TWO national treasures came together at York's National Railway Museum this week ahead of a major new exhibition.

Sir David Jason, better known as Del Boy, was filming a documentary at the museum and watched as Stephenson's Rocket was carefully unpacked after being transported from its former temporary home in Manchester, to go on long-term display in York.

He watched as the original Rocket being installed, and took a ride on the replica Rocket, outside the museum.

Stephenson's Rocket has been previously dubbed the Elgin Marbles of the North after being housed in London's Science Museum.

It was announced last year that it would go on long-term display in York, alongside legends of the steam age including Mallard and Flying Scotsman, in the museum's redeveloped Great Hall.

It will stay there for at least a decade, initially as part of a new exhibition called Brass, Steel and Fire, organised by the Science Museum Group.

The exhibition will continue on to London but Rocket is to remain in York.

Built in 1829, Rocket is one of the UK’s most historically significant objects. After success at the Rainhill Trials in the same year, the engine operated on the world’s first inter-city passenger railway in 1830 and helped usher in the railway age, shaping the modern world as we know it. Rocket was the only locomotive to successfully complete the Trials, achieving a then remarkable top speed of 30 mph and securing the engine’s place in history.

Anthony Coulls, Senior Curator at the National Railway Museum, said: “Rocket was not the first steam engine, but it is certainly one of the most significant and it combined all the technological innovations available at the time to create one engine that was faster and more reliable than anything seen before.

“The technology pioneered by Rocket led to the rapid expansion of the railways, which brought widespread social and economic changes that shaped modern Britain as we know it."

Moving such a significant but fragile object from its temporary home at the Museum of Science and Industry was not straightforward and required a large team and careful planning.

Alongside Rocket, highlights of the Brass, Steel and Fire exhibition include the world’s oldest working model steam engine made in 1836 by Thomas Greener, aged just 16 years old.

Thomas became an engineer after working as an apprentice at Shildon Works under Timothy Hackworth. The model is based on a full-size stationary winding engine that would have been used on the Stockton and Darlington Railway to haul coal wagons up steep hills.

In 2018, to share Rocket with a wider audience, the Science Museum Group announced that the historic locomotive would go on a national tour of significant locations with a strong connection to the engine’s story.

This included a visit to the Discovery Museum in Newcastle, the city where Rocket was built, as part of the Great Exhibition of the North.

The engine then went on display at the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester which is based on the site of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway.

Brass, Steel and Fire will open at the National Railway Museum on September 26. Entry is free.