Tornado main line comeback aimed for September 29

A1 Peppercorn Pacific No. 60163 is set to return to main line traffic on September 29.

That is the date when owning group The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust hopes to have the locomotive hauling its ‘The Ynys Mon Express’ from Leicester to Holyhead.

At Wansford, on the Nene Valley Railway, the trust and its contractors are continuing the work to return No. 60163 Tornado to operational service since it failed on the East Coast Main Line with the April 14 ‘The Ebor Flyer’ from King’s Cross to York.

Repairs to Tornado following its April 14 failure of the East Coast Main Line while heading the ‘Ebor Flyer’ are ongoing at the Nene Valley Railway’s Wansford works, where it is seen on July 22. GARETH EVANS

A statement issued by the trust on August 10 said: “We are pleased to report that the two outside engines are now rebuilt and ready for final inspection before testing and running in operations. In the coming week the equivalent work will be undertaken on the inside engine so that the locomotive can then be weighed and prepared for steaming.

“It is anticipated that Tornado will make its first moves under its own power around the Bank Holiday weekend and will undertake running-in operations at the Nene Valley Railway before returning to main line operations on Saturday, September 29.

“We are pleased to confirm that all of the components required for the reinstatement to traffic of No. 60163 are now to hand or undergoing final machining. This includes the replacement outside union link which has been manufactured by Stephenson Engineering of Manchester.”

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