Historic engine Locomotion No.1 is set to move Shildon this month.
The Science Museum Group and Darlington Borough Council have agreed for the train to move to the national collection of railway vehicles, in the world’s first railway town.
Sarah Price, the Head of Museum at Locomotion, said that the engine will undergo a detailed forensic and archaeological investigation which will reveal “more about the history of a locomotive that is so well-known, but has been so little understood.”
Built by George and Robert Stephenson, Locomotion No. 1 was the first steam locomotive to haul a passenger-carrying train on a public railway, making its first journey in 1825 between Stockton and Darlington.
Since 1975, it has been on permanent display at the Head of Steam, Darlington’s railway museum.
Peter Gibson, Member of Parliament for Darlington, said it is while it is “part of our town’s identity”, it also “represents an opportunity to work together to bring more visitors to our museums, work for the benefit of our local economy, and embrace the next chapter in our railways story.”
The train will return on loan to the Darlington Railway Museum in 2025 for the 200th anniversary of the Stockton and Darlington railway.