Trapped steam engine removed by lorry from North Yorkshire Moors Railway

Stranded locomotive Tornado has been removed by road from a heritage line after track damage left it unable to leave.

The engine was hauling a service on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway's Whitby branch when a skip lorry struck a bridge near Castleton Moor, causing extensive damage to the supports and track.

Tornado has been stranded for two days as she could not leave the area by rail, and it has now been decided to move the locomotive by road.

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A lorry took her from the shunting yard at Newbridge, near Pickering, to a mainline rail connection to enable her to travel to the Severn Valley Railway, where she is booked to appear at a steam gala later this week.

Tornado's visit to the line has already been beset by problems after her initial arrival was delayed by heavy snow two weeks ago, leading to cancelled services.

Mainline trains have been suspended between Battersby and Whitby since Monday, and Northern passenger services between Middlesbrough and Whitby will resume on Friday. The road itself has also been shut.

Network Rail confirmed that the bridge was struck with such force that it caused significant structural damage to steel girders, and caused the track to be dislodged. Short-term repairs are now being carried out.

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Services on the heritage railway will run from Saturday March 24, when the spring/summer timetable begins.

NYMR general manager Chris Price said:

“The bridge strike has caused minimal disruption to the NYMR. We have unfortunately had to cancel our Battersby driver training courses planned to take part this week, which will now be rescheduled at a later date. This will not affect our daily services which begin from Saturday March 24 and we look forward to welcoming our passengers for the railway's 2018 season.”