The Flying Scotsman visits Stockton

The Flying Scotsman on a visit to Stockton, taken at the station showing the overall roof, now long gone sadly, in April 1966. I was very fortunate in those days to have a permit for taking pictures at the lineside and still only a teenager so I did not get into trouble with that policeman on the platform.

Photo and details courtesy of Garth McLean

10 thoughts on “The Flying Scotsman visits Stockton

  1. This was the ‘Flying Scotsman Anniversary Special’ and it ran on April 16th 1966, the third Anniversary of its purchase from BR by Alan Pegler. Starting at Northallerton the route was Stockton, Sunderland, Newcastle, Berwick, Edinburgh, and over the Forth Bridge to Inverkeithing. Return route was back to Edinburgh then the Waverley route via Hawick to Carlisle, Hexham, Newcastle, Durham and Northallerton. Outward departure from Northallerton was 08.05 and the booked time at Stockton was 08.31/08.33, so if on time, that is when the picture was taken. Information from the ‘Six Bells Junction’ website which holds a mass of information on special trains and rail tours.
    It was indeed wonderful to spend days standing on the footbridge and watching the trains in and out of the station north end during my annual visit to Stockton in the school summer holidays, particularly the expresses which would be hauled by a Pacific or a V2. There were through trains to Kings Cross, Colchester and Liverpool as I recall, the latter I was lucky enough to travel on from and to home in Warrington.

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  2. Regarding Stockton station (and it’s very possible indeed I may have commented before, so please bear with – bear with…), there was an original Stockton and Darlington Railway coach on a plinth on the Up (‘London’) platform. Can anyone remember it? It was located near the bay platform(s?) at the north end and if you climbed up surreptitiously, you could see the deeply cushioned interior. This coach was removed by a “breakdown” crane Ca. 1970, gingerly lifting between the tie rods beneath the arch and eventually down onto a rail wagon. (Likely went to York Railway Museum.) I recall taking some Super8 film although it’s unlikely my old projector still works after such time.

    These days of course, the station or working area would be cordoned-off from the public (I was the only spectator there I believe) and you’d almost certainly be hassled by police and other unhelpful railway staff… By then working on BR anyway, I simply kept a commonsense distance clear of the crane and of course the suspended load “Good old boys” doing the slinging and working on the crane – BR “one big family” then! Can anyone recall the water-cranes provided for the steam locos on Stockton station’s platforms? The sturdy leather “bags” emptied into big tanks that often had a few large goldfish within. These cranes or “water columns” and the overflow tanks survived in working order well after the demise of steam. Unsure about how the fish were fed – by signalmen perhaps? Anyone know???

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    • Colin, I remember the railway coach that you mentioned that stood on Stockton station platform. There used to be a railway museum at Darlington and I think the above mentioned coach was transferred to that museum rather than the National Museum at York.

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  3. Excellent shot there, Garth! I went to school with “Maccer” from 1960-65; we were in the Grangefield Railway Society. A few might know that from 1964 right until a couple of years ago (the last tape made when t”Scotsman” visited the West Somerset Railway where from 2015-18 I was Track Engineer and had once to get ‘down-and-dirty’ with her to make a special inspection of her tender wheels at Minehead (in front of hundreds on the platform). A TINY “non-defect” was present. The crew also let me “cab” her – a first). Instead of a camera, my long-pressured parents later bought me a Philips portable tape recorder and I then recorded and logged a great number of steam engines working in extremis. On the day of Garth’s master shot I was likely a bit further along at Norton South Junction – the top of Stockton Bank. I think t”Scotsman” later returned south via Darlington (easy to check of course) and the recording was not so good. However, such brilliant days, those…

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  4. When I was at school in the early 60s we got a train non-stop from Stockton to Kings Cross. Now most of the trains are non-stop on their way past!

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  5. Those were the days when Stockton was accomplished in almost everything including shopping and being able to get the train. It was a pleasure to talk about Stockton and work in the place.

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  6. I remember the roof and the steam trains – I recall my mother pointing towards them and encouraging me to remember the sight of them – because they were due to be gone soon!

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