Back over the border, the Flying Scotsman rides again

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The Independent Online

After an absence of more than 20 years, the Flying Scotsman is to journey north of the border again, albeit at a price.

After an absence of more than 20 years, the Flying Scotsman is to journey north of the border again, albeit at a price.

For £3,300, passengers will be able to take part in a three-day trip travelling in grand style from London to Edinburgh, and then on to Perth, Aberdeen and Inverness, scheduled for October.

The 77-year-old locomotive, which underwent a £1m refurbishment last year, has been chartered by Holland and Holland, the sport and travel agency. The locomotive will pull the state cabins and restaurant cars of the Edwardian-style Royal Scot.

"We have charted the carriages before but on this occasion we wanted to do something really special," said John Ormiston, the director of travel at Holland and Holland. "We decided that to do that we had to have a steam locomotive and the most famous engine was the Flying Scotsman."

The Flying Scotsman covered up to 2 million miles in service with LNER and British Railways - mainly operating between London, Newcastle and Edinburgh - before it was withdrawn from service in 1963.

In 1928 it pulled the first non-stop service from London to Edinburgh, at that time the longest non-stop run in the world. In 1934 it was the first engine to achieve an authenticated speed of 100mph.

The locomotive was bought four years ago by Tony Marchington, a pharmaceuticals entrepreneur from Oxford. Since then it has been chartered for journeys across England at £5,000 a day. But October's journey will be the first time the Flying Scotsman has travelled to Scotland for more than 20 years - plans to organise trips in it to travel to millennium celebrations in Edinburgh fell through.

Between London and Scotland the locomotive will consume 12 tons of coal and 24,000 gallons of water.

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