It has been confirmed that premier locomotive engineers Riley & Son E Ltd have agreed on a contract with the National Railway Museum, which will see the company remain as custodians of 60103 Flying Scotsman for the next 6 years.
The National Railway Museum has also released the details for Flying Scotsman's 2018 schedule with the announcement. The new contract will start this year with a tour of venues and scenic railway journeys across the UK.
The first opportunity this year for the public to see Flying Scotsman will be 10 and 11 March at the East Lancashire Railway in Rawtenstall, where it will be on static display. The record-breaking engine is scheduled to visit heritage railway lines on several other dates in the spring, before embarking on railway tours taking in locations in Scotland, the Lake District, the Chiltern Hills, the North Downs and the Yorkshire countryside.
Jim Lowe, Head of Operations at the National Railway Museum, said:
“I would like to congratulate Riley & Son (E) Ltd for their success in winning the contract and I look forward to working with the team again in what is sure to be a very popular 2018 touring schedule. Flying Scotsman is a true symbol of engineering excellence and continues to inspire and amaze crowds of people wherever it goes.
The contract was awarded to specialist engineering firm Riley & Son (E) Ltd, following a competitive tender process. Based in Heywood, Lancashire, the firm is the current operator of Flying Scotsman and was responsible for restoring the locomotive back to working order - completed in 2016.
As well as day to day operation and maintenance, the contract will include a comprehensive overhaul in 2022 and plans to mark the engine’s centenary celebrations in 2023.
Ian Riley, from Riley & Son (E) Ltd, said:
“I am very pleased that we have been appointed to maintain and operate Flying Scotsman for the next six years which will enable us to develop a long-term plan for the care and management of this world-renowned engine. The success is down to the skills, experience and hard work of the whole team who have spent many hours working on the locomotive from restoration to the present day. Flying Scotsman is definitely a special engine and the chance to work with such a well-loved locomotive again is a real privilege.”
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