Richard Hilton was an RAF fighter pilot and a British Railways diesel locomotive engineer before becoming the Festiniog Railway's Locomotive Superintendent on 13th July 1959, a post he held until 1962. (Johnson 2004) In that role he was responsible for returning Merddin Emrys to steam in 1961 and for bringing the first privately owned steam locomotive, the former Oakeley Bagnall 0-4-0ST Kidbrooke on to the railway, also in 1961.
His father was a District Locomotive Superintendent on the GER and LNER. Dick owned a large collection of engineering artifacts ranging from narrow gauge diesel locomotives to a steam tug and he had an extensive practical knowledge of railway engineering. In the early nineties he was actively involved in the operation of 71000 Duke of Gloucester, being responsible for its boiler water treatment.
- "Obituary", Ffestiniog Railway Magazine, Issue 144, page(s): 483
- Johnson P (2004) Immortal Rails Vol.1 page 157, Rail Romances, Chester, CH$ 9ZH, UK