Locomotion – The National Railway Museum at Shildon

He may only be 2 but our youngest Mayhem is obsessed with Thomas The Tank Engine and loves playing with his wooden train set. So ‘Locomotion’ at Shildon, is just the place to bring him.

Locomotion Shildon main collection building

Locomotion is part of The National Railway Museum which also has a large collection of exhibits at their main site in York. At various times during the year events such as steam days and special interest fairs are held. During the school holidays there are themed activities.

Restoration takes place at Shildon and Papa Joe was very excited to see carriages being delivered that were just like those he used to go to school in.

Locomotion Shildon 1

Memories for Papa Joe

Suitable for 2+

Where: Dale Road Industrial, Estate Shildon, DL4 2RE
Admission: FREE – – -Train ride experiences – special charge
Website: www.nrm.org.uk/PlanaVisit/VisitShildon    Tel 01388 771439

The modern main collection building is full of interesting locos and carriages you can wander around. The museum relies on volunteers so you may be able to go onto an exhibit if volunteers are on hand.

Locomotion Shildon early rail carriage

An early railway carriage

You can also walk back in time beside the railway track to the historic buildings associated with the Stockton and Darlington Railway. On the you pass a children’s play area which is great fun for The Mayhems.

Locomotion Shildon outdoor play

If the free ‘Cradle of the Railways’ Tour is running you will have a chance to go inside Hackworth’s house and also see the original Sans Pareil – phone ahead to check when they are taking place.

Locomotion Shildon san pareil

The original Sans Pareil built by Timothy Hackworth which took part in the 1829 Rainhill Trials on the Liverpool and Manchester Railway

Some of the exhibits in the main collection building have viewing platforms beside them so we were able to see inside the engines and carriages.

Locomotion Shildon royal carriage

A peak through the window of The Royal Train

We were able to go inside prototype Advanced Passenger Train and have its workings explained to us by an enthusiastic volunteer.

Locomotion Shildon APT

Inside the APT- E the world’s first self-propelled active tilting train

Scattered inside the main collection building are activities for all ages.

Locomotion Shildon lego 2

Plenty of activities for the Mayhems to try out

I had fun testing seats!

Locomotion Shildon seat testing



Meanwhile Papa Joe was fascinated by the restoration area.

Locomotion Shildon restore area


Getting There Shildon station -Tees Valley Line operated by Northern Rail – 3 minutes walk from museum
Satnav users:  DL4 2RE .Follow the road into Dale Road Industrial Estate – main car park is the last turn on the left.
Google see map or get directions

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