This weekend, the Epping Ongar heritage railway, at the end of the Central line, will be hosting a grand total of five steam trains chugging decoratively through the Essex countryside.
This is the first time the recently reopened line was hosted five engines in steam on the same day.
The event takes place from 8th to 10th June and a working timetable has been crafted to demonstrate the capabilities of these locomotives.
The five engines are:
- United States Army Transportation Company S160 Class, 5197
- GWR 813 0-6-0 Saddle Tank
- Hunslet Austerity Lord Phil
- Metropolitan Number 1, and
- Hawthorn Leslie locomotive ‘Isabel’
The S160 and Lord Phil will be hauling 5-carriage trains, while Met 1 and GWR 813 will have lighter duties pulling 3-cariage trains.
On the Saturday and Sunday there will be a chance to ride in the brake van with the newly painted and lined Isabel.
Isabel will also make a special photocall at North Weald during the gala (prior to taking it up rostered duties on brake van rides for the remainder of the gala. This will take place at 10.30 am on Saturday 9 June.
Tickets to the steam gala cost £20 for an all-day pass (£10 for children) and includes a free connection from Epping tube station or Shenfield train station to the steam railway at North Weald by an old Routemaster bus.
You can book tickets in advance here