London train stops traffic in Sheringham

The Diesel Class 20227 engine arriving at the North Norfolk Railway. Picture: KAREN BETHELL

The Diesel Class 20227 engine arriving at the North Norfolk Railway. Picture: KAREN BETHELL - Credit: Archant

A symbol synonymous with the London Underground has made an unusual stop in Norfolk.

Traffic in Sheringham town centre drew to a halt on Friday afternoon, to allow a classic diesel engine to travel across the road from the mainline station to the North Norfolk Railway.

Crowds lined either side of the platforms at both stations to watch the Diesel Class 20227, with its bright London Underground livery, trundle across the 'tramway' rails embedded in a section of Station Road, which had been fenced off in a military-style operation carried out by a small army of Poppy Line volunteers.

The crossing, which reconnected the North Norfolk Railway to the national rail network after 40 years, was opened in 2010 by music guru and rail enthusiast Pete Waterman. It has since been used around half a dozen times a year, allowing visiting engines to make their way to the Poppy Line by rail, instead of on the back of a lorry – which can cause engines to develop mechanical problems. However, because of weight restrictions at Gunton bridge, only smaller trains are able to make the journey.

North Norfolk Railway development manager Chrissie Rayment, who helps organise the diesel gala, said trains crossing the road created 'quite a spectacle'.

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'It is exciting for the railway and exciting for Sheringham,' she added. 'We are used to seeing trains from the viewpoint of the platform, but when you see them at road-level, you realise just how big they are.'

Tickets are available from the North Norfolk Railway, or online via

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