The Torbay Express

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Alan Payling looks at a journey on a steam train that will thrill everyone and offers passengers the chance to travel to the English Riviera in real style

There are many opportunities for operators to offer their passengers on tour a ride on a heritage steam railway. Everyone will know what I’m talking about: a journey back in time that pootles along an old branch line for half an hour or so that keeps a lot of people happy. But then, there’s the Torbay Express! When it comes to heritage railways, this is among the crème de la crème of steam train journeys running from Bristol to Dartmouth. And we’re not talking about Thomas the Tank Engine here either: this one has big Gordon up front. In comparison to many heritage railways, it’s way up in the premier league as the Torbay Express doesn’t mess about on the branch lines of the old railway network – this one offers much more; the rush and thrill of the mainline.

Tornado hauling the Torbay Express at Dawlish. SIMON PIELOW, WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

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