British Rail shut the Purbeck branch line, from
The line has since been restored by enthusiasts. The steam-hauled train left
'Against the odds'
Campaigners from the Swanage Railway Trust fought for the line to be rebuilt and watched it grow mile by mile over the years.
Mike Whitwam, Swanage Railway Trust chairman, said: "The first steam trains between
" History was also made on 1 April when the first passenger through train since 1972, called the Purbeck Pioneer, went from London to Swanage. Trains have been running on parts of the preserved line for some years but these are the first complete through services.
On Bank Holiday Monday, a diesel engine will take the service from London Waterloo to Swanage, where the steam engine will then take the train back to Waterloo. A 1940s-built Southern Railway Bulleid Pacific steam locomotive, named Tangmere after the West Sussex Battle of Britain airfield, was used to pull the 12-coach Dorset Coast Express train.