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Head of Steam
Established 1975
Location Darlington, County Durham, England
Type Railway museum

Head of Steam, formerly known as the Darlington Railway Centre and Museum, is a railway museum located on the 1825 route of the Stockton and Darlington Railway, which was the world's first steam-powered passenger railway. It is based inside the station building at the North Road railway station. Its exhibits are devoted to the area formerly served by the North Eastern Railway with a particular focus on the Stockton & Darlington Railway and the railway industry of Darlington.


The museum currently has four locomotives on display. They are all on long-term loan from the National Railway Museum.

Number & Name Year Description Livery History
Locomotion No. 1 1825 S&DR 0-4-0 N/A
Locomotion No.1, Darlington
Locomotion No.1

Locomotion No. 1 was built by George Stephenson for the world's first public steam-worked passenger railway, the Stockton and Darlington Railway. It was responsible for hauling the first train on the line on 27 September 1825. In 1857 it was put on display in Darlington, first at North Road station and in 1892 at Darlington's Bank Top railway station, before finally returning to North Road in 1975 at Darlington's railway museum.

No. 25 Derwent 1845 S&DR 0-6-0 Green
Stockton & Darlington 0-6-0 25 'Derwent' Head of Steam, Darlington 30.06.2009 P6300113 (10192716434)

No. 25 Derwent was designed by Timothy Hackworth and built by William and Alfred Kitching for use on the Stockton and Darlington Railway. It spent many years on display with Locomotion No. 1 at Darlington Bank Top station before being put on display in the museum.

No. 1463 1885 NER 1463 (LNER E5) 2-4-0 NER Apple Green
NER E5 2-4-0 1463 (1885) Head of Steam, Darlington 30.06.2009 P6300112 (10192722204)

This engine was designed by Henry Tennant and Thomas W. Worsdell for use on express trains. It spent a large portion of its preserved career on display in the original York Railway Museum.

No. 901 1919 NER T3 (LNER Q7) 0-8-0 LNER Black
LNER Q7 0-8-0 901 (1919) Head of Steam, Darlington 30.06.2009 P6300110 (10192857226)

Designed by Sir Vincent Raven for use on heavy freight trains.

In the 1980s, it was loaned to the North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group which restored it to working order. It then spent several years working on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway before its withdrawal. It was put on display in the museum during its refurbishment in 2008.

Model railway

The museum holds a large model of the Stockton & Darlington Railway which can be seen in the images below.

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