The Nottingham Transport Heritage Centre is a museum of local transport history based at Ruddington in Nottinghamshire on the same site as Rushcliffe Country Park. It houses a collection of steam and diesel rail locomotives, and is currently the northern terminus of the Great Central Railway (Nottingham) heritage line. A nine-mile section of standard gauge track runs south from Ruddington, towards the town of Loughborough. The NTHC also houses a classic road transport collection, and is home to the Nottingham Society of Model and Experimental Engineers. The Nottingham Transport Heritage Centre is open every Sunday and on Bank Holiday's from Easter Sunday to late October.
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Road transport collection Edit
- Operational vehicles
- Routemaster RCL London Transport CUV 218C built in 1965. (Notable for being the first RCL Routemaster to be built)
- AEC Regent III Nottingham City Transport OTV 161 built in 1954.
- Leyland Atlantean open-top ex Northern General and Trent ORC 545P built in 1976. (Was also registered MPT 299P and YRC 194 before receiving its present registration)
- Trent Buses AEC Militant 'wrecker' GSU 841 "Gus" built in 1952. (Name Gus not carried, later had its body replaced from a Bristol ECW)
- Ford Capri Mk 3 2.0 Litre Laser,C444 KVH built in 1985. Has been converted from 'Auto' to manual gearbox, fitted with K&N air filter and Ally Cat wheels.
Seen as part of Mansfield Notts branch Capri Club display at the 2007 Ford Enthusiasts Spring show at Donington in the classic 'Cops & Robbers' themed 'Professionals' display. Also featured at the Classic Motor Show NEC in November 2008 as part of the Capri Club International display.
- Ford Capri Mk 3 D544 REM 2.0 Litre built in 1986. Converted from 'Auto' to manual gearbox, total engine re-build, full re-spray and pollybush kit just fitted.
Featured at the Classic Motor Show NEC in November 2008 as part of the Capri Club International display.
- Green Goddess Fire Engine PGW 265 built in 1956.
- Ford Fiesta XR2 D88 JNX. (Owned by a road transport group member, not kept at the centre but a regular visitor)
- Vehicles undergoing light work
- Leyland Atlantean Nottingham City Transport ARC 666T "Andrew Pickering" built in 1978 (numerous experimental features made this vehicle unique amongst NCT's Atlanteans, under repair)
- Vehicles undergoing overhaul or restoration
- Barton Transport AEC Reliance/Plaxton Panorama coach 866 HAL built in 1960. (Undergoing restoration in the road transport depot)
- Chevrolet Corvette C3 FBC 56T built in 1978. (Undergoing overhaul in the road transport depot)
- Stored vehicles
- Leyland Lion LT5 South Notts VO 8846 built in 1933. (Stored outside awaiting a major restoration)
- Leyland National Mk.1 Trent Buses KVO 429P built in 1975.
- Leyland Royal Tiger/Duple Roadmaster South Notts MAL 310 built in 1951. (Stored outside awaiting restoration)
- Leyland PD1 Barton Transport JVO 230 built in 1948. (Stored in the road transport depot awaiting major repairs)
- Vehicles away from the centre
- Leyland PD1 ex Leicester and Barton Transport DJF 349 built in 1947. (Undergoing restoration off site)
Also on site is a Plaxton Panorama coach which is being used for spares for 866 HAL's restoration and a East Yorkshire Lorry whose engine and gearbox will be used for DJF 349's restoration off site.
A former Nottingham Tram 'body' is also in the collection.
Arson attack Edit
On the morning of 21 February 2007, firefighters were called to tackle a serious fire that had taken hold among a row of tightly-parked buses from the collection. The vehicles were parked outside the main building, and it is suspected that the fire was the result of an arson attack.
The fire was brought under control, before it could spread to the main museum building, but not before several of the vehicles had suffered severe damage. In total, five buses were destroyed and two others damaged.
The vehicles affected were as follows:
- Total loss:
- SCH 117X – 1982 Daimler Fleetline – South Notts 117
- LVR 508W – 1981 Bedford / Plaxton Supreme coach – ex Lincoln
- STO 523H – 1970 Leyland Atlantean – Nottingham City Transport 523
- LNN 89E – 1967 Albion Lowlander – South Notts 89
- DAU 370C – 1965 AEC Renown – Nottingham City Transport 370
- Damaged but restorable:
- Slightly damaged (inside building):
- ARC 666T – 1978 Leyland Atlantean – Nottingham City Transport 666 (now repaired)
Miniature railway Edit
The centre is home to a miniature railway which works on the operating days, the line is one mile long and has two running lines, both going through different tunnels. They usually have a miniature railway gala and a miniature traction engine rally during the year.
