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Shildon regeneration ahead of Flying Scotsman visit

The Flying Scotsman in Newcastle on May 11 Credit: ITV

A County Durham town is set to undergo major regeneration work ahead of an upcoming visit from the world-famous Flying Scotsman.

The work in Shildon town centre will start later this month and is scheduled to be completed for when the Flying Scotsman arrives on July 16.

The plans, by Durham Council Council, include refurbishment of the town square and canopies over the old water feature and statue being removed to open up the space.

Seating and bins will be replaced across the town centre, with improved lighting also installed.

The improvements come after consultations with residents, schools and businesses highlighted the need to make the square more usable as a public space for events.

Cllr Neil Foster, Cabinet member for economic regeneration and culture, said:

The visit of the Flying Scotsman promises to be a major event for Shildon and we look forward to welcoming it with an improved public space.

– Councillor Neil Foster, Durham County Council

The Flying Scotsman made its name on the London to Edinburgh route in the 1920s and became the first locomotive to reach 100mph back in 1934.

The train was retired in the 1960s, but was meticulously restored over the last decade and made its inaugural run from London Kings Cross to York on February 25.

The famous locomotive is currently conducting a tour of the UK and travelled from York, through Durham to Newcastle Central Station on May 10.

The Flying Scotsman will arrive in Shildon on July 16, before returning for a week-long stay at Locomotion: The National Railway Museum at Shildon from July 23.