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Video of the month

Pockerley Waggonway


Hop on board for a steam ride through the Georgian landscape, representing the era which saw the birth of the railways.

Pockerley Waggonway is home to replica locomotives, Puffing Billy, Steam Elephant and Locomotion No.1, which pull recreated carriages from the period.

The 1815 Steam Elephant was built for Wallsend Colliery by William Chapman and John Buddle. Neither the engine itself nor the original drawings for Steam Elephant survived and the construction of the replica for Beamish was based on a remarkable series of sketches and exhaustive researches by Museum staff.

George Stephenson’s Locomotion No. 1 was built in 1825, the replica had its first public steaming at Beamish in 1975, 150 years after the original was unveiled on the Stockton and Darlington Railway.

The most recent addition to the collection is a replica of Puffing Billy, built in 1813 by William Hedley to haul coal from Wylam Colliery to the River Tyne. This is one on the world’s oldest surviving locomotives, the original is now on display in the Science Museum in London.

The Great Shed at the Waggonway is based on lost buildings from railway pioneer Timothy Hackworth’s works in Shildon, County Durham. It includes original ironwork from George Stephenson’s company in Newcastle upon Tyne.

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Pockerley Waggonway