The branch line from Sittingbourne to Sheerness-on-Sea is an unusual community rail line in that it provides a basic half-hourly service to passengers. Sittingbourne and Kemsley are both famous for the paper production and while the mill at Sittingbourne has closed, Kemsley continues to flourish.
Close to Sittingbourne station is the Sittingbourne & Kemsley Light Railway, a preserved 2ft 6″ steam railway that used to connect the mills at the two communities to Ridham Dock on the Swale Estuary. Check out the latest news by visiting the S&KLR website.
Swale station gives access to marshland to explore and is also the closest station to the area of Iwade. The line passes through a mix of residential, industrial and salt marsh landscapes before reaching the historic town of Queenborough, once site of a royal castle and ferry services to Holland. The line terminates at Sheerness-on-Sea, once a naval dockyard and now home to a busy commercial port.
Sheerness has also been a favourite destination for holidaymakers from London who could easily reach the Isle of Sheppey by train. View the current timetable
There are many local attractions and places to visit along the Swale Rail line.
If you are looking for entertainment then Sittingbourne has a lot to offer from skating at The Mill Skatepark to Karting or watching the Greyhound racing. You may prefer to go to the Cinema or try you hand at Bowling.
Alternatively, you may wish to watch a show at the Avenue Theatre or drop into the Swale Media Arts Centre
Not far from Sittingbourne Station you will also find the Sittingbourne and Kemsley Light Railway and the Raybel & Dolphin Barge Museum.
For a walk in the fresh air you can visit Milton Creek Country Park or explore the Saxon Shore Way from a number of different points across Swale. Near to Swale Station you will find a wealth of nature and is the closest station to Elmley Nature Reserve.
Why not take a trip and visit the beautiful Queenborough Harbour and then pop along to the Queenborough Guildhall Museum before topping up your tan at the beach at Sheerness or exploring the Sheppey Shoreline. Sheerness also has it’s own Sailing Club
If you enjoy your history then you may want to visit the Church by the Dockyard or Blue Town Heritage Centre.
Kent CRP have put together a local guide Swale which highlights some of the local attractions and how fair it is to cycle or walk to from the nearest train station.
Students from Sheppey College produced a website during their community week all about tourism in Swale. Take a look at their website website Swale Rail Tourism.
For up to date information on timetables visit Southeastern’s website. Alternatively use the National Rail Enquiries website or better still download the app for live updates.
For more information about the Swale Rail Line Community Rail Partnership, please contact Therese Hammond on 07917 131248 or Gary Outram 07787 434258.