Plans for a new £ 5.9million collectible building at Locomotion in Shildon have been revealed in an exhibition to be shown this month.
The 2000m2 collector’s building is slated to open in 2023 ahead of celebrations marking the bicentennial of the Stockton & Darlington railway in 2025. The new building will house up to 45 rail vehicles, in addition to the 87 already on display in the existing collector’s building, for to create one of the largest collections of railway vehicles in the world.
The building is supposed to become the centerpiece of an ongoing improvement program at Locomotion as part of the National Railway Museum’s “Vision 2025” master plan. These include repairs to the site’s historic buildings, the original Locomotion # 1 exhibit, and the relocation of the historically significant Gaunless Bridge.
Designed by AOC Architects, Locomotion’s new building was originally scheduled to open in 2022 but has been delayed due to the pandemic.
The exhibit to reveal the plans will be on display at Locomotion next week, and there will be a one-on-one open session at the museum with members of the project team, before the plans are submitted for approval later in the year.
Dr Sarah Price, head of locomotion, said the construction project will help transition to net zero carbon across the site.
“This will create a lasting legacy for the region as we celebrate the bicentennial of the Stockton & Darlington Railway in 2025,” said Price.
Cllr Elizabeth Scott, Cabinet Member of Durham County Council for Economy and Partnerships, said the new building “will not only revitalize the site and attract more visitors, but also showcase the vibrant culture and the rich industrial heritage of County Durham, which is one of the main reasons the county is bidding for UK City of Culture 2025. ”
Locomotion opened in 2004 and is part of the Science Museum Group. The museum is a partnership between the Science Museum Group and Durham County Council, which is one of the museum’s major funders.
The museum has received a share of the £ 3.5million regional ‘leveling’ funding following a successful bid from County Durham Council, which will see improvements to visitor parking, aid for landscaping and other repairs to historic coal falls.