Monthly Archives: January 2013

217 – Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces From Chasewater News – Summer 1998 – Part 2 – From the Board Room

217 – Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces

From Chasewater News – Summer 1998 – Part 2

Steam Train H-Ford,Rugeley

 From the Board Room

David Bathurst, Chairman


Early indications are that we are maintaining the record traffic figures set in 1997.  Despite one of the worst months of April since records began, wee are continuing to attract passengers, both casual and regular.  We are increasingly welcoming visitors from longer distances, and in greater numbers.  Our existence is becoming more widely known within the enthusiast community.

Chasewater Open Day

At this time of the year, cash flow is at its most critical, with a number of substantial annual bills (insurances in particular) falling into the treasurer’s lap.  A reliable income stream is therefore essential – not only in respect of passenger income but also membership subscriptions.  Fortunately, the Chasewater Open Day, on Monday 4th May, produced support beyond our wildest expectations and made a significant and welcome contribution to our early-season income figures.  Lichfield District Council are to be congratulated for promoting this successful event.

Steam Boat

‘Thank You’, Tarmac

 Elsewhere in this edition, reference is made to the magnificent donation of 600 fully chaired sleepers by Tarmac, through their subsidiary company Centrac.  With the recently acquired rail and a highly successful programme of trackbed preparation, our working members are proceeding towards Threes Junction with unprecedented speed.  Indeed, we have already reached (and passed) the location at which the early plans suggested a deviation so as to avoid the proposed Burntwood Bypass island (although I must hasten to add that there is a lot more work to be done before we can contemplate extending our passenger services).


Burntwood Bypass

Negotiations are proceeding with Staffs County Council regarding the Bypass and its implications.  Company representatives met on site with SCC Officers on 18th June, when a number of very detailed aspects were examined and amicably agreed.  We are now awaiting formal confirmation of the constructive and positive decisions taken at the meeting and provided that the expected letter correctly reflects what we believe to have been decided, we should be able to withdraw our statutory objection to the compulsory purchase order for Phase 2 of the Bypass scheme.

Further encouragement arrived the day following the meeting in the form of a letter from Lichfield District Council confirming that the SCC proposals were acceptable to the District Council from a planning viewpoint.  In view of LDC’s role as planning authority, this is a most welcome development within the negotiation process.

B-Hills West after M6 Toll

Birmingham Northern Relief Road (M6 Toll)

Local members will know that the legal challenges to the decision of the Secretary of State to approve the Birmingham Northern Relief Road have rather muddied the waters so far as the highway promoters are concerned, resulting in some unavoidable delay.  Nevertheless, the feasibility study on the ‘replacement’ of Brownhills West Station and related facilities is still proceeding, with various further options now being examined in some detail.  It is entirely understandable that the highway promoters and Lichfield District Council would prefer to find a solution not involving the use or acquisition of land in the ownership of third parties.

Mecc Christmas 2010 001

An Early Christmas

In the meantime, enquiries in other areas have resulted in the acquisition, at no cost, of a number of items of track furniture, tools, equipment and other useful odds and ends.  What do they say about ‘one man’s rubbish…?’  The sight of certain members rooting about in rubbish skips may well have looked suspicious, but it certainly proved productive – although whether our new line speed will within the foreseeable future be reflected by the newly-acquired 75 mph speed limit sign is a matter open to some uncertainty.

News – February on the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway


Nine Miles of Smiles this February – Kids Go Free!


Come and enjoy the delightful Ecclesbourne Valley this February 2013.

Trains are running on Saturdays 2nd, 9th and 16th between Wirksworth and Duffield and for these dates only kids can go free!

Maximum of two free children with each £9.00 Adult or £8.00 Concession Day Rover ticket purchased. Normal fare paying child age range is 6 – 15 inclusive. Normal child fare is £5.00 each. Named February Saturday dates only.

For more details of this and more on the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway, go to the website:

Narrow Gauge Railways – Amberley Museum & Heritage Centre

Narrow Gauge Railways



History of the collection

1 double_headed_hunslets

The Industrial Railway Collection at the Amberley Museum in West Sussex has become one of the most important collections of industrial railway equipment in the UK. The history of the collection actually goes back further than even the initial concept of the Museum at Amberley with the formation of the Brockham collection and acquisitions by the Narrow Gauge Railway Society during the 1950s and 1960s.

