South Devon Railway

South Devon Railway

The South Devon Railway is one of Devon's and the West Country's best loved tourist attractions and is the longest established steam railway in the south west. It is a seven mile former Great Western Railway branch line, built in 1872, which runs along the stunning valley of the River Dart between Buckfastleigh and Totnes.

We run steam trains with heritage rolling stock and offer a wonderful all day attraction for families and people of all ages. Ride the South Devon Railway and, while you are with us, you can visit the Totnes Rare Breeds Farm and Dartmoor Otters & Buckfast Butterflies. The museum itself is on the platform at Buckfastleigh station.

Visit website

  • Tiny

    Tiny, the only surviving broad gauge locomotive, is on loan to the SDR Museum from the National Railway Museum in York. Tiny stands on a section of original broad gauge track. 2018 sees Tiny's 150th birthday - watch out for details of the party!

  • Eating on the Move

    The SDRT Museum hosts a collection of railway tableware which give a fascinating insight into travel in a bygone era. The items range from knives, forks, spoons, plates, dishes and all the things that a diner would have used on the train or station restaurant, most from the GWR.

  • Ashburton station

    Today's South Devon Railway was the Totnes to Ashburton branch. The Totnes Quay line was built by the same company. We have an extensive display of photographs of the lines, and Chris Lamacraft's fine model of Ashburton station. Thanks to Totnes Image Bank and Peter Gray.

  • Ashley the Small Blue Tank Engine

    Ashley spent his working life at Exeter Gas Works, and yes - it really was blue! It came to the South Devon in 1969 and was restored to working order. Shunted into the museum in 2010 he now does a great job telling people how to drive a steam engine.

  • Catch a steam train on the South Devon

    The whole South Devon Railway is a museum piece, although our trains operate to modern standards. We run steam trains between Totnes and Buckfastleigh from the end of March to the end of October every year. Visit us to find how travel used to be!

Admission & prices

Admission to the museum is free, except on "Day Out With Thomas" weekends and certain other special events.

Opening dates: the museum is open every day that trains are running. A limited train service will run between Buckfastleigh and Staverton daily from 15 to 23 February. Trains then run every day from 14 March to 01 November. We regret that we are currently closed because of the coronavirus outbreak. We hope to reopen on 16 May 2020.

Museum opening times are at least 10.00am to 4.00pm, and longer depending on particular events and timetables. Check the South Devon Railway website at www.southdevonrailway.co.uk for details of train times and train fares. Entry to our museum is free, and we welcome well-behaved children and dogs. We aim to provide free children's activities on weekdays in the February and October half terms.

The railway and museum will be open from Boxing Day 2020 to 03 January 2021. We will be running a special timetable on those days - check our website for full details. From 27 December to 03 January there will be a free mince pie for every passenger!

Find us

A38 from both Exeter and Plymouth: take exits for Buckfastleigh. Totnes: A381 from Kingsbridge and Newton Abbot, A385 from Paignton.
Buses to Totnes and Buckfastleigh: call Traveline 0871 200 22 33.
Quarter mile walk from National Rail station, Totnes

Museum news

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Information

  • Parking available
  • Toilets On-Site
  • Wheelchair access
  • Cafe on-site
  • Childrens activities
  • Gift Shop

The South Devon Railway offers a good-value day out, with something for everyone. We welcome parties and can provide an interactive, stimulating and enjoyable experience.

We'll be open on Boxing Day, and every day that the South Devon Railway is running public trains in the festive season: 26 December to 03 January 2021.

Our museum is fully accessible to wheelchair users. We welcome children of all ages, and have a range of hands-on activities for them. We also welcome well-behaved dogs on leads. On certain days during the season the original signal box at Buckfastleigh will be open, where you can try your hand at pulling the levers.The Lee Moor Museum, featuring locomotive Lee Moor No 2, will also be open on selected days. There is no charge for any of these.

Looking forward to seeing you soon!

South Devon Railway
The Railway Station
Buckfastleigh
TQ11 0DZ

T: 01364 644370
E: museum.curator@southdevonrailwayassociation.org

Podcast

South Devon Railway Memories

Memories of the Ashburton branch, the Dart Valley Railway and the South Devon Railway

Name Time
1 Dave Knowling intro 03:08
2 Dave Knowling's Pixies 01:05

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South Devon Railway

South Devon Railway
The Railway Station

Buckfastleigh, DEVON TQ11 0DZ