Right on track …
This September sees the 175th anniversary of the opening by Edinburgh & Northern Railway of their their line as far as Cupar. We caught up with Dave Grant who, with the Scottish Railway Preservation Society (SRPS), is organising a commemorative trip. Dave tells us more …
“Although there wasn’t so much internet around in 1997, some of you might have heard that I arranged for a party of fifty Cuparians to have a day out in York to mark the 150th occasion. Virgin Trains (as was) really came up trumps on the day and the only disappointment was my inability to persuade the York Station Announcer to mention the situation when calling the return trip. Never mind.
I never lost sight of the 175 coming up and, given the small likelihood of me still being around for the 200, was determined to do something to mark this occasion.
My main plan was for a “Mystery Tour” which would deliver unexpectedly good results in terms of route and destination but the first Operator I spoke to said they didn’t really get involved in either private hire or special trains so that was a bit of a setback.
Setting aside the concept of a Cupar Exclusive train, I spoke to the SRPS who were very receptive to the whole route and concept, except that they felt it would be hard to get bookings for a Mystery Tour and anyway, with the internet, the destination would soon leak out, which is true enough.
Their coaching stock is otherwise committed for the anniversary (20th September), so Sunday 2nd October was agreed as a suitable compromise.
The tour is on their website now and is open for booking.
Pick-up and drop-off points are Linlithgow, Dalmeny, Dalgety Bay, Kirkcaldy, Ladybank, Cupar, Leuchars and Dundee.
The plan is to go from Dundee up to Aberdeen, over to Inverness, down to Perth via Aviemore and Pitlochry, back to Dundee, then over the Tay Bridge back into God’s Country. That is a wee bit up in the air however as Network Rail were making noises yesterday about maybe needing a closure of the Highland Line on 2nd October, so it might need to be a retracing of steps from Inverness but that would still be a fitting way to see the “175” commemorated. SRPS will doubtless confirm that aspect as soon as they have certainty of what is happening.
Railtours going “over the top” to Inverness are not very common so please consider joining us on this historic (nearly) day and support the SRPS at the same time.”
Click on the poster to access the SRPS booking information …