The railways conducted a heritage run of a 164-year-old locomotive, which is the world’s oldest working steam engine, to mark the 73rd Independence Day. A heritage special service hauled by EIR-21, the world’s oldest working steam locomotive, was successfully operated from Chennai Egmore to Kodambakkam, the railways said on Saturday.
The heritage special with a single coach with railway officials left Chennai Egmore around noon on August 15. Many rail and steam enthusiasts turned up at Chennai Egmore and Kodambakkam railway stations to see the heritage special.
These steam heritage runs are operated to showcase the heritage value of Indian Railways. The Express EIR 21, which is similar to Fairy Queen in appearance, is 164 years’ old. The locomotive was originally shipped to India from England in 1855. After withdrawal from service in 1909, this loco was kept as an exhibit at Jamalpur workshop and Howrah station for over 101 years.
During this period this loco was in the sun and rain; many parts were corroded, some were missing, some were broken and some were not fit for use.The Perambur Loco Works took the challenge of reviving the engine in 2010.