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North Norfolk Railway buys star locomotive the Black Prince

PUBLISHED: 17:39 05 October 2015 | UPDATED: 08:32 06 October 2015

North Norfolk Railway buys Black Prince loco

North Norfolk Railway buys Black Prince loco

Archant

It has been a star attraction at one of Norfolk’s most cherished heritage railways and now the Black Prince has found a new home.

Edward, the Black Prince (1330 - 1376)

Edward, Prince of Wales, was a medieval military hero with victories in the hundred years war. He became unpopular by levying taxes to pay for a Spanish expedition. Alive, he was known as Edward of Woodstock. The title of Black Prince developed after his death, referring to his black armour. He is buried in Canterbury Cathedral.

A regular feature on the North Norfolk Railway (NNR), the no. 92203 engine has been acquired following proposals put forward by the popular attraction’s board last month.

Originally bought and named by wildlife artist David Shepherd, who acquired it from British Rail in 1967 for £3,000, the engine has been purchased via a “specially structured deal” taking place over the next nine years. Hugh Harkett, managing director of NNR, explained.

“By doing a deal with [David] we have ensured that this iconic locomotive will stay in north Norfolk,” he said. “In effect, we will be paying for it over the next few years through its steamings. The board felt confident in taking on such a large engine given that we now have the engineering facilities that can support and look after her.”

He described the details of the deal as confidential but “mutually beneficial to both parties”.

“It also goes without saying that David, who brought his engine here some years ago, will be welcomed onto Black Prince in the same way as he has in the past,” he added.

“We are delighted that we now have Black Prince to complement the home stud. Effectively we now have enough ‘home’ engines to carry us through a whole season if needs be.”

The Black Prince, built by Swindon in 1959, made its debut to NNR in early 2011. It had been on the market for the past year after undergoing its 10-year overhaul to ensure its continued operation.

A handover event is being organised for the end of November.

• Do you have a story about the county’s heritage railways? Email Donna-Louise Bishop or call 01263 513160.

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