Tornado steams into Royston and South Cambs – much to delight of crowds lining platforms

PUBLISHED: 11:42 30 August 2017 | UPDATED: 11:45 30 August 2017

The 60163 Tornado steamed through Meldreth railway station. Picture: Clive Porter

The 60163 Tornado steamed through Meldreth railway station. Picture: Clive Porter

Clive Porter

Crowds lined North Herts and South Cambs platforms yesterday to see the 60163 Tornado steam through the stations.

Penny Mount with the Tornado in Royston. Penny Mount with the Tornado in Royston.

The last of the original Peppercorn class A1 steam locomotives was scrapped in 1966, and the Tornado – the first to be built in more than 50 years – was completed in 2008.

The train, built to the design of the historic trains by Arthur Peppercorn, passed through Royston, Meldreth, Shepreth and Foxton en route to Great Yarmouth, and stopped in Royston on the way back.

Penny Mount was on the Royston platform, ready to catch a glimpse of the train.

She told the Crow: “The station was buzzing, the platform was packed with so many people.

“When we were told the train was running late a few people were disappointed, but I just thought to my self ‘oh well, nothing new’!

“As the train was pulling in to the station every one was trying to get the best pictures they could. I took a small video and became excited like a kid in a sweet shop – she is a magnificent beast.”

Penny was born in London but spent most of her life in Germany with the armed forces.

She met her partner Gary Webb and moved to Royston just over a year ago.

The Tornado in Meldreth. Picture: Alan Jones The Tornado in Meldreth. Picture: Alan Jones

Penny, who is a carer at St George’s Nursing Home in the town, said: “I first got into loving steam trains when I was younger my dad took myself and sister on a train ride.

“I loved the smell of the steam and and size of the engines.

“My favourite train line is the Whitby to Pickering line – the veiws are stunning and just the sound of the steam coming out its hard to describe.

“I’ve been to most of the train museums over the years. While serving in the army I was stationed with a railway unit and had the opportunity to ride on the foot plate of an army steam train, but that was many years ago.

Train enthusiast Penny Mount at Pen-Y-Mount Junction. Train enthusiast Penny Mount at Pen-Y-Mount Junction.

“I have seen the Tornado a few times before but just can’t get enough of looking at her.

“The Flying Scotsman is my favourite engine of all time. I even went to visit her while she was in the sheds at Shildon in County Durham, being done up.”

For more on the Tornado go to www.a1steam.com.

There is also a documentary about the engine on BBC iPlayer, available for the next six days. Search ‘Tornado – the 100mph Steam Engine’ at bbc.co.uk/iplayer.

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