Tanfield Railway shows 1920-1950 on an industrial/minor railway, featuring items built/used in NE England.

 East Tanfield DH9 9UY tearoom open 10-2 daily.
 Next ordinary passenger trains will be in February 2022 - book on TR web.
 Andrews House, Sunniside & Causey stations are currently closed.
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Saturday, 30 January 2021

MH Opencast

I am aware of three opencast schemes at Marley Hill.  The first scheme was small & underway when we first came to site around 1970.   It led to filling of the valley to Bowes Bridge between the railway & Marley Hill Colliery.   The second was a scheme of the early 1990s.   The photos below are from this period, when we supported the proposal of a tourist railway into the workings.
Eric receiving a token of our mutual working from John Stephenson in front of more tangible assistance -  a mile of track to facilitate our Causey extension
(photo courtesy of Colin Waite)

Friday, 29 January 2021

Waggonway No.13 Spring 1982

Includes Gamma, Sunniside extension, carriages 3 & 4, BH trams, Consett rebuild

Thursday, 28 January 2021

Wednesday, 27 January 2021

Tuesday, 26 January 2021

MH Entrance Work

Dennis filling a hole dug to ascertain the depth of services under the road

Sunday, 24 January 2021

Hetton Colliery of 1820, Hetton Colliery Railway of 1822

Durham Records Office while closed to the public in 2020, produced the online bicentenary exhibition: 

'Adventurers and Pirates' - Hetton Coal Company, 1820

Hetton Colliery in the nineteenth century
(Artist - Thomas Harrison Hair, source - TWAM)

This short but extremely interesting resource outlines the difficult, speculative & combative nature of the development of part of the great northern coalfield, leading in 1822 to the adoption of stationary engines & Stephenson's locomotives on the world's first railway designed from the outset to use steam technology.

Saturday, 23 January 2021

Durham Records Office

Following an everyday Google search I stumbled upon some documents from Clayton & Gibson (solicitors) held by Durham Records Office.   That below outlines & refers to the agreement of the Grand Allies underlying establishment & use of the Tanfield Waggonway:


27 June 1726 (1) The Hon. Sidney Wortley of Wortley, Yorkshire, Esq. and Edward Wortley, Esq., his son, Thomas Ord of Newcastle upon Tyne, gent. (2) Sir Thomas Liddell of Ravensworth Castle, Baronet, an infant, and George Liddell of Ravensworth Castle, Esq., his guardian (3) George Bowes of Gibside, Esq. (4) William Cotesworth of Gateshead Park, Esq. Copy of the partnership agreement of the Grand Allies to run for 99 years from 11 November 1726. All collieries lying above Newcastle Bridge to be held in thirds by (1) (2) and (3) reserving to (2) the present Liddell family collieries and collieries within the townships of Ravensworth, Lamesley, Eighton and Kibblesworth; reserving to (3) the Bowes family collieries at Gibside, Marley Hill, Hollinside, Fryerside, Lamesley, Ravensworth and Kibblesworth and also the Parkhead Collieries; reserving to (1) the Wortley and Ord share in the Stella Grand Lease Colliery and reserving to (3) and (4) the Liddell and Cotesworth collieries of Farnacres and Whickham for 15 years; covenant for the mutual granting of wayleaves for waggonways with reservations as to distance from Ravensworth Castle etc and denying the use of the said waggonways to outsiders without mutual consent. 5s. per ten to be paid to (4) for certain coals led through his lands, those from collieries west of the River Derwent excluded; covenant by (4) not to work any collieries in Durham or Northumberland other than his interest in Bucksnook, Farnacres, Whickham, Stella and Winlaton Collieries during the various terms of 15 years and the life of William Widdrington and also except Gateshead Park Colliery; (4) covenants to forbid use of wayleaves through his lands without the consent of (1) (2) and (3) excepting existing agreements as to Bucksnook and Lintz Collieries, Gateshead Fell Colliery, Dipton Colliery and as to staithes at Winlaton and Stella for the Winlaton, Stella Grand Lease and Clavering's Stella Collieries. Penalty of 40s. per ten payable by (4) for breaking these agreements; general arrangements for colliery working, payments of rentals; (4) to be allowed to lead 600 tens p.a. from Bucksnook and Lintz Collieries over the waggonways of (1) (2) (3) contributing only the maintenance costs for the said waggonway; option for the partners to take a lease of Whickham and Gateshead Fell Collieries from (4); agreement to be void if not ratified by Liddell on his majority or by (4) within seven days of first seeing these articles.

Weekend Woodwork

Ian cutting truss parts for the roof of the welcome building
(photo courtesy of Angela Pickering)

Friday, 22 January 2021

Waggonway No.12 Winter 1981

Features HL 18" locos, NG BH, ballast brakes, dock vans. Newcastle locos, South Africa, track
I have three more Waggonways, Nos 13, 14 & 15.   If you have any TR mags which immediately follow No.15, I would like to borrow them for scanning & publication - please get in touch.

Thursday, 21 January 2021

Tuesday, 19 January 2021

Monday, 18 January 2021

Monday's Jobs

A Towne engineer inspecting lifting tackle for the wheel lathe ......
(photo courtesy of Angela Pickering)

Saturday, 16 January 2021

Office Work in 2008

Back in August 2008, Steve & Ian prepare to lift a container, watched by Alan

Wednesday, 13 January 2021

A Few from Today

Ian starting to improve an area alongside the carriage shed as a possible picnic area

Tuesday, 12 January 2021

Today at TR

Ian clearing the lineside at Bowes Bridge, prior to fencing
(photo courtesy of Dave Dixon)

Monday, 11 January 2021

Woodwork with Ian

Ian measuring, checking & cutting parts for a wall frame of the welcome building
(photo courtesy of Angela Pickering)

Sunday, 10 January 2021

Friday, 8 January 2021

Wednesday, 6 January 2021

Tuesday, 5 January 2021

Today's Job

The lineside to Bowes Bridge being cleared of encroaching growth .....

Monday, 4 January 2021

Mainly HC 38 Work

Peter checking the back to back measurements of HC 38's wheels .....

Sunday, 3 January 2021

Saturday, 2 January 2021

New Year's Work

Steve looks on as Antony & Luke pass cuttings up to Dan
(photo courtesy of Oliver Humphries)

Friday, 1 January 2021

Kearney Tube part 2

Extracts & diagrams below are from the 1939 LNER promotional leaflet, unless otherwise stated:
The tube was proposed between North & South Shields stations

Waggonway No.9 Spring 1981