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I have theorized for some time that there might well be an untapped market of enthusiasts on the East Coast of the country who would welcome the opportunity to enjoy a trip on the Settle to Carlisle line. The Railway Touring Company have 'dipped their toe in the water' with their 2014 trip 'The Hadrian'.

259 worked its way across, from its base at Willesden on the West Coast Mainline, to the East Coast Mainline to commence this trip at King's Cross on 10th May 2014. Additional passengers were collected at Potter's Bar, Stevenage, Peterborough and Doncaster. On arrival at Doncaster the coaching stock was uncoupled and 86259 then ran 'light engine' to Holgate Sidings just south of York for stabling for the next 10 hours.

Meanwhile 47245 'ran round' to take the stock from Darlington through Leeds to Hellifield. The 47 then 'ran round' once again and the A4 Pacific 60009 "Union of South Africa" then hauled the load through Settle and onwards to Carlisle. There the locomotives exchanged ends so the A4 could continue its trip across the Tyne Valley Line, parallel to Hadrian's Wall (hence the trip name!), towards Newcastle. At Low Fell junction the train 'turned right' to join the East Coast Mainline and run south to York where 86259 could once again be put back 'in harness' for a high speed return to King's Cross.

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Friday 9th May 2014. Viewed from Harringay station platform, 86259 has attached to the empty stock, brought south by 47245, for tomorrow's 'Hadrian' Tour. It is now climbing the ramp to the flyover across the East Coast Mainline to access Ferme Park sidings, where it will spend the night. The track workers sit back and enjoy the view.


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The sight that greeted 'Hadrian' passengers on Saturday morning at King's Cross. Overnight graffiti 'artists'had attacked the train while it was stabled in Ferme Park. Unfortunately for West Coast Railway Company, the vandals had got at one coach before they were disturbed. Fortunately for 86259,they had started at the other end of the train!


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Driver Alan Grenfell on the outward journey approaching Peterborough.


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Crossing the Newark flat crossing!


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86259 is detached from the train at Doncaster mail terminal platform, in Decoy yard.


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From Doncaster, 86259 went 'light engine' to York where it stabled in Holgate sidings for the day.


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West Coast driver Arno Brooks brought 'The Hadrian' back from York to London King's Cross where he now stands by the loco on platform zero.