More than 75 crew members who manned the footplate of the world's fastest locomotive , Mallard, and its sisters in their final decades on the tracks will be gathering at the National Railway Museum in York today.
This is the first time many of the firemen and driver teams will have met since their railway heyday. It is part of the museum's Mallard 75th anniversary celebrations.
This weekend the steam locomotive Mallard will be the star attraction at Grantham Station. In the summer of 1938 she sped past the town setting a new world speed record.
Today business leaders from across the country gathered for a sneak preview of this famous engine and an insight into some of the opportunities Lincolnshire has to offer. But for many the next few days celebrating the 'Story of Speed' can't come soon enough.
The steam legend will first appear in Grantham, the place where the world speed record was set in 1938 as the centrepiece of a Festival of Speed, on September 8 and 9. She'll then return to her birthplace Doncaster in time for the annual St Leger Festival.
Mallard will be on display at Freightliner Ltd’s Railport depot on September 14 and 15 before joining other Doncaster-built locomotives to celebrate 160 years of Doncaster Works at Barrow Hill Roundhouse in Chesterfield on September 28 and 29.
Mallard was one of 35 A4 locomotives designed by railway engineer Sir Nigel Gresley. She was only a few months old when she made the record breaking run on 3 July 1938. The driver Joe Duddington and fireman Thomas Bray, both from Doncaster, reached a speed of 126mph – a record unbroken to this day.
An appeal's gone out for former drivers, firemen and inspectors on the Mallard to get in touch with York's National Railway Museum. It's to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the locomotive breaking the world steam speed record.
The Museum is hoping to arrange a 'drivers day' in October as part of its Mallard 75 series of events and activities of which HRH, the Prince of Wales is Patron.
Although several members of the crews that worked on the footplates of Mallard and her sisters are already speaking to the museum, the hunt is on to track down those who can tell the tale of the BR era, between 1948 and 1997.
Preparations for the anniversary on July 3rd are falling into place with Dominion of Canada getting the final finishing touches to a complex cosmetic restoration which has seen the mighty machine transform from shabby BR green to its 1930's streamlined garter blue glory.