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50 years Anniversary Last Steam from Rochdale

The last scheduled steam hauled passenger train to call at Rochdale station ran on 18 May 1968, just fifty years ago.    It was the 0208 (2.08am) Mail and Passenger express which came from York to Manchester Victoria, calling at Rochdale at 0550 (5.50am).      The steam locomotive took over from a diesel at Halifax.   It was Stanier class 5MT number 45310.  


Steam locomotives still  shunted at Castleton until 29th June when the last steamer there was another Stanier 5MT, number 45318.   Some freight and evening parcels trains remained steam worked until 29th June 1968.   But with the closure on that date of Bolton, Patricroft and Newton Heath sheds to steam the only steam activity locally was an evening freight train from Burnley to Moston.      There were a handful of privately chartered steam excursions.    Sunday 21 July saw Britannia class Pacific, number 70013 "Oliver Cromwell" work through Rochdale and then on 4th August a Railtour which ran via Oldham, Rochdale and Heywood on a grand tour of the North West behind a pair of steam locomotives, Stanier 8F number 48476 and British Railways Class 5MT number 73069 marked the official end of steam on British Railways.   After that date the only steam locomotive allowed to run on British Railways was the privately owned "Flying Scotsman".


Contact Information


Meeting Place: Woolworths Social Club
Gipsy Lane
OL11 3HA

Meeting times


2nd Tuesday in Feb, April, June, August, Oct and December,in The Blue Pits Inn, 842 Manchester Road, Castleton, Rochdale, OL11 2SP