The steam railway was a popular feature at Belle Vue and operated for 53 years in a variety of forms and locations.The "Railway Queen" prior to its first run on the miniature railway on May 30, 1928.
The image above was generously donated by Brian Begg Robertson
In my day it ran along the avenue from the vicinity of the Longsight Entrance into the heart of the park, close to the Kings Hall. The Parkside Station, near the Kings Hall, is shown opposite.
There were two locomotives: the Railway Queen and King George V.
Ironically, it was during the 70s when a third locomotive, "Joan", was added to the railway. The engine had become surplus to requirements in Rhyl at a facility which was part of the Forte Empire.
After the railway closed in 1977, one of the locomotives was presented to the Eskdale Trust and renamed "Synolda". It became a feature at the railway museum at Ravenglass and occasionally works the Ravenglass-Eskdale Railway.
In April of 2001, Glen Fairweather sent me some information on the Belle Vue locomotives:
the Fifth - built in 1911. Started
Belle Vue in
1938. Previously ran at the Kursaal Amusement Park in
Southend. On leaving Belle Vue it was restored back to running order
and went to operate at Steamtown Railway Museum in Carnforth,
Lancashire. It ran there until last year when it was sold to a buyer in
Synolda - built in 1912. Started work at Belle Vue in 1939. Also ran at the Kursaal Amusement Park before coming to Belle Vue. It was called Prince Charles during its years at Belle Vue, and according to one of its drivers it was still working there in 1965. Now kept on the Ravenglass & Eskdale Railway in Cumbria and kept in fully restored condition (see below).
Joan - built 1920. Worked at Belle Vue between 1970 and 1977. Spent the previous 50 years running on the Marine Lake Railway at Rhyl. Upon leaving Belle Vue it went back to Rhyl again. It can be still be seen running there today, still happily pulling holidaymakers around the Marine Lake track.
Railway Queen - built in 1921. Worked at Belle Vue between 1928 and 1977. It then went to the railway at Rhyl for 10 years before going on static display at James Pringle Weavers at Llanfair PG, Anglesey, North Wales. It can still be seen there today.
and generously donated by him on behalf of CHEZRASCALS MEDIA
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