Why do we remember… George Stephenson?

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By Juliet Smitha freelance educational writer

Trainspotting can be cool for kids – ten activity ideas to ensure that your cross-curricular teaching goes full steam ahead…



George Stephenson was born in Northumberland in 1781. He constructed his first locomotive called The Blutcher in 1814. George then went on to form a company with his son Robert, together with Michael Longbridge and Edward Pearse. Their company became the world’s first locomotive builder. Their first engine, Locomotion, was finished in 1825. In 1829, the Liverpool & Manchester Company held the Rainhill Trials to decide whether to use locomotives or stationary engines on their railway line. George and his son won the competition with a locomotive called Rocket, which reached the previously unheard of speed of 30mph. George Stephenson continued to work on improving the quality of the locomotives used on the railway lines until his death on 12 August 1848.

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