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A3 47772

Flying Scotsman


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 A3 Flying Scotsman in the siddings next to York station in 2004.

A3 Flying Scotsman in the siddings next to York station in 2004.


Flying Scotsman was built in 1923 at Doncaster works of the LNER. It was designed by Nigel Gresley, as LNER class A1. It appeared at the British Empire Exhibition at Wembley.Flying Scotsman was picked to haul the the inaugural Flying Scotsman train

On the 1st of May in 1928 it ran from Kings Cross in London to Edinburgh in Scotland with a 10am start from King Cross taking eight hours non-stop.

In August 1928, a new and improved version of the Gresley A1 locomotive, classed A3 began to come out of Doncaster. The older A1s were later rebuilt with Flying Scotsman, not being rebuilt in Doncaster works till 4 January 1947 because of the 2nd World War.

With it British Railway number of 60103, double chimney and the German type smoke deflectors, in January 1963 it was sold by BR to Alan Pegler. Bill McAlpine later purchased the locomotive. Dr Tony Marchington also owned it and then Pete Waterman also owned part of it

The National Railway Museum now owns Flying Scotsman as part of the National Collection. £415,000 was raised by the public and Sir Richard Branson Chairman of the Virgin Group donated £365,000 plus £1.8m grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund. Well done to all who helped get this famous locomotive in the National Collection were it belongs.

Flying Scotsman then went into the work shops for a full overhaul of the locomotive.

The story of this overhaul was very long,. I am not going place any blame on any one, that is for others, but was a bit of a mess. The locomotive was nearly ready for Railfest, then had to be took apart again. Every one knowns, it  cost the earth.

Flying Scotsman leaves York Station in 2004

A3 4472 Flying Scotsman leaves York Station in 2004

What Does a A3 look Like

There has been a lot of talk about the colour of Flying Scotsman. What colour should it be with a double chimney and the German type smoke deflectors?   

The late BR green with German type smoke deflectors is nearer to what it looked like it its last years with British Railways. But less all the dirt and grime of the last years of steam.

When I saw Flying Scotsman at Peterborough North around 1959, if it had not stopped in the station, you could not have seen its name  and number, under all the grime.

LNER apple green, with its LNER number of 4772, which Flying Scotsman has carried for most its time after it was sold by BR was all wrong.

The German type smoke deflectors were taken off when it was sold by BR. But there was still a need for them to help the driver see were he is going. This is because they help lift the steam above the cab windows in certain cross wind conditions. The German type smoke deflectors had to be put back on, so the driver could see track ahead.

The boiler with a double chimney and blast pipe will soften the exhaust blast and stop it lifting just above the cab windows.  This is why the smoke deflectors were put on in the first place. The shape of the A4 helps do the same job

The present rebuild on Flying Scotsman has the right colour and number for the engine at the End of its British railways days with German type smoke deflectors, double chimney .

The man or woman in the street still  thinks, it should be in LNER apple green, with LNER on its tender and the number 4772. Most never even saw it in BR colours or even in the real LNER colours.   

York station with A3 4472 Flying Scotsman in 2004

York station with 4472 Flying Scotsman in 2004. 

The UKs National Railway Museum is at York next to the railway station 

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This website is Ukrailways1970tilltoday.me.uk it is a webe site on railways, but it is not just on trains, but all things railways, with photos, which I have taken from the 1970s till now. I take photos of all have to keep taking photos. I also take photos of preserved railways with steam diesel and electric trains.There is lots more to add and I keep taking More!