Industrial railways have a fascination of their own. Main stream gricing it most definitely is not, but we are all allowed our little fetishes, aren’t we? (And that’s the only one I’m telling you about!)

2 ccsw

Initially the collection at Amberley was envisaged as a small operation, demonstrating typical industrial narrow gauge trains. The first locomotive to arrive on site was the Motor Rail Hibberd 1980/1936, donated to the Museum by Southern Water and previously used at the City of Chichester Sewage Works at Apuldram, to the south of the City. Restoration, which included the removal of several layers what looked like mud but probably wasn’t(!), was started by the late Peter Holland and after his death continued by Chas Thomas – seen here driving the locomotive on the occasion of the official recommissioning with members of Peter Holland’s family on the “man-rider” wagon.

3 earlydays

The first locomotive to actually run under its own power at Amberley was Peter Smith’s Ruston & Hornsby 187081/1937, seen here shortly after its rebuilding. Note that the Museum was, at that time, very undeveloped – the corrugated building in the background is now our main railway workshops in which much of our maintenance and restoration work was and still is carried out.

4 thakeham4

Finally, in 1982, the local Thakeham Tiles company decided to dispense with their short narrow gauge railway in favour of a conveyor belt system (still in use for any conveyor belt gricers to see – is there such a person?). The company donated the entire railway, track, wagons and locos to the Museum on condition that they removed the whole thing over one weekend! It was done. Some of the track, one of the locos and the wagons are still in use at Amberley today. Thakeham Tiles No.4 is Hudson Hunslet 3653/1946. The rear end was rebuilt by Thakeham Tiles to enable the locomotive to enter a low building containing a wagon unloading hopper.

Hudson Hunslet 2208/1941 – Thakeham Tiles No.3 is also part of the collection. This originally worked at the Trevor Quarry Co in North Wales and after purchase by Thakeham Tiles, received the same cab modifications as No.4. Unless we can get spare parts for the Ailsa Craig engine, this second one is unlikely to run again for a very long time.

This was originally as far as development of the collection was to go until in 1982 the collection of industrial and narrow gauge items, formerly kept at the Brockham Museum’s site near Dorking, was brought to Amberley when the Brockham Museum Trust found they were unable to develop further due, mainly, to access problems. With it came many interesting locomotives, rolling stock and sundry related items and the much enlarged collection has become one of the most significant in the UK. It also resulted in the railway collection at Amberley taking a completely new direction in that a passenger carrying line was proposed and built. This remains the most public face of the collection.

The Brockham collection included two 2ft gauge steam locomotives, Polar Bear and Peter, both at that time in varying states of disrepair. Restoration of both was subsequently completed at Amberley.

The collection included some enthusiastic volunteers several of whom are still part of our volunteer workforce on the railway.

And the rest, as they say, is history.




Model Railways – The Fairplex Garden Railroad – Pomona, CA

The Fairplex Garden Railroad – Pomona, CA

Model Railroads on


Quick Description: The Fairplex Garden Railroad is considered the oldest and possibly the largest miniature railroad of its kind in the United States.

Location: California, United States

Date Posted: 10/7/2009 7:30:01 PM

Waymark Code: WM7D4J


Long Description:

The Fairplex Garden Railroad – Pomona, CA

The Fairplex Garden Railroad is considered the oldest and possibly the largest miniature railroad of its kind in the United States.


The railroad began as a special static exhibit for the third Los Angeles Fair in 1924. It soon became a small, hand built, operating miniature train, in true 1/2 inch scale. The small railroad continued to grow and in 1935, moved out of the Fair’s tent to its present 100X300-foot outdoor location where it remains today.


In May of 1997, with the help of members of a local garden railroad club, the original 1/2 inch scale was replaced with what is referred to today as G gauge in the hobby of model railroading, and renovation of the miniature railroad began. Today over 9,800 feet of track provide for the running of over 30 trains at one time. Approximately 2,000 linear feet of underground pipes and conduits support the operation. Nearly eighteen miles of wires are required to operate the electrical systems and over 12,000 gallons of water flow through its lakes, rivers and streams.


The Fairplex Garden Railroad is maintained by volunteers throughout the year. The railroad operates daily during the L.A. County Fair in September, the first Sunday of each month and for selected Fairplex events throughout the year. Admission to the Garden Railroad is free, however for selected Fairplex events admission price may vary depending on the event. The Garden Railroad is located between the Main Grandstand and Fairplex Building #4.


