The Rail Ale Ramble People

Crookham Travel

Quality Tours with Taste since 1977


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Forthcoming Tours & Events

All tours start from London unless stated otherwise, but may sometimes be joined en-route

RAIL ALE RAMBLES: Our RARs (primarily day trips by train, sometimes with an overnight option), to interesting real ale breweries and pubs, remain our mainstay and we have now organised over 200 of them since 1977. These tours may be arranged at quite short notice, so check back often.

WEEKEND EXPLORERS: Long weekend trips, in the UK and Europe, visiting interesting breweries and pubs with added rail or cultural interest such as steam railways, narrow gauge lines, tram systems, funiculars, boat travel or museums.

EXPLORER HOLIDAYS: 1 or 2 weeks or perhaps longer, to destinations primarily in Britain but occasionally to Europe and beyond, usually with brewery visits and rail interest.


2023 and 2024

Since the pandemic, we have successfully run twelve full RARs and small-scale day trips, two Weekend Explorers and one full Explorer Holiday. This year we have run a number of Real Ale Rambles (including the major milestone of our 200th RAR!) and an extended holiday to South West Scotland. We are running at least one more RAR this year (visiting Arkell’s fine steam brewery in their 180th year of brewing), as well as planning a full holiday to Devon for spring 2024. Other RARs may be planned for later this year – make sure you are on our mailing list (contact us on to be the first to hear of these and future tours!).


Wednesday 18th October

This RAR is packed with interesting places to visit, starting at Reading Station where we'll be joining our coach. During the day, we will visit the following:

·         Our first stop will be to the excellent Carters Rest in Wroughton (GBG), a pub which can trace its routes back to 1671 and today sells a wide range (normally six - four off-season) cask ales. As well as a pint, a local bakery's large soft roll will be included.

·         Next, the highlight of the day: a visit to Arkell's fine steam brewery in Kingsdown, Swindon. There we'll have a private tour and hear their very interesting tale – this is an important year for them as they are celebrating 180 years of brewing fine ales.

·         After this, we'll head to the Broadtown Brewery's former brewery site and current tap room – the Hop Chapel, themed as a monastic style tap room, beautifully completed with ornate reclaimed wood, vintage glass panelling, stained-glass windows and a pipe organ where you’ll enjoy an included pint and an interesting tale.

·         Our final stop for an included pint will be at The Five Bells (GBG) in Royal Wootton Bassett, a busy and cosy traditional thatched local with a beamed ceiling and open fires, dating from the late 17th Century.

All good things have to come to a close so you’ll be taken back to Reading Station to arrive by about 20:30, where the tour ends. Included is private coach travel, a pint in both pubs, a filled lunchtime roll and the Arkell's Brewery visit – plus a guaranteed great day out with other friends of GDD!

Please contact us at for the booking form



RAR 201 is in the planning stage and we will publish detail as soon as they are available.

Details later


2024 –
Wednesday 20th to Monday 25th March

An Explorer visit to East Devon.  The programme has not yet been finalised but will include:

·         Several brewery visits and scenery via four days coaching, door-to door;

·         One way River Exe cruise to Topsham with real ale on board - see the trains from the river!

·         Seaton Tramway and depot;

·         Pecorama with its hugely expanded narrow gauge railway;

·         Five nights stay in Exmouth at the 3* Royal Beacon Hotel with two brewpubs and a 'Spoons in town. The Meeting Point will be at Exeter St. David’s station.

Details later


April 2024

In April 2024 the Brewery History Society (BHS) are running a trip to Belgium based in Antwerp and we are assisting them in planning the itinerary. They are likely to be visiting Brouwerij Het Anker, Brouwerij Malheur, Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat, Brouwerij De Koninck, Antwerpse Brouw Compagnie and the Huisbrouwerij De Halve Maan amongst others. They may be able to accommodate some of us too if spaces allows – if you are interested in joining this trip which is likely to be running in the week commencing Monday 15th April 2024, please contact Tony Fox-Griffith to register your interest.

If you are considering joining the BHS in this tour, please contact Tony Fox-Griffith at to register your interest











11 Attlee Gardens, Church Crookham, Fleet, Hampshire GU52 6PH
Telephone: 07766 663579



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 Page last revised: 17 September 2023



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