A Press Release issued jointly by the National Railway Museum at Locomotion, Shildon and Darlington Borough Council on 5 March reported the good news that a compromise agreement had been reached over the future location of Locomotion No 1.
It went on to state though that, as part of the development by the Council of the Darlington Railway Heritage Quarter at Hopetown, NELPG will be occupying and operating the 1861 Shed on the site, along with the Darlington Railway Preservation Society. This has subsequently been reported by the railway press. However, in respect of NELPG, this is not the case. NELPG is in negotiation with Darlington Borough Council to see if the 1861 Shed can be configured to meet our needs, but has, as yet, made no commitment to move into the building. Darlington Borough Council has acknowledged that to be the case, apologised for its error, and had given an assurance that a correction had been advised to all recipients of the original Press Release. It would appear that the message did not get through to all.
Members will continue to be advised of progress with the discussions with the Council, but, if unsuccessful, the Group will have to find a new base for its locomotive overhauls, after twenty years at Hopetown.