Visit the The Fairplex Garden Railroad website for more information.


216 – Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces From Chasewater News – Summer 1998 – Part 1

216 – Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces

From Chasewater News – Summer 1998 – Part 1

Front CoverThe works train out of section and onto the extension, June 1998

Editorial – Chris Chivers

In the spring edition of the Chasewater News I made reference to an old Chinese proverb – ‘May you live in interesting times’ – oh brother! How I should have kept my mouth shut!

Returning to Chasewater the week after a fortnight’s holiday in France I met our ‘esteemed’ Chairman in Walsall for the trip to the Railway to be on duty for 11o’clock.  On the trip to Chasewater, David said that I should see the track materials which had arrived on the weekend I went away, and also look at some other things donated by Centrack over the following fortnight.  We diverted to Three’s Junction, the end of our current lease, and drove to within a few yards of the gap in the hedge.  With the rain coming down we walked onto the trackbed and I had a look around.  I could see that the trackbed had been scraped clear of any remaining vegetation but as it was somewhat muddy we decided to walk up the dead end branch towards Five Ways.  After managing to find a path through the trees towards our own line, I was looking down onto a line of laid-out sleepers.  Moving further along behind some trees and bushes I finally caught sight of the railhead.  When David and myself worked our way onto the laid track I thought that Arthur and the lads had been able to get a few panels laid past the pylon and were getting ready to carry on.  Then I thought ‘where the b—- hell is the pylon?  Arthur and the gang had laid something within the region of 400 yards of track in a fortnight.  I was gob-smacked!  When I managed to pick my jaw up, I was told to hang on as the works train was on its way.  When it arrived it was bearing even more loads of plunder in the shape of the first delivery of 7 foot concrete fence posts.  I know that I made an optimistic forecast that we could be at Threes Junction by the end of the years for works trains, but at this rate we could be open to passengers for the start of the 1999 season.  The siding for the temporary platform at the new station is now under construction with Arthur and his merry men intending to lay the point for the deviation in 11 days.

P Way 3

In the thirteen years that I have been associated with the Chasewater Railway, I have seen many changes to the Society.  When I first joined Chasewater was picking itself up out of the mud from a period of almost total stagnation.  What a difference the past thirteen years have made.  This year has seen the largest number of members ever, with a larger number of volunteers offering their services to the Railway (but we still need more!).

1998 has been so far the best ever for the Railway in that the number of passengers carried is up by 15% on our record-breaking 1997 season.  When I get home and do the figures on a Sunday night after a day’s running, I realise that what was an exceptionally good Sunday’s running several years ago now seems to be a normal Sunday’s trading.  Within the ranks of heritage railways Chasewater has come a long way and we are now classed as a small but rapidly expanding railway and definitely worth visiting.  Gone are the knowing grins and sniggers from members of other Societies when the name Chasewater Railway is mentioned.  Both past and present members can look back with pride at what has been achieved by a small railway with limited resources, and can look forward to a future which will see Chasewater go from strength to strength.  Also, unlike a lot of our much larger associates, we are reasonably financially sound with no major financial millstones around our necks.  The policy of obtaining materials in whatever form only when we can afford it seems to have paid off handsomely.  It was heartbreaking some years ago when we had to turn down the offer of track and other items simply because we could not afford the cost of the transport or plant hire.

P Way 2

With the Railway looking to the future we are well on our way to securing the trackbed to Church Street where our fourth station will have to be built.  This will be the first time the Railway has extended beyond our leasehold in the entire time that the Railway has been situated within the bounds of Chasewater.  Whether or not we can extend any further remains to be seen.  At the Brownhills West end of the line, some basic ideas have been committed to paper as to the new layout for the rebuilding of our current site when we are moved, these are for the moment only basic proposals and subject to revision as things progress.  No firm dates have yet been put forward as to when the station site will be due for re-development in conjunction with the BNRR so we are expecting things to stay as they are for the 1999 season.

