We had a wonderful trip from Kings Cross to York. We travelled in the Pullman Dining car and enjoyed the meals looking out at the beautiful country side passing by. At every bridge or level crossing there was a small group of onlookers with cameras, one felt rather privileged. A most enjoyable and memorable occasion. Getting back late at night to Kings Cross felt very special with this huge locomotive hissing and steaming at the end of the 400 mile journey. The whole experience was deeply evocative of another age. The magnificent Tornado engine pulled the train very smoothly and at surprising speed - just as fast as my brand new normal weekday commuter train!
There's another very negative review of the same trip which I don't fully agree with. The meal service was a bit slow, but we weren't going anywhere off the train for four hours so it didn't really matter that much. The leisurely meals helped to pass the journey (between getting up to look out of the window and take photos) and to be fair, the staff (who seemed very pleasant) were serving a lot of people from one small kitchen. I agree that some of the (standard class) carriages were pretty dirty on the outside. But its period rolling stock and when you see a mainline steam engine like this up close you remember that whilst they are thrilling machines they also produce clouds of soot and ash continuously - the railways of 50 years ago must have been very dirty places indeed. We did get information about the delay at York and were directed by reps to the correct platform, but it could have been communicated a bit more clearly.
Overall, a wonderful trip and a quite unique experience.
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