Do: Cakes and trains – Part 1

On Saturday we spent a truly wonderful day enjoying the sunshine, eating delicious cake, travelling in style and making new friends

We’ve been members of the Loughborough branch of the Clandestine Cake Club for over a year now – so we were super excited when we were invited to be involved in one of the launches for the club’s first recipe book

The club’s mission statement is simply: Bake, Eat and Talk about Cake

Our day started at the Leicester North station on the heritage line of the Great Central Railway, where we caught an old diesel train with Clandestine Cake Club founder Lynn Hill and local organiser Janet Currie

Leicester North sign, Great Central Railway

Great Central Railway ticket Lynn Hill on the Great Central Railway

The train took us past some lovely Leicestershire scenery but we were all chatting so much that we only really looked up to take in the beautiful Swithland Reservoir

It was lovely to spend time with Lynn in such a relaxing environment

Along the way B and Lynn discussed the quality of ingredients versus their cost (sparked by the horsemeat scandal!) and how lucky Leicester is to have such a vibrant food market

Quorn and Woodhouse, Great Central Railway

Fire buckets

The Quorn and Woodhouse station has a 1940s theme – and is suitably decked out in wonderful vintage furniture and other items

We popped into the NAAFI Cafe for a cup of tea and more chatting – this time joined by another member Amy Watkins

The Cafe had been a previous location for the Loughborough CCC – and had inspired Janet’s Choo Choo Chai Cake, which is featured in the new book

Quorn and Woodhouse, Great Central RailwayCafe menu, NAAFI Cafe, Great Central RailwaySteam train on the Great Central Railway

Lynn talked a little more about why she set up the club and how it’s grown hugely since the first meet up in Leeds

She said how surprised she’s been by the positive reaction and just how big it’s got – but at the same time revealed herself to be a very clever woman, who know what she wants and is extremely social-networking savvy!

We loved that she was so keen to highlight that being retired doesn’t mean sitting around reading the newspaper – it’s actually a great opportunity to take on a project you really love (and you might even end up with a book deal!)

With time ticking on toward the book launch, Lynn and Janet jumped into Amy’s car and headed to Loughborough… while we continued along the railway tracks – this time by steam train!

Steam train on the Great Central Railway

B’s written about her love for train travel on the blog before – but there’s something particularly magical about travelling by steam – especially when you go under bridges and see the steam billowing past your window

And it was E’s first ever time!

When we arrived at Loughborough Station we couldn’t resist poking our heads around the station – and into the First Class dining cars waiting to depart…

First class dining car, Great Central RailwaySign in Ladies Waiting Room, LoughboroughThe Lady magazineLoughborough, Great Central RailwayLoughborough, Great Central Railway

And then it was just the short stroll to the bookshop for cake…

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17 thoughts on “Do: Cakes and trains – Part 1

  1. PJ says:

    What a great experience! There’s a certain nostalgia that’s captured perfectly by steam trains (even though I’ve never been on one!).

  2. Lynn Hill says:

    I had a lovely time. What great pictures.

  3. thesecateur says:

    Fabulous photos, and a great record of a lovely day – can’t wait for Part 2!

  4. alison walker says:

    Love your blog and loved your cake too… hope you put a pic and recipe on your site soon:-)

    • makedospend says:

      Thanks Alison – lovely to have you on board! (Pun completely intended)

      Cake recipe will be posted later this week, so be sure to check back :)

  5. What a lovely idea for a club! Sounds like a perfectly relaxing and indulgent day out too, with such inspiring people! :)

  6. This sounds (and looks) like so much fun!

  7. Nick says:

    The photographs on your website are beautiful. Do you take them with a SLR camera or a mobile phone ?

    • makedospend says:

      Thanks Nick :)

      We do a combination! The photos in the post were all taken with a pretty old DSLR – but we also use film cameras, compact digitals and our phones (we’re pretty click happy!)

  8. […] We alighted at our destination and headed off for a cup of wartime tea.  We discussed the way that the Clandestine Cake Club has grown through people interacting on Twitter, Facebook and blogs.  The cake club ethos is convivial, social and to do with meeting as strangers, sharing food and conversations, and leaving as friends. We learnt that Elle and Becca started their blog as a result of chatting at a Clandestine Cake Club event over a year before and have became firm friends through writing it. Becca and Elle took photos – you can see them and read more about this part of our day here. […]

  9. thesecateur says:

    Finally – I have done my response to the day, you can catch it here – Hope you like it!

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