Diamond Valley

Cliff Hanging Train Journey
Completed in 1856, the train route from Bray to Greystones, around Bray Head, running on the edge of a cliff, is one of the most spectacular journeys by rail in Ireland today and has been described as one of the most dramatic train journeys in the world.

The Earl of Meath, whose Kilruddery estate is nearby, gave the route around the Head to the railway company free of charge. All the owners of the line, to the present day Irish Rail, have been regretting the decision ever since. The line, which has four tunnels on it, has had to be realigned six times since opening, four deviations and two minor realignments due to rock falls.

The 1856 route was designed by world famous 19th Century Civil Engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel and to this day the line is known as Brunel's Folly on account of the high cost of maintenance.

Brunel was a character. Sporting a high beaver hat stuffed with notes scribbled to himself, and always carrying a leather pocket case containing up to 50 cigars, his projects were larger than life, brilliant and radical. His London to Bristol railway line with 2 mile tunnel had MPs rising in the House of Lords with cries of impending doom - the tunnel still stands today!

Brunel designed important projects in England, Ireland, Wales, India and Europe but the line around Bray Head was one of his most ambitious plans. He died in 1859, less than 3 years after the Bray line opened.

Diamond Valley dwellers can take a 185 bus to the Dart Station from outside the front gate and for the price of a DART ticket from Bray to Greystones, enjoy the train journey of a lifetime. Go early in the day and walk the same route home along the 2hr Greystones to Bray Cliff Walk!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brunel

Isambard Kingdom Brunel

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