Last night Mr PP and I celebrated our silver Wedding Anniversary (OK, it is a year late, but it’s a long story) with an evening dinner aboard the world famous Flying Scotsman steam train.
Locomotive 60103 The Flying Scotsman (displaying the Cathedrals Express charter plate)
OK, so the Flying Scotsman is actually a locomotive and the carriages are a train, but let’s not get too picky here.
We set off from London Victoria at about 7pm and toured around south west London and on through the Surrey Hills before returning to Victoria at almost midnight. The queues at Victoria were huge and a “Photo Opp” system was put in place so that only passengers could snap the locomotive before boarding, and it was strictly a snap then move on.
Queues waiting to board The Flying Scotsman
Once on board we settled in to Coach A (at the very front) Pullman Premier Dining carriage where throughout the journey we were served a 5 course meal. Departure was marked with a glass of champagne. Our fellow diners were a pleasant group and conversation was relaxed between enjoying the views.
Pullman Premier Dining Table setting and the dessert course
Almost every station we passed through had groups of members of the public filming or photographing the Scotsman as she passed through. What I found particularly amusing were the number of people standing on platforms waiting for normal commuter trains who didn’t even look up from their phones while this snorting and steaming icon of British railway engineering reborn rumbled through. Unbelievable! Others however grabbed the opportunity to snap or film quickly before the moment was lost and at one point near Acton a man was spotted driving along the road holding his mobile phone out of the window filming the train while he drove alongside. Once free of London the locomotive was allowed to ‘stretch it’s legs’ and we were hurtling through the countryside on board the first steam locomotive to reach 100mph.
Flying Scotsman at Victoria Station
Flying Scotsman standing at platform 2 at Victoria Station
The whole evening was amazing and a fantastic way to celebrate our anniversary – definitely worth waiting a year for!