MAKING HISTORY: The opening day of the Stockton to Darlington railway in 1825
MAKING HISTORY: The opening day of the Stockton to Darlington railway in 1825

A WEBSITE selling railway-inspired gifts is being created by a Teesdale heritage expert who is appealing for suppliers to provide everything from locomotive-themed beer to vintage maps.

Heritage consultant Caroline Hardie is creating the site, www.therailway, in readiness for the 200th anniversary of the opening of the Stockton and Darlington Railway. It will sell homeware, models, toys, vintage and second-hand goods, maps, prints, cuddly toys and clothing.

Ms Hardie said: “If you produce something in any way, you can take advantage of the anniversary. Broom Mill Farm Shop, for example, is near the rail route in West Auckland. They may want to create a ‘locomotion banger’. Other things could be anything from Pease Cheese in honour of railway pioneer Edward Pease to Black Diamond beer, which would take the name of a locomotive. I’m now looking for suppliers to populate my website by providing gifts inspired by railway.”

Suppliers for “quaker gin” and locomotive models have already been secured, along with a traditional railway artist. TV antiques expert and local celebrity David Harper is creating a piece of “abstract art” which will be made into prints to sell. Meanwhile, Jane Hackworth-Young, great-great granddaughter of railway pioneer Timothy Hackworth, has provided access to the family archives.

Ms Hardie said the list of gifts being sought include engine driver neck ties for dogs, rail-themed stationary, keyrings, pens, cufflinks, selection boxes, jams, pickles and door knockers in the shape of locomotives.

To get in touch, call Caroline Hardie on 01833 650573.