The International Steam Pages

Great North Steam Fair, (11th - 14th April, 2019)

This is one of a series of pages I have uploaded to illustrate facets of the steam rallies we have attended in the UK. Click here for the 2019 introduction and overall index.

The Northern Open Air Museum at Beamish is justly famous and is permanently host to many steam attractions including three short standard gauge railways and one narrow gauge one, plus steam gallopers (not working in 2019) and a working 19th century steam winder. However, they also now host an annual steam fair which attracts a fair number of road engines. Having visited before in 2015, we again travelled up on the Thursday and caught the tail end of a gloriously fine day, Friday was cool but mixed for sunshine and Saturday cooler, cloudier and breezy. Sunday dawned bright but almost immediately clouded over and we skipped it. As before it was a long, long way to go but absolutely worth the effort.

I had thought that Yuehong loved the ambience of Yorkshire and the North East of England, but it turns out the real reason for her infatuation is that their fish and chips shops mostly use beef dripping for frying instead of the otherwise near universal vegetable oil. Beamish has a traditional coal fired fryer and by 16.00 the queue is not so long... Yuheong is enjoying 'Dab and Chips', here the dab is a half portion of fish (not the small flatfish), which is her excuse for breaking her normal strict diet. I would put that in the same category as drinking half pints of bitter!

Ask any gricer's wife what she hates most about these events and it will be the fact that one moment you're in the middle of a civilised conversation and the next he's run off to grab yet another photograph when he has thousands in his collection already.

An extra pleasure here was meeting Wilson Lythgoe for the first time in many years as he is over for an extended holiday from 'down under'. Needless to say. we made time for a visit to Beamish's 'Sun Inn'.

There are more photographs from Beamish in the 2015 report including items from the permanent collection which I didn't bother to cover again.

Choose the page you are interested in and within that, click on a thumbnail for a larger image. Then click again to return to the page.

Steam on the Road

Steel on Steel

David Collidge's Steam Scenes website ( is a fount of information and was a great help in compiling these pages.

Rob and Yuehong  Dickinson