Book Now: THE POLAR EXPRESS™ Train Ride 2024
Leekbrook + S160

Drive A Train

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to drive a full size steam locomotive? Or do you know someone who has always dreamed of taking the controls of a historic locomotive? If so then a Footplate Experience Course is just the ticket !


These courses offer a unique experience that allow its participants to get up close and personal with a heritage locomotive. Experience the magic of a working steam locomotive as you climb aboard the footplate with our experienced crews, blow the whistle, shovel coal into the firebox, open the regulator and feel the power of steam as you become a Train Driver for the day whilst passing through the beautiful and scenic Churnet Valley. There is something to suit every level from the novice to an experienced enthusiast.

Why not treat yourself, or surprise someone you know, with a day that will never be forgotten? These experiences are available as a gift voucher and if desired the participant can upgrade their gift voucher to the next level.

All courses must be pre-booked.

On selected dates we run dedicated "Footplate Experience Days" with Regulator & Top Link courses available throughout the day.

We also offer experiences on the majority of the running days so please take a look at our calendar to get an idea of when we will have availability throughout the year. Feel free to contact us by phone on 01538 360522 by email on 

The office is open Monday to Friday between 1000 - 1600

Cauldon Lowe courses are run as separate courses, and are timed to suit your availability.

Regulator, Top Link and Top Link Plus courses are generally operated before the start of each day the train is running, normally from 0800 onwards.

Please Note:- Footplate courses take place during times when the railway is not carrying fare paying passengers.