You’ll meet your guide at 9:30am at Tenterden Station to start the tour of our Carriage & Wagon workshop. Here you’ll discover vehicles being restored, overhauled and those undergoing brief maintenance.
Next it’s a short train ride to Rolvenden Station and the Locomotive works. A tour of the yard is followed by a fascinating look around the workshop where you’ll see locos in various states of repair or those undergoing examinations or boiler washouts. Additionally there's an opportunity to see ongoing restoration like the fascinating 4253 project. There’s the opportunity to ask questions throughout the tour and to take photographs at every location.
The tour lasts around 2½ hours and concludes at Rolvenden Station. As an all-day TravelCard is included in the price of this experience, you will have the time to enjoy a ride around the Railway or simply return to Tenterden.
Our popular Signalbox Experience Days are held at Northiam Signalbox on selected dates. These exclusive experiences offer the opportunity to work alongside one of our experienced signalmen and, under their supervision, you'll be given the opportunity to operate the levers that control the signals and points, signalling trains into and out of the station, as well as learning about some of the history and different methods of railway signalling.
At lunchtime, you'll join one of the trains when it stops at Northiam and enjoy a complimentary ploughman’s lunch on board the train as it makes its way to Bodiam and return. During the journey, your family and friends have the opportunity to meet up and enjoy lunch with you (an additional charge applies for family & friends lunch and travel options, which must be booked in advance).
An exclusive opportunity to spend a day with a knowledgeable guide behind the scenes at England's finest rural light railway.
Upon arrival at Tenterden Station you'll meet five like-minded enthusiasts and your guide for the day. Starting with introductions and a safety briefing, Hi-Viz vests will be issued for appropriate use during the day. Following this, there's a visit to the Tenterden-based Carriage and Wagon workshop. Here you'll see craftsmen at work on the current restoration projects together with regular maintenance and ongoing repairs.
The first train departure of the day will take you to Rolvenden Station, home to the Railway's locomotive engineering workshops. Here you'll get up close and personal with our fleet of locomotives and have unique access to see staff working with heavy engineering that keeps the Railway's locos rolling. A tour of the Rolvenden site includes the loco yard and engineering workshop. Then it's all aboard this train back to Tenterden for a visit to the Colonel Stephen's museum then onto an inclusive lunch in our Refreshment Rooms.
Following lunch we take you on the 2:20pm departure from Tenterden to experience the whole 21-mile round trip.
Arriving back at Tenterden at 4:15pm there's time for questions and a de-briefing before the day ends at approximately 4:45pm.
If you're looking for a more exclusive, longer driving experience than we offer on our other courses, then our Advanced Driving Course is the right one for you. This whole day experience is available to just two people per day and you'll complete two full round trips of the entire railway. You'll be driving on one trip and firing on the other, hauling a passenger (or freight by special arrangement) train between Tenterden and Bodiam - 21 miles of driving!
Your day will start at Tenterden Town Station where you'll be welcomed by our friendly, experienced team for a short introduction to the railway and safety briefing. Moving to the platform, your train will be waiting and after familiarisation with the controls, you'll take charge of your train for its journey through the beautiful Kent and Sussex countryside. On return to Tenterden, you'll enjoy lunch in our restaurant before your second trip over the line.
Throughout the day, our experienced footplate staff will accompany you and coach you in the art of being a driver and fireman as well as answering any questions that you may have. For a small additional fee, your friends and family are able to join you on your very special day and can ride on the train that you are driving or firing! This is obviously only available on trains formed of passenger stock!
It is not essential that you have previously completed one of our other railway experience courses before undertaking the Advanced Course, but you may find it beneficial to have done so.
Our experienced staff are keen to ensure your safety at all times, but in the unlikely event of an emergency you may need to leave the footplate quickly, and possibly jump from height to the ground without assistance. It is therefore essential that you have the ability and the fitness level to do this. If you are in any doubt please discuss your concerns with one of our staff.
WHAT IS INCLUDED
This is a unique opportunity to view the 21-mile line from a totally different perspective. You will travel in the cab of the DMMU with the driver on one of our scheduled passenger trains along the line. During the trip your driver will be happy to answer any questions you may have about the line, operation of the controls or the techniques employed in driving a Diesel Mechanical Multiple Unit.
Whilst sharing a 'driver's eye view' of signals, points and stations you're sure to have a memorable experience! The approximate journey time is 1hr 50min. The experience starts and ends at Tenterden Station
This experience is available on many days throughout the year, a list of available dates will be sent to you for a choice of date & time to be selected. Our DMMU cab rides are open to anyone over the age of 18 with no upper age limit.