Queen recreates historic train journey
The Queen has joined celebrations marking the 175th anniversary of the first train journey taken by a British monarch.
She recreated Queen Victoria's trip from Slough to Paddington on 13 June 1842 on the Great Western Railway.
The Queen made the 19-minute journey on the new Intercity Express train along with the Duke of Edinburgh.
Of her experience, Queen Victoria wrote in her journal "it was delightful and so quick".
The monarch added: "It took us exactly 30 minutes going to Paddington, & the motion was very slight, & much easier than a carriage, also no dust or great heat."
Victoria had been persuaded on board by Prince Albert, a veteran of rail travel who was fascinated by the new technology.
Joining the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh was Isambard Thomas and Gillian White, the direct descendants of Isambard Kingdom Brunel and Sir Daniel Gooch who had accompanied Queen Victoria on her journey.
Before boarding the train, the Royals visited the original waiting room at Slough station, which was used by the Queen's great-great-grandmother.
Mr Thomas said: "I was very much at ease, I didn't feel awkward. It was fascinating how much interest she has in trains and in train journeys. I think train travel is a quicker way to get around because the roads are too congested now.
"Obviously it's a different thing if you're the monarch; you're not sat in second class, queuing for the buffet."
Mr Thomas, a topographic designer from Greenwich, south-east London, said the Queen knew about "the history of trains" and had "a proper knowledge of Queen Victoria's diaries of the event 175 years ago and obviously quite interested in what Great Western Railway are doing now".
"The Queen was also interested in the technology and the electrification and the effects of diesel," he added.
"I think it's remarkable that she and the Duke of Edinburgh agreed to do this."
Mark Hopwood, managing director of Great Western Railway said he was delighted the Queen and Prince Philip recreated the journey.
"We are extremely proud of our heritage and this occasion marks a very special moment in the history of the Great Western Railway," he said.