SR U Class No. 31806 is set to return to the mainline this weekend, hauling its first tour since 2018 as part of this weekend’s Steam Dreams excursion with 61306 Mayflower.
The tour from Portsmouth will be top and tailed with the two locomotives. Departing Portsmouth around 13:45, the tour will take passengers in a cream tea tour featuring the Hampshire countryside.
31806 will haul the train as it heads towards Southampton before Mayflower takes over as the train heads towards Eastleigh.
The tour reverses at Eastleigh as it retraces its steps towards Portsmouth with 31806 at the helm.
31806 is normally based at the Swanage Railway and is owned by the Bunch Family and last appeared on the mainline in April 2018 on a Cardiff to Swanage railtour.
Tickets for the tour are still available, ranging from £49 per person in Premium Standard to Pullman Dining at £159 per person.
If you are interested in booking this tour, please visit the Steam Dreams website.
Timings can be found over on the RailAdvent steam on the mainline pages.
David Buck, Chairman of Steam Dreams, commented “We are extremely pleased to have been able to secure U Class 31806 on this special tour alongside Mayflower and would like to thank the Swanage Railway for making it happen.” David Buck added, “Having two steam locomotives on a tour always adds an extra dimension to the day and will give all those fathers celebrating on board a very memorable trip.”
Kevin Potts, Director of Swanage Railway, custodians of the U Class locomotive, said “I am delighted that we will be working with Steam Dreams for the first time and indeed for the locomotive’s second ever trip on the mainline since preservation. We are excited to have this opportunity to showcase the U Class over what would have been familiar territory for the engine in the southern region.”
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