Fairy Queen - world's oldest steam loco back in action from today
The "Fairy Queen", the oldest surviving functional steam engine in the world, is once again ready to haul a heritage train from National Capital Delhi from Saturday.
The 162 year old locomotive will haul a tourist train called 'The Steam Express' once a month between Delhi and Alwar via Rewari.
This train, which is a great attraction among steam engine lovers across the globe, will run Delhi Cantonment and Rewari on second and fourth Saturday of month beginning from October, 2017. The operation will continue till April, 2018.
Timings and Capacity
The visitors will be given the opportunity to visit Rewari Steam Centre, which is the only working steam locomotive shed over Indian Railways homing 10 steam locomotives. After a break of about three hours, the train will start from Rewari at 4:15 PM and reach Delhi Cantonment at 06:15 PM.
The train has a capacity 60 passenger and the tickets can be booked at IRCTC website as well as at various tourist facilitation centres of IRCTC, National Rail Museum and through travel operators. Photo credit: PIB
Marks celebration of Paryatan Parv
Commencement of steam operation shall also mark celebration of "Paryatan Parv"(5 - 25 October, 2017), a nationwide event to showcase tourism potential of the country.
Over the years, Indian Railways have initiated several innovative measures to promote steam tourism in the country which includes operation of steam charters in hill railways, regular steam operation in world heritage railways, restoration of steam locomotives etc.
162 year old
Built by Kitson, Thompson and Hewitson in England in 1855, the 5 feet 6 inches gauge locomotive reached Kolkata the same year. Till 1895, it was known as number 22. It was used by the East India Company to run light mail trains between Howrah and Raniganj in West Bengal. During the 1857 Sepoy Mutiny, the steam engine was used to ferry troopers. Later, it was sent to Bihar to be used for line construction. The engine retired in 1909.
In 1977, the engine was restored and since then it has been kept at the National Rail Museum in Chanakyapuri, Delhi.
It was certified by the Guinness Book of Records in 1998 as the world's oldest steam locomotive in regular operation.
The following year, the train received a National Tourism Award for the most innovative and unique tourism project from the then Prime Minister, Atal Bihari Vajpayee.