With the Winter Village well established as a theme, the LEGO design team returned to an early festive favourite to take another look at the Holiday Train concept
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Following the disappointment of the fan community when confronted with last year’s 10249 Winter Toy Shop, anything with a hint of originality would be a step up for this year’s festive release. Sure enough, 10254 Winter Holiday Train may not be a new concept but is certainly a fresh take on the concept.
The engine is the first part of the train to be built, followed by the carriages. The level of improvement since 10173 Holiday Train a decade ago is clear, with modern build techniques completely elevating the set. There are drawbacks too, as the scope and ambition of the train has been reduced, with fewer and smaller carriages.
The platform is rather perfunctory – it works, but its inclusion seems unnecessary. The mini-build presents built alongside, however, are lovely little models and work really well. The fire engine is particularly well done with very few parts.
The engine has a lovely design and colour scheme, predominantly green with red and gold accents. It has an immediate festive feel, with just the right amount of detail. The smoke effect is well done with a few white bricks, and the use of a goblet on the end of a cone makes for inventive use of the piece.
The carriage that is home to the spinning Christmas tree works very well, with the mechanism simple enough to put together. The tree is one of the better versions that LEGO designers have tried, and appropriately it features a mini train around its base. This section of the train also includes space for the presents alongside the tree.
The passenger carriage is small but delightful, including a lamp sat on a table inside, with space for two minifigures. The exterior is simple but effective, with a lovely dark blue roof. The lanterns are a nice touch, these little additions add to the feel that a set like this intends to evoke.The train conductor minifigure is notable in that he captures the spirit of an old-fashioned ticket collector. The female passenger makes use of a torso from a licensed set, which doesn’t happen often, borrowing the Penguin’s jacket in a way that captures the winter feel well.
The size of the train itself has been hampered by the inclusion of the track. Although this is no doubt great for those new to LEGO train sets, track can be purchased separately if desired and may have been better left out in favour of more carriages, or a reduction in the rather hefty price tag.
This is a delightful set, with some nice techniques and a generally well put together, if not too remarkable, train. The platform and track would have been better removed to allow for a bigger train or more accessible price point, but it’s still a perfectly acceptable addition to the Winter Village collection.
This product was provided for review by the LEGO Group.