Tag Archives: Dean Goods

Steam Locomotives of a more Leisurely Era – GWR 1883 – Dean Goods

 Great Western Railway 

Dean Goods  0-6-0

2563  as running about 1900.  In later years they received Belpaire fireboxes and superheaters.  H.C.Casserley

William Dean’s standard goods engine for the GWR, totalling 280 engines, built between 1883 and 1899, and numbered 2301-2580.  Nos. 2361-80, built in 1885 and 1886, differed from the others in having double frames.

The class proved to be a very efficient one, and the later survivors continued to put in much useful work, the last one to remain in service not being withdrawn until 1957.  Between 1907 and 1910 Nos. 2491-2510 were rather oddly rebuilt as 2-6-2T engines, becoming Nos. 3901-20 (although not in the same order).  These were all withdrawn between 1931 and 1934.2532      Dean Goods No.2532 heads a Lambourn to Newbury train in the      summer of 1947.  J.F.Russell-Smith

War Service

In 1917, 62 engines were taken over by the Railway Operating Division and sent to France. 46 of these engines returned to England in the early summer of 1919, but the other 16 had been sent on to Salonika at the beginning of 1918. Two of these engines, nos. 2308 and 2542, were sold to the Ottoman (Aiden) Railways and renumbered 110 and 111. No 111 was withdrawn in September 1929, but 110 lasted until the 1950s. Of the 14 engines remaining at Salonika, six were written-off and the other eight returned to England in April 1921.

At the outbreak of the Second World War, the War Department requisitioned 100 of these engines from the GWR and the GWR had to hastily reinstate some engines that had been recently withdrawn. The requisitioned engines were fitted with Westinghouse brakes and 10 were fitted with pannier tanks and condensing gear. All were painted black with their WD numbers painted on. In December 1940, the War Department requisitioned a further 8 engines.

At the time of the German invasion of France, 79 of these engines had been shipped to France. Some of the engines were destroyed in the retreat to Dunkirk whilst the remainder were used on the French railways by the German occupation forces. After the war, between 22 and 26 engines were sent to China under UNRRA auspices, and 30 were returned to the UK, but were deemed unfit for service and scrapped. No.2435 (WD no.188) was used in Silesia and then Austria until 1948 when it was claimed by the Russians before being handed back to the Austrians in 1952. Two further engines, nos. 2419 and 2526 (WD nos. 106 and 132) are known to have passed beyond the Iron Curtain. The remaining engines are assumed to have been scrapped.2538        There cannot have been many sections of the main line, or any branches of the Great Western which at one time or another were not the haunts of the Dean Goods 0-6-0s.  After the absorption of the Cambrian Railways on 1923 members of the class were a daily sight at almost any station on that section of the system on both passenger and freight trains.  The Mid-Wales line between Brecon and Moat Lane Junction used these engines until the last few years of their existence and it was not until the standard LMS small 2-6-0 was perfected and the new BR ‘78000’ class built that they disappeared from the scene.  No.2538, the last survivor, makes hard work of a north-bound goods near Rhayader in 1951.  J.F.Russell-Smith.

Of the engines that remained in England, most of them worked at War Department and Ordnance depots around the country, though in 1943, 6 were shipped to Tunisia and thence to Italy.

The last of the double-framed variety went in 1946, but in 1948 54 of the standard engines came into possession of the BR, and the last in service was No.2538, withdrawn in 1957.  No. 2516 has been retained for preservation and is now at Swindon.2516    The now preserved Dean Goods No.2516 at Cleobury Mortimer, on the line through the Wyre Forest from Bewdley to Woofferton, one of the most scenic branches on the Worcestershire/Shropshire border.  Regular passenger traffic was worked by Great Western type diesel cars for many years, but in July 1961 these ceased to operate and the service was cut to two trains per day, the morning and evening school train from Tenbury to Kidderminster, allowing the locomotive (a 57XX  pannier tank) to work the branch goods between services.  P.B.Whitehouse.

Final Dimensions: 

Driving wheels – 5’ 2”, Cylinders – 17”x24”,  Pressure – 180lbs.,  Tractive effort – 17,120lbs., Weight – 36 tons 16 cwt.

Some engines had 17½”x24” cylinders with 18,140lbs tractive effort.2516     Dean Good Loko, STEAM-Museum of the Great Western Railway, Swindon, England, Foto selbst gemacht.

