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Beamish Museum is excited to announce recently purchased Victorian 0-4-4T Steam Locomotive Dunrobin and its private saloon (No. 58A) has sailed its way safely across the Atlantic to the UK.
The engine and coach were loaded onto a ship named Atlantic Companion and left Halifax, Nova Scotia on Monday and arrived safe and sound back in the UK on Wednesday 18th May.
This is the first time since 1965 that Dunrobin has been on UK rails - for all the latest updates of how work on the engine progresses keep an eye on the Beamish Transport Blog.
It will be some time before Dunrobin appears at Beamish as it is due to be overhauled by an external contractor, and the boiler needs to be stripped of asbestos. Once overhauled it will be in residence at the Museum's Rowley Station, carrying passengers on a regular basis. The aim for this is at some point in 2013.
Built by Sharp Stewart in 1895 for the Duke of Sutherland it was used to pull his private train at Dunrobin Castle in Scotland up until around 1920.
After being placed on display in 1950 the loco and carriage were then exported to Canada in 1965 by a businessman and later ended up at Fort Steele (a Canadian Beamish), remaining in operation until 2005.
Deemed surplus to requirements, negotiations between Beamish and the Friends of Fort Steele have been underway for over 12 months and our offer was accepted in December 2010.
Dunrobin has carried at least four kings (Edward VII, George V, George VI, King Alfonso of Spain and the Kaiser Wilhelm II) and numerous other historic dignitaries (including Winston Churchill) in its cab.
Museum director Richard Evans said, 'We are absolutely thrilled to have ‘Dunrobin’ come to Britain, the locomotive has rich connections to British history and will be a cherished addition to the Museum.'