AN engineer ready to play her part in building Britain’s most powerful steam locomotive has moved more than 1,000 miles from her home to work on the project.

Daniela Filova has swapped the Czech Republic for Darlington to offer her skills and expertise for the £5m project to produce the No 2007 Prince of Wales loco.

The project's ambition is to operate an improved Gresley class P2 Mikado steam locomotive for main line and preserved railway use.

Mark Allatt, P2 project director and trustee of The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, said Ms Filova?'s appointment was proof "building and operating new steam locomotives is no longer just jobs for the boys or even old men".

He said Ms Filova's appointment would help to ensure that the project remains on schedule for completion in 2021 and enable the Darlington-based team to complete the wheelsets, continue the boiler procurement, order the cylinder block, design and order the first motion parts, continue to progress work on the tender and commence the electrical design during 2018.

Figures recently published by EU data gathering body Eurostat, show in 2016 there were 1.7 million scientists and engineers in the EU in 2016.

Men were particularly overrepresented, with 83 per cent of scientists and engineers in manufacturing were male and the UK lagged behind the EU average split.

The assistant mechanical engineer has been appointed as part of the A1 Steam Locomotive Trust’s team pulling together the engine in the Darlington Locomotive Sheds in the Hopetown area.

The trust anticipated at the beginning of its project that new roles would arise as the build went on and launched a recruitment process alongside Teesside University in September last year to find a perfect candidate.

Project managers agreed Ms Filova was a neat fit for the team and she will be expediting the production of manufacturing drawings.

Ms Filova has a background in intellectual property and has also run her own live steam model engineering and manufacturing business. She also offers experience in the use of the design software, which is used on the project, and has already produced manufacturing drawings for the Prince of Wales cylinder covers.

  • Roadshows offering updates will be held across the UK this year, including Darlington Locomotive Works, on April 7, at 11am.