Steam locomotive Rocket set for long term stay in York

Rocket to return to Manchester for the first time in 180 years
Credit: Museum of Science and Industry

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport has announced that Stephenson’s Rocket, one of the most iconic feats of British Engineering, will go on long-term display in the North of England.

Rocket was built by Robert Stephenson in Newcastle in 1829. The locomotive returned for the first time in 150 years for this summer’s Great Exhibition of the North.

Rocket was the winner at the locomotive trials at Rainhill in 1829 to decide the best design to power the Liverpool and Manchester Railway.

The locomotive will go on display at the Museum of Science and Industry in September 2018.

It will then move to the National Railway Museum in York where it will be placed on display with other legends of the railway such as Mallard and the Bullet Train.

What did the officials say?

Jeremy Wright, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said:

“Stephenson’s Rocket is an iconic part of Britain’s proud railway history and it is fantastic news that it will remain on long-term display in the North.

“It is right that our great art and culture reaches all parts of the country. This bold move by The Science Museum Group will ensure more people can see this national treasure and is an inspiring example of what can be done to make culture available to the widest possible audience.”

Ian Blatchford, Director of the Science Museum Group, said:

“The Science Museum Group is a truly national organisation, and enthusiastic about bringing the world’s greatest science and technology collection to everyone. I warmly endorse the Secretary of State’s commitment to strengthening fair and excellent cultural provision across the UK. A country with such an amazing history of innovation deserves it.”

Michael Holden avatar
I have had an interest in Railways for as long as I can remember. I am a member of a number of heritage railways and actively volunteer at 2 of them. I enjoy all types of railways, real life, model and simulations. I started RailAdvent in 2014 and am the main editor of the site.