Cliff Railways, Bournemouth
Bournemouth boasts three funicular or cliff railways which join the town on the top of the chalk cliffs to the seafront promenade and miles of sandy beaches below.
Bournemouth Borough Council operates all three railways – East Cliff, West Cliff and Fisherman’s Walk Cliff.
Generally, all three of Bournemouth's cliff railways are open between April and October.
East Cliff Lift
East Cliff railway, opened in 1908, it is the oldest and is 170 feet (51.5metres) long. It was electrically operated from the very beginning and has two passenger cars, running on two parallel 5 feet 6 inch (1.7 metre) gauge tracks.
The aluminium cars can accommodate 12 passengers on longitudinal bench seats with a door at each end of the carriage for boarding and alighting. The railway has an electrical control system.
At either end of the line are entrance buildings where passengers wait for the carriage to arrive. A stepped concrete terrace either side of the tracks has been created to ensure stability on the soft chalk cliff face. During the 1990s the East Cliff Railway was further upgraded with the installation of an electronic control system. The East Cliff Lift provides access from the beach to the Russel Coates Art Gallery & Museum.
West Cliff Lift
West Cliff Railway opened four months later than East Cliff, the railway is almost identical except that it is slightly shorter at 145 feet (44 metres). The West Cliff Lift provides access from the seafront to the Bournemouth International Centre.
Fisherman's Walk Lift
Fisherman’s Walk Cliff railway Opened in 1935 to serve the promenades of Southbourne and Boscombe. The railway has two parallel 5 feet 8 inch (1.75 metre) gauge tracks extending to a length of 128 feet (38.7 metres). In all respects it is similar to the other two funiculars except that the concrete cliff terracing only appears on the eastern side of the track. The lift links the beach to a cliff top cafe and children's play area.
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Contact & Further Information
Google Map - Bournemouth Cliff Railway