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A family firm with an ethos of honesty and integrity. Our passion for delivering quality escorted holidays by rail at great value fares along with consistently excellent customer service has stood us in good stead for over 40 years.

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Monday - Friday, 9am to 5pm

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Kent & Sussex Autumn Steam Explorer

We stay beside the River Medway in the historic county town of Maidstone on this fascinating Autumn break featuring the wonderful 'Giants of Steam' event and visits to SEVEN steam venues including THREE private steam charters.

View Dates & Book

5 days from £669



Thursday 13 October 2022



  • Giants of Steam Gala at the Bluebell Railway

  • Private charter at the Bredgar and Wormshill Light Railway

  • Kent & East Sussex Railway and loco collections

  • Colonel Stephens Museum, Tenterden

  • Romney Hythe & Dymchurch Railway – the world’s smallest public railway

  • Private Charter at the unique Sittingbourne & Kemsley Steam Railway

  • The Spa Valley Railway

  • Private Charter at The Lavender Line


Also included in your Tour Fare:

  • 4 nights’ bed & breakfast plus 1 light lunch

  • Rail travel & seat reservations from your Home Station to Tour Base (Standard or First Class)

  • Rail & coach travel, with transfers as described

  • All excursions and admissions as detailed

  • Services of experienced Railtrail Tour Manager


Travel from your home station to Maidstone and after depositing luggage at the Travelodge Maidstone Central we commence with an afternoon visit to the Bredgar and Wormshill Light Railway, for our first private charter of the tour. Our visit also includes a chance to see the traction engines, a steam roller, vintage cars, miniature locos, and a model railway.


Our morning begins with a private coach transfer to the Bluebell Railway - Britain's very first standard gauge preserved steam railway which is holding their Giants of Steam Autumn Gala. Here we have individual day rover tickets affording multiple return journeys along the length of the line including time to view the wonderful locomotive collection at Sheffield Park and the historic station at Horsted Keynes, which has featured many times in films and television period dramas. Our visit includes a guided tour Sheffield Park Station including the museum, steam works and loco shed. After our visit to "The Bluebell" our private coach transfers us to back Maidstone There are many varied opportunities to obtain an evening meal and to socialise with new friends. You are welcome to accompany your Tour Manager to his chosen venue if you wish.



Today we visit two of Kent's finest heritage railways, commencing at the beautiful Kent & East Sussex Railway where we take the steam train journey from Tenterden to Bodiam and return. We break our journey on the return at Rolvenden to view the locomotive collection. We also include time to enjoy lunch at leisure and to look around at Tenterden station, including entrance to the Colonel Stephens Museum who built this and many other light railways. This afternoon, we continue by coach to Hythe for a journey on the superb Romney Hythe & Dymchurch Railway - the world's smallest public railway (15" gauge). The exhilarating journey takes us to Dungeness then returning as far as New Romney to view the locomotives and model railway. Our coach returns us to Maidstone where the evening is free for you to dine at leisure.



A short road journey brings us to the Spa Valley Railway where we have ample time for a steam ride on the 5 miles route to Eridge and to view the locomotive and rolling stock collection in the historic, original, 1886 shed at Tunbridge Wells West station. We can also take a second diesel hauled run along the line. In the afternoon we take the short journey to Isfield station, home of the Lavender Line we enjoy a tour of the site and a light lunch of sandwiches, crisps, sausage rolls and a beer before our private charter on the 2-mile run through the Wealden countryside at this very friendly standard gauge line. We also have the rare opportunity to see Riley's miniature railway running, hopefully with a steam engine in operation and see some miniature traction engines in steam.

B, L


On our final day of steam we enjoy a private charter at the unique Sittingbourne & Kemsley Railway. Having been close to closure it is reassuring to be able to visit the unique 760 mm gauge line at this paper mill site - a true industrial light railway. After our visit to Sittingbourne we commence our homeward journeys.


B=Breakfast, L=Lunch


Travelodge Hotel, Maidstone

The Travelodge Maidstone Central Hotel is riverside, a short walk from the High Street shops and restaurants. The hotel has a bar and café restaurant, where we will take our buffet-style full English breakfast. The comfortable bedrooms are en-suite with TV and coffee & tea making facilities. Low cost evening meals are available at the hotel as an optional extra. Single travellers have sole occupancy of a double room.



Fare Region



London: Terminal



Greater London



South of England



East Anglia



South West



Heart of England









North East



North West



South Wales



North Wales






*Please note: Some local and regional train services are Standard Class only, so First Class ticket holders will travel in standard class accommodation for these sections of journeys.


Join & Leave at Hotel £669


No tour discount for holders of National Railcards


Single Traveller Supplement £150


4 nights’ bed & breakfast plus 1 light lunch

Rail travel & seat reservations from your Home Station to Tour Base (Standard or First Class)

Rail & coach travel, with transfers as described

All excursions and admissions as detailed

Services of experienced Railtrail Tour Manager

Important – Please select the number of passengers before proceeding to ‘Book Now’

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Contact Us
Railtrail Tours Limited
21 The Smithfield Centre, Leek
Staffordshire Moorlands, ST13 5JW
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