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The Stephenson Railway Museum was opened in 1986 to house the railway collections of Tyne & Wear Museums. Its name commemorates George and Robert Stephenson who lived locally from 1802 until 1823. Billy, is one of only five survivors world-wide to pre-date Stephenson's world-famous Rocket. Steam engines, electrics trains and rolling stock combine with interactive displays telling the story of electricity and coal.
Some of the exhibits are from the collection formed in the 1930s at the former Museum of Science and Industry in Newcastle - one of the earliest museums of its kind in England, outside of London.
The Museum is also the northern terminus and maintenance workshop for the North Tyneside Railway. Rides on the steam trains can be taken during the summer months. The railway operates mainly on summer weekends to and from Percy Main, and steam locomotives haul most trains. Several of the Museum's exhibits are kept in working order for use and demonstration of the railway, including a unique 1909 electric locomotive. The latest locomotive to go on display is the newly restored electric Harton E4. The E4 forms the centrepiece of the Museum's new exhibition The Electric Century.
There are displays and exhibits, which both illustrate the vital part railways have played in the region's history, and also show how they continue to be relevant to today's transport needs.
There are interactive exhibits, occasional temporary exhibitions, and a seasonal programme of exciting activities, including storytellers and family events. Discover local wildlife on a walk beside the railway.
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