Britannia, having just left Whitchurch earlier today

The loco Britannia, No.70000 steamed through Whitchurch twice today as she hauled an excursion from London to Salisbury and back.

Enthusiasts gathered along the line, and there was as always, a goodly crowd at the railway station to see this magnificent marvel of engineering from the past.

Britannia was built in 1951 and was built to haul expresses in East Anglia on the line to Norwich. A claim to special fame was that the cab roof was painted white to mark the locomotive pulling the funeral train of George VI in 1952. She went out of service in 1966.

Steaming through Whitchurch this evening

When Britannia came through Whitchurch last year she was in her British Railways black, but this year she has been repainted in British Railways Brunswick Green.

Britannia hauled the Royal train in January this year with Prince Charles aboard who rededicated the loco. Once again she had the white cab roof.

She was once owned by songwriter/DJ Peter Waterman who sold her to the present owner Jeremy Hoskin, business man and part owner of Crystal Palace Football Club.

That’s enough ‘anorak-ism’ for now!

(A video of last week’s Tornado through town is now on our YouTube channel. See HERE for story.)

Comments (2)

  • Andrew Smith

    I can’t help but bore you all once again with the fact that I saw Britannia when it was a “real” dirty working steam loco when it thundered through Frodsham station, Cheshire, with a freight train in the mid-60s. Such excitement! Such smells!

  • The Mayor and Mayoress

    Two trills for me in one evening – to watch from the up platform, Brittania rounding the corner from Hurstbourne under full power, whistle blowing, clouds of smoke as she decended on and passed through Whitchurch North station, oh what memories. The second thrill was having our son and grandsons there, watching from the footbridge. That is untill the train went under and then with shreeks of laughter from Adam, the youngest, when the smoke covered them and they saw nothing more of the train untill after it had almost completly passed.


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