THE world's most famous steam engine, the Flying Scotsman, thundered into Bury this weekend for a special Scotsman in Steam event.

Rail enthusiasts were able to get up close and personal with the legendary locomotive as she made her hotly anticipated return to the East Lancashire Railway.

Over May 12 and 13 visitors were given the chance to ride behind the engine on a series of passenger services through the Irwell Valley.

They were also able to find out what makes the engine so special with expert led talks by ELR volunteers.

Chairman of ELR, Mike Kelly, said: "It has been a fantastic day, and it was great to have the Flying Scotsman.

"Over the weekend we will have 4,000 people riding behind the engine and maybe 1,000 more that visit the platforms and ride on other trains.

"But they are all here to get a glimpse of this iconic engine."

Know as the "People’s Engine", the Flying Scotsman, was the first locomotive to exceed 100mph, and for decades represented the best of British engineering.

In addition to this weekend's event the Flying Scotsman will be visiting Bury's Bolton Street Station for more static displays and passenger services later this year.

Mr Kelly said: "These types of events really do bring in the crowds and people come from far and wide to see the Flying Scotsman — she really is the world's most famous steam engine.

"We have had people from London and Edinburgh coming to the North West to see the engine.

"That really supports Bury and the East Lancashire Railway, and it's these type of events that keep us going."