STROUDLEY ‘Terrier’ 0-6-0T No. 55 Stepney will form one of the centrepiece exhibits, alongside a cutaway replica of itself, in a new museum at the Bluebell Railway.
The development follows a £1.1million award from the Heritage Lottery Fund.
The ASH (Accessible Steam Heritage) museum will revitalise the way the railway displays its out-of-traffic locomotives by transforming its current Sheffield Park engine shed into a fully interpreted, wheelchair friendly exhibition hall.
The building is being funded by the HLT grant and £388,000 direct from the railway. It will undergo substantial repairs first, and will also be extended at the side to create the new exhibition space.
The 1875-built Stepney is a core component in the Bluebell Railway machine, and as such it will be one of the star exhibits, the fragile locomotive having earned its retirement.
The mock-up will be used to explain how a steam locomotive works, featuring a sectioned boiler in the style of the National Railway Museum’s ‘Merchant Navy’ Ellerman Lines, and an enlarged cab to allow wheelchair access to a built-in audio-visual driver experience.
Read more in February’s issue of The RM – out now!