1889 – 0-8-0 & 0-8-2T Barry Railway
In 1886-8 Sharp Stewart & Co. built twenty 0-8-0 tender engines for the Swedish & Norwegian Railway, a company founded for the transport of iron ore from a mine in Sweden to Narvik on the west coast of Norway, but for some reason they were never delivered, and were left on the maker’s hands.
In 1889 the Barry Railway in South Wales purchased two of them, and they had the distinction of being the first 8-coupled engines of any British railway. They proved very successful, and as in 1897 two of them were still on hand at the maker’s works, the Barry acquired these also, but not before they had, in the previous year, ordered seven new engines of virtually the same class, but built as tank locomotives. These were the first 0-8-2Ts ever to run in Britain. The remaining 0-8-0s had in the meantime found other buyers abroad.
Owing to the small turntables in use on the Barry system, the 0-8-0s had to be fitted with 4-wheeled tenders. This resulted in the unusual situation of the tender engines having less coal and water carrying capacity than the tank version. Both classes underwent a few modifications by the Barry, but all passed practically unaltered to the hands of the GWR at the grouping, who in accordance with their usual practice when acquiring engines from another company were quick to ‘Great Westernise’ most of them by fitting them with GWR boiler mountings and chimneys. The 0-8-0s had been BR Nos.35, 36, 92 and 93, and they became GWR 1387-90. The 0-8-2Ts were Barry 79-85, renumbered GWR 1380-6. All were broken up between 1925 and 1930, but it may be mentioned that another South Wales company, the Port Talbot Railway, acquired three 0-8-2Ts of the same design, also from Sharp Stewart in 1901, and one of those, as GWR No.1358, lasted until 1948.
0-8-0 – Driving wheels – 4’ 3”, Cylinders (2) 18”x 26”, Pressure – 150 lb., Water capacity – 2000 galls, Coal capacity – 3 tons
0-8-2T – Driving wheels – 4’ 3”, Cylinders (2) 18”x 26”, Pressure – 150 lb., Water capacity – 2100 galls, Coal capacity – 3½ tons