RAIL fans in Whitchurch and Wem received a rare treat on Friday, when a historic steam train passed through the area.

On Friday, April 2, an LMS 'Black Five' 4-6-0, known as Sherwood Forrester, came through Whitchurch and Wem as part of a training exercise for the crew.

Enthusiast and photographer Chris Kapolka of Whitchurch was on hand to capture a shot of the classic locomotive.

"The picture was taken at 10.30am, where Prees Road bridge crosses the railway, with a preserved LMS Class 5MT 4-6-0, No. 45231, named Sherwood Forrester heading south to Carmarthen on a crew training run from Crewe," said Chris

"There were some 842 of these mixed traffic locomotives built from 1934 for the London Midland and Scottish Railway and they could be seen anywhere from Wick and Thurso to Bournemouth.

"Some 18 locomotives have been preserved and several have been certificated for operating on Network Rail.

"They are regularly to be seen on the dramatic West Highland Line and the legendary Settle and Carlisle Line.

"Two of the class are here in Shropshire on the Severn Valley Railway."