Visit to North Norfolk autumn gala beckons for Oliver Cromwell…

GREAT Central-based ‘Britannia’ No. 70013 Oliver Cromwell will be making a return visit to the North Norfolk Railway later this summer to take part in the line’s early Autumn Steam Gala on August 31-September 2.

August marks the 50th anniversary of the end of British Railways steam, and the National Collection Pacific has been in high demand this year, especially with this being its final year in traffic before withdrawal for overhaul.

No. 70013 Oliver Cromwell was the starlet of the End of Steam events in 1968, pictured here with the Manchester Rail Travel Society and the Severn Valley Railway Society’s ‘Farewell to BR Steam’ at Manchester Victoria on July 28 that year. PETE SKELTON

Oliver Cromwell last visited the railway in 2013, having also officially ‘christened’ the line’s main line connection at Sheringham in March 2010.

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Further details on the locomotive line-up had still to be announced at the time of writing, but it is expected motive power will be drawn from a pool of GNR ‘N2’ 0-6-2T No. 1744, LNER ‘B12’ 4-6-0 No. 8572, BR ‘4MT’ Mogul No. 76084, GER ‘Y14’ 0-6-0 No. 564, BR ‘9F’ 2-10-0 No. 92203 Black Prince, and WD ‘Austerity’ 2-10-0 No. 90775.

…after double-weekend starring role in Great Central’s bumper 1968 celebration

BEFORE No. 70013 ventures back to Norfolk it has a double weekend in service at the Great Central Railway as the Loughborough line commemorates the events of early-August 1968, which culminated in the running of the ‘Fifteen Guinea Special’.

The End of BR Steam Gala takes place over the weekends of August 4-5 and 11-12 with ‘Cromwell’ playing the central role.

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