Tanfield Railway
Speciality Museums
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Saturday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
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About
The Tanfield Railway, the World's oldest railway dating back to 1725, is a wonderful day out for all the family, whatever the weather. Just sit back and enjoy the beautiful scenery as steam drifts past your vintage carriage in a truly yesteryear atmosphere, when lifes pace was less hurried. Trains operate every Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday throughout the year, plus Thursdays and Saturdays during the school Summer holidays. Make sure to break your journey at Causey Arch and take a walk across the World's oldest surviving railway, built in 1725 to transport coal from the Durham Coalfields to the River Tyne. Also, a short stroll from Andrews House station, is the engineering base of the railway at Marley Hill. Here you can get up close to our working and stored locomotives within the World's oldest working engine shed, built in 1854. Catering facilities are located at Andrews House station, Pontop Canteen at Marley Hill and Tommy Armstrong's tea room at East Tanfield station.
Suggested duration
2-3 hours
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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4.5
422 reviews
Excellent
304
Very good
90
Average
14
Poor
5
Terrible
9

Robin N
Hartlepool, UK1,399 contributions
Oct 2022
Called in here right at the end of the Summer 2022 season. It was memorable as it was very wet outside but in both of the cafes there was a lovely atmosphere and it was WARM.
I had a tea and a piece of cake ( curiously called 'Cutting cake') at £3.50 (phew) and a tea £1.70.
I was able to walk around the stock site and take photos - I dont think much had moved since my last visit. Because I like this railway a lot, I have joined the Friends and am not against doing some painting for them.
The train was those Victorian carriages with very hard seats! The staff were very friendly. I was full of sympathy to station staff walking around in sodden greatcoats (why??)
Written 28 October 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

griswald
12 contributions
Oct 2022
Whie i was in the area visiting Beamish Museum i decided to go and have a look at
the Tanfield Railway which is very close by.
It was a wednesday and i knew there would be no trains running i thought it would
be interesting to see what was there.
I spoke to a really nice gentleman whose name was Colin who said i was welcome
to have a look round the site as long as i was careful where i was walking due to any
trip hazards etc.
After a look round i was surprised at the amount of locos and rolling stock awaiting
restoration. A mammoth task indeed.
Colin said to come to the engine shed when i came back and he gave me a tour round and the history of the site and each loco.
I would love to return when it is an operating day and will have to stay over as i live
a good 3hr drive away.
If you are visiting the north east and are interested in old raiways and industrial heritage then this is a must
Written 14 October 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Claire W
Sunderland, UK121 contributions
Aug 2022
Absolutely brilliant experience, friendly and exceptionally knowledgeable volunteers, beautiful trains and rolling stock. The day I visited the steam trains weren’t in use obviously due to the exceptionally dry weather and the risk of sparks in the tinder dry vegetation. Although it is possible to book a private carriage on the train I found chatting to my fellow passengers totally added to the experience.
Causey Arch and the walking trails are beautiful and the cheese scones from the cafe worth the trip alone!
Written 12 September 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Ken J
Birmingham, UK1,075 contributions
Aug 2022
I just want to say that a visit here continues to be a great experience with such sincere and knowledgeable people and a large collection of rolling stock. They welcome your questions and most of the site is open to the public and if not you can always ask someone. Catch the train and support this excellent railway, stop off at Causey Arch if you have the time, and their second hand book shop is definitely worth a visit
Written 7 September 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Geoff. Hewitt
37 contributions
Aug 2022
Visited on the Sunday before a trip to Beamish. Nice people, who didn't struggle too much with my Lankysheer accent, and an enjoyable ride on an unusual train. Only four stars because steam engines were not running, but the reason was obvious (everything was tinder dry and the undergrowth was very near to the track) and we will certainly be going again ASAP. You are free to wander around the site, and see the wide collection of industrial tank engines and even one or two industrial electric locomotives and diesels.
Written 22 August 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

_carolnicholson2112
County Durham, UK9 contributions
Jun 2022
Booked Afternoon Tea as a surprise and we had a fabulous day.

Staff are very helpful, friendly and dedicated. Afternoon Tea was delicious, never ending cups of tea/coffee served by 2 lovely ladies.

An added bonus was that we could change carriage after our Afternoon Tea and hop on and off at each stop to enjoy the walks, etc and facilities/shops at each station.

Would recommend Tanfield Railway for an enjoyable day out, even if you don't sample the Afternoon Tea.

Enjoyable for all age groups and warmly welcomed by all staff members :-)

Thank you :-)
Written 19 June 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Ruthadie09
Newton Aycliffe, UK43 contributions
Jun 2022 • Family
I’ve never even heard of this place, let alone visited so our trip (me + 6 year old) held very little in terms of expectations.

The railway has 4 stops, tanfield, sunniside, adams house and another one. Tanfield and adams house being the slightly bigger stations. All have car parks and you can jump on at any point, it’s probably about 30 mins from one end to another. They have a small storage area with older carriages at adams house which is worth a look.

You can’t buy food on the train; but can at any of the stations, and you’r fine to take it with you,

We went for a teddy bears picnic and we enjoyed it, scenery is beautiful and it’s easy to fill a few hours; you can also walk from one station to the next relatively easily.

Staff all very friendly. Pre-book online to save money!
Written 5 June 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Dawn M
Newcastle upon Tyne, UK7 contributions
May 2022 • Couples
I booked afternoon tea as a birthday gift for my mother! There were 5 of us in the party so we were on a table for 4 and a table for 2!
The set up was lovely! Nice china cups and plates and the finger sandwiches we’re waiting for us when we boarded the carriage! Dorothy was our server and she was such a lovely, helpful friendly lady! Nothing was too much bother! She was topping up our tea cups as well as serving our wonderful selection of cakes and scones!
We will definitely do this again
Written 15 May 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Louise G
1 contribution
May 2022 • Family
Would highly recommend afternoon tea :-)
The food was beautiful and the service onboard was brilliant.
Afternoon tea on the train was something I'd never done before but would definitely do again in the future.
Written 1 May 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Dave
North Shields, UK4 contributions
Apr 2022 • Couples
Visited today, 24/04/2022, for afternoon tea, tremendous people who volunteer and operate this magnificent attraction.
The staff are so friendly and helpful especially Dorothy who was most welcoming as were the two ladies at the cafe, customer service par excellance.
The high tea was scrumptious and beautifully served by Alison who continually looked after all the guests with copious amounts of tea, coffee and soft drinks as required.
I cannot praise these people enough, what an excellent attraction run by inspired people.
Written 26 April 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Tanfield Railway (Gateshead) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go

Frequently Asked Questions about Tanfield Railway

Tanfield Railway is open:
  • Sat - Sun 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

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