John Rastrick, English engineer and inventor, c late 18th century.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
John Rastrick (1738-1826) was an engineer, millwright and maker of pumps and churns, but he is perhaps best known as the father of railway pioneer John Urpeth Rastrick (1780-1856), who built steam engines with John Hazledine to designs by Richard Trevithick. John Urpeth Rastrick was also one of the judges at the Rainhill Trials (1829), the competition arranged to judge the best locomotive to operate on George Stephenson's new Liverpool & Manchester Railway. 'Rocket', a locomotive designed and built by George's son Robert Stephenson was the eventual winner.