A gorgeous walnut coaster showing the calendar for 27th September 1825 – the day that saw the opening of the Stockton & Darlington Railway. Should anyone use this who is not aware of the significance of that date (surely not!), the coaster is also engraved with “The opening of the Stockton & Darlington Railway; the day that changed the face of the world”. The base of the coaster is of cork so precious polished surfaces are protected from scratching.
The coaster is made in a little workshop in the New Forest in England and the timber used is Forest Stewardship Council approved (FSC). Lovingly wrapped ready to hand over as a gift.
At seven in the morning, on the 27th September 1825, 12 wagons of coal were led from the Phoenix Pit at Witton Park in County Durham, to the foot of Etherley Ridge and then hauled up 1100 yards up the North Bank by the stationary engine at the top. Then the wagons descended Etherley South Bank to the road to West Auckland. From West Auckland, the train was joined by another wagon filled with sacks of flour, and then led by horses across the level to the foot of Brusselton West Bank. Here thousands of people were waiting on the slopes of the ridge to see the 60 horse power stationary engine at work on Brusselton ridge. These waggons, along with 21 others, were coupled to Locomotion No.1 along with the first railway carriage “Experiment” at New Shildon, on their way to Darlington and then to Stockton. This was the start of the modern railway network as we know it. Engineers would travel from across the world to see and learn how to run a railway. And so by 7 am, the day that would change the face of world, was underway; and it had started here.