Bid to get Dame Vera Lynn back on tracks at North Yorkshire Moors Railway

It’s been a fantastic few opening weeks at NYMR, welcoming back scores of happy visitors, who once again have been able to enjoy the delights of travelling by steam.

Wednesday, 26th May 2021, 10:29 am
Updated Wednesday, 26th May 2021, 10:30 am

We have six locomotives currently operating in traffic, including the much-loved LMS Black 5 No. 5428 ‘Eric Treacy’, and its sister locomotive, LMS Black 5 44871, which has been hired to help cover the huge distances our fleet of locomotives travel every year - over 50,000 miles through the stunning North York Moors and beyond to Whitby.

Alongside guest engines, the NYMR’s resident locomotives are also in service, including: ‘SR S15 class No.825’ built in 1920; ‘BR 9F No.92134’ built in 1957; ‘BR Standard 4 Tank No. 80136’, built in 1956; plus the oldest locomotive currently in steam at the NYMR, ‘Lambton Colliery No.29’, built in 1904 - charting over 117 years of steam locomotive development and history.

These are exciting times at NYMR – not least because, ahead of the first anniversary next month of the passing of ‘The Force’s Sweetheart’, we’re delighted to announce the start of the tender overhaul of locomotive No. 3672 ‘Dame Vera Lynn’.

It is hoped work on the locomotive Dame Vera Lynn can be completed for the 2024-25 season.

An appeal to raise the estimated £600,000+ needed to fully restore the special locomotive and get it back into traffic, currently stands at over £175,000, thanks to the generosity of the general public.

It is estimated another £450,000 is still required to fully fund this significant project.

However, with the funds raised so far the NYMR has announced the start of the locomotive’s restoration, proceeding with the tender.

The locomotive is part of the NYMR’s Motive Power Department (MPD) overall plan; it is hoped work on Dame Vera Lynn can be completed by 2024/2025, to tie in with the locomotive’s 80th birthday and the 80th anniversary of VE Day.

The restoration of the tender will be undertaken by Riley & Son,based in Rochdale, and involves the renewal of whole new tender water tank, new springs, new axel box bearings and an overhaul of the brake gear.

Ian Foot, a member of the restoration team, said: “This is a monumental step in the locomotive’s restoration; the project is doable, and the determination, passion and drive is there to see it

succeed.

"However, like any other steam locomotive, it requires money, and we urge anyone who’d like to see it back on the tracks by its 80th anniversary to donate to the appeal.”

Clifford Brown, who purchased Dame Vera Lynn and Repton in the late 1980s, put both locomotives in Trust to the NYMR when he began to suffer ill health.

While Repton has enjoyed regular overhauls and spells in traffic, Dame Vera has sadly remained out of action.

While we celebrate the good news, we still need your help so we can return No. 3672 Dame Vera Lynn back into steam and visitors can enjoy the sight and sound of this iconic locomotive once again!

A £10 donation will help towards nuts and bolts or a £100 donation will go towards buying parts such as new fire bars.

Visit the appeal website www.nymr.co.uk/DVL for more information and to find out how you can help support the restoration of this iconic locomotive.