Spot the dif­fer­ence - it’s the Lanky ‘A’-3’ class!

Steam Railway (UK) - - Steam News -

A hum­ble Lan­cashire & York­shire Rail­way freight lo­co­mo­tive cheek­ily at­tempted to steal the na­tional lime­light from Fly­ing Scots­man in Oc­to­ber, as the celebrity Gres­ley ‘Pa­cific’ made its re­turn visit to ‘Red Rose’ coun­try. Hav­ing made its de­but on ELR me­tals in Jan­uary at the end of its £4.5 mil­lion re­build (in tem­po­rary LNER black), the Gres­ley ‘A3’ re­turned for a fur­ther four days’ duty on Oc­to­ber 13-16. It was also steamed on Oc­to­ber 12 for an episode of Noel Ed­munds’ Deal or No Deal, on Chan­nel 4 later in the year. It pulled in a fur­ther 10,000 vis­i­tors for the ELR - but some were con­fused as to which lo­co­mo­tive they had come to see, af­ter L&Y ‘A’ 0-6-0 No. 12322 was adorned with a ‘Fly­ing Scots­man’ head­board. Al­though the small black Aspinall ‘3F’ is about as far re­moved from a beefy record-break­ing ‘Pa­cific’ as one can imag­ine, the rail­way said it was “in­un­dated with con­fused vis­i­tors”. The crew of No. 12322 were con­se­quently asked to re­move the of­fend­ing item but promptly re­placed it with a ‘Royal Scot’ head­board, which had a sim­i­lar ef­fect. The ELR re­ported that around 8,700 pas­sen­gers oc­cu­pied 96% of the seats on the non-stop Bury-Rawten­stall trains hauled by No. 60103, while those trav­el­ling on the other ser­vices - cov­ered by No. 12322, ‘West Coun­try’ No. 34092 City of Wells and ‘4MT’ 2-6-4T No. 80080 - took the to­tal fig­ure over 10,000. Al­though the to­tal will still be lower than the 20,000 dur­ing the Jan­uary visit, those trains were avail­able at nor­mal fares, while the lat­est series cost £25 per seat. No in­stances of tres­pass were re­ported, and the only glitch came with a SPAD (Sig­nal Passed at Dan­ger) in­ci­dent on the Satur­day, at Townsend Fold - in­volv­ing a DMU shut­tle. Hav­ing not sched­uled an en­thu­si­ast gala this au­tumn to make way for ‘Scots­man’s’ visit, the ELR is plan­ning a ma­jor event for March 11-13 next year, for which it “has feel­ers out for a num­ber of big vis­it­ing en­gines.”


Fly­ing Scots­man de­parts from Bury on Oc­to­ber 13, pass­ing L&Y ‘A’ 0‑6‑0 No. 12322 car­ry­ing the ‘Fly­ing Scots­man’ head­board.

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