It is hoped that when Brownhills West is re-developed that more room can be given to our shop sales area.  The cramped conditions that we now have are not conducive to increasing turnover and therefore shop sales have lacked the increase in performance that other sections of the Railway have enjoyed.  This has been born out by the amount of business that the Bric-a-Brac stand has enjoyed since they moved into the portacabin, which was installed instead of the ‘blue van’ wagon body when it finally gave up the ghost.  The bulk of the money raised so far this season is going towards carriage and wagon restoration.  Keith Poynter asks if anyone is clearing out any items which are of no further use to them then the Bric-a-Brac would be most grateful for them, with one exception – we are currently overflowing with old railway magazines that we cannot shift!  Even though we are grateful for any donations towards our fund raising efforts, we are finding that magazines take up a lot of space.  If anyone knows somewhere which will accept the type of glossy paper used in the mags for recycling so we could raise some extra money for the Railway, could they please let me know.

McGrath Ticket DatingMcGrath Ticket Dating Machine (Chasewater Railway Museum)

With the advent of the new ‘temporary platform’ being erected during the winter, the problem of booking office staff and booking office equipment for the new station is coming to the fore.  I’m currently looking for another three Edmondson ticket machines complete with type slugs to be used at the two new stations when they are built, and to replace the one in use at Brownhills West, as it is showing its age through general wear and tear.  Initially, the station booking office at Threes Junction will be a temporary affair, possibly in one of the brake vans which can be moved into position at the start of each running day.

Cash Box B-Hills LNWR StnCash Box from Brownhills LNWR Station (Chasewater Railway Museum)

  It has been proposed that a staff re-training session should be carried out in the closed season, due to the number of operating staff we now have and are likely to gain in the future.  The re-training should be for all staff who works on the trains, P Way and station staff and anyone else working on or around the running line.  Dates and the format of the course have yet to be decided.

On a different note, it was pointed out at the last Annual General Meeting by one of our longest serving members, Dave Ives, that the Railway is approaching its 40th birthday and it would be a good idea to celebrate it in some suitable fashion.  A meal was held at the Wilkin for the Railway’s 30th in 1989, but I feel that it might be a bit small for our current membership.  If anyone has any suitable ideas could they please drop me a line.  We still have twelve months to go but there is no harm in a little forward planning.

Engine Shed

Down in the loco shed things are moving at a steady pace.  The centre set of axle boxes for S100 has now been fitted into the frames and work is commencing on the front set.  When all six are finished the frames are to be repainted and the wheels re-united with the frames.  Work on Alfred Paget is continuing as described in the article further in the magazine.  Both the Sentinel and Asbestos still continue to perform well in traffic with minor maintenance on a week-to-week basis.  917 still remains stabled on the shed road awaiting restoration, and as progress continues on the overall locomotive restoration programme I feel that it will not be too long before work is started on bringing 917 back into service.  The Hudswell Clarke and Invicta await the decision of the various parties as to when work will commence on bringing the locomotives back to full working order.

In a slightly lighter vein, any regular visitors to the Railway over the past couple of months will have noticed that we have ‘acquired’ a pair of horses.  We are helping out a local gentleman by stabling his horses for a short period.  Tony Wheeler has saved a fortune in strimmer wire and effort as the horses are great at keeping the grass in the top compound under control.  As a bonus, the gardens are getting a great source of free fertiliser!  The appearance of the top compound has been greatly improved and it looks much tidier all round.  The bottom compound is also undergoing an amount of work.  The fence line is being expanded and the steel sheds which we have acquired from Centrac have been erected, so increasing the amount of secure accommodation for all the materials that we have been receiving.  The JCB has received attention to the gearbox, which necessitated a visit to the scrapyard, and the Railway also purchased a second dumper truck from the same source.  A proposal has been made that this could be fitted with rail wheels so helping in the ballasting of the extension.

Ticket Cabinet IOMTicket Cabinet from the Isle of Man Railway (Chasewater Railway Museum)

Canal News 2013 – Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

WRG Headerheader2

Canal News 2013

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

from footbridgeThe Chelmer and Blackwater Navigation

Taken from the footbridge, looking south east towards Ulting.  © Copyright Trevor Harris and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

 Date: 16th-23rd February

 Location: Maldon, Essex

Leaders: Chris Byrne (leader)

Cost: £56 | Accommodation: Danbury Outdoor Centre | activites: towpath repairs, vegetation clearance


The Chelmer and Blackwater Navigation runs through a largely unspoilt part of rural Essex and connects Chelmsford with the tidal estuary of the River Blackwater at Heybridge Basin. In 2005 our sister organisation, Essex Waterways, took over the management of the navigation. To help maintain this beautiful waterway WRG is running more camps this year.

