2nd July 2011 / 29th October 2011

Steam Dreams
The Cathedrals Express

Tour postponed to 29/10/2011 then 10/03/2012 due to a combination of factors.

Route :

Advertised Loco(s) Advertised Route
steam: 60019 'Bittern'
(running as 4492 'Dominion of New Zealand')
London Paddington - Reading - Newbury - Taunton
Train splits: Portion 1:
48151 Taunton - Exeter St Davids - Plymouth
48151 Plymouth - (reverse of outward route) - Taunton
Train splits: Portion 2:
60019 Taunton - Bishops Lydeard - Minehead
60019 Minehead - (reverse of outward route) - Taunton
Train recombines:
steam: 60019 'Bittern'
(running as 4492 'Dominion of New Zealand')
Taunton - (reverse of outward route) - London Paddington

Notes :
(1) : The train was originally advertised for 60163 'Tornado' but this was not available so 60019 was substituted.
(2) The letter from Steam Dreams stated: The decision to make this change has not been taken lightly and has been caused by a number of factors which have conspired to make the train somewhat different if we were to run it on July 2nd. It would have meant diesel haulage for over 135 miles (between London and Taunton) and also a departure from London at 0650hrs and a return at 2300hrs. By re-dating the train we move into a different national rail timetable period which enables a better path from London Paddington and therefore a slightly shorter day. To speed up the day the connection to the West Somerset Railway will be by road coach from Taunton to Bishops Lydeard before the onward journey Minehead which will continue steam-hauled. Timings for the necessary shunting at Taunton to run a portion to the West Somerset Railway would have taken around 45 minutes in each direction adding an hour and a half to the day. Our train to Plymouth will be steam hauled all the way from London.

Sources : John Clifford & Nick Bartlett

Back to "The Railtour Files"