16 thoughts on “Steam Trains at Thornaby Depot in the 1980s

  1. Re Jeff Ellis request for update on Mike Heslop, sorry I can’t help but I do wonder if it’s the same person who I was in the scouts with (7th Stockton) Mike did live in Thornaby and was a keen cyclist so maybe one and the same. He was a very successfull scout and I think achieved Queens Scout status.

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  2. The depot and offices have closed, and what maintenance and traincrews that are left are now billeted in the West End, which have been updated to include a new fuelling / oiling point, and accommodation on what was the boiler house fuel tank site.

    Not much happens at the depot now, and a 52 hectare area is supposedly up for sale. Once again the prospect of the main line being diverted, or perhaps more accurately reinstated into its original pre-Tees Yard route is once again being mooted, as the small access tunnel into the depot / yard site is a big problem to redeveloping the site.

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  3. I finished my railway career at Thornaby, being the Terminals Manager for both the depot and yard, I had an office to which the steam engine “A2” Blue Peter, spent months having repairs done to it, after its accident at Durham. I remember a lot of the Guards and Drivers etc, and have just completed a list of drivers that were there in the last few years. Yes we had quite a few steam engines in for wheel turning apart from the diesel fleet.

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  4. I will be back in Stockton for a visit on 17th May for a few days and hope to get to the depot where I worked. How many people from 1972 – 1979 still work there I wonder? or has it been closed altogether as was predicted?

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  5. I often seen the Fying Scotsman while living in Stockton one of the best steam engines ever built I emigrated to Australia in 1986 and a few years later was very surprised to see it pass my house at the side of the railway on the way to Perth in Western Australia were it was on Exibition thousands of people turned out to see this magnificant engine . Another suprise for me was seeing a diesel engine which I helped to build at Metro Vickers Beyer Peacock in Yarm Road in 1953 regually passing my house for the first two years of my stay in perth . The deisel was taken out of service and sent to the Railway Musium which is near my home in Perth . I have a friend who lived near me when living in Stockton and emigrated the same time and lives near me in Perth who made a really good painting of the Flying Scotsman . Hope it is still kept in good order

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  6. The class 37 in the background – British Steel Corby, received this name in March 1987. (No, I”m not a train expert, just an internet search expert!)

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  7. It certainly wasn”t the 70″s, large numbering on the Class 37 was not in vogue then and I was working at the depot and involved in the 125th Celebrations maintaining the trolleys that the TV cameras were on running on the 2nd line at Bishop Auckland Station.

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  8. I think I remember this event as a small child- and it was the 1970s rather than the 1980s. I wonder if it was connected with the Stockton and Darlington 125 celebrations?

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  9. Good to see the Flying Scotsman. I remember its last visit to Hartlepool station and the final fill up with coal before they closed the sheds there. I even took a photo of it (black and white) with one of those new fangled Polaroid cameras at the time. How I loved those days of steam.

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  10. My Grandfather used to be an engine driver, mainly with LNER at Darlington and then when he moved to Thornaby in the 1930″s he was based at Middlesbrough Sheds. For a time he was on secondment in Argentina, teaching their drivers, when they were in the process of building their railways.

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  11. I wonder if there are any past employees who know of Mike Heslop from Thornaby who worked as an apprentice at the Depot in the early 60″s. He was also a member of Tees Side Clarion Cycling Club. Think he lived in the St Lukes Avenue area.

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    • Hi Jeff,

      I have stumbled over this post and I am wondering if you are talking about my Dad , Mike Heslop? He was from Thornaby and as you say a very keen cyclist!

      Frances

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  12. The wheel lathe was installed while I was a 4th year apprentice in around 1976. My father worked for the company who installed it. The first concrete pour sank into the soft mud the depot is built on and had to be re-done a few days later. I became a fitter as the lathe was commissioned and was responsible for the spare part store and maintenance of the lathe for around 6 months in 1977 before moving to Darlington Depot.

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  13. These images were taken at Thornaby Depot in the 1980″s. The Flying Scotsman and Evening Star were visiting to have their tyres turned on the wheel lathe. One image shows the wheel lathe in action turning the tyres of Evening Star. I cannot remember why 5690 visited but it was probably for the same reason.

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