Film ID:
NEFA 22233



Visitor Tabs


This amateur film shows the cavalcade of locomotives on show at Shildon in County Durham to celebrate 150 years of railway history in Britain. The film was produced by Stephen Fairbrother and his father, William Mercer Fairbrother.

The film opens with a painting showing The Rocket in full steam, possibly at the Rainhill trials.

A round insignia reads: 'Stockton & Darlington Railway1825 & 1975'. A large poster sign reads 'Stockton and Darlington (Railway?) One Hundred & Fifty Years of British Railways'.

The film moves to Shildon in County Durham where visitors walk around stationary steam engines on display. The engines have numbers attached to them, presumably to match information in a guide book. The engines on display represent a history of steam railways in Britain, but a more modern Newcastle Metro train is also included in the exhibition.  One steam locomotive in green livery has the name 'The North Eastern' on a nameplate above the smokebox. Famous engines include Mallard and the Flying Scotsman, and also on display is a London Underground train.

A view follows of the front of engine No. 1000, a Midland Railway engine, preserved at the National Railway Museum at York. The camera zooms in on an information board attached to it. Another engine on display is LNER class B1 "Mayflower". A class Y7 tank engine built at Gateshead is now currently preserved by the Middleton Railway at Leeds. An information board stands next to LMS Princess Elizabeth.

The front of A4 Pacific class 4498 Sir Nigel Gresley is filmed next. At the back of the locomotive, a set of steps allows visitors to get a footplate view of the engine. General views follow of visitors milling around looking at other engines.

A smaller engine with distinctive 'boxy' design is marked on the cabside 'WTC No. 5. In the distance outside of the main exhibition area is a London underground train.

Next, the grand cavalcade starts witha replica Locomotion, which hauled the first steam train on the Stockton and Darlington Railway, and became the first locomotive to run on a public railway. This replica was built by apprentices at ICI Billingham. Crowds sit in grandstands near the track to watch the display.

A familiar site on the region's railways in the past, as a National Coal Board saddle tank engine goes past, No. 2502/7 the Hunslet Austerity design 0-6-0ST (Saddle Tank) built by Bagnall. In 1975 it worked at Vane Tempest colliery at Seaham.

The LMS Stanier 'Black 5' 4-6-0 number 4767 'George Stephenson' is next, built at Crewe in 1947.

This is followed by a North Eastern Railway 2238 a Raven 0-8-0 built at Darlington in 1918, then North Eastern Railway 2392, a Worsdell design 0-6-0 also built at Darlington in 1923.

An LNER (London & North Eastern Railway) engine is next, saved by the North East Locomotive Preservation Group. The Peppercorn K1 2-6-0 was built by the North British engine works after nationalisation in 1949, and withdrawn from service in 1967.

An engine built in Glasgow next, a Caledonian Railway No 419 a McIntosh 0-4-4T, tank engine which was built at the St Rollox works in 1907 and withdrawn from service in 1962. The engine steams off into the distance.

Next in the cavalcade is LNER No 246 Morayshire a Gresley designed D49 class 4-4-0 built at Darlington in 1928 and withdrawn in 1961.

A Great Western Railway (GWR) Collett 0-6-0PT, No. 7752 follows, built by the North British works in Glasgow in 1930, withdrawn by BR in 1959. Engines similar to this were apparently able to play tunes on their whistles.

A larger Great Western Railway engine follows on, number 7808, named Cookham Manor. The Collett design 4-6-0 was built at Swindon in 1938, withdrawn in 1965 and privately preserved. Another GWR locomotive follows. GWR 6960 'Raveningham Hall'. A  4-6-0 locomotive built at Swindon in 1944, and withdrawn 20 years later. It was rescued from being scrapped in 1972 and restored at Carnforth Steamtown.

A view over the heads of the watching crowds as the next locomotive in the cavalcade approaches. This time it's LNER 4771 Green Arrow, a Gresley designed V2 2-6-2, built at Doncaster in 1936 and withdrawn to be preserved in 1962.

Next is an engine that was seen in the exhibition earlier in the film, LNER number1306 'Mayflower, a Thompson B1 class 4-6-0 built at the North British works in 1948 and withdrawn in 1967, and restored at Carnforth.

A London Midland & Scottish railway locomotive rolls by. This is LMS 8Fclass 2-8-0, 8233 a former War Department locomotive working in Persia in the Second World War before used as a British Rail engine No. 48733.

In its distinctive navy blue and red livery, a Longmoor Military Railway No 600 'Gordon' tows a much smaller Metropolitan Railway electric locomotive built in 1906, No 12 'Sarah Siddons'.

