Home Heritage Original George Stephenson notebook turns up in York

Original George Stephenson notebook turns up in York

A records assistant at Network Rail’s archive in York has stumbled across a notebook with George Stephenson’s plans for the world’s first locomotive-driven passenger railway.

John Page discovered the notebook by chance while looking for another document in the archive’s deeds room in April this year. It includes Stephenson’s redesign and budget for the Stockton and Darlington Railway, which opened in 1825, and was signed by G Stephenson at Killingworth Colliery on 18 January 1822.

The notebook, which shows Stephenson’s survey of George Overton’s original plans for the line and recommendations, has now gone on display at the National Railway Museum in York.

John Page said: “Because it is a historical document it would never have been loaned out or requested as it didn’t impact the running of the railway so since the 1950s, it has sat on a shelf unnoticed amongst hundreds of other packets.

“I was looking for a deed for one of our internal colleagues and purely out of curiosity decided to look through the packets, and there it was, and what a thrill it was to find.”

Sir Peter Hendy CBE, chair of Network Rail, added: “George Stephenson’s original survey of the Stockton and Darlington Railway ushered in the railway age, not only in Britain, but around the world. Network Rail is delighted and proud to have found this astonishing artefact, and very pleased to have it displayed by our friends at the National Railway Museum.”

The notebook will be on display until 28 December in the museum’s Great Hall.

Photos courtesy of Network Rail


Read more: New rail graduates join FirstGroup


 

Recommended

UK hydrogen train ventures out onto the main line

HydroFlex, the UK’s first hydrogen-powered train, ran on the main line today, signalling a big step forward towards the UK’s net zero...

RMT calls for urgent Government support for open-access rail operators to avoid job losses

Rail trade union RMT has called on the Government to provide a financial support package for open-access operators Grand Central and Hull...

TBF creates two Covid-related memorial funds

Many of those working on the front line of the public transport industry have suffered during the Covid-19 pandemic. This has been...

New-look Optilan strengthens and expands

Despite the market challenges caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic, leading international communications and security specialist Optilan has used the last six...

Asquith Xavier recognised by plaque at Chatham station

British Rail guard Asquith Xavier, who broke the colour bar at Euston station in 1966, has been recognised with a plaque in...