While the heritage railway and buses provide an interesting and atmospheric experience, EOR prides itself as being a family day out. Our heritage transport network links together a number of local attractions. Below are just a few suggestions of attractions that can complement any visit to the area and are well worth a visit.
Please note that EOR cannot be responsible for third party sites. Details of opening hours and admission prices are on each attractions own website.
This page includes ideas for all the family, places to stay and for Railway Enthusiasts.
Visit Ongar is an Ongar Town Forum website, which informs and provides suggestions to visitors. The site includes a list of local attractions, places to stay, a calendar of events, including the ever popular Ongar Carnival, Fireworks and Christmas Lights events that are well worth a visit if you are in the area around these times.
Location: Greensted Road, Ongar
The oldest wooden church in the world, dating from the 11th century. A beautiful little church with Tudor chancel and crusaders grave. Tolpuddle Martyrs settled here after their pardon. The railway runs a special bus service via Greensted Church on Gala event days, please check our timetable page for details.
Location: Budworth Hall, High Street, Ongar
FREE admission - 10:00 to 14:00
Running on the fourth Sunday of every month during March to June and September to November, the market features local foods and produce, plus local hand crafted gifts.
Location: A128 Chipping Ongar to Brentwood road at Kelvedon Hatch.
(Opening Hours and Prices on websites)
The biggest and deepest cold war bunker open to the public in southeast England! Witness the three lives of the bunker starting with its role as an RAF ROTOR Station, then a brief period as a civil defence centre through to its most recent life as a Regional Government HQ. Designed for up to 600 military and civilian personnel - possibly even the Prime Minister - with their collective task being to organise the survival of the population in the awful aftermath of a nuclear war.
The bunker site has recently expanded to include Rope Runners, the first high-wire adventure in Essex, offering an adrenaline packed for all the family. They also offer paintballing, water zorbing, air rifle shooting and archery.
North Weald Airfield was established in 1916, was in front line service during the Battle of Britain and is still very active, not only being used for aviation, but also a wide range of other sporting and leisure activities. It also hosts the UK's largest open air market, every Saturday. North Weald Airfield boasts some of the best aviation facilities in Eastern England, with it's long tarmac runways, engineering services for all types of both historic and contemporary aircraft and its excellent volunteer fire service.
The Airfield museum is housed in the former RAF North Weald Station Office. It is adjacent to what was the main entrance to this former Battle of Britain Fighter Station. The museum sets out to tell the story of a famous airfield that has protected London during two world wars. The story is told in displays, with photographs, artefacts and personal memories.
Location: map available by clicking here
Open all year, FREE admission.
The Essex Way is a long-distance path stretching right across the County of Essex from Epping Tube station in the south-west to the port of Harwich in the north-east, covering a distance of 81 miles. The path leads you through ancient woodlands, open farmland, tree-lined river valleys and leafy green lanes, unveiling historic towns and villages along the way. The path runs parallel to the railway between Epping, North Weald and Ongar, and offers an ideal way to stretch your legs exploring our beautiful countryside between stations, and perhaps also snap some pictures of the trains passing.
Mr Grumpy's Old fashioned Sweet Shop & Tilly's Tea Rooms
Ongar High Street
Take a step back in time, to when sweet shops were filled from floor to ceiling with jars of multi-coloured sweets, with amazing names and tastes at Mr Grumpy's sweet shop. They have sweets to suit all sweet teeth, and the adjacent Tilly's Tea Rooms offers a wide range menu, with seasonal specialities added to the menu.
Ashlyns Farm Shop, Restaurant & Experience, North Weald
Ashlyns offers a wide range of local farm produce, where you can get a taste of this part of Essex. The accompanying restaurant services a wide range of dishes, many of which have ingredients sourced from the local area, cutting down "food miles".
The forest offers a variety of activities are offered including horse riding, rambling, cycling and model aeroplane flying, as well as acres of unspoilt forest to walk through, while you relax, unwind and enjoy our rich wildlife.
Location: 39-41 Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, Essex
The museum tells the story of the people who have lived and worked in this part of west Essex from the earliest inhabitants to the present. Housed in a building dating to 1520. The Museum offers something for all the family, with plenty of gallery trails and hands on activities for kids.
The official site for English tourism, for general information on family days out
DayOutWithTheKids.co.uk - is an easy to use website for finding places to visit with your family all over the UK. Searchable by age of kids, county, town, postcode and indoor or outdoor attraction.
A guide to Essex hotels, accommodation, restaurants, Essex wedding venues, tourist attractions, places to visit and things to do in the county of Essex.
has information about what's on in the North Weald Community.
is located alongside part of the line, and is open to the public to walk through and enjoy. The park offers an ideal place to see the woodland being managed, and you may even glimpse the trains passing.
This is a medium sized post windmill from 1807 and still in working order and occasionally making flour. The mill makes for an ideal exploration in the agricultural past of the farming heritage of Essex.
This is slightly later, built in 1816 and has a brick tower, and is also still in working order and visitors can explore over the 5 floors. There is also the nearby Stock Heritage Centre.
The Hall was built during the reign of Henry VIII and retains many of its original features. It stands in open countryside, one mile from the village of Ingatestone and substantially retains its original Tudor form and appearance with its mullioned windows, high chimneys, crow-step gables and oak-panelled rooms and is surrounded by ten acres of enclosed gardens comprising extensive lawns, walled garden and stew pond. Please check their website for opening details.
This Royal Horticultural Society property comprises of 360 acres of gardens, offering something to see in any season. The gardens are in a low rainfall area and the poor soil conditions makes it a challenging area for gardening and demonstrates how it is possible to create a garden of beauty by working with the prevailing conditions. In addition nearby to the railway, Blake Hall gardens are occasionally open through the National Garden Scheme.
Long journey? Staying overnight? Need accommodation near the railway? Please visit the Places to Stay on the Visit Ongar website, which has a list of all local accommodation providers. There are peer reviewed list of accommodation on the popular Trip Advisor website.
General Sites for Rail Enthusiasts
The heritage railway association has a guide to member heritage railways in the UK and Ireland, including details of special events and operating days. This site includes a map showing all heritage railways.
The Holden F5 Steam Locomotive Trust aims to build a replica steam locomotive. It is to be hoped that we will once again see an F5 operating between Epping and Ongar.
For information on disused stations on London's Underground visit Hywel William's site.
There are a number of heritage railway magazines which kindly cover news of developments at EOR. These include Heritage Railway Magazine, Steam Railway, The Railway Magazine, RAIL Magazine, Traction Magazine, Modern Railways and online magazine Railway Herald
An informative site about the world of Railway resources.
An informative site detailing the history of the Great Eastern Railway. EOR works closely with GERS, who have assisted with advice regarding the restoration of Ongar Station back into the GER period.
A site for Diesel enthusiasts.
And for the young or for the young at heart Thomas the Tank Engine has his own site.
For an alternative perspective on the history of the railway visit James Lyon's site.