Whistle Stops and Waterways

Groups of 12 - 24. £22.95 per person

Available Monday to Friday
Telephone 01797 253838


Arrive at Bodiam Station in time to take the 11.45 steam train to Northiam where you’ll alight and make your way down the 400m footpath to Bodiam Boating Station. Bodiam Boating Station is a family run business offering boat cruises, kayak and rowing boat hire and camping. Sharing the site is Lime Wharf Cafe, where you will sit in delightful surroundings and enjoy a Ploughmans lunch and hot beverage.
Once replenished, you will be invited to join our captain aboard the M.V. Dannie Lee, our ex-Royal Navy Lifeboat. If you are lucky, you might spot a Kingfisher or white Barn Owl as you journey slowly along the River
Rother, taking in all that this High Weald AONB has to offer.
You will arrive at Bodiam Castle by 2pm, where you will disembark, giving you plenty of time to explore this 14th Century National Trust treasure.

Swords, Shields and Passing Fields

Groups of 15+ £26.66 per person
Telephone 01424 775705

Battle Abbey

Arriving between 10.00am and 11.00am you’ll step into England’s story with a morning visit to Battle Abbey, site of the Battle of Hastings. Discover the fascinating story behind one of the most famous dates in England’s history and experience the atmospheric battlefield and abbey ruins.
See the spot where King Harold is commonly believed to have fallen, then enjoy the peace and tranquillity of the newly restored Duchess of Cleveland’s walled fruit garden. Explore the hands-on exhibition and watch the introductory film, bringing alive the dramatic Norman Conquest. Take a break in the café during your visit, where each group member will receive a 10% discount off non alcoholic drinks and café purchases.
A 1pm departure from Battle Abbey will allow sufficient time for your group to travel to the Kent & East Sussex Railway station at Northiam, to catch the 1.45pm steam train to Bodiam, which returns to Tenterden at 3.10pm.
Your party will enjoy a Ploughman’s lunch on the return trip from Bodiam, while the scenery and stunning countryside of the Rother Valley rolls by the window. Arrive in Tenterden still with time to optionally explore the historic high street with its wonderful collection of independent shops.
Please contact the Railway in the first instance first to book your train on 01580 765155, and then contact Battle Abbey (Monday to Thursday) to complete the package booking.

Group Visits 2016As a GTO, if you're looking to combine a visit to another attraction in the area you'll find we've probably done the leg work for you! We currently have eight joint packages agreed with our tourism partners to make your choices simpler and booking even easier! Please have a browse through the packages below and if you'd like to speak to knowledgeable member of the Railway's booking team we're always available seven days a week.
Mon - Fri 9 - 5, weekends 9 - 1,   Telephone 01580 765155

Bodiam Boating Station

Whistle Stops and Waterways - more information

Battle Abbey

Swords, Shields & Passing Fields - more information

Old Dairy Brewery

Ales and Rails - more information

Wildlife Heritage Foundation

A Ride on the Wild Side - more information

Stevenson Brothers

Reins & Trains - more information

Great Dixter House

Gardens and Guards - more information

Biddenden Vineyards

Vines, Wines & Railway Lines - more information

The Chapel Down Winery

Cream & Steam Away - more information

Ales and Rails

Groups of 15 to 20. From £31.50 per person

Available Saturday and Thursday when trains are running.
Book through K&ESR only 01580 765155

