Thursday 4th October 2018 – LNER Pacific no. 60103 Flying Scotsman on a Cathedrals Express from Theale to Taunton.
Our Steam Dream competition winner Will Beattie from Ramsbury treated his Dad to the trip for his 60th birthday!
Train Photographer Tony Bartlett
Experienced photographer Tony Bartlett captured The Flying Scotsman as it steamed across Hungerford Common:
Just as forecast, the day dawned with light cloud thereby nullifying the problem for photographers of having to shoot directly into the sun. In fact as I arrived at my chosen spot on Hungerford Common, I could see mist descending over the town but my limited view remained reasonably clear, although the low level of available light was not ideal for action photography. The train was on time into its station stop at Newbury so there was not long to wait before the sound of the steam exhaust could be heard approaching rapidly from the far end of the Common, shortly after followed by Flying Scotsman bursting out from under Dun Mill overbridge, having blasted the underside of the bridge with steam in characteristic fashion:
The original plan had been for the Pacific to be accompanied by a 4-6-0 for its tour of Devon and Cornwall – Mayflower was to join later in the journey but being unavailable a Black Five was having to deputise. By good fortune this was presumably still in the London area so we were treated to the sight of it double-heading with FS for this first part of the tour:
….. a grand sight indeed, and an unusual LNER/LMS combination! The yellow signal on the up line was initially a cause for concern indicating that an express was imminent with potential to spoil the view, but at the time it was in or approaching its stop at Hungerford (not so good for spectators there).
In the interests of balance I took a ‘going away’ shot of the two locos to give more prominence to the Black Five no. 44871, which shot also displays the corridor tender of the Scotsman with its rear carriage connection and porthole lighting the corridor. For today it would only provide a good view of the smoke box of no. 44871:
For more from Tony about our local steam train heritage, click here.