Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 27 December 2014

Historical Ulster: Steam engines from the Belfast Telegraph Archives

The steam train puffs it's way through Whitehead. 23/7/1932
The steam train puffs it's way through Whitehead. 23/7/1932
The R.H.Smyth, an engine orginally built for the Londonderry Port and Harbour commission, pulls out of a siding at the Railway Preservation of Ireland Headquarters at Whitehead. 13/6/1982
Some of the youngsters from Whitehead and carrickfergus who took part in the Railway Preservation Society of Irelands steam tour on the Belfast-Larne line. Included are the Northern Ireland railways crew, rear, left to right, Messrs Bertie Wright, Frank Dunlop and Barney McCrory. 26/4/1974
The 'Portrush Flyer' steam train at Ballymena. 19/7/1975
Jackie Kitchen (left), Belfast, and Willie McCaughley, Lurgan, who were the engine drivers of Mo. 85 "Merlin" for a special trip organised by the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland. 12/5/1987
Driver Billy McCaughley take a bow at Central Station before steaming off to Dublin with the Slieve Gullion Express. 11/9/1982
Steam Trains.. Last puffer train steams out at Magheramorne to mark the last journey for a steam train in europe. 2/5/1970.
Steam Trains. A 100-year-old steam engine, which was used in the making of the film 'The First Great Train Robbery', made a centenary run from Belfast to Derry at the week-end and looking after the engine were drivers David McDonald (L), from Whiteabbey, and Robert Graham, Monkstowm, both fron Northern Ireland Railways. 1/9/1979
Railway Preservation Society Of Ireland. Feet firmly on the footpath, Michael and driver Paddy keep a watchful eye as the train pulls out. 17/10/1970
Steam Trains.. The steam- hauled passenger train that chugged away from No.1 platform in Bangor last night marked the end of an era. It was the last train to travel along the Belfast Central line, linking the Belfast-Bangor track and the one to Portadown. The train was given a civic send-off from Bangor by Alderman Charles Milligan (THIRD FROM RIGHT) who waved the guard's flag. Driver of the train was Mr Eamonn O'Hara, of Finaghy Road North, Belfast.
Steam Trains. Locomotive No.186, bulit in 1879 for the Great Southern & Western Railway, puffs quietly into Larne Harbour station with driver T. Ramsay and fireman G. Gaw, who work for Northern Ireland Railways, on the footplate. 26/3/1970
The steam engine on route from Witham Street to Cultra passes through Holywood. 14/2/1993
Two steam engines belonging to the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland. 4/7/1973
A 50-year-old railway engine, R.T. 24, which spent its life shunting along the Belfast docks, on a special outing with members of the Northern Ireland Railway and Road Development Association and the Irish railway record Society, who travelled in brake-vans and truck from Great Victoria Street station. 14/5/1962
Enjoying the atmosphere of by-gone days of steam were these three pupils of Central Primary School, Carrick, before boarding thr Slieve Gullion at York Road Station on a trip organised by the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland. From the laet: Carol Boyd, Sharon McCoy and Ruth Rainey. 1/10/1981
Tricky manoeuvre when new engine "RH Smith" arrived by low loader at the Whitehead site. Eventually the shunt was successful and "Guinness" (left) pulled the on to the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland (RSPI) track. 4/7/1973
The final resting place for 20-year-old tank locomotive "Pamela" as she is swung into place in Eastwood's scrapyard at Andersonstown, Belfast, beside her twin "Wilfred." 27/1/1968
Railway Preservation Society Of Ireland. Mr Dave Gallagher who was an engine driver for 26 years on the Canadian Pacific Railway, takes a picture of the Lough Ern steam engine when he visited the Railway Preservation Society Of Ireland third annual Open Day at Whitehead. Mr Gallagher left Donegal in 1925 to go work in Canada. 3/7/1971
Railway Preservation Society Of Ireland. Little Graham Glendenning (5) was feeling pretty chuffed this morning. For Graham, who lives in Cyprus Gardens, Belfast, was on board the very last steam train to puff its way out of Great Victoria Street Station. 4/10/1975
Railway Preservation Society Of Ireland. Pauline Turtle (9) of Belvoir Park, Belfast, donned a railman's hat and held a flag and lamp from the Portrush Flyer when she recieved a few tips from Inspector Frank Dunlop of Greenisland. 25/7/1981
Railway Preservation Society Of Ireland. Three young enthusiasts enjoy themselves aboard one of the steam engines at the annual Railway Preservation Society Of Ireland Steam Gala Day at Whitehead. They are (FROM LEFT) Colin Ward (11), Gavin Ward (14) and Gavin Campbell (11). 7/7/1973
Railway Preservation Society Of Ireland. Steam train enthusiasts Mrs Ann Fallon (R), from Helen's Bay, and Mrs Jutta Diehl, from Craigavad, have a close-up look at the engine before boarding the Portrush Flyer. 21/7/1979
Northern Ireland Railways. For the past 25 years Annie Kelly has been keeping the level crossing at Barmouth, Castlerock, Co. Derry, safe for train drivers, passengers and motorists. Annie now 74 has to give way to automation. She is being replaced by an automatic crossing gate. (05/02/1974)
Railways: Steam Trains/ County Donegal engine at Strabane after closure of the line. 10/12/1969
Railways:Steam Locomotives. Steam train arriving at Station.
Steam locomotives, carriages and waggons at the Co. Down Yard, Station Street, Belfast. 4/1/1956
Belfast; Queen's Bridge, rom Oxford Street, steam locomotive "Alexandra" on horse drawn cart.
Steam traction engine enthusiats take part in rally at Shane's Castle. 14/7/1973
Portstewart steam tram. 24/9/1925
The new electric signal device at Craigavad Station. 24/11/1932
The Clogher Valley Train, stopped at a station as driver and station staff pose for this picture. 1/4/1922
The marshalling yard at Adelaide, seen from the footbridge which crosses the main Belfast-Dublin line. 27/8/1963
Eleven tons of gleaming 1913 John Fowler Traction Engine - ready to set off for the Larne Lions Club garden fete, with proud owner Mr Billy Wilson, from Reehill Road, Carntall, Newtownabbey. 28/5/1976
The buffet car onboard a G.N.R train sits prepared for hungry passengers. 30/3/1936
The new German Diesel locomotive built for the G.N.R. by M.A.K, the famous engineering firm in Kiel, after it was unloaded from the German ship Norderaw, at the North Wall, Dublin. DATE UNKNOWN
The 57-year-old steam engine 'Vera' boards the Liverpool ferry at Belfast for a new lease of life. 30/3/1968
Puffing their way into the centre attraction is the line-up of traction engines and steam engines at the annual steam engine rally at Shane's Castle, near Antrim. 24/7/1975
Owner of 'His Lordship' Mr Tom Varley stands close to the steam engin's footplate flanked by (left to right) Mr Robert Brougham, Mrs Susan Varley, Mr Rory Woolf, Mr Arnold Brook, Mr George Lyttle, Mr Robert Craig and James Hynds. 21/7/1978
Mr Arley Brown and his sons with a toy and full-size steamroller engine at their home, in Warren Park, Lisburn. 18/9/1972
With their funnels smoking the traction engines get under way with the nostalgic puffing sound of steam driven pistons during a rally at Shane's Castle, near Antrim. 20/7/1973
Mr James Wasson, of Carnmoney, and his son Trevor aboard their 1922 single-cylinder traction steam engine. 21/8/1969
The Great Northern Railway Station, Great Victoria Street, Belfast, in the early part of the century.
The old Great Victoria Street Station, a terminal with atmosphere. 1967
A notice to passengers onboard the Holywood to Belfast train. 1976
On watch at Bangor Railway Station. 8/2/1968
Children play at the run-down Dundonald Railway Station. 8/8/1957
Waiting for the train at Helen's Bay station. 25/6/1937
Prospective buyers pass the 'waiting room' at Knock Station, Belfast, as they look over old sleepers and other railway property which was up for auction. 15/12/1958