Old Dairy

The Old Dairy Brewery is nestled deep in the heart of the ‘Garden of England’ just moments from the High Street in the picturesque market town of Tenterden in Kent. With glorious views over rolling countryside, the 30 barrel brewery is housed in two converted World War II Nissen buildings next to the Kent & East Sussex Steam Railway.
The ales range from extremely quaffable best bitters, pale ales, stouts and IPA’s to an excellent array of seasonal brews. Great delight is taken in brewing the more challenging Imperial Russian Stouts, Double Hopped IPA’s, Fresh Hop beers, Wild Hop beers, vintage beers and historic recipe beers. The brewing process uses only the finest malts and hops, most of which are grown in the county.
The ‘Ales and Rails’ tours can be enjoyed in two ways;
Option 1 - £32.50 per person. Arrive at Tenterden Station and park for free. Start your guided tour of the brewery at 11.30am which lasts around an hour and a half. Enjoy tastings and have time to spend in the brewery shop where you’ll receive a 10% discount on purchases. Then stroll a few yards in time to take the 1.15pm steam departure where at your reserved seats a delicious Ploughmans Lunch will be served. The return trip to Bodiam is almost two hours, arriving back to Tenterden at 3.10pm.
Option 2 - £31.30 per person. As above but start your guided tour of the brewery at 1.45pm. Then stroll a few yards in time to take the 3.35pm steam departure where at your reserved seats a delicious Cream Tea will be served. The return trip to Bodiam is almost two hours, arriving back to Tenterden at 5.30pm.

A Ride on the Wild Side

Groups of 15+ £49.50 per person

Visit the Wildlife Heritage Foundation website

AWOTWS 570An exciting new experience for groups was announced in September 2013 by the Kent & East Sussex Railway and the Wildlife Heritage Foundation (WHF), a taste of African Safari in Kent!!!

For the first time groups can encounter the Wildlife Heritage Foundation’s 50+ Big Cats as part of a unique and exclusive package with the Railway. As a centre of excellence for conservation and breeding, the WHF normally limits entry to those on a special package, for example, a ‘Ranger for the Day’ or an ‘Overnight stay in a Luxury Lodge’ experience.

The attractions have released eighteen dates for 2015. Available on most Wednesdays between April and October the day will start when your group arrives at the WHF near Headcorn. A welcome talk with refreshments will provide an introduction about the amazing work carried out by the Sanctuary before getting a chance to see these beautiful animals up close. When touring the 38-acre site your guide will explain the complexity of managing the attraction and highlight the challenges faced on a daily basis by Big Cats both in captivity and in the wild along with the intricacies of the European Endangered Species Programmes and how they operate to help save the World’s Endangered Big Cats from extinction.

Following your visit to the WHF your coach will deliver you to the Kent & East Sussex Railway in time to enjoy a cooked lunch before taking the 3.40pm steam departure for a 50-minute gentle ride to Bodiam.
The group visit is for a minimum of 15 people and a maximum of 53 people.

The experience is £49.50 per person to include welcoming refreshments at the WHF and a cooked lunch on arrival at the Kent & East Sussex Railway, Tenterden Station.
To book contact the Kent & East Sussex Railway on 01580 765155.


2015 dates

All Wednesdays
Dates displayed in green are booked

APRIL 8 15
MAY 13 20 27
JUNE 3 10 17 24
AUGUST 5 12 19  26
SEPTEMBER 2 9 16  23 30



Coaches should arrive at the WHF at 11am and will depart at 2pm for the Kent & East Sussex Railway in Tenterden where there is free coach parking.  
2.15 Arrive Tenterden Station, lunch prior to the 3.35pm steam departure to Bodiam.Depart Bodiam Station by coach approx 4.25pm.4 cats



As 'A Ride on the Wild Side' is a fairly new experience we will list the questions you are asking with answers below. Please don't hesitate to contact us with your questions.


Q. What is the cooked lunch?

A. Chicken and Mushroom Pie or Steak and Ale Pie......and for vegetarians......Roasted Vegetable and Cheese Sauce Pie (All served with roast potatoes and vegetables). Fruit Crumble Cheesecake or Lemon Tart. Followed by a cup of tea or coffee.

Q. Is there coach parking at both venues?

A. YES, there is free coach parking at the WHF and Tenterden Station.

Q. Is the experience suitable for disabled visitors?

A. The tour of the WHF park is not confined to pathways, there is a need to cover closely mowed grass areas which are soild in dry periods but naturally can become more difficult on or following wet days. Visitors who use a wheelchair will be advised about accessibility by the tour guide on the day. All facilities at the Railway have been designed with elderly, infirm, disabled and wheelchair users in mind. See here for more details.

Q. Are there benches or is there seating throughout the tour?

A. Yes, there are benches, picnic tables and shelters with seating around the site.