LOOKING back to the week that was October 30 to November 5, fifteen years ago...

THE first steam train to be built in England in nearly 50 years made its main line debut on November 4, 2008.

The Tornado travelled between York and Darlington as part of its main line trials.

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The £3m A1 Peppercorn class locomotive was built by a team of volunteers in Darlington over the past two decades.

November 4, 2008 was the first time a steam locomotive had travelled on Network Rail since 1960.

Mark Allatt, the chairman of the A1 Steam Locomotive Trust, said: "It was very exciting. After two amazing months of tests, trials and initial passenger operations on the Great Central Railway, Tornado is now ready to stretch her legs on the Network Rail main line, where she will be tested at speeds of up to 75mph this month ready for her passenger debut in the new year. "

On November 18, 2008, Tornado was to return to Darlington and pass through the town on a trial run between York and Newcastle.

When not undergoing engineering work and preparation for her trials, the Tornado was on display at the National Railway Museum in York.

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Three of the last surviving British veterans of the First World War prepared to mark the 90th anniversary of the day peace returned to Europe.

Health permitting, the men – all well into their 100s – will attend a service at the Cenotaph in central London to commemorate Armistice Day on November 11.

At precisely 11am, Henry Allingham, 112, Harry Patch, 110 and Bill Stone, 108, would lead a two-minute silence as the nation remembered the sacrifices made by the 1914-1918 generation.

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They each represented the armed service they belonged to: for Mr Allingham the Royal Air Force, Mr Patch the Army and Mr Stone the Royal Navy.

Dennis Goodwin, chairman of the World War One Veterans' Association, said the three men hoped to play an active role in next week's ceremony.

"It is most significant that they represent each armed service – the odds on that are tremendous, " he said.