Friday 6th May saw the final day of a LCGB week long kettle railtour being advertised with a BZK “seven” from Pleven to Sofia. This was too good to turn down as a holiday opportunity so as part of a ten day Bulgaria/Romania trip we had arranged a part fare on said charter. Originally planned to be 87010 which is sidelined at Podyjane, 87004 was unsurprisingly provided especially as the stock was formed of the Bulgarian Royal Train – a presidential saloon, couchette coach and one compartment coach – how many locos have worked Royal Trains of two different countries I wonder?!
A 10.00 departure from Pleven saw us wind our way to Sofia via plenty of photo stops and the stunning Mezdra Valley – certainly not a bad way to spend a day and the first 87 passenger working of the year to boot . As a bonus, this was the only day of sun on their tour, cue much moaning about sun coming out for electrics whilst they had been viewing plinthed kettles in the rain!!