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Shinkansen comes to York

01 Aug 2001

THE FIRST Japanese Shinkansen carriage to be exhibited outside Japan was unveiled at Britain's National Railway Museum in York by His Excellency The Ambassador of Japan Sadayuki Hayashi on July 12.

Built in 1976, Series 0 car number 22-141 was withdrawn in 2000 after travelling over 10 million km. It was donated to the museum by JR West, which also met the shipping costs.

After arriving at Southampton Docks, the carriage travelled to York by road. It did, however, grace British tracks for a trip of less than 2 km on the East Coast Main Line to reach the museum. As the Shinkansen loading gauge is somewhat more generous than that in Britain, there was just 5mm of clearance at the entrance to the museum.

The car is the first foreign-built rail vehicle to be exhibited at the NRM, and will be on show alongside other historically important machines such as Rocket (which has visited Japan), and world steam speed record holder Mallard.