It was a nice summer and I enjoyed a family day out travelling from Hythe to New Romney on the Romney, Hythe & Dymchurch Railway (RH&DR) in Kent on 5th July 2014. We travelled on an overcast afternoon and the breeze was slightly chilly when it whistled through the carriages. We travelled West from Hythe as far as New Romney, where we alighted to look at the model railway and take refreshment.
The original plan was to go all the way to Dungeness, part of Romney Marsh1, where the line ends. It doesn’t end in the usual sense with buffers at the end of the rails. The outbound line loops around the countryside until it becomes the line running back to Hythe. Trains don’t have to manoeuvre to make the return journey. They just keep going forward.
Unfortunately we travelled too late in the day. We realised that if we continued our journey, from New Romney to Dungeness and back, we wouldn’t have time to get back to Hythe. Perhaps I’ll get to see Dungeness next time.
Learn more about Romney Marsh2.
Videos and Photographs Taken During My Trip From Hythe To New Romney
For photographic enthusiasts: All photographs and videos were taken with a Lumix FZ100.
Map Showing Hythe RH&DR Station
The RH&DR locomotives and track are scaled to ⅓ of a full size railway. Its lines may have a small gauge (15 inches) but it is a big railway with 13½ miles of track.
The RH&DR operates a public service using trains of long carriages mounted on bogies with roofs and windows. Some carriages have glazed windows and some are open. They have comfortable seats. The seats over the bogies don’t have a foot well and so are more suited to children or dogs (yes dogs are allowed after paying the appropriate fare). Take a look inside this one:
At Hythe the line follows the route of the Royal Military Canal which can be seen here beyond the palings:
The journey from Hythe to New Romney wasn’t quite so bouncy as this video portrays. Because the line follows the Royal Military Canal it has similar bends in it which allow the loco to be seen from time to time.
You can relax and enjoy the scenery as you traverse the marshes:
On the journey from Hythe to New Romney I saw this Victorian Water Tower near New Romney:
Map Showing New Romney Victorian Water Tower
Map Showing New Romney RH&DR Station
New Romney was quite a hive of activity due to all the comings and goings of through trains, the model railway, single carriage rides given on the sidings and regular use of the turntable. The Bug was giving regular rides back and forth over the turntable:
As you can see on the video below, of The Bug, we took our dogs a Border Collie and a Beagle with us on our journey from Hythe to New Romney.
While The Bug was out of the way I had a look at the turntable from two angles:
Whilst wandering about at New Romney I came across this relic from WW2. Actually I think it was a WW2 look-a-like:
There were a few more locos around including diesels:
Winston Churchill rushes into New Romney Station. There’s plenty of time to apply the brakes because the platforms are so long:
Then Winston went for a quick spin on the turntable too with the driver on board and a ‘disc jockey’ controlling the turntable:
Map Showing Dymchurch RH&DR Station
With a heavy load No.8 Hurricane pulls out of Dymchurch Station with wheel-slip (spinning driving wheels). It’s heading towards Hythe. The road crossing ahead has its barriers down and people are waiting:
“Why are people waiting?” You ask. They are waiting to get to the Funfair:
Dymchurch is well known locally for this funfair which has been around for many years. It’s right at the beach, only a short walk from the RH&DR Station.
We stopped off to look at it but on the way back one of our party caught the wrong train. He looked quite troubled when he returned. I thought he’d seen a ghost:
Well it was late in the day by this time and a cool breeze had sprung up. So we were glad to get back on the next train to Hythe (the last train if I remember correctly).