Flying Scotsman, the world’s most famous steam railway engine, will thunder through Clitheroe twice on Saturday hauling the Northern Belle, one of the world’s most luxurious Pullman trains.
There will be great picture opportunities for trainspotters and photographers – especially when it halts for several minutes at Chatburn during both trips to take on water.
But Northern Belle managing director Jeanette Snape has pleaded with members of the public not to put themselves – or the train – in danger by trespassing on the railway track.
She said: “We know this will be a big attraction, the world’s most famous steam engine pulling Britain’s most luxurious train.
“But while we want as many people as possible to see the train and get photographs, we also want everybody to stay safe.
“It is extremely dangerous, as well as illegal, to trespass near the railway tracks. At best people could end up in court being fined £1,000 – at worst they could end up in the mortuary. So please take care and act sensibly.”
British Transport Police plan to have officers on board to photograph trespassers who put themselves or the train in danger.
Chief Insp. Gareth Davies said: “Seeing Flying Scotsman is an exciting event for many people.
“But please remember to use safe vantage points to view and take pictures of the train, stay clear of the line and do not risk serious injury or death by trespassing on the tracks.
“The railway is an extremely hazardous environment and those caught trespassing or obstructing trains can expect to be prosecuted.”
The Northern Belle, seven ornately-decorated 1930s-style Pullman carriages, is Britain’s version of the famous Orient Express train,
On the first of its two journeys next Saturday, it will leave Crewe around 9am hauled by a vintage diesel locomotive as far as Preston where Flying Scotsman will be waiting to take over.
It is expected to pass through Clitheroe and Horrocksford Junction shortly after noon on the way to Hellified and Settle before reaching Carnforth, where the classic 1940s movie Brief Encounter, starring Trevor Howard and Celia Johnson, was filmed.
The train will return to Crewe via Morecambe, Lancaster and Preston.
Then in the evening the Northern Belle will set out from Manchester with 300 passengers who have paid £350 each for a slap-up Gala Dinner trip with champagne.
Again it will thunder through Clitheroe and Horrocksford following the same route to Carnforth, where passengers will be able to dance on the station platform to the train’s resident band and then pucker up under the iconic station clock where Johnson and Howard stole an illicit kiss.
The Northern Belle – which is always hauled by a heritage diesel or steam locomotive – operates luxury excursions from stations all over Britain.
It will return to Preston twice next month – for a day trip to Llandudno and Conwy Castle on Friday August 16th and then to Edinburgh on Saturday August 24th.
For more details see www.northernbelle.co.uk or phone 01270 899681.