These gently swaying restaurants have always been a classy public place where even grubby standard class passengers could taste first-class treatment. As a waiter on the East Coast service recalls, lone diners would complain about being seated together, but once the wine started flowing they would all be chatting and swapping business cards. “The deals that got done in this car,” he sighs.
Patrick Barkham sums up the experience of travelling in style on the East Coast Main Line. Sad that the dining cars are being shunted off the tracks in the new timetable.
Critics' Reviews – Planet Narnia – The BBC1 Programme The Narnia Code both delighted and challenged me. Michael Ward's discovery of a third layer of meaning in the Narnia Series by CS Lewis is clearly and stylishly analysed in this documentary by Norman Stone. A must see.
Tornado leaves York Station. I was with my son, Warwick, who uses a wheelchair so I only had time to snatch a few hand held shots over the heads of the crowd. But it has atmosphere and captures the excitement of seeing this loco under steam and hauling at train.
Many thanks to the A1 Steam Locomotive Trust for making this day possible. If it makes money and pays off it’s debts it’ll be a miracle – but the joy of this first trip will be remembered fondly by many. We Brits are still able to match the engineering skills of a generation or two ago.
The chimney belching smoke and steam also reminded me that the golden age of steam never existed. It was without a doubt a coal black age.
January 31st is the day that passengers will be hauled by the brand new steam loco, Tornado. Built at a cost of £3m it will take members of the society that backed the project between York and Newcastle. I’ll watch it leave York but sadly I won’t be on board – not being a member.