The Flying Scotsman - A Personal Tale
22 May 2019 -
We all know the Flying Scotsman has a long and illustrious history, with the iconic locomotive being the first to make the direct trip from London to Edinburgh in 1862, a distance of 392 miles. Taking eight hours, it entered the record books as being the world's longest scheduled non-stop run by a train.
Just Go Holidays has been offering tours that allow people to ride behind this historic steam train for years, and we’ve had some fantastic feedback, but never with a personal touch – until now.
On last year's tour, our Transport Operations Manager was lucky enough to get talking to Mr and Mrs Ken and Brenda Scott, who had quite the story to tell.
Ken’s father, Joseph Randall Scott, was one of the original drivers on the Flying Scotsman, and was part of a record-breaking test train journey from Glasgow to London in 1968, where they took an hour off the previous time for that same trip.
As it was such an arduous expedition, it took an entire team of train drivers to manage the journey; Mr Scott was responsible for the Glasgow to Carlisle portion of the route.
Being a steam train driver was quite the career back in the day, and it took a long time to work your way up the ranks. Mr Scott, whose father before him had also been a steam train driver, started out as an engine cleaner, before working his way up to a fireman, then senior fireman, before finally becoming a fully-fledged driver.
Some of his most notable experiences? Driving her Royal Majesty, the Queen, on numerous occasions!
Sadly, Mr Scott died in a tragic train accident in 1976.
Standing on the very footplate of the famous train his late father had driven, Ken and Brenda were understandably emotional, but described the experience as “absolutely marvellous”. Both were very close to Joseph, by all accounts a lovely man.
We are really pleased they chose to tell us their story and would like to thank them for letting us share it!
Would you like to experience the thrill of riding behind the Flying Scotsman for yourself?
Discover our Flying Scotsman & Classic Cambridge tour which gives you the chance to do just that!