Model railway Edit
The centre also has three model railway layouts in a portacabin next to the miniature railway. There are two OO gauge layouts; the first is a Thomas the Tank Engine layout and the second is a model of the old Ruddington Station. The third feature, an O gauge layout is a model of a station with a goods and locomotive shed with a Church, woodworking centre and a factory. There is usually a model railway gala each year.
Visitor centre Edit
The visitor centre contains displays about the centre's railway locomotives and vehicles in the road transport collection, the history of freight trains, locomotives and historic bus operators in Nottingham. There are plans to shortly put up displays on the centre's previous life as the Ruddington MOD Depot.
The museum is situated next to the NSMEE workshops. The museum has a Ferguson TE-F20 tractor, Fordson Model N Standard tractor and some models of barn engines, stationary engines and a portable saw bench that can be worked by the Fordson tractor. The Ferguson tractor is a runner but the Fordson tractor needs radiator repairs and has got a flat tyre.
The museum is currently closed to the public.
Permanent Way (vehicles)Edit
The centre is also home to a number of Land Rovers. A list with the status of the vehicles are shown below. These vehicles below are kept in No. 3 building.
- Land Rover series 1 MAN 833. (Awaiting repairs)
- Land Rover series 2 DOM 120V. (Under repair)
- Land Rover Defender D375 ASG. (Operational)
- Land Rover 110 ex 'Balfour Beatty' Road Railer R649 JFE. (Operational)
- Land Rover Defender C178 AWW. (Operational, fitted with a cherry picker on the back)
- Leyland Constructor A130 BRB. (Operational, fitted with a crane)
- David Brown 1410 Tractor . (Operational, fitted with a fence post driver)
- Redone Tractor (Out of operation) ?
- ERF Tractor unit VUT 493X (Out of operation)
Railway collection Edit
The railway operates on every open day and on the last Sunday of each month it runs steam hauled services to Loughborough Junction, a 19 mile round trip. Diesel services to Loughborough Junction also run occasionally. At other times steam hauls services over a 9 mile round trip to Rushcliffe Halt. In May and October the line also holds diesel galas.
- 7 Steam locomotives, most awaiting restoration or repair work.
- 9 Diesel locomotives
- 6 are operational
- 2 undergoing restoration
- 1 on loan
- Diesel shunters
- 6 operational shunters
- 1 under restoration
- 1 out on loan to Beamish Museum
- Operational diesel shunters
- 2 DMU (Diesel Multiple units)
- 1 operational (3 car unit)
- 1 awaiting restoration (2 car unit)
- 10 BR Mk1 Carriages
- 9 BR Mk2 Carriages
- 1 BR Mk3 Carriages SLEP (Sleeper Coach) (Converted for use as a nightclub and gym)
- 2 Six wheelers
- 4 Barnum carriages
- 4 Other carriages including Adtranz Concept Coach 35249. Used as a stationary refreshment coach & Cinema Coach adjacent to the temporary platform.
- 4 Non-passenger carrying stock
- 6 Brake vans
- 16 assorted Vans (wagons)
- 2 Iron Ore Wagons
- 8 Ballast wagons (All operational)
- BR Dogfish ballast hopper wagon 993039 built in 1959. (Operational, painted BR Black)
- 2 Tank wagons (Operational, )
- 7 assorted Open wagons
- 10 Flat wagons
- Rail cranes
- Taylor Hubbard 8.5-tonne Diesel Rail Permanentway Crane 81353. (Out of service with engine defects, engine lifted to facilitate a re-build to rectify the failure. Painted yellow with warning stripes and railfreight logo)
- LNER Cowans Sheldon 45-tonne Steam Rail Crane 941602 (9017). (Stored at Ruddington awaiting overhaul, painted Lined BR Black with early crest)
The group is always looking for volunteers to help and if you wish to help out with carriage and wagon maintenance then contact with the GCRN Operations Director.
