PEOPLE have been given the chance to see a replica of Puffing Billy – a train that used to carry people around Butlins holiday camp, in Filey.
The replica was created by businessman Ian Morrell, who spent the summer holidays at the North Yorkshire holiday camp either riding on Puffing Billy or in the garage helping mechanic Harry Lawty to build it.
Between them, it took a year and a half to recreate the popular train from a holiday snapshot, dated August 3, 1969.
Now 30 years on from the closure of the holiday camp, Ian has been giving people the chance to enjoy the fruits of his and Harry’s labours.
For yesterday Puffing Billy stopped off at Hartlepool Railway Station as part of a journey south through Teesside and North Yorkshire and on to Whitby.
Puffing Billy has also been the catalyst for a series of books, commissioned by Ian, from South Hetton, which have been drawn and written by his friend Swin Tempest.
Part proceeds of each book sold will go to the children’s heart ward at the Freeman’s Hospital, in Newcastle – a charity close to Ian after his grandson, Caden, was born with a serious heart defect. It was corrected by a team at Freeman’s ward 23.