The 'Wolverton Bloomer' replica steam train has been resident in Station Square, Central Milton Keynes since 1991, when it was built by engineering apprentices. The 'Wolverton Bloomer', designed by James McConnell and first engineered in the 1850s, is the most famous class of locomotive built at Wolverton Works.
Over the past 15 years the condition of the 'Wolverton Bloomer' has been deteriorating and is in desperate need for refurbishment. But thanks to Wolverton Society for Arts & Heritage , with support from Wolverton & Greenleys Town Council, Wolverton UnLtd and Milton Keynes Council, the 'Wolverton Bloomer' will now become part of the Wolverton townscape.
This project would not have been possible without the help of Alstom, who run Wolverton Works. They will restore the engine to its original glory. Colin Love, Alstom Site Director, said "Historically Wolverton Works have been inextricably linked with the community and the 'Wolverton Bloomer' and we are proud to be part of this project."
Moveright International Ltd will spend two days carefully manoeuvring the replica onto transporters to take it to the Works. Moveright are the leading hauliers in this field often moving engines for railway museums and they are undaunted by the logistics of moving the largest work of public art in Milton Keynes.
Sue Westell, Wolverton Society for Arts & Heritage "We can't thank Alstom and Moveright enough, without their help the 'Wolverton Bloomer' wouldn't be coming to Wolverton. We know residents will be thrilled to see it!"
Following 'Wolverton Bloomer's' removal, English Partnerships will restore the paving in Central Milton Keynes Station Square in readiness for a high profile programme of temporary art installations, the first of which, commissioned by Milton Keynes Gallery , is due to start at the end of this month. The aim of the temporary installations is to promote Milton Keynes nationally and internationally, demonstrate civic pride, and to inform the future design of the space .
Project Coordinator Lucy Bedford from Milton Keynes Council commented, "The 'Wolverton Bloomer' has been in need of extensive refurbishment for a number of years now, and we're pleased that the piece will be refurbished by expert train engineers and after consultation be sited in Wolverton for permanent display".