Photo gallery: Thousands visit steam rally to see member of a special locomotive family

Mid Norfolk Railway steam gala at Dereham Train Station. The Union of South Africa. Picture: Ian Bur

Mid Norfolk Railway steam gala at Dereham Train Station. The Union of South Africa. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: IAN BURT

The sister of a world record breaking steam train rolled into the Mid Norfolk Railway at Dereham during a weekend summer festival of steam.

The 60009 Union of South Africa, sister of the Mallard locomotive which set the world speed record for a steam locomotive of 125.9mph, a record that still stands today, was the main focal point of the festival which ran from Thursday to Sunday.

The event attracted around 3,000 steam train enthusiasts.

Mid Norfolk Railway chairman Barry Woodgett said: 'This is the first time we've had an A4 class locomotive on a heritage line in Norfolk, so it's really quite a special event for us.

'There has been a lot of interest and we've had a good turnout of people here.

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'It's been an important weekend in the ongoing development of the Mid Norfolk Railway.'

The streamlined Gresley Pacific Union of South Africa travelled from The Great Gathering at the National Railway Museum in York, where the six surviving examples of this type were brought together from around the world. The steam gala also featured the 61994 Great Marquess, 1744 N2, Y7 1310 and a Cockerill vertical boilered shunting locomotive.

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The Mid Norfolk Railway's newest arrival was also launched.

The Saville Bar is an on-train buffet car, which was used on the Great Eastern Mainline between Norwich and London, serving refreshments until retirement from service in the late 1990s.

Used to serving teas, coffees and the British Rail sandwich at 100mph, it travelled at a more leisurely pace on the Mid-Norfolk Railway at the weekend.

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