Heritage Railway


CONTRARY to my statement in issue 271 that I would not be writing this column for the foreseeable future, I have now agreed with the editor that I will continue on a periodic basis. There is a comparative lack of steam-hauled railtours in the south, which are the easiest for me to cover and so for this issue I am reliant on my good friend Sandy Smeaton, who has kindly sent me details of excellent runs with two locomotives.

I am not averse to travelling north of Watford, despite the mega long days which this entails, but discretion seems to be sensible at present in order to minimise the risk on the long rail journeys to reach steam. Incredibly though some operators, notably Saphos, The A1 Steam Trust (A1SLT), West Coast Railways (WCR) and The Railway Touring Company (RTC) have resumed operations, even though current restrictions result in much reduced capacity and therefore income.

LMS Royal Scot Class No. 46115 Scots Guardsman is a consistently good performer and I admit that the RTC’s ‘Cumbrian Mountain Express’ on August 8 was very tempting. After some robust family discussion however, I decided that age and other issues meant I had to give it a miss. Fortunately, Sandy was on board and has sent me full details of an astonishing performance all day by the 4-6-0.

We start with the Carnforth to Carlisle section as shown in Table One, followed by the return from Carlisle

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