Bahamas booked for first main line tour in 25 years!

By Cedric Johns

STANDARD class tickets sold out within hours for the mainline comeback of Jubilee 4-6-0 No. 45596 Bahamas, which is set to work a special train from Oxenhope to Carlisle on February 9.

Handed over to Bob Meanley and his engineering team at Tyseley Locomotive Works for a major overhaul in November 2013, largely funded by a £996,000 Heritage Lottery Fund grant, the locomotive returned to steam in time for Tyseley’s September 29/30 open weekend.

Bahamas looked the part when it made its first public moves at Tyseley over the weekend of September 29-30, following overhaul at the Birmingham workshops. As would perhaps be expected, the popular locomotive’s first main line excursion in a quarter of a century proved to be an immediate hit, with standard class tickets selling out within hours. IAN DIXON

As part of its return to main line duties, the 4-6-0 was due to make two proving runs around the West Midlands. On December 11, Bahamas was booked to run with a support coach and following that, an empty coaching stock loading run on December 13.

Assuming all goes according to plan, the Jubilee will depart for its home base, the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway on December 18. As with the test runs, the movement will be undertaken by West Coast Railways.

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