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East Lancashire Railway

Type:Steam Railway

Bolton Street Station, Bolton Street, Bury, Lancashire, BL9 0EY

TripAdvisor Traveller Rating

TripAdvisor Traveller Rating - 1582 reviews1582 reviews

Tel: 0333 320 2830

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East Lancashire Railway

Make the trip from grandparent to grandchild on a journey that spans generations on this heritage railway.

With a storied history stretching back to the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, the East Lancashire Railway is the steam powered heart of the Irwell Valley, pumping goods and people around the region for nearly 200 years!

The line runs for 12 miles through scenic Lancastrian landscapes, from beautiful rural panoramas and postcard pretty villages to bustling Victorian towns and cotton mill dotted horizons. Each station offers something unique, from historical Heywood to relaxing Rawtenstall, scenic Summerseat and bustling Bury.

Local attractions include real ale bars, quaint tea rooms, quirky boutiques, markets, restaurants, cafés and more!

Take a walk on the “mild side” on a professionally guided Rail Ale Trail, experience the enchantment of fine dining aboard a heritage steam train or discover the North West’s transport history at the Bury Transport Museum. The railway also hosts an annual programme of events to suit any age and interest. Put on your dancing shoes and sashay along to the popular 1940s Weekend or make magical memories on board the award-winning Santa Specials.

Every stop is a start!


Ticket TypeTicket Tariff
Family (2 adults, 3 children)£38.00 per ticket
Freedom of the Line Adult£14.80 per ticket
Freedom of the Line Child£9.40 per ticket
Freedom of the Line Concession£13.30 per ticket
Under 5s (except Day Out with Thomas)Free

Single and standard returns also available, more information on fares is available on on http://www.eastlancsrailway.org.uk/plan-your-day-out/timetables-fares.aspx

Opening Times

East Lancashire Railway (1 Jan 2018 - 31 Dec 2018)
Monday - TuesdayClosed*
Wednesday - Sunday09:00 - 17:00*

* Please check website for opening times and dates.

Dates and times marked with a '*' are provisional and may be subject to change


Thursday, 23rd August 2018 - Thursday, 23rd August 2018

Thursday, 30th August 2018 - Thursday, 30th August 2018

Thursday, 25th October 2018 - Thursday, 25th October 2018

Wizard AcademyThroughout 2018 - It's the first day of term at the Wizard Academy, and a sect of sinister sorcerers have made off with one of the school's most important magical artefacts. Join an enchanting cast of characters on a quest to get it back, and learn all of the skills to be an award-winning witch or...
more info

Friday, 24th August 2018 - Monday, 27th August 2018

Wednesday, 5th September 2018 - Saturday, 8th September 2018

Scotsman in SteamThe People's Engine, A3 60103 'Flying Scotsman', makes a hotly anticipated return to the East Lancashire Railway, visiting for a series of static displays and passenger services throughout the year.
more info

Friday, 7th September 2018 - Sunday, 9th September 2018

Ales on the RailsSteam and sup at the East Lancashire Railway's three day beer festival! Stops along the line will be showcasing of the very best of the very best breweries, so whether you are an ale aficionado or a cider supremo you are sure to find something to suit your palette.
more info

Friday, 7th September 2018 - Sunday, 9th September 2018

The Rossendale 60s Festival7 - 8 Sep - The contrast of events really captures all aspects of the 60s era, from classic cars, hippie markets, retrospective exhibitions and scooters, genuine vintage clothes, food and live 60s music.
more info

Sunday, 9th September 2018 - Sunday, 9th September 2018

Vintage Vehicle GatheringStart your engines, this popular classic car exhibition returns to the East Lancashire Railway! The exhibition will feature a healthy collection of classic cars, all dating from before 1990.
more info

Saturday, 22nd September 2018 - Sunday, 23rd September 2018

Autumn Diesel GalaWhat better way for a diesel devotee to end a cracking year of events? Join the East Lancashire Railway for the third and final large scale diesel gala of 2018.
more info

Saturday, 6th October 2018 - Sunday, 7th October 2018

Day Out With Thomas™5 - 7 May, 4 - 5 Aug & 6 - 7 Oct - Enjoy a Day Out With Thomas! Calling all little engineers! Join Thomas, the number one blue engine, at the East Lancashire Railway for a train ride unlike any other.
more info

Friday, 19th October 2018 - Sunday, 21st October 2018

Autumn Steam GalaMake sure not to miss the last large scale steam gala of the ELR's calendar! A fantastic way to ward off the winter chill.
more info

Friday, 26th October 2018 - Saturday, 27th October 2018

Wednesday, 31st October 2018 - Wednesday, 31st October 2018

Halloween Ghost TrainsAre you brave enough to board the Halloween Ghost Train? Take a ride to Rawtenstall and back alongside a host of hideous haunters and giggling ghouls.
more info

Saturday, 3rd November 2018 - Sunday, 4th November 2018

Scenic Railcar WeekendPay tribute to the stalwart Diesel Multiple Unit at this special theme weekend as these endearing engines take the spotlight.
more info

Saturday, 17th November 2018 - Sunday, 18th November 2018

Lancashire WeekendIt's all things Lancashire at this special themed weekend celebrating the historic day when the county sent its first representatives to Parliament.
more info

Saturday, 24th November 2018 - Sunday, 25th November 2018

Saturday, 1st December 2018 - Sunday, 2nd December 2018

Saturday, 8th December 2018 - Sunday, 9th December 2018

Saturday, 15th December 2018 - Sunday, 16th December 2018

Friday, 21st December 2018 - Monday, 24th December 2018

Santa SpecialsKick start your Christmas celebrations with a steam train ride through a winter wonderland on what has become a firm family favourite in the North West. Meet Santa and his helpers as they travel through the train giving a gift to each child.
more info


  • VAQAS VB Attraction
VAQAS VB Attraction


  • Sub-Regional AwardsTourism Event of the Year Tourism Event of the Year 2010
  • Sub-Regional AwardsLarge Visitor Attraction of the Year Large Visitor Attraction of the Year 2014
  • Sub-Regional AwardsPartner of Visit Lancashire Partner of Visit Lancashire 2018
  • Sub-Regional AwardsLancashire Tourism Awards 2016 - Finalist Lancashire Tourism Awards 2016 - Finalist 2016
  • Sub-Regional AwardsLancashire Tourism Awards Finalist 2017 - Large Visitor Attraction Award Lancashire Tourism Awards Finalist 2017 - Large Visitor Attraction Award 2017




  • Open All Year
  • Outdoor

Establishment Features

  • Disabled Access/Toilets

Parking & Transport

  • Coaches Welcome


  • Certificate of Excellence 2018

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    Buffer Stops Bar, RossendaleSited at Rawtenstall Station, Buffer Stops offers five ales and one real cider on handpump, a range of lagers, continental beers, traditional pub snacks and locally sourced pies. This cosy bar welcomes both visitors and locals with a friendly atmosphere.

    East Lancashire Railway Weddings, RossendaleThe East Lancashire Railway provides a memorable and quirky wedding experience, with a wide range of options and locations from receptions aboard dining trains and the luxury Observation Saloon to photo opportunities on the footplate.

    Dining with Distinction, RossendaleEnjoy first class service and fine dining behind one of our historic steam engines whilst journeying through the charming Lancashire countryside soaking up the picturesque panoramas as you go.

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