Tunbridge Wells West to Groombridge Service with visiting Steam Locomotive No. 52322!

Sunday 27th & Monday 28th May 2018

Spa Valley Railway » All Events

Visit the Spa Valley Railway over the Bank Holiday Weekend and enjoy a train ride behind Victorian Lancashire & Yorkshire Steam Locomotive No. 52322!

Due to Network Rail engineering works only the line between Tunbridge Wells West & Groombridge will be available for use on Sunday 27th & Monday 28th May, with no services operating to/from Eridge.

We will be operating to Eridge on Saturday 26th May with a standard Green timetable and 52322.

However, we will still be operating steam trains on these days, so join us for a trip through the High Weald countryside to a special timetable. Book online to save queues on the day, the fares listed in our booking system are the same online as they will be on the day, these are standard unlimited travel Tunbridge Wells West to Groombridge only prices. 

Trains depart Tunbridge Wells West at: 10:30, 12:00, 13:15, 14:30 and 15:45.

Customers that are booked on Sunday and Monday's dining services are being contacted as soon as possible but the following information applies:
• Customers that are booked on Sunday's High Weald Belle, this service will no longer depart from Eridge and will instead depart from Tunbridge Wells West at 13:15.
• Customers that are booked on Monday's Cream Tea, this service will now depart from Tunbridge Wells West at 15:45.

A full working timetable can be downloaded here

Lancashire & Yorkshire Locomotive No. 52322
This locomotive was built in 1896 by the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway Horwich Works. At over 120yrs old the engine is still going strong and the visit to the Spa Valley Railway will be the first time this engine has ever been in the South of England.

Orignally numbered 1300 and then 12322 when owned by the London Midland & Scottish Railway, the now British Railways black engine and numbered 52322 owned by Andy Booth will certainly be a great addition to our railway for its visit. The locomotives first operating day will be on Saturday 5th May to a Green timetable. 

Data profile of Lancashire & Yorkshire Locomotive No. 52322
• Wheel diameter: 5’ 1”
• Length: 48’ 6”
• Loco weight: 42 long tons 11 cwt
• Total weight: 69 long tons 3 cwt
• Fuel type: Coal
• Boiler pressure: 180 psi
• Cylinders: Two, inside
• Cylinder size: 18” x 26”
• Valve gear: Joy valve gear
• Loco brake: Vacuum
• Train brakes: Vacuum
• Tractive effort: 21,130lbf
• Operator: Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway
• Power classification: LMS & BR: 3F
• Number: 1300 (L&Y) , 12322 (LMS) , 52322 (British Rail)

Our principle intermediate station, although on this occassion the terminus on 6th & 7th May! Alight here to visit Groombridge Place Gardens & Enchanted Forest and also the delightful village divided between Kent & Sussex. Our station is newly constructed as the original station was demolished to make way for a new housing development in the 1990s, what you see today is the work of truly dedicated volunteers who have spent thousands of hours developing Groombridge into the wonderful station that we have today. Please do visit the restored Old Station Building which is now used jointly by ourselves as a Ticket Office and also the home of our Admin team plus Withyham Parish Council.

Known as one of the sunniest spots on the railway and also the crossing point for trains, you can enjoy a snack or drink whilst savouring in the past at our country station.

What to see in Groombridge:
• Groombridge Place & Enchanted Forest
• The Junction Inn
• The Crown Inn
• Walks to Harrison’s Rocks
• Join the Forest Way to the historic villages of Withyham & Hartfield (Winnie the Pooh Country)
St Thomas’ Church of 1884 

High Rocks
The smallest however probably the most picturesque station on our line, built from scratch and opened in 1998 following the closure of the original halt in the 50s, serves the fantastic High Rocks themselves and the delightful Inn.

High Rocks Halt is actually set in the gardens of the High Rocks Inn. This is an ideal place to sit and watch the trains go by whilst enjoying a drink in the landscaped gardens. A very unique station in a beautiful location, one stop on your journey you must make!

These date back millions of years, acres of breath taking sandstone rocks are linked with eleven bridges. You can also enjoy the High Rocks Inn and function complex, plus access to the High Weald countryside and woodland footpaths.

Tunbridge Wells West (for Royal Tunbridge Wells)
Since 1606 visitors have been coming to Royal Tunbridge Wells to experience the Chalbeayte Spring.

Its chance discovery by Lord North, who was returning to London after a three month stay in the county, lead to the growth of Royal Tunbridge Wells and also the famous Pantiles.

The news of Lord Norths discovery soon spread around and in 1629 the first royal visitor to the town became Queen Henrietta Maria, wife of King Charles 1, who stayed in the Wells for six weeks.

In 1909 King Edward VII officially recognised the popularity of the town with its many royal visitors, which included his mother, Queen Victoria, and granted the town its "Royal” prefix.

Today the town is still full of elegance and its original charm and the Spa Valley Railway takes you right to its Western edge, just a few minutes walk from the Pantiles.

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