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Simplon Tunnel 100th Anniversary
. . . in N Scale, naturally!
The first bore of the Simplon Tunnel was completed in 1905 but the first scheduled traffic did not use it until 1 June 1906.
Official Centennial celebrations begin on 19 May 2006, exactly 100 years after the Tunnel was dedicated by Italy's King Vittorio Emmanuelle III and Swiss President Ludwig Forrer. Horse mounted 'Carabinieri' police await nearby, ready to handle crowd control should it become a problem.
The Simplon Tunnel Centennial festivities are underway and the crowd is gathering. An eleven-piece Swiss 'oom-pah' band is preparing to play as soon as the dignitaries on the podium finish their speeches.
Amici Scala N Members in blue shirts pose in front of their booth for a photo. From left to right, Andrea Barella, Massimo DiGiulio, Antonio Rampini, and Giorgio Donzello. Mauro Porcelli is in the booth (not visible from this angle) and renown railway photographer Maurizio Tolini is taking the photo.
On the near track, flag-festooned Italian Pacific Gr.691.022 has just arrived with a train of vintage UIC-Y type coaches restored to their early Sixties appearance (Paolo Pacini painted the coaches). Ce 6/8 "Krok" number 14253 was supposed to power the Swiss train, but a pantograph failure has it 'bad ordered' at Brig.
The yellow, white, and red Swiss Post Bus used to transport Swiss revelers to the site, stands ready to return them to Brig at the conclusion of the program. The far track (southbound side) is partially protected by an overhead rock fall structure made of steel and heavy timbers.
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