What’s going on in 2013 …

So why not join the Essex Waterways team as they have an array of tasks waiting for you! Get stuck into various improvement works including towpath maintenance, vegetation control and tree management along the Navigation.

Being maintenance work, camps on the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation are different from our normal restoration projects but if you fancy helping us keep this active and vibrant waterway alive then this is the camp for you!

LockRushey Lock

Rushey Lock is on the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation. The TL8 Northing passes through the lock behind the gates. The G.R is for the apex of the gates in the picture.   © Copyright Glyn Baker and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

215 – Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces From Chasewater News – Spring 1998 – Part 5 Carriage and Wagon News

215 – Chasewater Railway Museum Bits & Pieces

From Chasewater News – Spring 1998 – Part 5

Carriage and Wagon News

Andy Kennerley

M & C Shildon 1975The Maryport & Carlisle Coach at Shildon in 1975

Work in this department has slowed due to the problems with maintaining rolling stock out in the open air, with most of the time being taken up trying to save some of the Railway’s most important assets.  The biggest change has been the shunt which has taken place, in which the Midland brake van was moved out from the end of ‘2’ road and placed in front of the MSL coach.  Restoration has been carrying on in between periods of preventative maintenance to try and slow the deterioration of the Railway’s wooden–bodied rolling stock.  As the Railway’s membership has been growing it might allow some of the slowly increasing number of working members to switch to the Carriage and Wagon department from the more immediate work on other areas of the Railway.  The following report has been compiled to try and give an up-to-date view of the condition of the vehicles in store at Chasewater.  Little or no expenditure has been made by the C&W dept due to the work of our ‘Procurement Officer’ I.e. scrounger, Tony Wheeler, who seems able to locate sources of quality timber from all sorts of places.

Midland 4-Wheel Brake

10 MR 4w Passenger Brake

The restoration of this vehicle has been progressing quite well even with the effects of the bad weather that we have been experiencing lately.  The main bulk of the work at the moment is waterproofing the existing hardwood and plywood panels, and replacing those which have rotted beyond use, as well as the fitting of two new doors with the assistance of Keith Poynter.  The result of all this work is that the wagon is now drier than it has been for quite a few years, as well as the outward appearance of the wagon being much improved with the application of a fresh coat of paint.

There has also been a lot of work replacing the missing beading, which is being made up out of pieces of hardwood panelling by Tony Wheeler.  Work has also been taking place on the restoration of the original gas lamps and grab handles.  Quite a lot of work has gone into researching the number of the coach, and into the original Midland livery which consisted of crimson lake with gold leaf beading.

MS & L 6-Wheel Coach

Work on this item of Chasewater’s stock has been slow of late due to the weather conditions but the paintwork is still looking good and this coach has caused quite a few heads to turn with a lot of good comments being made.  A lot of work has been carried out on the underside of this vehicle, with the spring hangers being cleaned and oiled and new cotter pins being made up to replace the badly corroded originals.  The original brake block retainers have been removed and these are being either renovated or replaced with new parts as required.

Maryport & Carlisle Coach

This coach remains partially sheeted up waiting for the panels to be replaced.  Some of the exposed windows on this vehicle have been smashed by stones from the local vandals, and some of the exposed woodwork on the vehicle’s frames has started to rot.  Hopefully, someone will start work on re-panelling this coach during the spring.

LNWR Paddy Coach

This coach, unfortunately, must be considered beyond reasonable repair to us at this time.  Discussions must take place into the future of this historic vehicle.  During the shunt around, part of the side of this carriage came away, along with several doors.

CCC Co. Brake Van

CCCC Brake Van

This wagon has now fallen into major disrepair, with the chassis collapsing and breaking the sole bars.  The interior of the van still remains dry.

CRC Co 4-Plank Wagon

This wagon continues to look good with only a limited amount of peeling on the paintwork.  A limited amount of work has been carried out on this wagon in the form of waterproofing the floor timbers.

CCC Co 4-Plank Wagon

This vehicle is currently under restoration and has been partially stripped down, awaiting a good, long dry spell when further work can be carried out on this wagon.

Midland Hand Crane

Now that this wagon has been uncovered from the large amount of brambles which grew over it, as assessment on the condition of the crane shows that it is in desperate need of repair.  Most of the timber-work on the base of the crane has now become totally unstable due to rot.  The jib section of the crane needs a total replacement beam due to the break in the base of the jib.  The bulk of the metalwork is still in good condition and the crane is a long-term restoration job.

