LNER are sending a High Speed Train in British Rail livery on a farewell tour of the East Coast Main Line

A High Speed Train in 1970s British Rail livery has already gone on display at the National Railway Museum in York - now another will go on a farewell tour of the East Coast Main Line
A High Speed Train in 1970s British Rail livery has already gone on display at the National Railway Museum in York - now another will go on a farewell tour of the East Coast Main Line
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LNER are marking the retirement of their fleet of 1970s-era High Speed Trains by sending one of them on a farewell tour.

The diesel locomotive, painted in the original British Rail Intercity 125 livery displayed by the trains when they first entered service on the East Coast Main Line in 1978, will visit most of the stations along the line during its tour - with journeys to York, Leeds, Doncaster and Wakefield Westgate available.

The High Speed Trains will be officially retired from regular timetable service on December 15, and will be replaced by the new Azuma fleet.

The National Railway Museum in York's latest exhibit is a 1970s High Speed Train in British Rail livery
Ticket sales will go towards LNER's partner charity Campaign Against Living Miserably, which works to prevent male suicide.

One of the HSTs has already gone on display at the National Railway Museum in York after being donated by the Great Western Railway, which also used the sets.

One of the legs of the four-day tour is a trip from Aberdeen to Inverness, which the HSTs never operated as part of normal passenger services.

LNER managing director David Horne said:-

“This is an opportunity for us to express our appreciation for the decades of service from the iconic Intercity 125 on the East Coast route.

“We recognise the huge transformation these trains gave to rail travel when they were introduced in the 1970s, and want to show our appreciation by taking them around the route one last time.

“We’re particularly delighted that on its last service with LNER, we will take the HST on a route it’s never done with us before, from Aberdeen across to Inverness.

“Our HST farewell tour gives our customers and communities the opportunity to see the train in its original lively after serving the country so well over the years before being replaced by our new world-class Azuma trains."

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The four-day tour starts on December 18 with an Edinburgh to Aberdeen leg, continuing to Inverness.

Day two is a return leg from Inverness to Edinburgh and the third day is Edinburgh to Leeds via Newcastle and York.

The final day sees the train return to London King's Cross from Leeds, with stops at all stations including Wakefield Westgate and Doncaster.

Tickets are available from UK Rail Tours and will include free travel with LNER on any of its services either to reach the departure station or to return home.

The schedule has been designed to give as many people the opportunity to catch a glimpse of the specially liveried Intercity 125 using power cars 43206 and 43312 as part of the final journey along the East Coast.

The final timetabled journeys hauled by HSTs on December 15 are likely to be the 19.35 London King's Cross to Leeds service and the 17.05 Harrogate to London King's Cross departure.

One of the HST power cars endured a sad end to its operational life in November, when it was involved in a collision at the Neville Hill depot in Leeds. The locomotive was struck by an Azuma on a low-speed approach line and suffered damage that forced it into retirement earlier than planned.