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Steam to the seaside

From 1845 railways played a huge part in the development and growth

of Scarborough as a seaside holiday destination.

In the late 1970s to help arrest the decline in visitor numbers

Scarborough Council funded the restoration of a turntable and

watering facilities and persuaded British Rail to introduce a

programme of steam hauled excursion trains bearing the headboard

Scarborough Spa Express. The majority of the trains were hauled by

locomotives from the national collection and Mallard, Duchess of

Hamilton, City of Truro, Evening Star and eventually Flying Scotsman

have all been involved at some time. This had not been part of the

forecast work load when the museum was set up in 1975 and from 1980

the Friends funded two fitters and organised volunteers to support the

maintenance, preparation and operation of the trains.

This was partially funded by revenue from on train teams of

enthusiastic volunteers, selling Friends’ books and merchandise.

British Rail poster advertising the Scarborough Spa Express. Photo: NRM collection SSPL

4472 Flying Scotsman passes Grosvenor Terrace, York enroute to Scarborough in the 1980s. Although not a National Collection locomotive at this time, it was prepared and serviced by NRM staff paid for by FNRM. Photo: NRM collection SSPL

Duchess of Hamilton 46229 Class 8P. This locomotive was designed by Sir William Stanier for the London, Midland & Scottish Railway. The locomotive is shown on the Scarborough turntable which was constructed to enable steam locomotives on the Scarborough Spa Express to be turned ready for the return trip to York and other Yorkshire destinations.Photo: NRM collection SSPL

Frank Paterson

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