NOT OFTEN in a lifetime do you get ahead of the Queen! But as Her Majesty opens Scotland’s new Borders Railway today – the longest domestic main line to be built in Britain for more than a century – I was lucky to get one of the 100 tickets to board the very first train on the line last weekend.
Here’s a shot of HM’s departure on the train this morning, with a fortunate passenger, along with us, as the first service arrived at Tweedbank last Friday. (Not the Queen exactly,, but clearly royal enough to make a bit of history!)
Hopefully this will herald a new era of railway openings, reversing the brutal 1960s Beeching cuts. The line follows the tracks of the spectacular Waverley route – the most tragic closure of the Beeching era. I’ve written the story of the fall and rise of the railway in my new book ‘The Trains Now Departed’ http://amzn.to/1xKrjzz
And you can read about my journey back in time at Independent Travel, the travel pages of the Independent, later this week…