Flying Scotsman steam loco to travel through Kent

Flying Scotsman Photo Antony Christie

The Flying Scotsman locomotive, described as the most famous in the world, can be seen travelling through Kent on March 17.

Built in 1923 for the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER) at Doncaster Works to a design of H.N. Gresley, it was employed on long-distance express trains on the LNER and its successors, British Railways Eastern and North-Eastern Regions, notably on the London to Edinburgh Flying Scotsman train service after which it was named.

The locomotive set two world records for steam traction, becoming the first steam locomotive to be officially authenticated at reaching 100 miles per hour on 30 November 1934, and then setting a record for the longest non-stop run by a steam locomotive when it ran 422 miles on 8 August 1989 while in Australia.

Retired from regular service in 1963 after covering 2,076,000 miles, Flying Scotsman gained considerable fame in preservation under the ownership of Alan Pegler, William McAlpine, Tony Marchington and finally the National Railway Museum (NRM). As well as hauling enthusiast specials in the United Kingdom, the locomotive toured extensively in the United States and Canada (from 1969 to 1973) and Australia (from 1988 to 1989).

Whilst the locomotive is rostered for the steam hauled sections of the trip listed, it cannot be guaranteed and may be substituted for a different engine.

The locomotive runs to Canterbury then goes to Ashford via  Dover and Folkestone, hauled in reverse to Canterbury via Wye, then heads back to London via Wye.

The Flying Scotman departs London Victoria at 8.44am and arrives at Canterbury West Platform 2 at 11.42am.

It then detaches from its train and runs hauling just its “Support Coach” from Canterbury West to Ashford, via Sturry, Minster, Deal, Walmer, Dover Priory to Folkestone West, where it stops to take on water, before heading off for Ashford International for Servicing. This journey will also have “Turned” the loco the right way around for its return trip – that is – “Facing London”.

The Loco and its coach then depart Ashford International running in reverse back to Canterbury West to re-attach to its train and will pass through Sturry at 1.44pm, Minster at 1.57pm and Sandwich at 2.06pm.

Times will be confirmed 5-7 days before the journey. Find out more at

UPDATE_ Rail times can be found at

Details with thanks to John Horton and Steam Dreams Railway Company