The 24th March provided yet another excellent Vintage Trains tour, leaving Solihull at 7.05 and following a circular route of over 230 miles. As with the previous Lickey Banker tour in 2010, our motive power was ex-LMS 4-6-2 6201 "Princess Elizabeth". During the run, there were some wonderful sections where we were probably hitting the maximum permitted speed of 75 mph. We had a 3 hour stopover at Bristol, where we discovered the Bristol Harbour Railway and had a delightful run through the docks in open carriages and hauled by a Peckett 0-6-0 Saddletank "Henbury". The highlight of the day was of course the climb of the 1-in-37 Lickey Bank, where this time we had two banking engines, ex-GWR 0-6-0 Pannier Tanks 7752 and 9600. The climb was spectacular, the sound of the 3 engines volcanic, and the literally hundreds and hundreds of spectators cramming Bromsgrove Station and in the fields either side of the 2 mile bank, made the event something to treasure.
On checking You-Tube when I got home, there were already a large number of videos uploaded. Two particularly good ones: -
At speed near Wootten Bassett http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LH-ZnybQSRI
On the Lickey http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w46vlW7VTHM (we were in the third coach)
And weren't we lucky with the weather!