Families and railway enthusiasts alike came together at STEAM – Museum of the Great Western Railway on Saturday 13 March to take part in the 50th celebrations of the much-loved Evening Star locomotive.
Many of the men and women who helped build Evening Star and those who worked with the locomotive met up to celebrate and share their memories with each other and with visitors.
Evening Star was the last in a long line of steam locomotives built at the world famous Swindon Rail Works. Owned by the National Railway Museum in York, it returned home to its birthplace in September 2008 on loan to STEAM and now takes pride of place on the recreated Station Platform.
Pictured right, railway historian Steve Wakefield, second right, with former Swindon loco drivers with Evening Star, Colin Trembling, Fred Simpson, Gordon Shurmer, Norman Harris and Tom Conduit. Photo: Roy Nash
While some of the men and women who worked with the famous locomotive have already been in contact with STEAM to take part in the birthday event, many with strong connections with the locomotive turned up on the day.
Cllr Phil Young, Cabinet Member for Culture, Regeneration and Economic Development, said: “Evening Star was an important part of Swindon’s railway heritage and this celebration is a fitting way to mark its 50th birthday.”
About Evening Star
Evening Star No. 92220 is currently on loan from the National Railway Museum in York. She went into service for just five years in 1960. As the last of a long line of steam locomotives built at the world famous Swindon Works, it was given special treatment. The locomotive was painted in smart Passenger Green, the external pipe work was made of copper and brass and the double chimney given a copper cap.
The name Evening Star was decided through a competition among railway workers and the nameplate was unveiled on 16 March 1960, below.