Subject to confirmation and a lot of arrangements still to finalise, I am very excited to reveal that this year’s Great North Steam Fair (the second event within the overall festival) will be attended by a visitor from Belgium. Maldagem to be precise. This 8 ton 0-4-0T, named Yvonne, built by St Leonard (Liege) in 1893 and numbered 947, will (subject to all of the usual caveats) be in action in the Colliery area throughout the event.
Stoomcentrum Maldagem is a steam centre located in northern Belgium and featuring running lines of both standard and narrow gauge. Yvonne is owned, and her restoration was completed, by Stijn Vandenbranden. Regular Beamish visitor ‘Peter Pan’ (Graham Morris’ Kerr Stuart Wren) is a frequent attendee to festivals there and further information can be found here: http://www.stoomcentrum.be including a stocklist and descriptions of the events held there.
Below: A selection of photographs kindly supplied by Kevin Hoggett showing Yvonne, which only returned to steam in 2012, at work at Maldagem. The tiny proportions of this engine can clearly be seen and I think it will look rather at home with our own No.1 and No.18 on the Colliery railway…
Below: This photo shows Kevin’s well known Avonside ‘Fred’, a resident at Maldagem, with Yvonne and illustrates brilliantly just how small the little St Leonard is!