Friday, 30 April 2021

Percy Main H Class

A NER H Class at rest at Percy Main sheds. With two survivors of this design (one H Class, one LNER Y7) in preservation - a visitor of the future perhaps?


Wednesday, 28 April 2021

B&T No.6

The oldest photograph we've found so far showing our railway.

This early view shows Percy Main Workshops, with Blyth & Tyne number 6. An 0-6-0 long boiler locomotive, by Robert Stephenson & Co, works number 1271 of January 1860.
She cost the Blyth & Tyne £2175 when new.
After being overhauled in 1884 and 1895. She was withdrawn in December 1897.

Billy Embleton


Tuesday, 27 April 2021

Bearing work on Ashington No.5

Chris 'bluing in' one of Ashington No.5's axlebox bearings to determine how much to file off

Filing back the bottom of the bearing, quite a long process but by the end a suitable fit is obtained


6555 outside

No.6555 was shunted outside on Sunday after John and Tom have completed the initial stages of the repaint


Monday, 26 April 2021

Building the railway

A throwback today looking at the building of the railway.

The pictures show the conversion of the Metro test track maintenance sheds into a museum, the remodeling of track in the yard at Middle Engine Lane, and the laying of the line down to the original Percy Main Station (just North of the Metro bridge).

Ernie Carlin
Paul Talbot


Sunday, 25 April 2021

BLS day 2 - train failure, protection and rescue training

The Branch Line Society were back for day two today. In this photo, No.08915 has ran-round and is ready to depart Percy Main, and will simulate a train failure at a random point on the way back to Middle Engine Lane

The train 'failed' shortly after departing Percy Main. The first part of the training was for the guard to detrain his passengers and get them to a position of safety

Instructor Ian (far right) of Green Dragon Rail briefs the Branch Line Society group as well as NTSR train crew

The group is lead back to the railways nearest access point

The next part of the training was to lay out train protection. At the NTSR this is a red flag (or lamp in darkness) held out 200 yards from the failed train or obstruction. As the train 'failed' just before a curve the protection is put out over 200 yards (and off the curve). In this photo, No.08915's second man, Katie, holds out the red flag whilst the rescue locomotive approaches.

No.03078 approaches the start of the train protection. As there is a train in section, a rescue locomotive is given express permission from the railway's Duty Operations Manager (Controller) to enter the One Train Working section and must proceed at caution all the way to the beginning of the protected section. The driver of the rescue locomotive comes to a stop at the red flag, liaises with the crew of the failed train, and is shunted onto the failed train by hand signal from there.

Rescue locomotive No.03078 coupled up to No.08915


Saturday, 24 April 2021

Branch Line Society day 1

No.08915 has been out in action today to welcome the Branch Line Society for their training session

Whilst out with the train an emergency stop was simulated at a random point during the journey. This allowed the BLS group to detrain and discuss the action points for an emergency stop


No.08915 entering Percy Main

In Percy Main head shunt

Back at Middle Engine Lane


Jean and Rob tending to the museum entrance garden this morning


Friday, 23 April 2021

Fishplate greasing

Volunteers Adam, Thomas, and Matthew have been out with the PWAY trolley to carry out fishplate greasing

Matthew tightening up a fishplate bolt following greasing 


New platform fencing

Some photos of John's excellent progress on constructing the new platform fencing at Middle Engine Lane


Former NTSR resident

Former NTSR resident; the LNER pigeon van has been installed in its new home at Goathland Station on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway.

In today's photos, you can see the coach looking brilliant in its new pseudo-NER livery ( to fit into the NER Station surroundings) and ready for its new role as an educational vehicle and accessible toilet.

Photo credits
Kieran Murray
Sam Cumbor. 

Wednesday, 21 April 2021

Crossing collision

An interesting photo today. This shows Backworth 16 after its meeting with J27 65812 in the snowy winter of 1963.

The Percy Main based J27 was heading over Earsdon crossing under clear signals when number 16 descending the bank with a train of full hoppers was unable to stop at the signal due to the snowy conditions. And collided with the BR train.
We will let you judge who came off best!

Photo: Keith Nye


Tuesday, 20 April 2021

Full Steam Ahead - 23rd May

We're getting ready to steam up!

We're delighted to tell you that we'll be re-opening on Sunday, 23 May (subject to government guidance changes) for heritage train rides and visits to the museum.

When visiting it's best to book your tickets in advance, more details can be found on the Stephenson Steam Railway Facebook page, when bookings open.

We’re looking forward to welcoming you back!


Monday, 19 April 2021

North Tyneside Loop

A collection of photos taken by John Barton from Holystone. Showing a number of North East Rail scenes. Including the famous Tyneside electrics and the almost as famous 'Council chamber'.

Permission kindly granted by Daniel Barton.