MR CraneSuccess!

Cadbury’s Box Van


There is the start of some deterioration on this vehicle and it is the cause of some concern.  This van is still being used to store some items which are starting to be affected by the ingress of damp.  It is hoped that work on making this vehicle watertight will be started soon.

GWR Fruit ‘D’ Van

There has been little work on this wagon except for a tidy out and having the roof covered by a protective tarpaulin.  The exterior paintwork is still looking good.


This vehicle is still in its original condition as used by BR for a stores van at Wolverhampton High Level Station.  Several windows have been covered up after being broken by vandals and are awaiting replacement.  The external coat of paint is still keeping the worst of the weather out and the vehicle remains dry inside.

Tank Wagon

There has been little work done on this wagon with the interior being washed out and any signs of green algae being cleaned off the exterior.

Maunsell Brake Van

There has been little work done on this vehicle after it was re-roofed two years ago.  Water ingress is still a problem and very little is stored in this vehicle.

Midland Box Van

MR 1109 Box Van

There has been little work done on this wagon except for attention to the brake gear and the door slides being lubricated.

GWR 21 ton Toad Brake Van

This is the mainstay of the P Way gang works train and is in regular use every weekend.  The external paintwork is good and the vehicle is warm and dry.  A new lock assembly has been manufactured and installed to protect the padlock and bars have been placed over the windows to make the Toad a more secure vehicle.

GWR 16 ton Toad Brake Van

This vehicle still requires attention to the roof and to the broken spring before the vehicle can be returned to traffic.

NE Box Van

North-Eastern Box Van

There has been very little work carried out on this wagon except for a tidy out and a protective tarpaulin covering.

GE 6-Wheel Brake

This vehicle remains watertight and generally well protected against the elements.  One or two of the panels need some attention and some cracked windows need replacement.

Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era 1902 – Earlier Robinson 4-6-0s Great Central Railway

Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era

1902 – Earlier Robinson 4-6-0s

Great Central Railway

6100 - One of the 6 -7 engines in 19266100 – One of the 6′ 7″ engines in 1926

In all, J.G.Robinson designed nine classes of 4-6-0 for the Great Central Railway during his period of office from 1900 to 1922, the first four of which conformed to one general pattern and can be considered here.  The later classes differed very considerably.

The arrangement common to all four of the earlier designs was the two outside cylinders driving the centre pair of wheels, with the framing raised to clear the coupling rods and separate splashers for each pair of driving wheels.  The main variations between the four classes lay in the sizes of the driving wheels and the boilers.


The first batch consisted of fourteen engines, No. 180-7and 1067-72, built between 1902 and 1904.  These had 6’ 1” wheels and were intended mainly for the fast fish traffic between Grimsby and London, hence they were usually known as the ‘Fish’ class.

Nos. 195 and 196, which appeared in 1903, were intended for express work and had 6’ 9” driving wheels.  Apart from the six-coupled wheels, they were identical with the ‘Atlantics’ which appeared at the same time, and were built for the sake of comparison between the two types.  Neither class was ever converted, however, unlike the similar situation on the Great Western, where the 4-4-2 type was eventually altered to 4-6-0.


1906 saw ten somewhat similar engines but with 6’ 7” wheels, Nos. 1095-1104, of which 1097 bore the name ‘Immingham’.

Lastly, in the same year, were ten engines, Nos. 1105-14, with 5’ 3” wheels for fast freight traffic.  All of these classes had 5000 added to their numbers at the grouping, and in 1946 they were renumbered from 1469089 and 1678-90 (two engines already withdrawn were not included here).  They were scrapped between 1947 and 1950, and although some passed into BR hands, only two, old 1105 and 1111 actually carried BR numbers, which they did as Nos. 61469 and 61475.


B1 later B18 – Driving wheels – 6’ 9”,  Cylinders – 21”x 26”,  Pressure – 180 lb.,  Tractive effort – 21658 lb.,  Weight – 72 tons 18 cwt,  GCR classification – 8C,  LNER classification B1, later B18

B4 – Driving wheels – 6’ 7”,  Cylinders – 21”x 26”,  Pressure – 180 lb.,  Tractive effort – 22206 lb.,  Weight – 71 tons 15 cwt,  GCR classification – 8F,  LNER classification B4

B5 – Driving wheels – 6’ 1”,  Cylinders – 21”x 26”,  Pressure – 180 lb.,  Tractive effort – 24030 lb.,  Weight – 65 tons 4 cwt,  GCR classification – 8,  LNER classification B5

B9 – Driving wheels – 5’ 3”,  Cylinders – 21”x 26”,  Pressure – 180 lb.,  Tractive effort – 27410 lb.,  Weight – 66 tons 1 cwt,  GCR classification – 8G,  LNER classification B9

The cylinder dimensions were originally 19”x 26”, with less tractive effort in consequence.


