STEAM railway enthusiasts brought their teddy bears to Didcot to celebrate the opening of a new play park.

Before Hurricanes and Spitfires took to the sky at Didcot Railway Centre on Sunday in a special fly past, the ribbon was cut at the new play park on the site, next to the picnic area.

Young visitors were invited to bring their teddy bears to mark the opening of the park and the annual teddy bears' picnic.

The new facility was opened at about 12 noon by former Didcot mayor Scott Wilgrove.

During his time as mayor in 2014/15 Mr Wilgrove had nominated Didcot Railway Centre as his charity for the year and fundraised to have the railway-themed playpark built there.

Following his year in office Mr Wilgrove became a guard at the centre.

Ann Middleton, commercial manager at Didcot Railway Centre, which is next door to Didcot Parkway, said: "We thought it was very fitting to have Steve cut the ribbon, given his connection with the centre.

"We welcome this wonderful addition to our picnic area, which provides more for families to do and helps to make the centre more family-friendly.”

Funding for the play park was also raised from a community grant from Magnox Ltd, the nuclear decommissioning site license company, which has a centre at Harwell Oxford science centre.

Earlier this year Didcot Railway Centre Didcot Railway Centre celebrated its 50th anniversary.

The centre’s origins can be traced back to the Beeching cuts, when British Railways closed the depot based there in 1965.

Volunteers from the Great Western Society moved in from 1967, after negotiating a long lease, along with just three locomotives and a handful of carriages saved from the scrapheap.

It has since been transformed into a popular visitor centre, dedicated to showing people what travelling by rail was like in the heyday of Brunel’s Great Western Railway.

The centre is often used to shoot nostalgic railway scenes for movies including the Anna Karenina movie, which starred Jude Law and Keira Knightley.

Thousands of rail enthusiasts are expected at the centre next month, to see the nation’s favourite steam locomotive, Flying Scotsman.

The record-breaker will be at the rail centre during the three days of the August bank holiday weekend, from August 26 to August 28.

Demand for tickets is expected to be high.

For more information about the centre or its up and coming steam day this weekend visit