Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway

Type:Steam Railway

Ravenglass, Cumbria, CA18 1SW

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Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway

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About

Known affectionately as La’al Ratty meaning ‘little railway’ in olde Cumbrian dialect, the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway is one of the oldest and longest narrow gauge railways in England. In April 1913 the original 3ft line closed and in 1915 the new 15in La’al Ratty was born. Our heritage steam engines transport passengers from Ravenglass, the only coastal village located in two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Lake District National Park and Frontiers of the Roman Empire Hadrians Wall, to Dalegarth for Boot some 210ft above sea level.

Ravenglass was once a bustling port and of great significance in Roman times. It is now widely regarded as the most southerly point in the unique defensive system developed in the days of Emperor Hadrian, the most famous of which - Hadrian’s Wall - crosses from the east coast at Wallsend to Bowness-on-Solway. Much of the original fort was destroyed but just a short distance from the station you can find yourself standing next to the external bathhouse where its remaining exterior walls still stand defiant. Today, Ravenglass is a tranquil village with a coastal feel and a Site of Special Scientific Interest. Pearl mussels were formerly found here but now the rivers Irt, Mite and Esk merge into an almost landlocked harbour providing fragile habitats for wildlife.

At the other end of the line sits Dalegarth for Boot Station. The little village is nestled in the heart of the Eskdale Valley and home to a working corn mill, real-ale pubs and a micro-brewery. The Woolpack Inn, at the foot of Hardknott Pass, serves great food, real ale and a warm welcome.

The line is seven miles long with a journey time of 40 minutes each way offering spectacular views over the estuaries and countryside with England’s highest mountains forming the backdrop. Our covered, half open and open top carriages provide the both comfort and views as you journey along the line. We offer wheelchair adapted carriages - please call us to book in advance. Carers travel free with a fare paying disabled passenger upon production of a PIP or DLA certificate.

There are great walks on offer from either end of the line as well as from the seven intermediate request stops. From Dalegarth Station, grab your camera and hiking boots and discover the Eskdale valley; from a gentle 2 mile stroll to St Catherine’s Church to the 2.7 mile amble to Stanley Ghyll Force. From Ravenglass, step back in time and find out about the history of the railway in the free museum, or venture out and explore the Roman Bath House and Ravenglass Beach. For more of a leg stretch, visit Muncaster Castle, ancient family seat of the Pennington family, home to colourful spring gardens, a Hawk and Owl centre, a celebrated ‘fool' and ghosts aplenty to keep visitors amused for hours. Just a stone’s throw away sits Wasdale, home to Britain’s deepest lake, highest mountain and smallest church.

For those who enjoy exploring by bike, the Eskdale Trail is an 8½ mile cycling route which starts from Dalegarth Station car park and goes down the valley ending at Ravenglass. Please remember to pre-book your bike on the train as space is limited.

Whatever your interests, there are plenty of options to enjoy an unforgettable day at Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway.

There is a café at either end of the line for both passengers and local residents to enjoy. The Turntable Café is built on the site of the original three foot gauge building on platform 1 at Ravenglass Station. There is a spacious seating area downstairs overlooking the platform, covered exterior seating and a large vaulted seating area upstairs, with exterior link to the children’s play area. The upstairs area can be reserved for children’s parties, celebrations or coach groups with seating for up to 50 persons. At the other end of the line, at Dalegarth Station, you will find Fellbites Café. Located over two levels, the upper floor overlooks the main platform enabling you watch the trains go back and forth. The menu is traditional with daily specials in the height of the season. Our fully licensed café even has its own on-site bakery for those tempting home-baked treats. Fellbites is open every day of the scheduled timetable. Dogs are welcome on the lower floor only. Free Wi-Fi is available.

Other facilities include a gift shop and outdoor play area at both stations.

The main season runs from March until October, however, we operate trains during November and December for Christmas through to New Year. 

Guide Prices

Ticket TypeTicket Tariff
4 Adults£63.00 per group
Adult Return£18.00 per adult
Adult Single£12.00 per adult
Child Return£12.00 per child
Child Single£8.00 per child
Family Return (1 adult & 2 children)£36.00 per family
Family Return (2 adults & 2 children or 1 adult & 3 children)£54.00 per family

Under 3's go free but they must have a ticket to travel.
Dog tickets are £1.50 however dogs are not permitted in 1st Class Observation Carriage

Facilities

Accessibility

  • Accessible Lift
  • Accessible to Wheelchair Users
  • Facilities for Hearing Impaired Visitors
  • Facilities for Visually Impaired Visitors
  • Parking Areas for Disabled Visitors
  • Ramp / Level Access
  • Toilets for Disabled Visitors
  • Wheelchairs available

Children & Infants

  • Baby changing facilities
  • Childrens Play Area

Establishment Features

  • Accept coach parties
  • Cater for groups
  • Dogs Accepted
  • First Aid
  • Printed Material in Foreign Languages

Parking & Transport

  • Coach Parking
  • Railway station within walking distance

Map & Directions

Road Directions

From M6 junction 36 follow the brown Western Lake District signs to Broughton-in-Furness, passing Newby Bridge on the A590 and turning right at Greenodd onto the A5092. From Broughton follow the A595 to Silecroft T junction (turn right) and beyond.

From M6 junction 40 follow the brown Western Lake District signs past Keswick and Bassenthwaite Lake on the A66 towards Cockermouth. Turn left at the Cockermouth roundabout onto the A5086. Follow the A5086 to Egremont where it joins the A595. Turn left for Ravenglass following the A595.

From Ambleside and Coniston, consider using the A593 passing through Torver before arriving at Broughton. From Windermere and Bowness take the A592 to Newby Bridge.

Various scenic routes offer spectacular journeys. From the central lakes consider the dramatic Wrynose and Hardknott passes route to Eskdale but be aware of the 1-in-3 ascents and descents, single track road and hairpin bends. Also look for Birker Fell, and the Corney Fell options on ordnance survey maps.

Post Code CA18 1SW for Ravenglass Station

Post Code CA19 1TF for Dalegarth for Boot Station

Public Transport Directions

Visit by train from Lancaster and Morecambe, Grange-over-Sands, Windermere, Preston, Carlisle and Oxenholme the Lake District - all key holiday destinations. Regular northern trains travel on the scenic Cumbrian Coast Line between Carlisle, Whitehaven and Barrow calling at Ravenglass every day. Plus, there is a Sunday service which stops at Ravenglass.

Save money with a through ticket: £4.00 off the normal combined adult fair, £2.00 off the child fare with even greater savings for railcard holders. You can buy these from station ticket offices or from conductors on the train.

Opening Times

* Our main season runs from March until October however we operate trains during November and December for Christmas through to New Year.

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