Close to celebrating its centenary, the ‘Flying Scotsman’ – the world’s most famous and iconic steam locomotive – is to visit the Swanage Railway on the Isle of Purbeck in Dorset for nearly three weeks in October 2022.
Owned by the National Railway Museum in York, the iconic 97 tonne Class A3 locomotive – completed in 1923 by the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER) – will run the popular Purbeck Heritage Line for 19 days from Wednesday 19 October to Sunday 6 November 2022 inclusive.
When tested in 1934, the “Flying Scotsman” designed by Nigel Gresley was the first steam locomotive in the UK to pull a train at 100 miles per hour.
Coupled behind No. 60103 ‘Flying Scotsman’ will be a late 1940s Devon Belle Pullman observation carriage – known as Car 14 – which dedicated Swanage Railroad volunteers rescued from San Francisco to the United States in 2007 where it was a static bar.
It was between 1969 and 1972 that “Flying Scotsman” drove the Devon Belle Car 14 in the United States of America during a tour of the country aimed at promoting British exports. Unfortunately, the company organizing the tour went bankrupt and ‘Flying Scotsman’ was sent home, but the Pullman observation car remained in the United States.
Swanage Railway’s volunteer business manager Marcus Alldrick said: ‘The dedicated directors, administrators, staff and volunteers of Swanage Railway are delighted that the railway has successfully welcomed back’ Flying Scotsman” which celebrates its centenary in February 2023. .
“We are extremely grateful to the National Railway Museum for once again giving the Swanage Railway the opportunity to host such a historic event to harness and display the famous ‘Flying Scotsman’ who is such a charismatic icon and celebrates his 100 years on February 24, 2023.
“It will be wonderful to admire #60103 carrying the unique Devon Belle Pullman Observation Carriage – known as Car 14 – as they operated in pairs across the United States between 1969 and 1972,” said explained Marcus, who is a volunteer porter on the popular Purbeck. heritage line.
Fresh from a major technical overhaul, ‘Flying Scotsman’ will carry passenger trains from Swanage to Corfe Castle and Norden for five days – from Saturday 22nd October to Wednesday 26th October 2022 inclusive – with station access only for the public.
The iconic steam locomotive will be on static display at Swanage Station on Thursday 20th October and Friday 21st October 2022, then from Thursday 27th October until Sunday 6th November 2022 inclusive, with ticket-only access to visit the fascinating sole of the iconic steam locomotive.
Robert Patterson, Trustee of the Swanage Railway Trust and Chairman of the Swanage Railway Company, explained: “With uniformed attendants serving champagne and canapes to passengers on board the Devon Belle Pullman observation carriage, Car 14 will be coupled directly behind ‘Flying Scotsman’ when she will haul trains on the Swanage Railway.
“It will give Pullman passengers a rare chance to enjoy the pleasures of traveling in style behind and watch the world’s most famous steam locomotive as it journeys through Purbeck’s stunning countryside and past the historic ruins of the castle. of Corfe.
“‘Flying Scotsman’ visited Swanage Railway in March 2019, and the reaction from the public seeing and hearing the charismatic steam leviathan at work was incredible and proved that the iconic locomotive still has a special place in their hearts. people,” added Bob who is also a volunteer station porter on the Swanage Railway.
Costing £7,944 to build, ‘Flying Scotsman’ was named after the prestigious London-Edinburgh express train service which the locomotive helped run – the journey time being eight hours.
In 1924 ‘Flying Scotsman’ appeared at the British Empire Exhibition in London and in 1963 British Railways withdrew the locomotive from service.
Purchased by the National Railway Museum in 2004, ‘Flying Scotsman’ has been restored through a ten-year, £4.2 million project funded by the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Heritage Lottery Fund as well as public donations.
To find out more about visiting ‘Flying Scotsman’s, go online to swanagerailway.co.uk. Information on the history and restoration of the locomotive is available through the National Railway Museum at flyingscotsman.org.uk
Swanage Railway is welcoming new volunteers who should contact Swanage Railway Volunteer Recruitment and Retention Manager Jonathan Evans on 01929 408466 or email [email protected]