International engineering company Alstom is making two very special donations to the community of Gorton in Manchester.
The company, which has a major traincare centre in nearby Longsight, is donating an historic wheelset that used to be on display at Alstom in Manchester, and a Pendolino wheelset from the tilting train the company is famous for.
The presentations will be made on October 29 at 1.30pm outside Gorton Library in Garratt Way and will reflect the proud railway heritage of Gorton which is most famous for the ‘Gorton Tank’, otherwise known as the Gorton Locomotive Works, and for locomotive manufacturer Beyer, Peacock & Co. Celebrity railway enthusiast Pete Waterman is expected to attend the event, together with local councillors.
Tim Bentley, Managing Director for Mainline for Alstom, said: “We wanted to make a donation that recognised the extraordinary engineering history of railway engineering in Manchester, the hub of which was at Beyer Peacock and the Gorton Tank, while also highlighting that the area has a very real present and future in the railway industry as well.
“The Pendolino’s an iconic train in the UK, and around the world, but people probably don’t realise that Longsight is the country-wide headquarters for the work we carry out on the rolling stock and the world class centre of excellence for train service and train service technology development.
“So we’re delighted to be able to mark the past, present and future of the railway industry in Gorton and Manchester with this donation.”
The Pendolino wheelset will be displayed in Debdale Park, with the historic wheelset going on display at Gorton Library, where there will also be a display about the history of the Gorton Tank. The wheelsets will eventually form part of a heritage trail through Gorton.
At the same time, Alstom will be supporting a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) careers event at the Library before the unveiling. In addition, there will be ‘Mad Science’ activities on offer for younger people as part of the company’s community outreach activities in partnership with Manchester’s Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI).
Gorton Locomotive Works, known locally as Gorton Tank was located in Openshaw, and was completed in 1848 by the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway. Locomotive construction began at Gorton in 1858 and continued for more than 100 years – and more than 1,000 steam locomotive – until closure in 1963.
Also located in Gorton was Beyer, Peacock and Co, which manufactured locomotives between 1854 and 1966. Its designs were used in Africa and Australia, with its tank locomotives used on the Metropolitan and District Lines in London from 1864 until electrification in 1905. It was located on the opposite side of the railway tracks to the Gorton Tank.
Head of Media Relations, Alstom UK
Tel 01788 545602 or 07801 775650