THE RAKE’S PROGRESS

GB
1945
2hrs
Dir: Sidney Gilliat
Starring: Rex Harrison and Lilli Palmer

The life of an upper-class cad in the 1930s

Near the end of this classic comedy drama there are scenes filmed on a GWR branch line that includes a shot of an as yet unidentified station, followed by several good tracking shots of a GWR 2-6-2T on a local train. The scene depicting Margaret Johnston leaving on the departing train may have used the real thing. Although it is not known which line featured in the film it could have been somewhere in Cornwall, as much of the final 20 minutes of the film was shot in the county. In addition to these scenes there is one much earlier shot of a passing express at night but the locomotive at the head can not be identified.

This could be absolutely anything, but whatever it is, it’s steaming poorly
Although the identity of this delightful country station has yet to be ascertained it is thought to be somewhere on the GWR network, possibly in Cornwall
A GWR 2-6-2 tank hauls its train through the countryside, bunker first
Another similar shot shows the train passing a house. The proximity of the building to the track suggests that it could be a crossing keeper’s cottage.