Saturday 9 November 2019

A famous visitor but blink and you'll miss it

While I was filling with water yesterday morning, local boater Garry, on nbChugabug and who runs a Vlog (Chugabug) told me that the Flying Dutchman loco would be passing by the marina soon.  Of course I had to see this so armed with camera I, and many others, set up for the photo oppotunity on the bridge that allows access to the marina.

Train Spotters and boaters eagerly await the arrival of the Flying Dutchman

The name Flying Dutchman is actually the name of a passenger service from London Paddington to St Davids Exeter and this was named after The Flying Dutchman, a famous racehorse, which had won both the Derby and St. Leger in 1849. The racehorse was in turn named after the famous Dutch Admiral Tromp.  The name was later given to the loco used on that service.

The locomotive was built in Doncaster becoming the first locomotive of the newly formed London and North Eastern Railway (LNER). It left the works on 24 February 1923 with number 1472. It was designed by Sir Nigel Gresley as part of the A1 class – the most powerful locomotives used by the LNER at that time.

By 1924, when it was selected to appear at the British Empire Exhibition in London, the loco had been renumbered 4472 – and had been given the name ‘Flying Scotsman’ after the London to Edinburgh rail service which started daily at 10am in 1862.

The British Empire Exhibition made Flying Scotsman famous, and it went on to feature in many more publicity events for the LNER. In 1928, it was given a new type of tender with a corridor, which meant that a new crew could take over without stopping the train. This allowed it to haul the first ever non-stop London to Edinburgh service on 1 May, reducing the journey time to eight hours.

In 1934, Flying Scotsman was clocked at 100mph on a special test run – officially the first locomotive in the UK to have reached that speed.

Sure enough, an hour later, the famous locomotive appeared, although only visible for a few seconds as it was running at speed.

And here are a few photos of it

Appearing from behind the bridge

The Flying Dutchman approaches our bridge in a cloud of steam

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