Tornado, the first new main line steam locomotive to be built in Britain for almost 50 years, will haul her historic first train from London’s King’s Cross station on Saturday 18th April 2009. This train, the Yorkshire Pullman, will run to York and will be the first time a once-familiar Peppercorn class A1 has departed from London’s King’s Cross Station for over 40 years.
The Yorkshire Pullman name was first used on Monday 30th September 1935, and apart from the hiatus due to the Second World War, survived for some years after steam locomotives ceased to haul it. Although the original prestigious train started at Harrogate and was regularly hauled by Tornado’s now extinct class members south of Doncaster, the 2009 Yorkshire Pullman will run from London’s King’s Cross station to York and return with Tornado hauling the luxurious VSOE British Pullman train. The 2009 train will consist of 13 carriages, equating to about 550 tons, and will run at up to 75mph. The new £3 million Peppercorn class A1 60163 Tornado will be wearing her glorious apple green livery with ‘British Railways’ on the tender as carried by the first 30 of the original 49 Peppercorn class A1s when built and the train will be resplendent in its traditional umber and cream livery.
Only Pullman class is available, with champagne breakfast served on the outward journey and a sumptuous five course meal on the way back to London. Tickets for the return journey on the Yorkshire Pullman are priced at £449 per person but with only a few tickets remaining the Trust has decided to make available special tickets travelling one way on the Yorkshire Pullman (either London to York or York to London) with the return by National Express East Coast service train included for only £250 per person. The booking agent for the Trust is Steam Dreams on 01483 209886.
Speaking about Tornado’s first passenger train from London’s King’s Cross station, Mark Allatt, chairman of The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust said:
“Tornado’s first train from London’s Kings Cross station is the opening of a new chapter in the story of a project that many said could never be completed. In 1990 a group was formed with a vision and the determination to make it succeed – to build and operate a Peppercorn class A1 Pacific steam locomotive for main line and preserved railway use. 19 years later, and thanks to that shared vision and determination, Tornado will haul her first passenger train north from King’s Cross to York on East Coast Main Line, the route on which the Peppercorn class A1s became such a familiar sight throughout the 1950s and early 1960s. It is thanks to our more than 2,500 regular monthly and other donors, our sponsors led by William Cook Cast Products Limited and the hard work of our volunteers and contractors that the project has achieved so much. The Trust is now looking to the great British public to help us keep Tornado on the main line by making a donation, sponsoring a component, taking part in our covenant scheme and/or our £500,000 bond issue to help repay the £832,000 borrowed to complete her construction.”
On Saturday 18th April 2009, Tornado will follow the timings below from London’s King’s Cross station to York and return:
Departs London King's Cross 09:18hrs
Passes Stevenage 10:05hrs
Passes Peterborough 11:01hrs
Water stop Grantham 11:32-12:07hrs
Passes Newark 12:23hrs
Passes Retford 12:59hrs
Passes Doncaster 13:36hrs
Arrives York 14:08hrs
Departs York – 17:06hrs
Passes Doncaster 17:35hrs
Passes Retford 17:59hrs
Passes Newark 18:29hrs
Water stop Grantham 18:46-19:15hrs
Passes Peterborough 19:49hrs
Passes Stevenage 20:36hrs
Arrives London King's Cross 21:09hrs
The Trust respectfully requests that anyone wanting to see Tornado's main line passenger trains follows the rules of the railway and only goes where permitted.