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Harvey of Hayle

Watch Harvey on Michael Portillo’s Great British Railway Journeys.

It's a dog's life Harvey, the holiday coach on the coast, sits in a lovely big garden beside Hayle railway station on the Cornish main line, one stop from the branch line to St Ives and only a short walk from three miles of golden sands.

This 1950's corridor railway carriage offers a real trip down memory lane, retaining lots of original British Rail features including lamp shades, luggage racks, mirrors, blinds and upholstery. Harvey is close to beaches, attractions and family friendly pubs and restaurants - you will find lots of interest for all ages by visiting our Hayle page.

Despite its size (8 feet wide, 65 feet long and 35 tons) Harvey is only let to one party at a time, but is divided at the centre lobby into two ends; East and West. The price quoted is for the East End only, and parties of more than four must book the West End in addition to the East. The West End can be added for an additional £120 when booking. The sleeping arrangements are a double bed and four bed bunkroom in the East End, and double bed in the West. The floor plan is illustrated further down this page, with photos for each room. There is a large garden and a deck and train viewing platform.

It's a dog's life There are two double beds, plus four bunks. For larger parties who don’t mind a squeeze, either sitting room can be used for sleeping in, increasing the capacity to 10.

For two couples or families holidaying together, Harvey can be divided into two separate self-contained lets by the centre lobby sliding doors. We find our children and their friends love having their own space - and there are times when a 'grown up' lounge compartment is rather an enjoyable luxury!

Pets are very welcome. Dog friendly beaches are just a short walk away.

The fully enclosed half acre garden is divided into smaller areas; individual lawns outside Harvey, a herb and butterfly bed, an open space with swing ball, table tennis, fruit trees and ample parking, plus a separate enclosed wildlife garden with pond and campfire brazier.

All our holiday lets are non-smoking.

Main corridor Kitchen Kitchen

Harvey features:

Our prices are for the accommodation (not per person) and are totally inclusive. Electricity, heating etc. is included as is the use of bed linen (duvets, covers, sheets etc) and 2 hand towels, 2 tea towels and a shower mat per letting


West - add this half of the carriage for an extra £120 during the booking process

Please follow these links for more about the Carriage Inventory, Accessibility or the History of Harvey.

Harvey Holiday Carriage Floor Plan
Harvey Holiday Carriage Floor Plan

Click here to book your holiday in Harvey on-line now or check availability and prices.

If you prefer, we are pleased to accept telephone enquiries and bookings at any time on 01503 230783.

At Railholiday we know how important the environment is to our guests, so offer holidays that are eco friendly. At Hayle this includes full recycling and composting facilities, green energy supply (Octopus), £50 off if you arrive by public transport and a gated wild area with a pond, butterflies and birds. You can read more about our green record on our green page.

We have numerous awards for our Cornwall Sustainability Award for Most Sustainable Small Business. For more information do please visit our Awards Page.

Harvey Tour - East End

kitchen in a railway carriage

1950s railway carriage

1950s railway carriage

bedroom in a railway carriage

kitchen in a railway carriage

1950s railway carriage toilet cubicle

Harvey Tour - West End

bathroom in a railway carriage

bedroom in a railway carriage

railway carriage compartment with Trojan moquette

Kitchen compartment

Inside, Harvey is compact and quirky - it is a 1950's railway carriage through and through. We made the decision not to remove any compartments and so there is no large living area, but for extended families Harvey is a great place as each party can have their own space. Teenagers and children will enjoy their separate sitting room and grandparents can be on hand but still have a place to retreat. And we're confident small children will love their signal box playhouse! For things to do and some of our favourite holiday day trips whilst staying in Harvey, go to our Hayle Area page.

We love this photo taken by Poppie Montgomery of her holiday in May 2015

One of the highlights of Harvey is the outside space - so much den making potential and a chance to see birds nesting in the escallonia and foraging for hawthorn berries and rosehips. In the autumn there's a good sized bramble patch in the wild area and a bounteous apple tree. There is a campfire area with chestnut seats made from our own woodland and a recycled washing machine drum that acts as a brazier, keeping the fire contained - perfect for roasting marshmallows on a summer’s evening or chestnuts in the autumn.

Who is Harvey suited to?

Holiday makers without a car - With excellent public transport links to the wider area by both train and bus, you can confidently leave the car at home and avoid the A30 altogether. We offer a £50 discount for anyone arriving by train, bus, bike or foot.

Single people and couples - Although Harvey has room for larger parties, it is just as good for smaller ones, and many of our guests choose to only book the East End. You’ll still have sole occupancy of the carriage and garden - the West End will simply remain locked.

