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The Flying Scotsman

Michael Portillo embarks on a journey from London to Edinburgh aboard the most famous train in history, the Flying Scotsman. But all does not go to plan.

A once-in-a-lifetime journey aboard the most famous train in history, the Flying Scotsman, begins for Michael before dawn at London's King's Cross. Excitement builds on the platform as the world's media, fans and 300 passengers await the arrival of railway royalty.

Boarding a vintage carriage, Michael recaptures the glamour of the 1930s, when the Flying Scotsman's passengers dined, sipped cocktails and had their hair done en route to Scotland. Among his fellow passengers are a former Flying Scotsman driver and a previous owner of the locomotive. But all does not go to plan, and the historic non-stop service is forced to halt for trespassers on the track.

Arriving at York, Michael meets the restoration team and gets his hands on the hallowed controls.

29 minutes

Last on

Mon 19 Feb 2018 18:30


Role Contributor
Presenter Michael Portillo
Series Producer Alison Kreps
Executive Producer John Comerford


Steam Railways

Steam Railways

A collection of programmes from the BBC archives on the beauty of steam locomotives.