Our blog of travels both near and far, in our wonderful country New Zealand and occasionally overseas.
Success is getting what you want; happiness is liking what you get
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Rye & A Great Little Railway
Mermaid Street, Rye
Local knowledge is great for travellers. We were told that we must go and check out Mermaid Street in the small town of Rye. This steep cobbled street is full of interesting old houses and little tiny walkways. We saw the Mermaid Pub which had a sign that said it was rebuilt in 1420, wonder when it was originally built? All the buildings in this street seemed to be of this vintage.
A Pacific Class 1/4 Size loco
While travelling from Hastings to Canterbury we came across the signs for the Romney, Hythe & Dymchurch Railway. This is a 15inch gauge railway that was established 81 years ago with the intention of replicating mainline rail as it was in the past. They have 11 steam locos and an undetermined number of diesel locos. The locos are 1/4 size so are in fact a little to big for the track but to look at them it is not noticeable. There is 16 miles of track and they get along at a reasonable clip. The train we travelled on was steam powered and the smell of coal smoke drifted into the cabins as we travelled along.
The train passed a number of "Caravan parks" which are really only large transportable trailers with all facilities plumbed and wired. This is interesting from our caravanning point of view but it is not our idea of a holiday but it seems to appeal to a number of the locals.
At the end of the train line was the halt of Dungeness. The station was just across from the nuclear power station. This is where the train turned around and headed back down the line to for its return journey.