The Flying Scotsman - ten fascinating facts about the world-famous steam engine that is making a comeback

The Flying Scotsman in steam

The Flying Scotsman in steam

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The Flying Scotsman, which was built in Doncaster and became a world-famous train, is steaming back into action for the first time since a decade-long, £4.2 million restoration project.

Heritage Minister Tracey Crouch, who was educated at the University of Hull, said that “the wonders of the engineering” will delight observers when the train is on show as an exhibit.

Colin Green (centre) co-director of Riley & Son Ltd in Bury, working on the restoration on the Flying Scotsman

Colin Green (centre) co-director of Riley & Son Ltd in Bury, working on the restoration on the Flying Scotsman

Here, with some help from the National Railway Museum’s information, we examine ten fascinating facts about it…

1. It became the first steam locomotive to be officially recorded reaching 100mph - on November 30, 1934. That is the train’s highest recorded speed.

2. The Flying Scotsman appeared in the film of the same name in 1929 - and it has also featured in 102 Dalmations (preparing to haul the Orient Express) and in the Thomas the Tank Engine books (as the brother of Gordon).

3. Its image was included on the back of specially-produced £5 coins for the 2012 London Olympics.

Flying Scotsman' A3 Class steam locomotive leaving Leeds station, Yorksire, with the 'White Rose' express for King's Cross station. Photograph by Bishop Eric Treacy (1907-1978) who was often allowed special access to many areas denied to other railway photographers.

Flying Scotsman' A3 Class steam locomotive leaving Leeds station, Yorksire, with the 'White Rose' express for King's Cross station. Photograph by Bishop Eric Treacy (1907-1978) who was often allowed special access to many areas denied to other railway photographers.

4. It set the record for the longest non-stop journey by a steam locomotive - continuously clocking up 422 miles when on tour in Australia on August 8, 1989.

5. The date of 24 February 1923 was when the 70-feet-long locomotive emerged from the works, having been built for the London and North Eastern Railway.

6 . It was the first coal-powered locomotive to run non-stop between London and Edinburgh. The train hauled the first of those journeys on 1 May 1928, reducing the journey time to eight hours.

7. Its high-profile owners have included Pete Waterman, the record producer, and Sir William McAlpine, the property developer.

8. The Flying Scotsman became publicly owned in 2004 - with the successful bid including £415,000 raised by the public, £365,000 donated by Sir Richard Branson and a £1.8m grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund.

9. It toured extensively in the United States and Canada between 1969 and 1973, taking in Boston, New York, Washington DC, Montreal, Toronto and San Francisco, covering a total of 15,400 miles.

10. The Flying Scotsman’s mileage is approximately 2,500,000 or 4,000,000km. That distance is the equivalent of Yorkshire to the moon - and back again ten times.

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