UPDATE – Sadly, the steam trains will now be hauled by diesel engine across the London Overground, but if you are to the west of London, it will be pulled by two Black Five class steam locomotives.


This coming Saturday (3rd Dec), get ready for an early Christmas present, as a steam train makes a rare visit to the North London section of the London Overground.

Operated by Steam Dreams, the train will be running from Southend to Winchester, via West Hampstead, so should be easy to watch as it passes along the London Overground — either from stations, or local vantage points and roads.

The timetable for the route passing key points is:

  • 08:09 – Southend East
  • 08:39 – Upminster
  • 08:54 – Barking
  • 09:08 – Forest Gate
  • 09:12 – Stratford
  • 09:35 – Hackney Central
  • 09:43 – Highbury & Islington
  • 09:55 – Gospel Oak
  • 10:02 – West Hampstead
  • 10:12 – Willesden Junction
  • 10:19 – South Acton
  • 10:29 – Brentford
  • 10:34 – Hounslow
  • 10:48 – Staines
  • 11:19 – Chertsey
  • 11:33 – Woking
  • 12:13 – Basingstoke
  • 12:39 – Winchester

And in the evening back to Southend

  • 17:00 – Winchester
  • 17:49 – Reading
  • 18:13 – Slough
  • 18:23 – Southall
  • 19:00 – West Ealing
  • 19:10 – Willesden Junction
  • 19:17 – West Hampstead
  • 19:25 – Gospel Oak
  • 19:35 – Highbury & Islington
  • 19:41 – Hackney Central
  • 19:52 – Stratford
  • 20:11 – Forest Gate
  • 20:17 – Barking
  • 20:31 – Upminster
  • 21:04 – Southend East

For the spotters, the locomotive in question will be the LMS Princess Royal Class 6201 Princess Elizabeth. Built in 1933, the locomotive was named after our current Monarch at the time when she was less Queen and more Princess.

The Princess Elizabeth is one of two preserved Princesses; the other being 46203 Princess Margaret Rose.


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  1. Greg S says:

    Sorry this may sound stupid, but: If I stand on a footbridge above the railway when the steam train passes… does this mean any health risk? I mean toxic fumes, smoke etc.

    • Ian Visits says:

      Technically, it’s not healthy, but a 10 second blast of flinty smoke isn’t going to do any damage compared to walking along the average London road breathing in car pollution.

  2. John Simmons says:

    According to the Steam Dreams website, the train will be diesel hauled on the London to Southend leg of the return trip.

  3. Gordon says:

    Princess Elizabeth now has a mechanical problem and will not run. Instead, the train will be double-headed by a pair of ‘Black Five’ steam locomotives, according to the Steam Dreams train operator’s website. Should look good!

    • Gordon says:

      BUT – they will only haul the train from Hanwell (West London) to Salisbury and return. No steam haulage on the Overground lines. Sorry, the Steam Dreams website didn’t make that clear, I should have checked a second source before posting.

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