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“An ok afternoon out for the family” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Epping Ongar Railway

Epping Ongar Railway
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: The Epping Ongar Railway is a volunteer run heritage railway which operates steam and diesel hauled trains through 5.5 miles of picturesque rolling countryside and through Epping Forest, along the former London Underground Central Line. We run a variety of special events through the year, including Peppa Pig, 1940's, Halloween Ghost Trains, Santa and Mince Pie Specials. Please check our website for opening times and fares information. over 6 miles of the former London Underground Central Line.
Chelmsford, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
51 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“An ok afternoon out for the family”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 28, 2013

Was an ok afternoon out with the family and great I would imagine if you are a train enthusiast. Very dedicated volunteers looking after, and restoring the engines. For a family I thought it was expensive but worth it even if its just a one off.

Visited September 2012
Thank Russell P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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314 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Excellent way to spend an afternoon”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 20, 2013

Not much to add to what's already been written other than to say that we spent a great afternoon on the bus & trains despite not being enthusiasts. The effort that has been put in to getting the machinery and station buildings to their present state is clear to see and we were amazed at the number of staff (presumably all volunteers), all of whom were unfailingly polite and courteous.

I would thoroughly recommend this as a great way to spend a serene morning, afternoon or day in the countryside. There is a picnic area at Ongar and a buffet car at North Weald so I would recommend combining this with a look around Epping and Ongar. We also visited the tea rooms in the back of Mr Grumpy's sweet shop in Ongar which I would also highly recommend.

Visited April 2013
1 Thank westhamtim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Very pleasant”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 2, 2013 via mobile

We had a very pleasant time. The staff were very friendly and helpful but a little over priced. They had an Easter egg hunt which my 7 year old son greatly enjoyed.

Visited March 2013
Thank David P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
83 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 195 helpful votes
“Missing Connections by One Minute”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 16, 2013

My friend wanted to visit the Dolls House Shop in Ongar for her new granddaughter. So I suggested we went to Epping on the Central Line and then the EOR to Ongar on the next Saturday.

Its a long trek from Central London to Epping (sitting sideways) and we arrived there at about 13.00 But there we hit a problem The EOR heritage bus service is not exactly timed to make connections with the trains - even its own!!

The next heritage bus to North Weald apparently was due to leave Epping at 13.35, it was timetabled to arrive at North Weald at 13.48

The train to Ongar left North Weald at 13.45 - three minutes earlier!!! BAD TIMETABLING.

We really needed to get to Ongar and were quite happy to pay £11 each for the return journey on the train. But if we had caught the next train to Ongar we wouldn't have got there until 15.00 - a tad late for what we needed to do.

I called EOR on the contact phone no. on their leaflet and asked the booking clerk if there was any way we could catch the 13.48 train - in mid-discussion he rudely cut the conversation short saying that he had customers at the window - and slammed the phone down. Great customer service - not.

So we caught a regular service bus - which was free for us with Senior Bus Passes - and arrived at Ongar at 14.00

When we tried to get back to North Weald and Epping we inquired at the EOR Ongar booking office to see what the last train of the day would cost us - £11 we were told - for a SINGLE trip of about 6 miles - and no it wouldn't be steam-hauled. We declined and caught a regular bus back to Epping - again at no cost.

So we will NOT be going back to EOR until

1/ their staff improve their customer contact skills, and
2/ they introduce a proper ticketing and pricing system.


Visited June 2012
3 Thank Chris2006
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
EOR-GM, General Manager at Epping Ongar Railway, responded to this review, February 18, 2013
Many thanks for taking the time to leave a review, and I was pleased to receive your feedback. In the months between your visit and submitting the review many of the items you raise have been addressed. Customers are encouraged to speak to our friendly staff or get in touch with us via the website, and we welcome the opportunity to continually improve our customer’s experience.

The timetables for 2013 have been completely revised to offer better connections, although we are unable to run a 339 bus to connect with every Central Line train (every 8 mins!). Our standard fares are great value as offer unlimited all-day travel on all our heritage transport experiences.

All our staff are volunteers, and we continue to actively recruit more. We aim to have an additional member of staff available to answer the phone to assist the clerk serving at the ticket window, but occasionally we have been short of volunteers or they require a meal/comfort breaks. Our volunteers also work hard to keep our heritage trains clean and tidy.

Please rest assured that our staff are regularly given update training and I will pass on these comments. While the customer service you experienced is not acceptable, I believe this to be an isolated occurrence as many visitors have commented on our friendly welcome.

We hope this response shows we have addressed the issues raised, and we look forward to welcoming you down again.
Simon, GM, Epping Ongar Railway
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
64 reviews
34 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Sunday relaxation”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 1, 2013

Sunday 30th December came to see loco 4141 and enjoy a mince pie. This is my seventh trip since opening and have yet to be disappointed. The new loco is a delight ,ideal for this branch.
[nice to see the GER N7 69621 possibly on loan one day].
All the staff were still in festive mood although they always seem happy and there seemed to be a good turnover in passengers. The bus rides are always a bonus especially when driven by Terry.
One gem at North Weald was RF 539 resplendent in Country livery gleaming in a rare bit of sunshine.
Roll on next season and to keep me company I spent my £3 voucher on the new DVD.
Congrats also on the awards.

Visited December 2012
2 Thank graham c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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