Revel in nostalgia at Poppy Line Steam Gala

The Black Prince engine, which will be one of the many attractions at the Poppy Line Steam Gala.

The Black Prince engine, which will be one of the many attractions at the Poppy Line Steam Gala. - Credit: Archant

Families and steam engine lovers will be able to enjoy the 'remarkable cocktail of nostalgia' at this year's Poppy Line Steam Gala.

The Britannia steam engine, which will be appearing at the Poppy Line Steam Gala.

The Britannia steam engine, which will be appearing at the Poppy Line Steam Gala. - Credit: Archant

The annual event, which is in its fifth year, will be taking place over two weekends for the first time between March 8-10 and March 16-17.

An intensive service of about 15 post second world war steam engines will run between Sheringham and Holt from 9.30am to 5pm each day across both weekends.

Colin Borg, marketing director, said: 'When you get up close to a great big steam engine it is enormous. It is almost like a prehistoric monster.

'You have the smell of the smoke and steam and it is a remarkable cocktail of nostalgia. Steam galas attract people who cannot remember steam, particularly young people.'

The attraction, which carried just under 150,000 passengers last year, is supported by about 400 volunteers.

'Without the volunteers we cannot run the railway. The steam galas put the railway on the map,' Mr Borg added.

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He said he expected between 5,000 and 6,000 people at this year's event, which would feature steam engines from the late 1940s.

As well as families from Norfolk the gala attracts enthusiasts from across Britain.

One of the star attractions will be the iconic Britania, which helped restore express services throughout the country.

Another one will be the even more powerful Black Prince, which was built to haul essential supplies of iron ore and steelworks from the docks.

The Poppy Line used to be part of the Midland and Great Northern Joint Railway, which closed in 1959.

There will be another steam gala event at the end of August and the beginning of September.

Rover tickets for the special weekends will offer unlimited travel each day and cost £21 for adults; £20 for senior citizens; and £13 for children aged between five and 15. Under fives can go for free.

Tickets booked before tomorrow will have 15pc off. Visit www.nnrailway.co.uk or call 01263 820800.

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