LNER V2 No. 4771 Green Arrow has arrived back into Doncaster for the new Danum Gallery and Museum, nearly 75 years since it left Doncaster Works.
4771 Green Arrow will join recently arrived No. 251 in the museum thanks to a partnership between Doncaster Council and the National Railway Museum.
The heritage centre will be a ‘must see’ exhibition when it opens later in 2021 with two steam locomotives and artefacts from the Doncaster Grammar School Railway Collection.
Green Arrow was built at Doncaster Works in 1936 and was the first V2 class to be built. 4771 was also the last surviving BR 2-6-2 locomotive, being withdrawn from service in 1962.
Sir Nigel Gresley designed the V2 locomotive from the LNER A1/A3 and Green Arrow last steamed in 2008 when the boiler certificate expired.
Both 251 and 4771 Green Arrow will remain part of the national collection and have been loaned to the new museum on an initial three-year deal.
Both locomotives have had preparatory work and more than 1000 hours of conservation from the Locomotion staff in Shildon. The work included corrosion treatment, repainting and a deep clean.
Ros Jones, Mayor of Doncaster, said: “The incredibly popular Green Arrow, together with the No. 251 locomotives, will spearhead a remarkable display of our great railway heritage, with many enthralling items going on public display for the very first time. They tell a compelling story of the golden age of steam and the major contribution Doncaster has made to the rail industry.
“In March, we plan a special online preview of Danum Gallery, Library and Museum to give people a taste of what they can experience once it’s right for us to open the building. It will be a community asset packed with cutting edge services and local and national collections of significance and importance.
“It’s a great achievement to have delivered this public building during these difficult economic times and signals our intent and ambition for Doncaster. It will be a joy to behold.”
Cllr Nigel Ball, Cabinet Member for Public Health, Leisure and Culture, said: “Doncaster has taken express delivery of Green Arrow, a truly great locomotive loved and respected by hordes of people up and down the country. Having worked at Doncaster Plant in the past, I look at Green Arrow and the other rail exhibits with great fondness. Our heritage is a treasure we must remember by sharing our many great achievements with residents and visitors.
“Danum Gallery, Library and Museum will be a great attraction and a place people can reminisce, explore, learn and much more besides. We want local people to aim for the stars, and this community hub will help them do just that.”
Andrew McLean, Assistant Director and Head Curator at the National Railway Museum, said: “We are thrilled to be working alongside Doncaster Council to share the story of this fascinating locomotive. In the longer term, we still see an operational future for Green Arrow, as outlined in our operational vehicle strategy. But for now, to see this locomotive to return to where it was built will be a sight to behold.”
Chris Barron, speaking on behalf of the Trustees of the Doncaster Grammar School Railway Collection, said: “This is the culmination of what we have worked on for several years. The new rail heritage centre gives the opportunity for everyone to see this unique and important collection for the first time. We have been grateful that Hall Cross Academy has continued to house the collection for over 70 years, but the problem was that few people ever got to see it.
“Although we can only display a small fraction of the entire catalogue, in partnership with Heritage Doncaster, we will be able to rotate the displays on a regular basis. This collaboration between the Council and the National Railway Museum means two great Doncaster-built engines will provide a great setting for these treasures. Our aim is to make this Centre a recognised place of discovery for railway heritage, something that has been missing from this railway town for too long.”
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