Great British Steam - BR
The steam locomotive was one of history’s greatest inventions, and it revolutionised transport throughout the world. Huge numbers of individual steam locomotives were produced during the two centuries of its history, and in this series we see some of the greatest of them all - those built for the great original railway companies but which eventually went on to form the national British Railways.
Great Britain’s railways were eventually all brought together to form the national system of British Railways. It inherited many great steam locomotives but continued to develop them to form its own range of universal or “Standard” types, incorporating the best from all the constituent companies’ designs. In this programme we see many of the products of British Railways, from the first - “Britannia” - to the last “Evening Star” - through the backbone of the range, the class 5 and class 4 tender classes, the ultimate tank engine, the class 4 2-6-4Ts, the solitary “Duke of Gloucester” and the last ever working Pacific “Oliver Cromwell”. Appropriately for these universal locomotives, we see them all over the land, working on the Settle and Carlisle line, in the Scottish Highlands, on the Welsh Coast, in the West Country, and out of the Capital, London. The last steam locomotives of British Railways were amongst the greatest of all.