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The Oliver Cromwell steams back into Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 07:59 24 April 2009 | UPDATED: 09:08 06 July 2010

The Oliver Cromwell passing through Diss

The Oliver Cromwell passing through Diss

It is known as the great survivor - having hauled British Rail's last steam train on August 11, 1968, bringing to an end an era which stretched back to 1804.

It is known as the great survivor - having hauled British Rail's last steam train on August 11, 1968, bringing to an end an era which stretched back to 1804.

The BR Pacific 70013, Oliver Cromwell was yesterday celebrating its latest lease of life by retracing a once familiar route when it chugged its way along the Norwich to London mainline, much to the delight of rail enthusiasts.

It was one of a series of new engines launched in a blaze of patriotism to mark the post-war revival of the railways and worked the express between London and East Anglia.

However, just three years later, British Rail unveiled its modernisation plan which left no room for steam and the engine was retired to the Bressingham Steam Museum.

Now, following an award-winning restoration, the Cromwell is carrying out a series of main line tours, including revisiting its old route.

Part of the National Collection based at the National Railway Museum in York, the Cromwell is in the custodianship of the 5305 Locomotive Association, based at Loughborough.

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