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New train and Corgi pups cheer Queen

February 18, 2004
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The Queen had good reason to smile on Wednesday, after the arrival of some charming new additions to the Royal household. Puppies Holly and Willow were born to one of her beloved pet Corgis. The newcomers will no doubt help Her Majesty get over the loss of Pharos, a favourite corgi recently killed by one of Princess Anne's bull terriers.

The youngsters' appearance coincides with another new arrival, a new £1.5-million royal train which will be used to transport members of the family - and presumably their pooches - around the realm. The Queen's Messenger, which was unveiled on Wednesday, is expected to serve the family for the next 30 years.

The wine-coloured locomotive, which bears the Queen's crest and can reach speeds of 125mph, will replace two smaller models currently in use. One of the two redundant engines, which are called Prince Henry and Prince William, will find a new home at the National Railway Museum in York. The less fortunate of the two "Princes" will be scrapped.

"We're not sure which one, but the other is likely to be melted down," revealed a spokesman for owners EWS Rail. "They're reaching the end of their operational life."

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Photo: ©
Her Majesty was wearing a broad smile when she stepped out for an engagement in London on Wednesday, following the birth of puppies Holly and WillowPhoto: © AFP
Photo: ©
Another new arrival, The Queen's Messenger locomotive, is expected to serve the family for the next 30 years. It was previously used by the Royal MailPhoto: © PA

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