Eastbourne’s much loved mini-train will return to the seafront promenade in time for the Bank Holiday weekend. Dotto resumes its traditional route between Holywell Retreat and Sovereign Harbour from Saturday 27th May.
The hugely popular road train has become a key highlight of the town’s tourist season. Travellers can take a ride along any part of the prom and hop on or off at the key attractions such as Wish Tower Slopes, Eastbourne Pier, Fisherman's Green, Fort Fun and the Sovereign Centre.
The iconic mini-train came close to being scrapped in 2014 after Eastbourne Borough Council failed to find an operator to take it on. Stagecoach stepped in with a plan to run Dotto on a commercial basis with cheaper fares. Back then, Stagecoach introduced a simple £2 a ride fixed fare (£1 for children) and a £5 hop-on hop-off day ticket. This week they announced that the fares will remain the same for the third year in a row.
Stagecoach says that over 32,000 passengers climbed aboard Dotto last season – ten percent more than in 2014.
“We’re looking forward to another fantastic season” said Philip Norwell, managing director of Stagecoach South East. “Dotto isn’t just about getting from place to place – it’s about having fun and enjoying the seaside experience. As well as a must-do for visitors and tourists, it’s loved and supported by local people. Our staff have a real affection for Dotto too.”
For the Bank Holiday weekend Stagecoach are offering Eastbourne Herald readers a half price ride if they bring along their Dotto voucher printed in this week’s issue.
The first Dotto train was created back in 1962 by Ivo Dotto in Castelfranco Veneto, in the Treviso region of Italy. The Dotto family have been manufacturing tourist trains ever since and with their self steering carriages they’ve become the Rolls Royce of their kind.
Dotto will operate on Saturdays and Sundays from 27th May to 25th June and then every day from 1st July to 3rd September. Dotto also runs on Bank Holiday Monday 29th May. More information can be found on the Stagecoach website at stagecoachbus.com/dotto