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Subject:Steaming ahead
Time:09:14 am
Don't usually get up early on Sundays, but today I was making breakfast at nine, looked out of the kitchen window and saw this:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LNER_Class_A4_4488_Union_of_South_Africa

Needless to say I did not have a camera handy... It was hauling several carriages and for some reason there was a diesel engine at the tail end of the train, I suspect to provide a backup if it broke down or ran out of coal or something. I'm guessing that the summer steam excursions in and out of Paddington have started again - and it turns out to be The Cathedrals Express, on the route Paddington-Westbury-Yeovil Pen Mill, Weymouth-Southampton-Paddington

http://www.uksteam.info/tours/t17/t0723d.htm

Unfortunately it's £100+ per seat, I suppose worth it if you're a steam enthusiast but I made enough long steam journeys in my childhood to satisfy me, I think.

Also posted at http://ffutures.dreamwidth.org/2083968.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments. Please comment here or there using OpenID.
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jhall1
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Time:2017-07-23 09:12 pm (UTC)
I went on a day trip behind that very locomotive last Tuesday, again organised by Cathedrals Express (also known as Steam Dreams). :) Yes it's not cheap, but great fun.
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ffutures
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Time:2017-07-24 11:17 am (UTC)
I suppose they're more fun if you haven't lived next to a railway all your life - having to clean soot off everything does tend to bias your opinion of steam trains...
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curiouswombat
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Time:2017-07-23 09:38 pm (UTC)
That would have made S2C's day.

She would be more likely to run out of water than coal, if our experience is anything to go by - they simply don't have the facilities to re-fill their tanks at regular intervals any more.
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jhall1
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Time:2017-07-24 09:04 am (UTC)
Most long trips involve several stops of 15 minutes or so for watering the loco. This generally has to be done from a water tanker, and has to be done somewhere where the tanker can park within hose-length's reach of the locomotive. Usually that's in a station, and the passengers can get out if they wish and stretch their legs but not always.
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curiouswombat
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Time:2017-07-24 04:22 pm (UTC)
We went to Edinburgh a few years ago. The engine usually goes to a goods yard outside the city to re-water, but there was a problem in the goods yard and they had no water. There was no tanker in Edinburgh capable of re-watering her(!) and after a delay of almost three hours (on top of the four hours we were meant to be there) a diesel provided power down to Berwick where we were met by a couple of tankers.

That then saw us down to Gateshead where we dropped the diesel and re-watered properly for the rest of the journey south!
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