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Return of the Bluebell Railway - full report

Just before 10am a journey was taken through the Sussex countryside that hadn't been made for more than 50 years.

Thanks to an incredible volunteer and fundraising operation - steam engines once again took to the tracks of an extended Bluebell Railway line.

Andy Dickenson was there and speaks to volunteer Roger Garman, Jim Holden, grandson of one of the heritage railway's founders Bernard Holden, fundraising manager Roger Kelly and engine driver Russ Hubner.

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Statement from the Bluebell Railway

The friends and family of the founder of the Bluebell Railway, Bernard Holden MBE, are paying their final respects at his funeral in Ditchling in East Sussex.

The Bluebell Railway wouldn't be here if it wasn't for Bernard. He was always very positive and strong and very willing to help younger people. He was always very energetic and kept us going. Our only sadness is that he didn't see us going into East Grinstead"

– Avril Gaynor, Spokeswoman for the Bluebell Railway

Crowds pay their final respects

Bernard Holden MBE said 'steam was in his blood'.
Bernard Holden MBE said 'steam was in his blood'. Credit: Jim Holden

The family and friends of Bernard Holden MBE are paying their final respects at his funeral on the Bluebell Railway in East Sussex. The 104-year-old passed away peacefully on the 4th October.

The steam train prepares to carry Bernard Holden on his final journey
The steam train prepares to carry Bernard Holden on his final journey Credit: ITV Meridian
Rail engineers carry the coffin onto the train
Rail engineers carry the coffin onto the train Credit: ITV Meridian
Volunteers stand in solemn salute
Volunteers stand in solemn salute Credit: ITV Meridian
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