Summer Steam Up

Summer Steam Up

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June 18 @ 08:00 - 18:30
|Recurring Event (See all)

One event on 18/06/2023 at 08:00

Demonstration, Outdoor, Show/Display

See Five Magnificent Steam Locomotives at Summer Steam Up Event

Visit the Spa Valley Railway in Tunbridge Wells for their ‘Southern Steam Up’ event which will feature a magnificent line up of five steam locomotives on the weekend of 17 & 18 June 2023.

Commercial Manager at the Spa Valley Railway Jonnie Pay said: “We are delighted to have so many iconic steam engines at our ‘Southern Steam Up’ event which is also celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the formation of the Southern Railway.

“The event will have a Southern theme, with three iconic Southern region locomotives in action all weekend including two which are visiting especially for this event – one from the Bluebell Railway and the other all the way from the Isle of Wight Steam Railway.”

Steam Engines in action over the weekend:

South Eastern & Chatham Railway 0-6-0 O1 No. 65 (visiting courtesy of The Bluebell Railway)

Ivatt tank locomotive No. 41313 (visiting courtesy of Isle of Wight Steam Railway)

Caledonian Railway No. 828

Hunslet Austerity No. 2890 ‘Douglas’

Bulleid Pacific No. 34072 ‘257 Squadron’

The Southern locomotives are visiting locomotive No. 65 which was built at Ashford Works in 1898 and used to operate close to Tunbridge Wells West on the Hawkhurst Branch and Kent & East Sussex Railway. This is only the second time in preservation the locomotive has visited another heritage railway and the railway is extremely grateful to the Bluebell Railway for making this possible.

The second visiting locomotive is 1952 built Ivatt tank locomotive No. 41313 courtesy of the Isle of Wight Steam Railway, this is only the first time the locomotive has left the Isle of Wight since returning to steam in 2017.

The third Southern locomotive is the mighty Southern Railway’s Bulleid Pacific No. 34072 ‘257 Squadron’.

257 Squadron was built at Brighton Works by the Southern Railway to a design by Oliver Bulleid and was completed in April 1948. The locomotive was designed to and ran at over 100mph in regular service – making the Bulleid Pacific’s an icon of the Southern Railway.

34072 was preserved by Southern Locomotives Limited in 1984 and underwent a significant restoration from scrapyard condition, returning to service in 1990. The locomotive operated at the Swanage Railway until the early 2000’s when an overhaul was required. The locomotive returned to steam in 2017 and moved to the Spa Valley Railway in November 2022 where it is now based alongside fellow Bulleid Pacific 34053 ‘Sir Keith Park’.

Tickets for this histroric event include all day travel and passengers can hop off and marvel at the steam engines in the stations and hop back on to enjoy the scenery along the 5 mile line which crosses the Kent and East Sussex border between Tunbridge Wells West and Eridge with additional stations at High Rocks and Groombridge.

All details of our Summer Steam Up can be found here:

All locomotives will be operating an intensive service between Tunbridge Wells West and Eridge throughout the Saturday and Sunday and into the evening of Saturday 17th June.  Brake Van Rides will also feature as part of this event with the Queen Mary Brake Van in operation.

Dining Trains in Operation

On Saturday 17th June enjoy an evening train ride behind visiting SECR O1 No. 65 and another locomotive whilst either tucking into a Fish & Chip Supper (advance booking required) or enjoying a pint of real ale from bar car ‘Kate’ on the Real Ale Train.

Book in advance to enjoy the Kent Cheese Train on Sunday 18th June (Father’s Day).  While on board enjoy a selection of locally sourced cheeses, crackers and chutney whilst travelling through the High Weald countryside with either a bottle of cider or glass of wine.

Also on Sunday 18th June visitors can enjoy seeing a number of interesting stationary engines in action on the platform at Groombridge courtesy of The Sussex and Kent Weald Stationary Engine Group.   There is no charge to see this wonderfully restored pieces of engineering in action.

Discounts available for tickets purchased in advance online.  Family rover tickets £60, adult rover tickets £25 and £15 for children with discounts available for buying two-day rover tickets.

The O1 locomotive will also operate over the following weekend of 24th & 25th June alongside Caledonian Railway No. 828 on a special timetable featuring both Victorian locomotives!

Booking is now open at

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