Northampton & Peterborough Railway

The Northampton and Peterborough Railway, with its station in Cotton End, was Northampton's first railway service.

The Northampton and Peterborough Railway was built by the London and Birmingham Railway and the engineer was Robert Stephenson. It was completed in 1845, providing a service that connected Peterborough, Oundle, Wellingborough, Northampton and Blisworth.

The route of the line ran through Far Cotton, where the station was located. The line closed to passengers in the 1960s although it was still used by freight trains until the 1970s. The line and sidings in Far Cotton were finally closed in 2005.

Standard Class 2MT 2-6-2T no. 84006 passes Northampton Bridge Street Station with the 4:24pm train from Northampton Castle to Wellingborough Midland Road. 29 April 1959. Courtesy Robin Puryer

Bridge Street Station

Closed in 1964, this handsome Tudor style building was Northampton's first railway station.

Read more about Bridge Street Station

The Steam Sheds

The steam locomotives were maintained and housed in the engine sheds on what became the site of Airflow Streamlines. There were six key areas of work: cleaning out the ash; washing out the boiler; stocking up the coal; topping up the water, and repairs and maintenance. On New Year's Eve the drivers and firemen would all get in the engines and sound the whistles as the clock of St Mary's Church struck 12.

Far Cotton Steam Shed

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Aerial view of the steam shed at Far Cotton.

Railway People

The Northampton and Peterborough Railway provided important employment opportunities for people in Far Cotton.

Bill Johnson

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The Northamptonshire Regiment

Built in 1927 (and withdrawn from service in 1962), the LMS Royal Scots class locomotive no. 6147 was officially renamed The Northamptonshire Regiment. Workers at the Far Cotton sheds can be seen here preparing the locomotive for its big day.

Engine cleaning

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Workers at the Far Cotton steam sheds prepare LMS no. 46147 for its official renaming as The Northamptonshire Regiment.

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