One of the stars of the show appears next, the distinctive lines of LNER class A4 4-6-2 number 4498 'Sir Nigel Gresley' towing Great Northern Railway 4-2-2 No 1. Sir Nigel Gresley was built at Doncaster in 1937 and withdrawn in 1966. It first appeared as a preserved locomotive in 1967. The Stirling Single locomotive was built at Doncaster in 1870 and withdrawn in 1907. It appeared at Stockton & Darlington centenary celebrations in 1925. It is now housed at the National Railway Museum.

Possibly the most famous engine in the world follows on The Flying Scotsman LNER class A3 4-6-2 number 4472. Flying Scotsman, tows North Eastern Railway No 910, a Fletcher's design 2-4-0 built at Gateshead in 1875. Gresley's Flying Scotsman was built at Doncaster in 1923, withdrawn in 1963 and privately preserved. It is now part of the National Railway Museum collection. The older engine was unique at Shildon as it appeared in two previous Stockton & Darlington Railway celebrations. That of the golden jubilee in 1875, and the 1925 centenary.

Next in the cavalcade is the Great Northern Railway 4-4-2 No 990 'Henry Oakley'. This Ivatt Atlantic engine was built at Doncaster in 1898, and withdrawn in 1937. It also appeared in the Stockton & Darlington centenary celebrations in 1925.

The black London & North Western Railway No 790 'Hardwicke' is next in the cavalcade, built at Crewe in 1892, The Webb Precedent 2-4-0 was withdrawn and underwent preservation in 1932.

A change of livery with the handsome maroon coloured Midland Railway 1000. The compund 4-4-0 egine was built at Derby in 1902, and withdrawn and achieved preservation status in 1951.

In the same livery, London, Midland & Scottish Railway No. 5690 'Leander' follows on. The Stanier design Jubilee class 4-6-0 was built at Crewe in 1936, and withdrawn in 1964. It was sent to the scrapyard of Woodham Brothers at Barry, South Glamorgan, where it stayed until 1973 when it was purchased for restoration and preserved. Another maroon LMS engine is next up, this time LMS 6201 Princess Elizabeth. The Stanier 4-6-2 was built Crewe in 1933, withdrawn in 1962 and privately preserved.

Next is engine number 51218. This 0-4-0 saddle tank engine was built at Horwich in 1901 as Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway No 68. At the time of filming, it was a preserved engine working on the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway in Yorkshire.

Following on, another smaller engine, London, Brighton & South Coast Railway No 72,  'Fenchurch'. This Stroudley 'Terrier' 0-6-0T was built at Brighton in 1872 and withdrawn in 1963. It is preserved on the Bluebell Railway. The coal at the back of the engine is painted white.

Another engine from the south of the country is the Southern Railway No 841 'Greene King', The Maunsell's S15 4-6-0 was built at Eastleigh in 1936 and withdrawn in 1964. It was to be scrapped at Barry in South Wales and left in 1972 for restoration at the Stour Valley Railway and named Greene King.

Next is number 35028 'Clan Line'. Built at Eastleigh after nationalisation in 1948, the Merchant Navy class Pacific was rebuilt there in 1959 and withdrawn in 1967. After restoration it made it's first appearance on the mainline in 1974

At the tim of  filming, the next engine was working on the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway. Number 41241, an Ivatt 2-6-2 tank engine was built at Crewe in 1949, and withdrawn in 1966.

Next is engine number 43106, an Ivatt 4MT 2-6-0 an ex-London Midland & Scottish Railway engine built in1951 in Darlington and withdrawn in 1968. It now works on the Severn Valley railway.

No. 75029 The Green Knight follows, a BR Standard 4MT 4-6-0, built at Swindon in 1954 and withdrawn in 1967, afterwards preserved. A man in a smart suit and tie, waves to the crowd from the footplate. In 1975 at the time of filming it was based at the East Somerset Railway.

A famous engine, as the cavalcade draws to a close, the last steam engine to be built for British Railways, No. 92220 'Evening Star'. Built for BR at Swindon in 1960, the BR Standard 9F 2-10-0 was withdrawn into official preservation just five years later. The engine steams slowly past.

The film finishes with a brief glimpse of 252001 as the cavalcade ends with the prototype of BR's enormously successful high speed train (HST). The 252001 was built in 1972 and withdrawn in 1976 when production HST's began to enter service.

[Stephen Fairbrother and his father William made films featuring heritage railways and industrial heritage in the North East England. The Terrier engine travelling in the cavalcade had a light-weight design, intended to give rapid acceleration on suburban trains of light-weight carriages on the South London line, where the stations were only about a mile apart.]