Screen Shot 2015-11-23 at 13.15.00A LOOK back at the career of a leading local railway photographer can be seen at Monkwearmouth Station Museum.

Ian Carr, who was born in Sunderland in 1937, died earlier this year in February.

He spent more than 60 years photographing and documenting the changing faces of the country’s railways.

Well-known for the pictures he took in and around Sunderland, he also documented the extensive colliery railway network that once crossed the region. His images appeared in more than 300 publications and he had exhibited his works on more than one occasion at Monkwearmouth Station Museum.

The new museum exhibition – Ian S Carr: A Wearside Photographer – runs until the end of February.

Sunderland City Council Portfolio Holder for Public Health, Wellness and Culture, Councillor John Kelly said: “Mr Carr’s passion has allowed us to open a window on almost the entire post -war history of railways in Sunderland and the surrounding area.

“It’s hard to visualise noisy steam hauled coal trains rattling through the likes of Washington, Ryhope and Silksworth now, but they were once an everyday sight and a way of life.

“Anyone with an interest in railways will know of Mr Carr’s work and his reputation.

“And, anyone with an interest in our region’s heritage, how we developed, and the way we all once worked and looked, will enjoy seeing the images. They’re all fascinating.”

He began recording the railways as a Bede Grammar School pupil in the early 1950s and had an interest in rail preservation. He was an early member of North York Moors Railway Historical Trust and North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Trust.

From steam hauled coal trains in the 1960s to the Tyne and Wear Metro, Mr Carr meticulously documented them all right up until his death.

He had a fondness for locomotives on their final days and local trains to destinations such as Durham and Bishop Auckland, which are now no longer served directly from Sunderland. The famous Doxford’s shipyard ‘crane tanks’ were also caught on camera as was the long scrapped steam locomotive named after Sunderland AFC.

His images captured changing industries and landscapes from shipyards, coke works, glass works and collieries once served by regular trains, or even their own internal railways.

The photographs appeared regularly in specialist publications and were also used to illustrate several books. Upon his death all of the images were placed into the care of The Armstrong Trust, making this exhibition possible.

Cllr Kelly added: “It’s thanks to the trust that we can now show this fascinating exhibition and look back to our yesterdays. This exhibition is a fitting tribute to a very fine man.”

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