Allchin roller 1131 ‘The County Borough of Northampton Highways Department No.1

The Northampton and Lamport Railway CIO is extremely fortunate to be the proud owner and custodian of a very important piece of local Northampton history.

Allchin Road Roller No 1131 was built in 1899 by William Allchin at the companies Globe Works’ by the River Nene in Northampton. She was built for Northampton Borough Council and registered as “The County Borough of Northampton Highways Department No.1” on 28th February 1900.

She was used by the Highways Department for road making and repairs to existing streets, avenues and roads until taken out of service sometime in the 1960’s.

After retirement the roller took part in the Northampton Carnival Parades each year.

Unfortunately sometime in the 1970s, the roller fell into disuse and was left in a dismantled state in one of the Council’s yards.

In 2009 the roller was donated to the Northampton and Lamport Railway and moved to Pitsford and Brampton in July of that year. Efforts to raise the money for its restoration began.

In November 2010 the roller was fortunate to receive grant funding from the National Lottery ‘The People’s Millions’ fund. This allowed an immediate start on a comprehensive overhaul and return to service. The restoration took about a year and the completed roller was ready on 31st December 2011.

No.1131 spent the next 11 years attending various events and steam rallies around the country, as well as steaming on certain dates here at the Northampton and Lamport Railway.

The roller was then retired in early 2022, awaiting its standard 10 yearly full overhaul.

Allchin Roller Overhaul Appeal

Help us to restore a real piece of Northampton’s history back to working order.

We need to raise £10,000 to complete the work necessary to see No.1131 back in steam.

Any amount you can contribute will make a real difference.

Allchin Traction Engine No.2146

The Northampton and Lamport Railway is also proud to be home to another Northampton-built Allchin – general purpose traction engine No.2146, which has been resident at the NLR since 2013.

Bought new in 1922 by the Story family, agricultural contractors in Rutland, 2146 worked threshing machines, saw benches and other farm machinery for 40 years before being restored and rallied by Bill Story until 1984. Now owned by Bill’s daughter Mary and her family, restoration work is ongoing between appearances at local rallies and NLR events.

If you would like more information about No.2146, or would like it to attend a rally, please email

ABOVE: 2146 performing a threshing demonstration at Peterborough Expo in 1977

ABOVE: 2146 at Rutland High School in 1973 with HRH Duke of Edinburgh

Allchin – History in Northampton

ABOVE: Map of 1899 showing the location of Allchin’s ‘Globe Works’ on the south bank of the River Nene (where Trenery Way is today), right in the heart of Northampton.

The works closed in 1931, following the agricultural depression of the 1920s.

ABOVE: Advert for Allchin traction engines from 1908