A KEIGHLEY-based steam locomotive is returning home to the Peak District cement works where it spent its working life.

Nunlow will spend its 71st birthday at the Hope Cement Works, Derbyshire, during an open day to celebrate the works’ 90th year of operation.

Breedon’s, which runs the works, is laying on free family entertainment and tours of both the quarry and the main works.

Nunlow is owned by the Bahamas Locomotive Society which is based on the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway at Ingrow railway station.

Bahamas Society chairman Keith Whitmore said: “It is hard to imagine that such an attractive loco spent her entire working life in industry and not on the main line.

“This shows the vision that Earle’s had in not only having a hard-working loco but to show the pride in the works and the setting in the Peak District.

“Nunlow is of course named after the hill behind the works, and in a strange reverse of fortune the hill no longer survives having provided stone for cement for so many years, but Nunlow lives on almost in spiritual tribute to the history of her name.

“We are also most grateful to Breedon’s to not only make the visit possible but for the sterling support which we receive from them.

“The history of our society is also based in Derbyshire as our locos will be both near their former home of the Dinting Railway Centre which we vacated in 1990.”

John Mulryan of Hope Cement works said: “We are grateful that the Nunlow locomotive will be returning to the works for the celebration, so younger generations can learn about our history.

“The railways have a big part to play in our 90-year history and are still a vital part of our operations today used to transport around a million tonnes per year from the works safely out of the valley across the UK distribution network.

“We thank the Bahamas Society for their continued support and look forward to future joint ventures as part of the development of our apprenticeship scheme.”