There's a war on, and pupils and teachers can see some of the military vehicles of the time

South Devon Railway Museum: be a part of living history

The South Devon Railway’s museum is on the platform at Buckfastleigh station. We are easy to reach from the A38 and A384 from Totnes. Remember that our whole railway – seven miles from Buckfastleigh through Staverton to Totnes – is a living museum. Visitors don’t just. see history – they are immersed in it. 

The South Devon Railway is open daily from March to the end of October and at Christmas. (As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, in 2021, services start on May 17th in line with government COVID guidelines). 

Phone:    01364 644370

Email:   trains@southdevonrailway.co.uk

Resources available

Displays include the only original locomotive built to Brunel’s broad gauge, plus the former Exeter Gas Works shunting engine Ashley. You can go on Ashley’s footplate and learn about driving a steam engine. We have a large collection of paintings and photographs showing the history of railways in South Devon, the Ashburton branch and the Totnes Quay line. We show you silverware from the Great Western Railway’s restaurant cars, and some history about the wool trade on which Buckfastleigh was built.

Our strengths

We encourage children - and all visitors - to interact with our exhhibits and displays. You can go in the cab of Ashley, our shunting engine. You can wave the flags and blow the whistle. You can sit in the Littleworth coach, built way back in 1848. Young children have a colouring table, a wooden trains table and building blocks. You can operate a real signal inside our museum!

Facilities available

The museum itself can accommodate up to 40 pupils at one time, and we can handle larger groups – up to about 100 – if pre-booked. We have a large café, covered and open areas for picnics and lunch breaks, and good toilet facilities. There is parking for coaches. Parties can arrive at either end of the line – Buckfastleigh or Totnes – and travel by steam train from both. The South Devon Railway’s station at Totnes is a c.500 metre walk from Totnes main line station.

The museum and public areas of the railway are fully accessible.

Other places to visit in the area

Dartmoor Otters & Buckfast Butterflies are at Buckfastleigh station. The Totnes Rare Breeds Farm is just off the platform of our Totnes Riverside station.

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