Bill Giese Highly Detailed Rock Island HO Scale Model Railroad


Bill Giese Highly Detailed Rock Island HO Scale Model Railroad.

Click the link above to access

Narrow Gauge Lines – The Causeway Tramway – Ireland

Narrow Gauge Lines

The Causeway Tramway – Ireland

Bushmills StationBushmills and Giant’s Causeway Railway at Bushmills station, Co. Antrim

This 3ft gauge line is built over part of the trackbed of the former Portrush and Giant’s Causeway Tramway, a pioneering electric line similar in many respects to the still-existing Manx Electric Railway. The P&GCT was at least 100 years ahead of its time, as it planned to generate its electricity by tidal power, so having zero carbon footprint. This line survived until around 1951. It is a pity that the B&GCR was not built as an electric line to reflect this history. The steam locomotive shown here is No 3 ‘Shane’, previously at the Shane’s Castle Railway in Antrim City.  © Copyright Dr Neil Clifton and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Station Building

 The  Causeway Tramway was re-opened in Spring  2002, The locomotives and rolling stock which operate on the track  were once used at Shane’s Castle and include  a Peckett 0-4-0 WT ‘Tyrone’ built in 1904 for the British Aluminium Company, Larne, a Barclay 0-4-0WT ‘Shane’ built in 1949 for Bord na Mona (incidentally the same year that the old tramway closed) and a Simplex ‘T’ class diesel locomotive (Rory). An interesting fact –  ‘Shane’ was one of three locomotives built by Andrew Barclay of Kilmarnock for use on the peat bog rail by Bord na Mona at Clonast and was specifically  designed to burn peat.

Station Sheds

Prior to the initiation of the original Giants Causeway Tramway in 1883, there had been several meetings, engineer surveys and costing done to evaluate the feasibility of constructing a railway line along the coast  from Portrush to Ballycastle, the idea being to  link the commercial coal, bauxite, iron, limestone, liganite  and basalt industries along the north coast with the commercial harbour of Portrush. The ambitious  proposal was shelved due to a lack of finance and doubts about the returns from such an investment. A narrow gauge railway was eventually built from Ballycastle to Ballymoney via Armoy and Dervock.


The Giants Causeway tramway  was brought into being by the vision and enthusiasm of  Col. William Traill of Ballyclough who himself was a keen advocator of the railway and kept well informed on technological development in engineering. It was this fact coupled with the Siemens Company showing the first electric railway system at the Berlin Trade Fair in 1879, that lead to that company being commissioned to incorporate their technology into the Giants Causeway Tramway system.  Col.Traill built the generating station at the Walkmill Falls (still there but minus the equipment) and installed water turbines to produce the necessary electrical power for the tram line.

Sir Macnaghten  of Dundarave was very opposed to the construction of the railway to the point that he diverted water from the river Bush above the Falls in an attempt to lessen the flow. However, the tramway opened in 1883 and was hailed as the world’s first commercially run ‘hydro-electric’ powered tram system. The initial electric cars were Midland Carriage and Wagons which were later followed by GEC and a Peckham car. Although hydro-electric power was used, most of the time two Wilkinson steam locomotives hauled the carriages. It originally ran from Portrush to Bushmills with a later extension added to the Giants  Causeway. In 1899 the live rail which ran alongside the track, was replaced by an overhead electric wire, steam haulage ended in 1916. The tramway ran for 65 years before finally closing down in 1949.

Giant's Causeway StationNo.3 Shane, arriving at the Giant’s Causeway Station from Bushmills

 This two mile stretch of 3ft gauge railway runs from Bushmills to the Giants Causeway and was opened in 2002. It utilises the old track bed of the Portrush to Giants Causeway electric tramway which closed in 1949. Most of the current track and rolling stock was used on the Shanes Castle Railway which closed in 1995.  © Copyright Wilson Adams and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.