On Friday 1st June 2018, the history of the Great Western Railway steam depot at Tyseley in Birmingham reached a significant milestone. The Vintage Trains Community Benefit Society share offer had raised over £850,000, enabling Vintage Trains Limited (VTL) to be launched. Securing its passenger operating licence means that VTL can now start running steam hauled, Pullman dining trains on the UK mainline rail network, offering both young and old the never forgotten experience of riding behind an express steam locomotive at speed.
VTL’s business plan includes the renovation and upgrading to new regulatory standards of its operational fleet of carriages; the erection of a new engine shed to house the steam locomotive fleet; upgrading the facilities at the 47 year-old Tyseley engineering workshops and to provide the skills training and apprentice programmes that will help deliver the enjoyment of steam for years and generations to come.
In 1999 Tyseley launched the Vintage Trains brand and achieved its long-held objective of running a regular steam train service on the national main line railway network: the Shakespeare Express between Birmingham Snow Hill and Stratford-upon-Avon. The Shakespeare Line has been and remains a very important part of the Vintage Trains operation. VTL are looking forward to working with SLPG and playing their part in the newly formed Heart of England Community Rail Partnership. VTL have exciting plans for future scheduled steam train services along the Shakespeare Line as well as actively supporting the work to involve the communities from all along the line.
Once there are more developments and news we will post it here.
Additional information can be found here www.uksteam.info