The Churnet Valley Railway
A delightful journey through Staffordshire's hidden valley
The Churnet Valley Railway takes you on a journey back to the classic days of railway travel on a rural line that passes through beautiful countryside known as Staffordshire's "Little Switzerland".
Our picturesque stations offer lots of interest with a complete range of visitor facilities, and there's plenty more to see and enjoy along the way. In addition to the 11-mile return journey along the valley, there's a taste of contrasting moorland scenery on the 9-mile round trip over the steeply graded Cauldon branch to Ipstones Loop.
Kingsley & Froghall is an impressive replica North Staffordshire Railway-style station complete with award-winning Signals Tearoom open on all running days, Signals Souvenir Shop, Picnic Area and full disabled facilities. Only a short walk from the historic lime kilns and Froghall Wharf on the Caldon Canal. Customers are advised to start their journeys from Froghall as parking is far easier than at Cheddleton
Consall, set in a picturesque hamlet deep in the Churnet Valley, is the Railway's "jewel in the crown". Sharing the valley floor with both the Caldon Canal and the River Churnet, this sleepy rural station is full of Victorian charm. No vehicular access is permitted at this station, and passengers alighting at Consall are asked to respect the local countryside. There are numerous walks which start from Consall and enable you to walk back to Kingsley and & Froghall or to Cheddleton.
Cheddleton, the original home of the preserved railway with its impressive Grade II Listed Victorian Station, offers a small museum and is the location of our locomotive sheds. The Boat Inn , a local pub is near and St Edward's Church and Cheddleton Flint Mill are both within walking distance along the Caldon Canal towpath.
Leek, (construction not yet started) the original focal point of the Churnet Valley Line when part of theBritish Railways national network. Closed in 1970, and was demolished in 1973. Efforts are being made to re-open the line into this busy Market Town. A new station is proposed, south of the original station site and will be positioned alongside a canal marina, all as part of a development to enhance tourism in the Staffordshire Moorlands.
We received planning permission on the 12th April to allow the railway to extend its tracks back to Leek.
If you would like to find out how to get to any of the stations please go to our contact page and click on the station you wish to travel from
The Cauldon Lowe Branch
Opened to passenger services in November 2010, the Cauldon Lowe branch offers a contrasting experience to the Churnet Valley line. Currently trains operate over a 4.5 mile section from Leekbrook Junction to Ipstones Station Loop which takes visitors over typical moorland scenery with far-reaching views and extends the visitors jourey by another hour.
The branch line, which offers some of the steepest gradients in the country, was opened by the Churnet Valley Railway who acquired this line in 2009 and restored during 2010 with support from the enthusiastic volunteers.
Passengers are not currently able to alight from trains at Ipstones.