Film ID:
NEFA 22174



Visitor Tabs


An amateur documentary made by Peter Dobing and George Theaker in 1990 following the closure of the Shildon Wagon Works. The film includes footage shot as part of the 150th anniversary of the wagon works on the 24th September 1983 as well as film of the ‘cavalcade of steam’ taking place in Shildon in August 1975 as part of the 150th anniversary of the opening of the Stockton and Darlington railway. 

Title: Rail 150 Years

The film opens with a LNER Thompson K1 class steam locomotive pulling out of the northbound platform of Bank Top Station in Darlington. The name plate on the front of the engine reads ‘The North Eastern’. It passes three men taking photographs on the platform. The driver and firemen wave at a boy who is also standing on the platform.

Next, there's a track side view beside a road bridge as the K1 locomotive approaches and passes at speed. The next shot was filmed in 1975 during the 150th anniversary of the Stockton and Darlington Railway and large crowds stand along the track and across the bridge.

Inside the Shildon Wagon Works the LNER Class A3 4472 Flying Scotsman is on display with large crowds of visitors walking around and looking at this and other steam locomotives. A small boy climbs along the side of boiler of the Flying Scotsman.  Crowds are also looking at the LNER Class A4 4498 Sir Nigel Gresley. An ‘Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants’ banner hangs down behind a display as visitors walk past.

A selection of black and white photographs taken during the 1975 celebrations follows showing a number of locomotives taking part in the ‘cavalcade of steam’.

A large crowd of spectators are beside the railway line as a steam locomotive travels towards them slowly blowing its’ whistle on a number of occasions. The GWR 6959 class locomotive ‘Raveningham Hall’ passes the camera traveling beneath a cowded road bridge, with crowds also at the track side. Again, the whistle is blown as the engine travels by, a policeman walking along the track while those on board wave at the crowd.

Along the track on the other side of the bridge a small boy waves at the LNER class V2 4771 Green Arrow as it slowly passes. A large crowd, including a number of children, wave track side near to the bridge as the Flying Scotsman also travels past, a Vaux emblem attached to the front. A woman with a camera takes photographs. As it passes, a second locomotive can be seen attached to the Flying Scotsman.

Children pick track gravel just as the LMS Stanier Class 8F 8233 passes by. The crowd clap and waves as the next train with bright red and white wheels passes, followed by the Sir Nigel Gresley with a second unidentified locomotive at the rear.

Changing location, a green painted GWR 5700 class locomotive slowly steams past the crowd standing along the track.

Two locomotives now pass watched by the crowd.

General views follow of the crowd clapping and cheering from the track side near Darlington as a number of other locomotives steam past, children still collecting garvel from the track as a memento.

At the Darlington marshalling yard, many of the steam engines featured as part of the cavalcade are parked,  including the Sir Nigel Gresley and Flying Scotsman. General views of the various locomotives as well as rail crews inspecting their locomotives. Two policemen walk past admiring the engines. Another engine slowly makes its way along the track. St. John the Evangelist church appears through the steam in the near distance.

At Shildon large crowds are looking over various engines on display outside the wagon works. A smaller locomotive with ‘Fenchurch’ stencilled across the side travels slowly past.

At a long straight section of track with embankments on either side, crowds watch from behind fences as a number of locomotives steam along the track with passengers on-board looking out of windows and doorways. The train now heads back in the opposite direction. A second smaller steam engine is visible at the rear of the train.

The film fades to reveal a ‘British Rail Engineering Limited Shildon Works’ hoarding attached to a building followed by a circular emblem for ‘Shildon Railway Works 150 Years 1833-1983’.

Inside one of the wagon works, metal sparks fly into the air beside a set of rail bogies. Outside, a conveyor moves a high-capacity coal wagon from one part of the yard to another. Along another section of track, a crowd of visitors look over a number of diesel locomotives.

Three men operate a replica of Timothy Hackworth’s Sans Pareil steam locomotive. One man uses a metal crowbar to help move the wheels. In a carriage attached to the back, a number of passengers watch proceedings with interest as the engine slowly makes its way along the track.

A large crowd stand around a level crossing, a British Rail Class 43 (HST) Intercity 125 diesel train at the edge of the shot. Five men unveil a plaque on the side of the train to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Shildon Wagon Works, a crowd applauding as the plaques is unveiled.

A policewoman follows the level cross barrier as it is opened while other marshals in red high-visibility vests hold back the crowd. The brand new Intercity 125 slowly makes its way over the crossing past the applauding crowds.

A display of railway lamps are stacked on top of each other and other disused lamps are stacked in a bin.

General views follow of the now closed and derelict Shildon works in 1990 including the long stretch of rail line seen during the 1975 cavalcade with the tracks removed. The camera focuses in on a sign hanging on a wall of the nearby Salvation Army, which is missing most of its sign.

End credit: A film by George Theaker and Peter Dobing

End credit: Stills photography Peter Singlehurst