THE project to build Britain’s most powerful steam locomotive will be holding a series of roadshows across the country.

The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, also the builders, owners and operators of 100mph steam locomotive No. 60163 Tornado, will be holding a number of presentations on the project to build new Gresley class P2 No. 2007 Prince of Wales in 2020.

Entry into each roadshow is free with the first at Darlington Locomotive Works, Darlington, on Saturday, January 18.

Other events will be held in Darlington on April 18, July 4, August 22, October 3 and November 21.

Accross the country, London, Peterborough, Wansford, Carlisle and Aberdeen will also be hosting roadshows.

The class P2 2-8-2 ‘Mikado’ locomotives were the most powerful passenger steam locomotives to operate in the UK, designed by Sir Nigel Gresley to haul 600 ton trains on the arduous Edinburgh to Aberdeen route.

Sadly, the design was never fully developed, and they were rebuilt in 1943/44 and scrapped by 1961. The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust is building the seventh member of this class over seven years at an estimated cost of £5m. The project will demonstrate how the design can be fully realised through use of modern computer design techniques, enabling the new locomotive to deliver its full potential hauling passenger trains at high speed across today’s national network.

The first Roadshow is at Darlington Locomotive Works, Darlington. Each presentation will feature key Trust personnel, including Mark Allatt (P2 project director) and/or David Elliott (director of engineering) and will cover the background to the project, progress to-date, future plans and details of how to get involved.

The presentation will start promptly at 11am until 1pm on each of the days and are open to existing supporters and members of the public.

The full list of presentations is:

18th January - Darlington Locomotive Works;

29th February - London Transport Museum, Covent Garden, London;

21st March - Great Northern Hotel, Peterborough;

18th April - Darlington Locomotive Works;

23rd May - Nene Valley Railway, Wansford;

6th June - Hallmark Hotel, Carlisle;

4th July - Darlington Locomotive Works;

23rd July - Jurys Inn Aberdeen, Aberdeen;

22nd August - Darlington Locomotive Works;

3rd October - Darlington Locomotive Works;

10th October - Great Northern Hotel, Peterborough;

21st November - Darlington Locomotive Works.

Contact the office on 01325-460163 for more details.

Mr Allatt said: “The past five years have seen dramatic progress towards our aim of completing new Gresley class P2 No. 2007 Prince of Wales by the end of 2022.

“We are holding a series of free roadshow presentations in 2020, starting at Darlington Locomotive Works, Darlington, to promote the £5m project and at each we will cover the background to the project, our progress to-date, future plans and details of how to get involved.

“These presentations are open to anyone interested in the project and we are encouraging our existing supporters to bring along interested family and friends.”

“Now is the time to get on board this ground-breaking project and help the Trust to raise the £5m needed to ensure its completion in 2022.”