Col. Stephens was a pioneer of light railways and was responsible for building and then managing the Kent and East Sussex line. He was also involved in many other light railways in England and Wales. The Museum is housed in one of the large curved roof buildings next to Tenterden Station which were used to store wartime supplies during the Second World War.
The museum looks at the life and work of Col. Stephens, including his study, some of the railways he was associated with and general railway artefacts. There is part of a typical booking office, workman’s tools and surveying equipment as well as a selection of name boards, other signs and timetable boards.
Gazelle is possibly the smallest standard gauge loco to be built and is displayed in the museum. It was built in 1893 and bought by Col. Stephens in 1910 to run on the Shropshire and Montgomeryshire Railway. It was used for pulling passengers, at first without a coach until passengers complained and the Board of Trade intervened. Next to her is an example of the kind of coach she may have pulled. She is on loan here from the National Railway Museum.
Outside the museum are examples of wheels, coach chassis from a Rye and Camber coach a small Ashover Railway truck, examples of rail handcars and a crane.
The museum is open from 12.30-4.30 on days the Kent and East Sussex Railway is running. It is a good small museum for anyone interested in railways and railway history.