Portadown was once a vital part of the railway network rightfully earning the accolade ‘Hub of the North’. Train driver, William Partridge, a proud Portadown man from West Street in the Edgarstown area of the town drove the last steam train from Great Victoria Street station, Belfast to Connolly Street station, Dublin in 1966.
The ‘Steam Enterprise’ last journey brought to an end a 111 years of regular steam-hauled passenger train services between Irelands two capital cities which had began on the 5th April 1855. On board the train as it left Belfast were more than 300 steam train enthusiasts with their special souvenir tickets issued by the Ulster Transport Authority. The ‘Steam Enterprise’ made its last stop in Portadown that day on its final journey. Portadown was the only other stop in Northern Ireland. William Partridge was a member of Kilmority Loyal Orange Lodge 31 and also Kilmority Royal Black Perceptory.
William Partridge on the Steam Enterprise on the day of its last journey and pictured below he is on parade with Kilmority LOL 31. (behind the Lambeg drummer)