Driving Experience

Would you like to drive a real Steam Train?

Make that dream come true!

Actual “hands on” driving of a Steam Train. These Driving Experience Courses make an ideal Birthday or Anniversary present.

Attractive Personalised Gift Vouchers which can include your own special message.

For further information please phone 01787 461174.

Steam Driver Experience Information

The course lasts approx. 3¼ hours during which time you will experience actual “hands on” driving, firing and raising the steam, also a session on how the locomotive works and signalling.

Under the guidance of our qualified footplate crew, you will experience the art of ensuring there is sufficient pressure of steam available by combining the efficient use of coal to keep the fire at a constant temperature and at the same time, maintaining the right level of water in the boiler. A very challenging period of trying to “tame” the elements

Appreciate the skill required to start and stop the loco, weighing in excess of 50 tons. Observe the route through observation of the signals. Attempt to make the most economic use of steam to create the maximum power required.

In short an experience at first hand of the sight, sound, smell and touch of every man’s (or Woman’s) dream – to actually drive a train.

Bring as many people as you wish to see you on the footplate of the locomotive. You will receive five complimentary tickets, any over that pay the applicable rate for the day.

Have a celebration lunch, tea or snack in the ‘Siding’s Buffet’ carriage. We cater for parties, so make a day of the occasion. (Buffet open 08.30 till 15.00 for food.)

Give or experience that ambition of a lifetime for only £250 per person.


On the side there is a sample of the Voucher we are currently producing for use as the “present”.

The personalised voucher is A4 in size, making an attractive presentation gift.

To book a Driver Experience Course please telephone us on 01787 461174, and please have ready the following information:

The full name you wish to appear in the ‘Issued to’ section.
The message, eg as shown – ‘A Happy Steaming Birthday’ or ‘Now you can play with a REAL train’.
A list of the names of the persons who have contributed to the Voucher.
The address you wish the Voucher to be sent to and the phone number of the gift organiser in case of any queries.

The recipient can arrange the date and time of the experience after receiving the gift.

You may book by letter enclosing a cheque for £250, payable to CVR 2006 Ltd. or by telephone on 01787 461174 and pay by credit card. When writing the names and message please print in capital letters so we do not risk any misspelling and send to:

Drivex, Colne Valley Railway, Yeldham Road, Castle Hedingham, Essex CO9 3DZ
Please allow at least seven working days from receipt of your instructions for us to ensure the Voucher arrives in time for the Birthday. If you bring payment and collect the Voucher, we can normally by appointment, have a Voucher available in 24 hours.

Please note:

Whilst in no way would we wish to detract from the wonderful hands-on experience on the footplate – it is hot, dirty and can be heavy work. The participant should be reasonably fit and will always be supervised by our qualified staff who will undertake any parts of the experience the participant does not wish or feel able to do. There is a minimum agre limit of 18.