Skip to main content

We're open seven days a week. Book your free admission ticket now to visit the museum. 

Schools and groups can book free tickets here.

Station Hall and other parts of our museum are closed, please check the Visit page for the latest info about closures.

You are here:

Great Hall

Rub shoulders with railway legends from the past 200 years—from history-makers to record-breakers, Great Hall is home to some awe-inspiring engines.

Jump on board the high-speed Japanese bullet train—the only one of its kind outside of Japan—and learn about travel on the world's fastest passenger rail network. Behold the spectacle of the technology-packed Eurostar in its natural habitat, a cross section of the Channel Tunnel. Marvel at notorious engines including Mallard, Duchess of Hamilton and InterCity 125.

From engine shed to museum

Before it became a museum, Great Hall was engine shed number four—one of nine in York. Built in 1877, the shed was used to house, clear and prepare steam locomotives for the mainline. In April 1942, along with York Station, it was badly damaged in a German air raid—it was repaired, but many others nearby weren't so lucky.

The shed was used for working engines until 1967 and was then used to store redundant steam locomotives from 1968, when diesel and electric locos were introduced. When the museum opened in 1975 it enjoyed a new lease of life as a perfect space to house our incredible collections.


Browse our online collection for more objects in the Great Hall. If you are visiting to see any of these objects, please contact us in advance to make sure that it will be on display.