Friday, March 08, 2019
WORLD FAMOUS FLYING SCOTSMAN IN BRIGG
Here's a real 'find' showing the world's most famous steam locomotive at Brigg station.
Railway enthusiast and supporter, Phill Hewson, kindly forwarded the picture to us.
It comes courtesy of Stuart Atkinson, of Gainsborough, and shows the iconic engine at the head of an enthusiasts' special in 1968.
A number of pictures showing Flying Scotsman at Barnetby in the late 1960s have survived, but this is the first we've seen of the loco in Brigg station.
Note the duo getting a super view from the old cast iron footbridge, since removed and now earmarked for restoration on a heritage line.
This view also reminds us of the original station buildings that once stood close to platform one at Brigg station.
They were demolished, stage by stage, under British Rail between the 1970s and the 1990s - the last to go being the former station master's house.
To the right of the train is a cottage that was occupied by various railway workers down the decades.
Reg Wilson, a Wrawby Junction signalman, lived there for a few years with his family in the 1960s.
We went to school with his son, whose upstairs bedroom window offered a great view for trainspotting.
Capable of reaching 100mph, Flying Scotsman hauled express passenger trains along the east coast mainline until 1963 when it was withdrawn but saved from the scrapyard.
The new owner, Alan Pegler, a Nottinghamshire businessman and steam loco fan, negotiated an exclusive deal with British Railways, allowing him to operate his engine on BR lines, hauling enthusiasts' specials.
That continued after BR withdrew the last of its mainline steam engines in August 1968.
Now a national asset, the loco is still running today and in 2023 will celebrate its 100th birthday.
That just goes to show the capabilities of its designer, Sir Nigel Gresley, and the skills of the workforce at the Doncaster Plant Works where the engine was built.
We had the honour of meeting Alan Pegler on a steam-hauled excursion towards the end of his life.
A few years ago we saw it in action on the North Yorkshire Moors heritage line, while in June 2016 it came through Elsham (see picture below) with many Brigg people making the short trip to see it.
These days it runs with its British Railways number; in 1968 it carried the one allocated by the London North Eastern Railway until nationalisation in 1948.
The smoke deflectors were a BR addition towards the end of its working life, helping to keep smoke out the footplatemen's eyes in the cab when travelling at speed.
Brigg Blog recently appealed to local people to share railway pictures of the past so they can be placed in the public domain, and not lost.
If you have any showing local lines, please email email@example.com
We have the facility to scan prints into digital format suitable for the internet and return them to the owners. Alternatively, scan your own and send them to us by email.