There are still a few steam engines around.
Oliver Cromwell at Reading.
On the Kent and East Sussex Line.
On the West Somerset Railway.
Leaving Porthmadog on the Ffestiniog Railway.
An absolutely delightful narrow gauge line runs some 70 miles inland from Nice into the French Alps, where steam engines can still occasionally be seen.
A "black five" at Grosmont.
On Grosmont Shed.
About to change tokens on the Swannage branch.
West Somerset Railway.
"The White Rose" leaving Leeds Central behind A3 Pacific "Diamond Jubilee" driven by my grandfather. This photo was taken by Eric Treacy who was a great railway photographer and an Anglican bishop, producing a host of evocative black and white images. The engine crew were aware that their departure was to be photographed which is why they are both looking out. It was the Bishop's practice to speak to the driver beforehand and encourage him to open the throttle as he set off, to create a more dramatic exhaust. Grandfather has clearly obliged!
Earlier in his career Grandfather served in France in the Railway Operating Division, here on the left. These locomotives are Great Central Railway Class 8K and hundreds were built to serve the front. After 1918 many returned to work in Britain and were still ambling about the tracks in my early trainspotting days.
A slightly better known A3 near Grosmont.
The same locomotive a year or so earlier...you may notice a few subtle differences!
Departing from Grosmont...
I have been to Grosmont quite often...
The railway on Mull is noted for its flexible labour policy!
The line runs between Craignure and Torasay Castle for about a mile.
A Cleethorpes attraction.
A4 Pacific Union of South Africa at Edinburgh Waverley with a special train on the newly reopened Border Railway to Tweedbank.
The "Jacobean" on the Mallaig to Fort William line.
The last train of the day to Pickering about to leave Goathland on a murky Autumn afternoon.
A preserved locomotive on Zagreb Station.
My grandfather, in full working dress, posing beside a recently built A1 Pacific which was later named Oliver Stirling. This is probably on Doncaster Shed c.1950
My Grandfather again at about the same time. This is probably a shift on the station pilot (a sort of spare engine) which was usually a V2, as here..
You will never guess where I saw the Royal Scot!
It is not quite the same as seeing them in steam and working, but York Railway Museum is the place to see steam locomotives and provides a great day out. A few of the exhibits are shown below.
It needs a second look, but yes! This is a model.
There is a railway museum at Didcot where working steam engines can be seen.
Another excellent railway museum can be found at Shildon. A few of the exhibits are shown below, including some on loan from York.