AN ICONIC steam locomotive is set to pass through Shropshire tomorrow as it makes the journey back to its base in Crewe.

The loco, 70000 Britannia was built in 1951 and will make the journey from Swanage in Dorset to Crewe in Cheshire on Tuesday (April 11).

That journey will see it pass through Yorton, Wem, Prees, Whitchurch and Wrenbury as it makes its way back from Swanage Railway's Spring Steam Gala.

While the timetable says it could be a diesel locomotive, train enthusiasts say it will be Britannia with one support coach.

When and where to see Britannia on Tuesday, April 11

  • Yorton 5.22pm
  • Wem 5.27pm
  • Prees 5.30pm
  • Whitchurch 5.35pm
  • Wrenbury 5.41pm 

Britannia was built at Crewe, and completed in January 1951.

It was the first British Railways standard locomotive to be built and the first of 55 locomotives of the Britannia class.


The then Minister for Transport Alfred Barnes named the locomotive at a Marylebone Station ceremony on January 30, 1951.

It was initially based at Stratford to transport East Anglian expresses to Norwich and Great Yarmouth.

The locomotive also pulled the funeral train of King George VI from King's Lynn to London following his death at Sandringham House in February 1952.