Mayflower returning to East Anglia for anniversary of Pilgrim Fathers’ voyage

Mayflower is returning to East Anglia in June for a trip to Harwich and Felixstowe. Picture: GEORGE

Mayflower is returning to East Anglia in June for a trip to Harwich and Felixstowe. Picture: GEORGE COPPING/iWITNESS - Credit:

One of Britain’s best-known steam locomotives is heading back to East Anglia for its second trip to the region this year to mark the 400th anniversary of the Pilgrim Fathers’ voyage to New England.

Former LNER locomotive Mayflower is to pull the special train from Liverpool Street to Harwich Town and Felixstowe Beach stations on June 7 - travelling to Essex to visit the home town of the Mayflower ship’s master Christopher Jones.

The train, run by operator Steam Dreams will set out from London’s Liverpool Street station and take passengers along the Great Eastern Main Line as far as Manningtree. Here it joins the ‘Mayflower Line’ to Harwich Town.

In the afternoon, the train will depart Harwich and head once again along the Mayflower Line to Manningtree, where it will join the Great Eastern Main Line to Ipswich. From here, the train joins the Felixstowe Branch and steams along the freight-only Felixstowe Beach Line, which is not normally accessible to passenger trains or steam charters, to Felixstowe Creek Sidings. The train will then travel a short distance back up the line before pulling into Felixstowe Town station.

Ipswich-born David Buck, owner of The Steam Dreams Rail Co and Mayflower, said: “We’re delighted with this route which allows Mayflower not only to visit Felixstowe for the first time since preservation but also to traverse lines which are rarely used by passenger trains.”

He added “to ensure as many people as possible can join us on this exciting trip, we are pleased to offer a special joint fare for both trips from London Liverpool Street”.

Tickets for the journey from Liverpool Street to Harwich and Felixstowe are available in three classes, ranging from £135 in Premium Standard through to the top class of Pullman Style Dining of £319. It is also possible to buy cheaper tickets for the Harwich to Felixstowe element of the trip.

Anyone interested in travelling with Steam Dreams should call the Booking Office on 01483 209888 or visit its website.

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This should be Mayflower’s second visit of the year to the region - on Easter Saturday, April 11, it is due to pull a special train from Liverpool Street and Ipswich to Ely and Lincoln but that is now fully sold out with no spaces left.

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