a station-by-station guide for tourist attractions

Bedford St Johns

National Rail | Bedford BDM | Bedford St Johns BSJ

Bedfordshire Offers & Links

Bedford is an important market town on the River Great Ouse. There are good views over the river from Castle Mound (all that remains of Bedford Castle). The parks and meadows beside the river are worth exploring and they make a pleasant route to Priory Country Park. The Bus Station is ½ mile from Bedford's main Rail Station and just over ¾ mile from St Johns Station. Bedford PlusBus can be used on buses within the urban area.

TI Old Town Hall, St Paul's Square. Tel. 01234 718112.

Bedford attractions map

The Higgins Bedford 1 mile

An art gallery and local museum in the former home of the Higgins family. Displays introduce the family and Cecil Higgins' collection. Watercolour, print and decorative art collections, including works by the architect William Burges and the artist designer Edward Bawden. Local collections tell the story of Bedford and its people. Exhibitions programme. Café and restaurant. Admission free.
Open TWThFS 1100-1700, Sun & BH 1400-1700.

Bunyan Museum 1 mile

A series of tableaux, room sets, reconstructions and information points tell the story of the 17th century author, pastor and preacher John Bunyan. Church Coffee Shop.
Open mid Feb-Nov, TWThFS 1100-1600.

Panacea Museum 1 mile

The museum tells the story of the Panacea Society, a remarkable religious community formed by Mabel Barltrop in 1919. The Victorian house 'Castleside' was part of the community's headquarters and the Gardens had great significance for the Society because they believed they were on the site of the original Garden of Eden. Chapel. Tearoom. Picnics allowed in Gardens. Admission free.
Open Feb-Nov, ThFS 1000-1600.

Priory Country Park 1½ miles (1 mile from St Johns station)

The Park, established after gravel extraction finished on the site, includes two large lakes, meadows and woodland. It is managed for wildlife as well as visitors. Wildlife garden. Bird-watching hides. Visitor Centre with displays and trail leaflets.
Open Visitor Centre M-F 0900-1630, SSu 1100-1630. Park open at all times.

Moot Hall Elstow, 1¾ miles (1 mile from St Johns station) or by bus

Set in the ancient village of Elstow on the picturesque village green the timber-framed Moot Hall was designed as a market house for Elstow Abbey. It now houses a collection of medieval furniture and many items relating to the life and works of Elstow's famous author, John Bunyan.
Open Apr-Oct, Sat & BH 1300-1600.
Bus 44 & 81 from Bus Station (½ mile from Bedford Rail Station) to Elstow High Street, 12 minutes journey, M-S both routes hourly. Bedford PlusBus tickets are valid for this journey. 44 operated by Grant Palmer, 81 operated by Stagecoach.

English Heritage Membership
English Heritage Membership

Wrest Park EH by bus then ½ mile

An extensive English garden developed by the de Grey family and displaying over 200 years of garden history. Follies and other architectural features. Waterside and woodland paths. Formal gardens near the mansion. Some unfurnished but opulently decorated State Rooms in the French-style Mansion are open. Exhibition on the history of the de Grey family and their estate. Café.
Open Apr-Oct, Daily 1000-1700. Nov-Mar, SSu (and WThF in Mar) 1000-1600. The Mansion may be closed if an event is booked, please check the website.
Bus 81 from Bus Station (½ mile from Bedford Rail Station) to Silsoe Church (about 35 minutes journey) then ½ mile walk. M-S hourly. Operated by Stagecoach. Buses also operate from Luton.
Wrest Park is 4 miles from Flitwick station.

Silsoe map