A Thumper returns to Worth Halt at Isfield after a run over a section of what once was the Uckifled to Lewes railway line. Its ''sister' Thumper was at the rear of this four-car formation

Lavender Line commemorates 50th anniversary of Uckfield-Lewes closure

Trains ran at the weekend on the only remaining section of the Uckfield to Lewes line – the Lavender Line.

The enthusiasts’-run railway at Isfield held what it called a ‘Double Thumper’ event on Saturday and Sunday (February 23 and 24) to mark the closure of the link on February 23, 1969.

Class 205 heritage diesels 1118 and 1133 were gleaming in the unseasonal sunshine as they took passengers along the short length of track.

The stock is known as Thumpers because of the noise emitted from the engines.

Hear the roar of a Thumper in this short video as it takes off on Saturday afternoon.


Their condition is a far cry from the stock that plied the Uckfield Line until replacement by the current 171s Turbostars and shows the love, care and work put in by the heritage railway’s volunteers.

A vintage bus in Southdown colours was used to bring passengers to the event and vintage vehicles were parked outside the front of the station.

Southdown bus at Lavender Line

A bus in Southdown colours was used to bring passengers to the Lavender Line for the weekend’s commemorative event

Islfield station - part of the Lavender Line

Isfield station and Worth Halt, part of the Lavender Line where events took place at the weekend to mark the 50th anniversary of the closure of the Uckfield to Lewes railway line


The Lavender Line is a preserved railway, run by volunteers, headquartered at Isfield from where the line runs north for around a mile towards Little Horsted on what was once part of the Uckfield to Lewes route.

It has both diesel and steam stock.

The Lavender Line

The preserved line’s is named after a coal merchant which once operated from Isfield station yard, A. E. Lavender and Sons.

Restoration of the line – in private hands – began in the 1980s.

Wartime Isfield

A poster displayed at Isfield station gives a quirky flashback to the village in World War 2.

World War 2 poster at Lavender Line

Stories from World War 2 told at the Lavender Line at Isfield

Special UckfieldNews.com feature on the 50th anniversary of the closure of the Uckfield to Lewes line.

50 years of hurt

From our files

Vulcan’s final flight viewed from Lavender Line

See also:

Losses mount at council run restaurant

Beauty therapists launch Uckfield day spa

Water pipes to be deep-cleaned in Uckfield

Former Smokehouse hotel rooms could be turned back into cottages

Rail lines replacement between Uckfield and Buxted

Find local organisations in our Uckfield Directory




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