A great time to visit Harvey is off season. the Hayle area has something for everyone all year round; marvellous spring gardens, summer festivals, autumn colours and bracing winter walks along the beach. Harvey makes an excellent base for exploring the heritage and landscape of the far west of Cornwall.

We welcome dogs Dog lovers - Pets are welcome and have the run of over half an acre of enclosed garden.

For dog friendly pubs and cafes, there are some great suggestions in the Orange Roofs Blog, which can be accessed by following this link. There are dog friendly beaches within walking distance. The best time to enjoy these beaches is undoubtedly out of season, but there are places for dogs to enjoy the sea all year round. Between May and September some beaches have a ban between 8am and 7pm, but dogs are welcome in the evening.

For listings of dog friendly pubs and beaches, please visit our Pet’s Page.

We welcome walkers Walkers, Heritage and Wildlife fans - Hayle is a major part of the Cornish Mining World Heritage Site and has lots of industrial heritage to explore, as well as being very close to the fascinating prehistoric settlements that pepper the Penwith area. The carriage is only 3 minutes from the South West Coastal Footpath.

Catch an open top bus from Penzance around the Lands End area, visit Geevor, Lelant, Porthcurno and the Minack. Put on your boots and go for a yomp along the beautiful coastal footpaths or the many trails that crisscross the moors. Bird watching is particularly popular in the Hayle area, on account of the estuary and the mild climate all year round. Harvey has a butterfly and herb garden, bird boxes, log piles and a wildlife area, so there's never any shortage of nature to watch. We are the proud winners of several wildlife awards, including the 2022-23 Cornwall bronze award for Wildlife Friendly business practice and the Cornwall Sustainability Award for Most Sustainable Small Business.

Kids LOVE it! Families love Harvey. As parents of (no longer quite so small) children we understand the importance of a stress free holiday, so we have made sure the enclosed site is safe by adding a high bolt to the exterior gate and have strived to make the carriage perfect for families by adding everything you'll need, from a high chair to toys, books and DVDs.

Our own children Walter and Poppy have always loved staying in Harvey - and bringing their friends to join them! With two separate lets that can be divided off, or made into one large space, Harvey offers the perfect solution for extended families or friends who'd like to holiday together but still have their own space. We love the video Poppy made of Harvey - please click on this link to watch it. Please note that we no longer have swings, but a full sized table tennis table instead.

We welcome cyclistsCyclists - There is a cycle shelter, Hayle Cycles, a local bike shop offering bike hire, just down the road and Harvey is only a few metres away from National Cycle Route 3. We also recommend Cornwall Go By Cycle who will deliver bikes for hire to your door.

Train mad boys and girls of all ages (and even those who aren't so enamoured!) - For the rail enthusiast there is a viewing platform adjoining the carriage. However there are very few trains overnight and there is a fence covered with roses and clematis between the coach and the platform, to ensure privacy.

Local people - We offer a £50 discount to anyone living in Cornwall or Devon who books a holiday with us.

Please note that because Harvey is a railway carriage and we have endeavoured to keep it as original as possible, there are space constrictions which may make Harvey unsuitable for taller visitors. The compartments are all the same size, 190cm by 190cm. Please be aware that if you are very tall the beds may be too short for comfort, as the mattress is a standard double with no space to extend the feet beyond the end. For more details please see our Access Guide.

Harvey Visitors Comments

"Incredibly well equipped and surprisingly comfortable" - Mr S, West Midlands.

"My favourite part was body boarding on the huge waves" - James aged 11, Gunnislake .

"The coach provides comfortable accommodation, superb 'spotting facilities' and an excellent base from which to explore the area" - Mr P and family.

"We both had a superb holiday - we'll definitely be back!" - Mr & Mrs G, Bristol.

"Super Accommodation - we even managed breakfast on the deck most mornings - our two young boys were still excited every time a train went past at the end of the week here" - Mr & Mrs P & family.

"Just enough conversion to provide comfortable living conditions whilst preserving the original feel of a 'real' railway carriage" - Mr J, Sutton.

"All of us from Grandma and five children aged 9 to 18 enjoyed staying here ... would certainly think of returning again and recommend this to others" - Mr & Mrs B & family, Surrey.

"This is the best place ever for public transport access!"

"Visited Falmouth and Pendennis Castle, St. Ives and Carbis Bay by train, Mousehole and St. Michael's Mount by train and bus. Glad we left the car at home again!"

"We've enjoyed every moment of being here, with the children calling it home (and not wanting to go out on several occasions)" -Mrs R & family, Peterborough .

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Contact Railholiday by email at office@railholiday.co.uk or by phone on (+44) 01503 230783.  ©