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The 'Vulcan Express'


by Ian Homer. Posted to category: General

Steam loco 78018 honours XH558
THE NAMING CEREMONY FOR THE ‘VULCAN EXPRESS’
AT THE GREAT CENTRAL RAILWAY Saturday 15th April 2017.

Kev Rumens faces the BBC camera team ahead of a BBC East Midlands feature.

At Quorn station in Leicestershire on a very cold and grey Easter Saturday morning, four of the new Vulcan to the Sky Trust volunteers set up the sales table at the ‘Easter Gala Weekend which featured the Loco Naming as an important part of the day. Alongside that table was another for some limited edition special prints which Kev Rumens would be signing later that day. Whilst this was all being organised Kev was at Great Central Railway's Loughborough station, being filmed and interviewed for BBC East Midlands Today the local regional news bulletins, which aired later that day.

He then boarded the special 'Vulcan Express' train, but not as passenger, but as a very privileged additional member of the team on the locomotive footplate. Seeing the ‘Vulcan Express’ from inside the locomotive’s cab this time, and not from above - over Swithland Reservoir as he has seen her previously.

 

Kev on the footplate as The 'Vulcan Express' pulls from the station and later, stoking the fire box!

Kev remarked about how excited he was to have done both and it was commented that he looked very excited by the experience. At one point, before alighting the train at Quorn station, both his wife Mary and he were treated to another trip.

Once he had arrived back at the VTST sales table at Quorn, people were already waiting to chat to him, and starting to purchase the attractive signed and framed limited edition prints. The photograph, thought to be the only one taken at the time, shows Kev flying above the train as it steamed through Swithland Reservoir, with the Loco 'Witherslack Hall' on the viaduct, during the 2015 Farewell Tour.

 

Signing pictures of XH558 over the locomotive in 2015 and some of our happy volunteers on the day.

The weather improved greatly as the day progressed and a steady stream of people talked with the volunteers and enjoyed meeting Kev, who was also enjoying the whole event. One Canadian gentleman, who was on holiday in the UK and whose Canadian sweatshirt was adorned with 'One howl of a plane', was particularly pleased to have the opportunity to talk to him.

Kev with a visitor from Canada, proudly wearing his 'One Howl of a plane' hoodie. 

All in all, this was a very successful day and we would like to convey our appreciation to Michael, Martin and the rest of the team at the Great Central Railway who could not have been more helpful and cooperative. Many thanks also to both Kev and Mary for their attendance and the volunteers who worked hard throughout the day.   

 

Footnote:

We would like to extend an cordial invitation to anyone in the Leicestershire, Warwickshire and surrounding area, to pop along to see us at the Lutterworth Museum on Sunday 23rd April from 10am to 3pm, to support a small sales table at their 'Classic Vintage and Vehicle Show'.

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Vulcan is a registered trademark of BAE Systems plc. Vulcan to the Sky and XH558 are trademarks of the Vulcan to the Sky Trust.

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