In the year that the Belfast to Bangor train line celebrated its centenary, another era involving this popular stretch of track came to a close.

On July 28, 1965, the last steam-hauled scheduled passenger train to make the journey from north down to the city pulled away from the No 1 platform at Bangor station.

It was also the last train ever to travel along the Belfast Central line, which linked the Belfast to Bangor track with the line to Portadown.

The train, under the control of engine driver Eamonn O'Hara, of Finaghy Road North, was scheduled by the Ulster Transport Authority as an excursion from Portadown to Bangor and back, and on its return journey from the seaside resort, the steam locomotive was given a special send-off by local dignitaries.

More than 100 enthusiasts from the Railway Preservation Society of Ireland and the Irish Railway Record Society were on board for the trip, and at Bangor a civic reception was led by the mayor, Alderman Charles Milligan, who waved the guard's flag to give the train its final send-off.

"A steam train seems to capture a better atmosphere," said the chairman of the Railway Preservation Society, Mr J.R.S. Harcourt.

"There is more of a spirit of romance about it than its diesel counterpart."

As the train continued its one hour 50 minute return journey to Portadown, it passed over a bridge at Middlepath Street, near Queen's Quay in Belfast.

The bridge was demolished a few days later, spelling the end of the old Belfast Central Line and bringing the curtain down on the era of direct train excursions from Portadown to Bangor.

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