100 Firsts Exhibition

For the past 100 years, innovation has been at the heart of everything we do. We’ve contributed to hundreds of industry firsts, and helped to create thousands more for our customers.

From introducing the first ever cinema carriage in 1924, to breaking speed records with globally renowned locomotives such as Mallard, the East Coast Main Line has regularly made history.

This year is LNER’s 100th anniversary. 

To mark the special occasion, we’ve created an exhibition that tells one hundred stories of pioneering innovation and cherished moments on the iconic line. Here you’ll discover remarkable and heart-warming tales from customers, colleagues and our history over the past century.

Read or listen to 10 of their stories that are on display in Newcastle Station.

Scroll through and click to read or listen to their stories

Rupert’s first trip to a West End show

How one young boy embarked on a life-changing adventure to London’s West End for his first experience of musical theatre.

A kitten’s first train journey to her forever home

A young woman in Edinburgh completed a 128 mile round trip to collect her new best friend - a kitten called Rini.

A very special trip to feed the pandas at Edinburgh Zoo

A surprise trip to the zoo and a very special day for Willow, who travelled from London to Edinburgh to feed two iconic pandas: Yang Guang and Tian Tian.

Frank Paterson’s very first job

Frank’s first job from school led to 40 years of illustrious service on the East Coast Main Line – clocking up an impressive list of firsts in the process.

From Bollywood screens to London’s streets

Travelling from India to London to catch a first glimpse of a famous landmark which is iconic in Bollywood cinema.

A first meeting with his wife-to-be

Love was in the air for two colleagues who went from sharing shifts to exchanging vows after falling for one another.

The first time meeting the Queen

Nick Dudley is one of LNER’s longest serving colleagues and meeting Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was a career highlight he’ll never forget.

Celebrating true love in the driver’s seat

Trudi and her husband are both train drivers for LNER, working the job of their dreams whilst travelling up and down the East Coast with an ‘office’ view that changes every day.

Sara Davies MBE takes a memorable trip to Buckingham Palace

Entrepreneur and television personality Sara Davies MBE was invited to London for a very special occasion – at Buckingham Palace.

Shaun Wallace’s early quizzing days

A practising barrister and one of Britain’s best known television quiz show personalities, Shaun Wallace forged his career as a quizzer by travelling up and down the East Coast Main Line.

Setting a speed world record

On 3 July 1938, Joe Duddington made history, setting the world speed record for a steam locomotive at 126 mph. His great grandson, Matthew Delaney tells us why his legacy lives on forever.

Read all 100 Firsts

First in history

Over the past century LNER and the East Coast Main Line have played a starring role in an incredible number of historical firsts. Read about some of them here.

First feats

LNER has been driving forward innovation and pioneering firsts since 1923. Hear about some of these achievements.

First loves

From first setting eyes on a future partner to travelling the East Coast Main Line during the honeymoon period, LNER has helped many lovers with those first sparks.

First adventures

All the way from London King’s Cross to the Scottish Highlands, the East Coast Main Line has been at the start of many first adventures.

First big life moments

Making memories which last a lifetime and being there in the moments which matter. Read about some of the most memorable experiences made possible on the East Coast Main Line.

First jobs keeping a career on track

A first job after leaving school or getting a dream offer while onboard, LNER has helped with thousands of careers over the past century. You can find out about some of them below.