Clan line ticks the nostalgia boxes
Clan Line’s 2019 programme may not yet be completely ‘sorted’, but spokesman for the engine Paul Blowfield says a repeat of its November 24 gambol through Home Counties hills is likely.
A different take on a ‘circular’, elements of the UK Railtours ‘Chiltern and Downs’ evoked memories of No. 35028’s time on the Marylebone to Stratford-upon-Avon trips of the 1980s. This one, however, started just down the road from the Great Central terminus, at Paddington, before heading over the direct line to Birmingham as far as Bicester. A left turn for Oxford was followed by a run back to London via Reading and Southern metals into Victoria.
A further aspiration for the forthcoming season is a tour to the East Somerset Railway – maybe also taking in Salisbury – that idea being among half a dozen or so trains to be discussed between the Merchant Navy Locomotive Preservation Society and UKRT. Meanwhile, the long-term ‘bread and butter’ work of the ‘British Pullman’ is expected to account for 13 or 14 trips.
December, by the way, marks a round anniversary for the Eastleigh ‘Pacific’, which was delivered in the last month of 1948 and started life at Bournemouth shed. There’s a different date to keep in mind during 2019 too – the Bulleid engine was rebuilt in October 1959.