If a railway enthusiast claimed to have seen a streamlined coronation pacific, a parallel boiler Royal Scot and an unrebuilt Merchant Navy class in steam in 2014, you would be forgiven for thinking that they had gone a little crazy, or perhaps that this is an April Fools Day prank! But it is possible, providing you can think big… On Sunday 23rd March, Eastleigh’s delightful miniature railway held their Spring Steam Gala. Every available locomotive was rostered into service, making for a varied line-up of motive power that includes miniatures of mainline locomotives.
Unfortunately fate was not with me on the particular weekend and thanks to a car problem, my visit was far too fleeting. From what I saw, it looked to be quite an event, with trains in steam pretty much everywhere you looked!
Eastleigh’s Lakeside Steam Railway is a dual gauge 10¼”/7¼” line that runs from “Eastleigh Parkway” station (which incidentally has a fantastic cafe) to Monks Brook Halt.
The railway has a fleet of around 23 steam locomotives and is well worth a visit. Check out the railway’s website for more information.