There was nothing remarkable about the train traveling from Glasgow. The 12 cars powered by a single diesel locomotive made up a mobile post office known as the Up Special. It was carrying postal staff who sorted mail and packages en route to London as it had done every night without incident for 125 years. It was completely unremarkable — that is, until the night of Aug. 8, 1963.
That night, the Up Special was carrying a large amount of cash in its second car, where registered mail was sorted. The amount was larger than usual because it had been a bank holiday weekend in Scotland.
At just past 3 a.m. near the Bridego Railway Bridge in Buckinghamshire, England, a gang of thieves pulled off a daring heist. They stole 120 sacks of bank notes worth £2.6 million (about $7 million at the time, or more than $50 million today) from the second car — a heist known today as the Great Train Robbery.
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Source Credits: Maria Trimarchi in HowStuffWorks. Image above is for illustrative purpose only, in depiction of a train robbery.