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| YOU ARE VIEWING ARTICLE - ID:20120511035 |
|Title:||Public Square Honours Rail Engineering Legend|
|ID & Publication:||20120511035 ~ The-Villager.co.uk |
|Subject:||Community News |
Doncaster has honoured the legendary locomotive engineer Sir Nigel Gresley by naming its new civic square after the man who designed and oversaw the creation of world famous locomotives like the Mallard and the Flying Scotsman in the town.
Mayor of Doncaster, Peter Davies, said: ‘Sir Nigel Gresley was the most celebrated engineer of his era and a true railway legend. He had a close affinity to Doncaster so it is fitting we name our new public square after such an important figure in our history. Doncaster continues to benefit from his legacy today.’
Born in Edinburgh in 1876, Sir Nigel Gresley held senior engineering roles for Great Northern Railways and London North Eastern Railways. Sir Nigel lived and worked in Doncaster for many years and held a close association with Doncaster throughout his illustrious career which saw many of the world’s most famous steam locomotives, together with wagons and coaches built in the Doncaster Plant Works. Sir Nigel died in 1941.
The Flying Scotsman was the first locomotive to break the 100mph barrier and The Mallard holds the official speed record for a steam locomotive clocking up 126mph in 1938.
To honour his great achievements the 100th Pacific locomotive built to his design was named Sir Nigel Gresley in 1937. The locomotive is still in operation on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway.
An innovative designer and an inspiration to others Sir Nigel put Doncaster firmly on the railway map, helping to establish the town as a major transport hub which it still benefits from today.
Sir Nigel Gresley Square is the focal point of the town’s new Civic and Cultural Quarter which is transforming the Waterdale area. The construction of the new £20 million performance venue and new civic offices is well underway. Housing, offices, leisure and other developments are also planned as part of the £300 million regeneration scheme delivered by Doncaster Council and its development partner Muse Developments.
Sir Nigel Gresley Square will officially open during a big Diamond Jubilee celebration event on Sunday 3 June. The new civic offices will be complete later this year and the new multi-purpose venue will open in 2013.
Dan Needham, regional director for Muse Developments said: ‘We’re delighted Doncaster’s new civic square has been named after a figure so richly embedded in the town’s heritage. We look forward to the official opening of Sir Nigel Gresley Square which will mark the next key milestone in the delivery of this exciting £300 million regeneration scheme.’
Chris Nettleton, of the Gresley Society, said: ‘Doncaster is famous the world over for the superb Gresley-designed locomotives that were built in the town’s locomotive works. Two of the best known were ‘Flying Scotsman’, and the streamlined A4 ‘Mallard’ that achieved the world speed record for steam of 126mph on 3rd July 1938, capturing then the spirit of the age.
’Gresley worked in Doncaster with a wonderful team of engineers and a highly skilled workforce drawn from the town. I am delighted that Sir Nigel is to be honoured with a public square dedicated to him as a permanent reminder of his links to Doncaster.’
Steve Davies, Director of the National Railway Museum, said: ‘Sir Nigel Gresley was arguably one of the greatest railway engineers the world has ever known. He designed some of the world’s best known locomotives, many of which were built in Doncaster. It seems only fitting that a town with such a strong railway history should honour a railway legend in this way.’
The new square features a range of comfortable seating, architectural lighting, a water feature, raised lawns, paved areas and a piece of public art. It was designed by landscape architects Whitelaw Turkington and built by main contractor North Midland Construction.
The CCQ project is supported financially by the European Union, as part of the European Regional Development Fund’s support for the region’s economic development through the Yorkshire and Humber ERDF Programme.
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