Standard & Premier Footplate Experiences

Whether to treat yourself or as a gift, our Footplate Experiences are unforgettable.


The distinctive sound of a steam locomotive as it climbs the 1 in 56 incline back to Cranmore Station, the roaring furnace firing the engine and YOU at the controls!

We offer Standard and Premier Footplate Experiences, both of which give you the chance to enjoy the excitement of driving and firing a steam locomotive, under the guidance of our skilled and dedicated footplate crews.

Your day will start with a short safety briefing after which it is straight on with the job in hand!

Your day will include:

  • Helping the crew prepare the engine, as well as taking on coal and water.
  • Assisting the crew as they take the passenger trains over the line.
  • Firing the engine.
  • Changing the points.
  • Taking the controls and driving the engine yourself!
  • Later in the day you will drive the engine with the coaches over the line.

*Please Note* Driving a steam engine is physically demanding and can be hard work. You will need to be at least 16 years of age, in good health and reasonably fit since you will be climbing up and down from the footplate quite a few times during the day, as well as shovelling coal and operating heavy controls. Please let us know if the person taking the course has any disability, medical or learning conditions that we may need to be aware of. Our courses are limited to two participants on any day and you will spend all of the time on the engine.

Julia Nest


Premier Footplate Experience

£350 from 8.30am to approximately 5pm.

The Premier Footplate includes driving an engine only and engine with carriages both directions over the line (10 miles of driving).

Standard Footplate Experience

£250 from 8.30am to approximately 2.30pm.

The Standard Footplate includes driving an engine and engine with carriages one way over the line (5 miles of driving).

Both courses include three free tickets for family and friends to use, plus a free packed lunch for the participant.

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Both Footplate Experiences include three complimentary day rover vouchers for family and friends to use on the day of your footplate course (your family and friends need to show their vouchers at the Ticket Office and they will be exchanged for day rover tickets). Plus a free lunch voucher for the participant to use in our Whistlestop Café (please exchange in our café on the day). You will also receive, a years free membership to the ESR, a selection of ESR gift items to remind you of your day and on completion you will be presented with a certificate of your achievement.

For a list of Footplate Experience dates click here

Buy a Footplate Experience gift voucher

Terms & Conditions

Due to the complexity of the organisation involved in operating the Standard and Premier Footplate Experiences the following conditions apply.


We are unable to offer a refund if course is cancelled within 21 days of booked date. If course is cancelled prior to 21 days a refund will be given minus an administration fee of £40.00


We are unable to accept alterations within 21 days of booked date. If an alteration to the booked date is necessary prior to 21 days an administration fee of £40.00 will be required.