With a triumphant blast of steam – and to the applause of delighted train buffs – the first mainline steam loco built in Britain for nearly 50 years pulls into London yesterday.
The apple-green Tornado – funded by £3million of donations from enthusiasts – pulled the Talisman train into Platform 1 at King’s Cross after a six-hour, 250-mile journey from Doncaster.
A huge crowd of onlookers turned out to see the first steam train to enter the capital in more than 40 years.
One of its 500 passengers, John Warren, 64, from Whittlesey near Peterborough, said: ‘Thousands of people were at the sides of the tracks waving as we went by.’
Built by a team of volunteers over nearly 20 years, the A1 60163 Tornado is a Peppercorn class A1 locomotive.
It can reach 100mph and will run on the main-line network from April 18. The A1s were taken out of service by British Rail in the Sixties.