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Severn Valley Railway to mark jubilee with four-day event

A celebration "fit for Royalty" is planned by bosses at the Severn Valley Railway who will be welcoming visitors to a four-day special event in June to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

A mock up of Taw Valley in its new purple livery.
A mock up of Taw Valley in its new purple livery.

Festivities will take place from June 2 to June 5 as the railway joins with the nation to celebrate the historic and momentous occasion across the extended Bank Holiday weekend.

Crowning the first day of the event will be the unveiling of locomotive 34027 with its new name, Elizabeth II, new number ‘70’, and unique, head-turning purple livery, specially commissioned to mark the Jubilee.

Visitors will have the chance to see the purple locomotive throughout the four-day event.

On the Thursday afternoon, locomotives at Kidderminster and Bridgnorth will sound their whistles as town criers make a special Queen’s Platinum Jubilee proclamation.

Evening services will transport diners to The Engine House at Highley for a Beacon Banquet, at which the railway's beacon will be lit at the same time as thousands of others across the world.

Alongside the stunning sight of the purple locomotive, the appropriately-named No 2999 Lady of Legend will be making its final appearances at the railway before it returns home to Didcot Railway Centre.

Heritage aircraft will also headline the show as The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight’s iconic Lancaster is set to perform a fly-past on all four days of the event.

It was 1952 when Queen Elizabeth II became sovereign, and the era of rock ‘n roll and the 1950s will return to the railway for the celebrations.

At Bridgnorth, visitors will be able to hop aboard a vintage fairground ride, and on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, there will be live music from the era at Kidderminster Station, a pop-up milk bar and jukebox at The Engine House, along with evening concerts at Kidderminster featuring a rock band on June 3 and an Elvis Presley tribute act on June 4.

Meanwhile at The Engine House, courtesy of BrickLive, the Severn Valley Railway will be hosting a hand-built Paddington-themed exhibition.

Hundreds of thousands of bricks will go into creating the exhibition, which is sure to delight visitors of all ages.

Alongside Paddington, the work of leading photographer Jack Boskett will be showcased in an exhibition called From Railways to Royalty, with 75 of his best works featuring heritage rail and the Royal Family.

Across the railway’s six authentically-preserved stations, gardeners will work their magic to produce floral displays in honour of the historic occasion, and each visitor will receive a special edition ‘seeded’ ticket to take home and plant for their own celebratory display.

Michael Dunn, head of visitor experience, said: “The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee is a once-in-a-lifetime historic event.

"We are pulling out all the stops to make sure our celebratory event will be truly memorable.

“The unveiling of No 70 Elizabeth II in its stunning purple livery will be a real ‘wow’ moment as we launch into the weekend.

"This is going to be an exciting and joyful celebration of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee and we cannot wait to welcome our visitors.”

Day tickets for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee event are on sale now at the svr.co.uk website.

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