Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Tornado in Lancaster

The weekly steam specials from Lancaster may have finished for the season but the West Coast Main Line will still see occasional steam trains throughout the Autumn and Winter. Today's locomotive, however, was "special" for a different reason. It's a class A1 Pacific - a type that hauled crack express trains on the East Coast route between London, Kings Cross and Scotland. By the end of steam haulage on British Railways  in 1968 all 49 of the class had been scrapped. Examples of all the other East Coast Main Line express locomotives had been preserved, but there was no A1.  In narrowboating terms it's as if no "Joshers" or Grand Union "Large Woolwich" boats had survived. Naturally, the only thing to do was to build a new one - and this is it. 60163 "Tornado" 
Here it is at Lancaster station this morning heading for Glasgow. It's due back tonight at 22.58 and I might just walk down to the end of the road to savour the unique sight of a 21st Century main line steam locomotive powering up the bank from Lancaster in the dark!


Halfie said...

Are those LED lamps I see at the front?

Anonymous said...

They look like it, don't they? A bit brighter than oil lamps I suppose. No doubt if we still had steam locos they would all have them.

Anonymous said...

Yes they are LED Lamps.In fact all its lamps are. There is so much electronic wizzardry to operate the modern day requirements of operating on the main line that I beleive there is even a 12v socket to charge mobile phones on board!!

I work on the WSR and it has been here several times and although we have to operate it like a "reigned in greyhound" it still pulls in the crowds. It is a wonderful loco