THE most famous steam train in the world is in Hampshire today.

For the first time, the Flying Scotsman is running the ten miles of the Watercress Line between Alresford and Alton and then back, to celebrate the full reopening of the railway.

It has been partially closed for around a year because of the building of a new bridge at The Butts in Alton.

The iconic machine has conquered the one-in-60 'over the Alps' climb to the summit at Medstead and Four Marks, in each direction. It is one of the steepest portions of line in southern England.

It is operating a special service today for invited guests, who have included the Lord Lieutenant of Hampshire Nigel Atkinson, TV presenter Alan Titchmarsh and local dignatories.

The locomotive will be in public service for four running days: February 29 and March 1, 7-8. It is believed to have long sold out.