Below are some FAQ's on how we are reopening the Railway to the new normal.
Is the Churnet Valley Railway Open during COVID-19?
Yes. We will be re-opening on Saturday 1st August and be operating at weekends and Wednesdays throughout all of August and September. We will reduce to weekend only services for all of October.
What Timetable Will You be Operating?
We will be working to a new timetable, offering a morning departure and afternoon departure each day. The first train will depart from Froghall at 10.30am, whilst the second train will departure from Froghall at 1.30pm.
Do I need to Pre-book?
Yes. In order to ensure we maintain social distancing as per the government guidelines, we need all tickets to be booked in advance.
Can you accept group bookings?
Yes. This needs to be advised at the time of booking, and you must ensure you stick to the government’s guidelines on social bubbles.
Are we able to get off during our journey?
No. At the current time we are unable to permit people to leave the train during their journey as we will be unable to guarantee your seat later in the day.
Are you offering All Day Tickets?
No. We will be operating a morning and an afternoon service, and your tickets will entitle you to travel on one of these services (decided at time of booking). To compensate for this we are offering 10% on all tickets purchased in advance.
What COVID Control Measures have you introduced?
- Enhanced cleaning
- Airport style booking in system
- One-way system through Booking Office / Temporary Shop / Tearoom
- Hand sanitiser provisions
- Contact less payments
- Guidance to your seats
- Dining Train fitted with screens between groups of seats
Do I have to wear a Face Mask?
Yes. It is currently law to wear a face mask whilst using public transport, which we are classified as despite being a heritage attraction. Exemptions are permitted for Under 11s, passengers with disabilities, those with breathing difficulties and anyone travelling with someone who relies on lip reading.
How Long Will The Journey Take?
Your journey will last just over 1hr 30 minutes from departure until your return.
Are toilets open on the trains?
Toilet facilities are available at Froghall station, and all toilets will be open where possible on the train. Please observe our normal procedure though of not flushing the toilets whilst the train is stood in the station.
Can you accommodate wheelchair users?
Due to the nature of our heritage coaches we at present cannot accommodate wheelchairs on board. If the user can be transferred from wheelchair to a seat on board, then we will assist where can. Should this situation change we will update when we are able to.
Will the service be steam hauled?
Yes. We aim to provide a steam locomotive for all our advertised services, subject to availability.
I have a voucher, how can I redeem this?
Yes. Please phone the office on 01538 360522 / e-mail.
I’m a shareholder / NSRC member. Am I able to use my usual discount?
Are you offering any of your usual discounts (HRA / Military / NHS / Railway)?
Are you running any special events in 2020?
Yes. The majority of our planned events have been cancelled for 2020, however we are looking to run our Borders Explorer specials on 7/8 November and our ever-popular Santa & Steam specials during the Christmas period.
Are any of the other stations open?
No. Cheddleton, Consall and Leek Brook Junction are to be closed to the public until further notice. This includes the engine sheds at Cheddleton.
Are dining services still running?
Yes. Most operating days a dining service will be available on the afternoon train. These must be pre-booked in advance, as no upgrades will be available on the day. Our dedicated dining coaches have been fitted with screen between groups of seats.
Are footplate courses running in 2020?
No. For the 2020 we have unfortunately had to cancel all footplate experiences in order to maintain social distancing. These will hopefully be re-introduced for the 2021 season.
Are dogs allowed on board these services?
What hours is the office open?
Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm.