Robert Stephenson & Hawthorn     Works No 7609    NCB  No 31 Meteor 0-6-0T

This locomotive was built in 1950 by Robert Stephenson & Hawthorn and spent its industrial working life at the National Coal Board (NCB) Whittle Colliery near Alnwick in Northumberland. Here it became NCB No 31.

It was no longer in service by the middle of 1972 by which time it was in a run down condition. Whittle had hardly any maintenance facilities and the engine was not liked by the crews there. One reason was that with inside cylinders, access for oiling up was not easy.

The locomotive was sold to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR) in early 1973.

It was operational on the NYMR around 1980 after being overhauled. Whilst it was based there it was given the name Meteor.

At some stage it was sold to the Avon Valley Railway – the Industrial Railway Society noted it was there in 2006.

The locomotive is now based at the East Somerset Railway where it is undergoing an overhaul which includes the provision of a new firebox.

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