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Hundreds turn up to Mid Suffolk Light Railway to witness Beyer Peacock locomotive





Visitors descended upon the Mid Suffolk Light Railway at the weekend to see the oldest locomotive to ever run on its line.

Passengers hopped aboard carriages pulled by the 143-year-old Beyer Peacock no. 1827 on Saturday to celebrate the railway’s 1940s weekend – held to mark the run-up to the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

John Reeve, marketing manager at the visitor attraction, explained how the opportunity to host the 0-4-0 tank engine, built in 1879, had come by chance after the original engine booked for the weekend was unavailable.

The Beyer Peacock no. 1827 has become the oldest locomotive to ever run on the Mid Suffolk Light Railway line. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography 2022.
The Beyer Peacock no. 1827 has become the oldest locomotive to ever run on the Mid Suffolk Light Railway line. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography 2022.

He said: “It was a bit of a wing and a prayer because we were going to have another loco, but we couldn’t get it in the end. We found out that there was this one, a Beyer Peacock, on its way back from an event in Welshpool, so we thought why not extend the journey.”

Despite its age, the loco had no trouble carrying passenger trains across the Middy. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography 2022.
Despite its age, the loco had no trouble carrying passenger trains across the Middy. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography 2022.

Despite its vintage, the loco was in top form as it transported passenger trains across the Middy.

“The extraordinary thing is that it’s the oldest one we have ever had but, according to the driving crew, it’s a bit of a racehorse that performed extremely well over the weekend,” added Mr Reeve. “We set it up, and it was off.”

Vintage cars were also on display over the weekend. Pictured are Sandra and Richards Edwards with their 1946 Chevy US Navy Fleetwood car. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography 2022.
Vintage cars were also on display over the weekend. Pictured are Sandra and Richards Edwards with their 1946 Chevy US Navy Fleetwood car. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography 2022.

Other jubilee-themed displays were also on show at Mid Suffolk Light Railway’s Brockford and Wetheringsett station, including a Home Guard Firearms Civil Defenders re-enactment group and a selection of Second World War-era military and civilian vehicles.

The Beyer Peacock will remain at Mid Suffolk Light Railway throughout June.



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