Kent Coast line

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Kent Coast Line
Kent Railways.svg
The Kent Coast Line, shown with other railway lines in Kent.
TypeSuburban rail, Heavy rail
SystemNational Rail
South East England
OwnerNetwork Rail
Rolling stock
Track gauge1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Kent Coast Line
Chatham main line
to Faversham
Margate Sands
(closed 1926)
Margate East
(closed 1953)
(closed 1872)
Ramsgate Harbour Tunnel
Ramsgate Harbour
(closed 1926)
Dumpton Park
Ramsgate Town
(closed 1926)
St Lawrence for Pegwell Bay
(closed 1916)
Ebbsfleet and Cliffsend Halt
(closed 1933)
Ashford to Ramsgate (via Canterbury West) line
to Ashford International
Richborough Castle Halt
(closed 1939)
Martin Mill
Guston Tunnel
Chatham main line
to Faversham
Charlton Tunnel
Priory Tunnel
Dover Priory
Dover Harbour Tunnel
Dover Harbour
(closed 1927)
Hawkesbury Street Junction
Train ferry to Dunkirk Train ferry#United Kingdom
Pier Junction
Admiralty Pier
(closed 1909)
Dover Western Docks Dover–Calais ferry (P&O Ferries)
(closed 1994)
Dover Town
(closed 1914)
Archcliffe Junction
South Eastern main line
to Ashford International

The Kent Coast Line is the railway line that runs from Dover Priory to Margate in the English county of Kent.

It was electrified (750 V DC third rail) by BR under the 1955 Modernisation Plan.


Services are operated by Southeastern, using Class 375 Trains. Typical service is hourly from Charing Cross to Ashford, dividing there into a part to Ramsgate via Canterbury West, and a part via the Kent Coast Line. See South Eastern Main Line.

A small number of the services via the Kent Coast Line (via Dover Priory) call additionally at Minster on weekday mornings and afternoons, acting as a school service.


The South Eastern Railway's (SER) first main line went to Dover via Folkestone and Ashford. The SER Ashford to Margate Broadstairs and Ramsgate (via Canterbury West) line was then extended south to Deal. This was linked up by the "Dover & Deal Joint Railway" with their bitter rival the London, Chatham and Dover Railway (LCDR).

Upon the joint management of the SER and LCDR in 1899 the track layout at Ashford rationalised, with Thanet receiving similar treatment (by Southern) in the 1920s.

The line was electrified under the BR 1955 Modernisation Plan, in "Kent Coast Electrification (Stage 2)" opening January 1961.

The building of the railway was significant in the development of seaside resorts like Broadstairs.

Dover track layout[edit]

The Railway Clearing House produced a map that shows the complex layout of this area. This shows the separate connection to the pier where trains used to board ferries.