The railway route Edit
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- Nottingham Riverside
There is some speculative talk of extending the line beyond Ruddington, via Wilford, to a new station next to the River Trent on the (southern outskirts of Nottingham) which would be called Nottingham Riverside. There may also be the opportunity to interchange with the Nottingham Tram network if the intended extension is built. However a vast amount would need to be spent for any of these plans to come to fruition – far beyond the current financial and human resources of NTHC and doubly unlikely in the current economic climate.
Ruddington is the main station on the line, and the home of the Nottingham Transport Heritage Centre. It features a Road Transport Building, locomotive sheds, signal box, miniature and model railways, cafe, visitor centre, toilets and car park. The country park borders the Heritage Centre. A lengthy new platform is being built in Great Central style at Ruddington to replace the much shorter temporary platform currently used.
- Asher Lane Crossing
- For a short time this was the end of the line. The old style crossing is on a farm road used by the public. It is a short walk from the country park to the crossing, where it is possible to see trains passing and the crossing keeper at work. A carriage shed may be built here in the future. There is no station at Asher Lane.
- Fifty Steps Bridge
- This is the end of the spur from the Heritage Centre, and here trains reverse for the onward journey to Loughborough. Passenger trains ran to this point in 1995. Surprisingly enough, the bridge itself originally had "Fifty Steps" but subsequent modification's have increased that number. There is no station here at present, although it is possible that a platform might be constructed in the future. The old Ruddington station is further down the line and there are plans to purchase the station and extend there.
- Gotham Sidings
There is currently no facilties here but if funds and planning permission can be collected, the NTHC plans to create a new set of sidings, similar to the ones at Swithland on the Leicester section.
- Gotham Moor
Trains pass through pleasant countryside, teeming with wildlife along with passing under a few bridges. There are wonderful views across Gotham Moor. There were once sidings there and it is hoped one day that the sidings would be reinstated
- Rushcliffe Halt
This is the only other station on the line currently available for passenger use. On many operating days soutbound trains terminate here before heading back to Ruddington. Station development is ongoing. Some rolling stock is stored in the adjacent sidings. The overhead road bridge gives a good view of the station area and sidings. Just next to the station is the British Gypsum works. On weekdays, trainloads of gypsum are delivered to the works and unloaded on the concrete pad visible from the station platforms. In recent years these trains have been operated by EWS with a mixture of Class 60 and Class 66 traction, and latterly by GBRf Class 66s.
- East Leake Halt
A disused station about 1 mile from Rushcliffe Halt. The development of land around the station since closure presents an obstacle to re-opening it for passenger use.
- Barnstone Tunnel
Barnstone Tunnel is the only tunnel on line. It was built by the Victorian Navvies and was dug out by hand.
- Stanford and Barnstone
Between Barnstone Tunnel and the Stanford Viaduct is plenty of space for to one day consider a new train station for which passengers could use to get off and look at the wonderful scenes below Stanford Viaduct ?
- Stanford Viaduct
The line travels over the River Soar, providing a view of the river below. The viaduct is completely original and NTHC passenger trains first travelled across it in 2000. The viaduct was built in 1895.
- Loughborough Midland High Level
This is the end of the line, just after passing the FKI/Brush works. GCRN services terminate at a Stop Board close to a road. Beyond that is the connection to Network Rail line and the Midland Main Line tracks. There are plans for a new station to be built here. The loco shed of the Great Central Railway at Loughborough are just visible, across the Midland Mainline. There are plans to reinstate a bridge across the Midland Mainline and to join up with the GCR at Loughborough via a new track link.
Various transport and heritage related events are held at the centre throughout the year.
- add brief details and a article link here
- Nottingham Transport Heritage Centre Website
- The English Electric Preservation Group Website who own 08220, D8007, 20154, 37009, E6016
- The GCRN Diesel Group Website/ Website of the individuals and groups who maintain D8007, D8048, 20154, D7629, 37009, 47292, 47765, 56097 and E6016
- Photographs of the centre taken by a volunteer
- The GCR Rolling Stock Trust website, owners of six-wheelers 373 and 946, Barnum carriages 228,664,666 and 695, Suburbans 799 and 555 and Clerestory 1663
- The NTHC Carriage and Wagon website, information about the Rolling stock at the Nottingham Transport Heritage Centre
- Ruddington Rail Catering website, the website about refreshments on board the trains
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