Some Early Lines – Mawddwy Light Railway

In spite of my spending a fair amount of time around the Mid-Wales area, this is yet another railway branch which I had never heard of!

Mawddwy Railway

Mawddwy Railway
Locale Wales
Dates of operation 1867 & 1911–1908 & 1951
Successor abandoned
Track Gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm  Standard Gauge)
Length 6+34 miles (10.9 km)
Headquarters ?

The Mawddwy Railway was a rural line in the Dovey Valley in mid-Wales that connected Cemmaes Road and the Cambrian Railway with Dinas Mawddwy.  Despite being only 6 miles 63 chains (10.9 km) long, there were three intermediate stations at Cemmaes, Aberangell (where it linked to the Hendre-Ddu Tramway) and Mallwyd.

    By 1854, the slate quarries at Dinas Mawddwy were employing a significant number of people.] At the same time, a new Lord of the manor of Dinas Mawddwy was installed, Edmund Buckley. He sponsored the building of a railway to connect the slate quarries at Dinas Mawddwy with the recently opened Cambrian Railways main line, at Cemmaes Road. The construction of the railway was contracted to R.S. Francis, with the contract starting in 1866. The railway opened on 1 October 1867. The first locomotive to work trains was Mawddwy which had previously been owned by Francis and used during construction. This was joined in 1868 by a second Manning Wardle locomotive, named Disraeli. Slate traffic and agricultural produce made up the bulk of the traffic on the railway, but from the earliest days it was clear that the railway company was struggling financially. In 1892 the Maes-y-gamfa slate quarry opened, connected to the Mawddwy Railway’s Aberangell station via the Hendre-Ddu Tramway, bringing the promise of additional revenue. However, by this time, the infrastructure of the railway was considerably worn and there was no financial revival.

    The slate industry continued to decline during the late 1890s and early 1900s, and the Mawddwy Railway continued to run down as revenues did not allow effective maintenance. Passenger services were suspended “pending repairs” around 1900. A single daily freight train continued to run until April 1908, at which point all services were abandoned due to the poor state of the track.]

    The local community, led by David Davies, called a series of meetings with the aim of reviving the railway. A proposal to form a new light railway to take over and operate the Mawddwy Railway. In 1910 a Light Railway Order was granted, permitting the railway company to construct a “new” light railway on the disused trackbed. Reconstruction commenced immediately under the direction of G.C. MacDonald, the Engineer of the Cambrian Railways. The track was relaid in heavy rail and several bridges were rebuilt or strengthened. On 29 July 1911 the railway reopened under the chairmanship of David Davies, with trains operated by Cambrian Railways.

    The advent of the First World War dealt a significant blow to the railway. Several local slate quarries closed and tourist traffic fell considerably, although timber and munitions traffic for the war effort offset this somewhat. After the war ended, the railway continued to struggle. In 1923 the Great Western Railway (GWR) took control of the Mawddwy Railway as part of the grouping of British railways. The GWR introduced buses to the Dyfi valley, many operated by its subsidiary the Corris Railway. These competed with the passenger services of the railway, leading to the end of passenger services at the end of 1930.

    Freight services continued through the Second World War, although the local slate industry continued to decline. The quarries served by the Hendre-Ddu Tramway closed in late 1939, though part of the tramway continued in use to bring timber from the forests west of Aberangell. After the war, the railway became part of British Railways at nationalisation. In September 1950 heavy flooding of the River Dyfi damaged the railway bridge north of Cemmaes Road station. The line was officially closed on 1 July 1952. The track was lifted early in 1952.


    Name Type Builder Works number Date built Cylinder size Wheel diameter Notes
    Mawddwy 0-6-0 ST Manning Wardle 104 1864 12 in x 17 in 3 ft 0 in Delivered in 1865 to contractor R.S. Francis for use on construction of the Potteries, Shrewsbury & North Wales Railway.  Sold to the Mawddwy Railway in late 1865. Rebuilt in 1893 and 1911. Transferred to the Van Railway after 1911, scrapped in 1940.
    Disraeli 0-6-0 ST Manning Wardle 268 1868 13 in x 18 in 3 ft 6 in Slightly larger locomotive than Mawddwy, scrapped in 1911.