A record 45,000 people flocked to the eagerly awaited September 21-26 Pacific Power event which replaced the Severn Valley Railway’s traditional autumn steam gala, to watch the world’s most famous locomotive, Flying Scotsman, top the bill in action with Britain’s newest main line steam engine Tornado. Before that, Flying Scotsman wowed the crowds during a visit to Tyseley Locomotive Works for three open days, as the mass public clamour to see the greatest steam icon of them all showed no signs of abating. Robin Jones reports.
Flying Scotsman fever struck Birmingham for three days in September, drawing more than 6000 visitors to Tyseley Locomotive Works.
During September 16-18, the Brunswick-green liveried No. 60103 lined up on the Tyseley turntable to the delight of crowds before moving into the venue’s Warwick Road station platforms.
There, as part of a special Flying Scotsman footplate experience, which was sold out within days of being announced, hundreds signed up to walk through the A3 corridor tender and visit the footplate.
There, they heard an explainer recount the locomotive’s exploits of being the first officially to reach 100mph, in 1934, and which, after being privately bought by the late Alan Pegler in 1963, continued to operate during the 1968-71 BR steam ban and visited North America and Australia before being saved for the nation by the National Railway Museum for £2.31 million in 2004.
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