The train will be moved to the mainland for restoration, but the carriages will be restored locally. Photo: Linda Bakken
This autumn, Kings Bay received a grant of 1.4 million NOK from Svalbard Environmental Protection Fund to restore the old steam locomotive, "Nr.2".
The locomotive is a protected cultural heritage, and was built in 1909. It came to Ny-Ålesund in 1917, when Kings Bay started mining in Kongsfjorden. "Nr. 2" is light and small, and its main function was to transport coal on to the pier where the coal was loaded onto boats for shipping. Several bigger locomotives were used to transport the coal from the mining area to the pier, but " NR. 2" was the only one light enough to use on the pier. It is also the only remaining locomotive in Ny-Ålesund today.
The locomotive is now in very bad shape, and needs extensive restoration. It will be transported to the mainland and taken to Sørumsand, where experts in train restoration will work on it. It will then be brought back to Ny-Ålesund where it has been for almost 100 years. The project is planned to be finished by the end of 2016, when Kings Bay AS celebrates its 100 year anniversary.
"Nr.2" is a loved locomotive, and is a big part of Ny-Ålesund's cultural identity, and Kings Bay is very grateful for grant from Svalbard Environmental Protection Fund to restore this historic landmark.
Kings Bay is also been working on restoring the historic London-houses. This summer the outside of "London 3" has been restored with money from Svalbard Environmental Protection Fund. Kings Bay has now received the money for this project, and we will use the winter/spring to restore the inside of this house. In the summer it will house the University of Groningen research station.
This video was taken by taken this summer by Arne Magnus Svabø, who also did the restoration.