On a bright and sunny March day I set off to find and photograph a legend from those glory days of the railway when trains were hauled by steam locomotives with evocative names, none more so than the Flying Scotman.
Across the North Yorkshire moors and nearing the village of Goathland I had never seen so many cars parked on the verges of the narrow moors roads vying with the sheep for a vacant patch of grass. Goathland itself was no better and the tiny station there was a mass of expectant faces waiting for the 12.44 from Grosmont (which wasn’t even scheduled to stop).
“Stand back, please,” a volunteer platform attendant asked. “Someone fell off at Grosmont yesterday!”
Nevertheless we craned to see as the high pitched toot of a whistle sounded and a column of steam appeared around the bend up the line. On it came, wreathed in steam, and then it was gone as the maroon carriages clanked by. My first glimpse of the Flying Scotman, albeit quite brief.
We’d catch the return, but not here. A mile or so up the line at Darneholme where the line passes beneath a narrow stone bridge. Even here up to 50 people gathered to stand and watch. Hovever, being the return journey from Pickering, the mighty Flying Scotsman was puffing backwards pulling its maroon entourage.
One final try. Onto Pickering to catch her steaming into the station. Again crowds lined the platform whilst others sought a vantage point. And as the train steamed into view you it was to the sound of bagpipes being played. As for photographs I managed to snap a few…
Words and photographs Copyright © 2016 by Antony J Waller