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Who knows about Stephenson?

In the shadow of George Stephenson's statue in Newcastle city centre The Journal asked passers-by what they knew about the North inventor who pioneered the steam locomotive.

Project manager David Dodds , 38, of Jesmond, said he would have thought everyone in the region would have known who George Stephenson was.

He said: "I knew George Stephenson invented the steam train, but maybe just because I come from the North. He is someone to be proud of around here and I would expect most people to know who he was."

Student Louise Robinson, 18, of Castle Leazes, Newcastle, said she had heard of George Stephenson, but did not know he invented the first commercial steam engine.

She said: "I thought someone called Henry Lloyd invented the steam train. I knew it was a British invention, but I didn't know it was George Stephenson."

Jessica Wignall, 18, of Newcastle, said she was embarrassed she did not know about him. "I guess that survey that British people are ignorant about our own inventions must be right," she said.

Sheila Spowart, 47, of Byker, Newcastle, said: "George Stephenson does sound familiar, but I wouldn't have known he was the inventor of the first train."
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Nov 16, 2004
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