Iconic Flying Scotsman Locomotive to ‘fly south’ to the historic Bluebell Railway this August
Beloved of enthusiasts and the general public alike, Flying Scotsman means so much to so many. At 100 years old, this Giant still draws awe-struck crowds to the theatre of steam. There is something so special about this living iconic engine that has travelled the world, bankrupted owners, thrilled the masses and fulfilled its purpose as an express engine transporting its passengers at 80 mile an hour from London to Scotland and places in between. It is now owned by the National Railway Museum who have kindly loaned the locomotive to the Bluebell Railway this August and September 2023.
“We are delighted that Flying Scotsman will fly south to visit us from 23rd Aug – 3rd September. An event like this creates a buzz of excitement for our hardworking employees and volunteers and we look forward to welcoming the thousands of ticket holders who are all keen to get close to arguably the most famous and iconic steam locomotive in the UK and probably the world”.
Bluebell Railway PLC
This is a much-anticipated visit. An overhaul led to the cancellation of its programmed visit to Bluebell Railway in 2022 with many disappointed ticket holders choosing to keep their bookings and wait more than a year to experience this giant of steam. However, it is now in great condition for its centenary year celebrations and back on track to visit Bluebell Railway near Uckfield in Sussex.
This will not be Flying Scotsman’s first visit to the Bluebell Railway. The last event in 2017 was a huge success, with people travelling from far and wide to glimpse the famous locomotive on Bluebell rails.
Flying Scotsman will be running non-stop return trains from Sheffield Park Station to East Grinstead Station on regular services and special dining trains. Unfortunately, these services are now sold out, but tickets for other trains during the event where you can hop on and off at stations to see Flying Scotsman as it passes and for the static event where Flying Scotsman will be on display in light steam are still available. There are also footplate visits available during the static display event where you can access the heart of the locomotive via the corridor tender and chat to locomotive crews to find out what driving a giant is really like.
Flying Scotsman was the first locomotive of the newly formed London and North Eastern Railway (LNER). The locomotive (previously numbered 1472) was renumbered 4472 in 1924 and given the name ‘Flying Scotsman’ after the daily 10.00 London to Edinburgh rail service.
It was numbered No. 60103 after British Railways was formed and rail travel was nationalised in 1948.
Flying Scotsman will be running non-stop return services between Sheffield Park and East Grinstead for five days from 23 – 29 August. All seats are currently sold-out. There are tickets available for home fleet engine services which can be used to view the great locomotive and be part of this wonderful event.
Visitors will also be able to see the locomotive on static display at Sheffield Park from 30 August – 3 September. Tickets for footplate viewings are available to book online.
Tickets are on sale and can be found here.
Photography by James Cummins & James Corben