Tag Archives: Southern Region

Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era – 1942 – ‘USA’ Class Southern Region 0-6-0T

Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era

1942 – ‘USA’ Class

Southern Region 0-6-0T

Model of No.32 Model USA 0-6-0 Loco 1

Roger Monk sent these 2 photos of a model of the locos.

For anybody interested this was built in the 1980s from a white metal kit.  A ready to run version is due to be released in the near future.  A couple of locos of this type worked in the West Midlands – at the Austin (later BL & Rover) plant at Longbridge.  Details are in the IRS West Midlands Industrial Locomotives Handbook.

Model of No.32 Model USA 0-6-0 Loco 2

USA ClassOrigin – USA, Purchased by Southern Region – Dec. 1946, Driving wheels – 4’ 6”, Length 29’ 8”, Weight – 46 tons 10cwt, Water capacity – 1,200 US gallons, Designer – US Army Transportation Corps, Purpose – Heavy-duty Dock Shunting, Cylinders (2) – 16½”x 24”, Boiler pressure – 210 lb., Coal capacity – 1 US ton, Power classification – 3F.

A typically American ‘Switcher’ or shunting engine. Stove-pipe chimney and three domes, the centre one of which carries the whistle. Quite un-English in appearance. Outside cylinders and valve gear. Connecting rods drive on rear axle. Very wide cab necessitating special warning notice to shunters riding on steps.

Number series: 30061- 30074 (Total 14).

A total of 382 of these locomotives were built to this design by three American builders – Davenport, Porter and the Vulcan Iron Works.

After the war, forty two of these locomotives were stored at the War Department’s Newbury depot awaiting disposal. A number found their way to Yugoslavia but others were sold for £2,500 each to the Southern Railway at the end of 1946. The latter found the locomotive’s 10 feet coupled wheelbase very useful and they were allocated to Southampton Docks where they subsequently became very well known to British enthusiasts.. Indeed, some of these locomotives have survived and can still be seen working on preserved railways – I believe there is one the Bluebell Line, on on the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway and two on the Kent and East Sussex Railway.

DS238The National Coal Board purchased three of the locomotives in May-June 1947 for use at its collieries in the north east. It would appear that their new surroundings were not to their liking and all three locomotives had short lives. Presumably their unusual pedigree posed a problem when major renewal was required. NCB No.32 (Davenport 2521 of 1943, number 4372) operated at Rising Sun Colliery and from Backworth Shed before it was scrapped in June 1954.

The other two locomotives – No.35 (Davenport 2509 of 1943, number 1944) and No. 36 (Davenport 2595 of 1944, Number 6006) worked on the Hartley Main system until they were scrapped in May and October 1953 respectively.


Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era 1910 – 4-6-2T London Brighton & South Coast Railway

Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era

1910 – 4-6-2T

London Brighton & South Coast Railway

32325 as running in 1947Two very fine express tank engines designed by D.E.Marsh and built in 1910 and 1912. They were Nos. 325 ‘Abergavenny’ and 326 ‘Bessborough’. The second engine differed slightly from the first in being fitted with Walschaert’s valve gear. They had superheaters from the start. They did splendid work on the London and Brighton expresses until the electrification of 1932, after which they had to be relegated to less spectacular duties. They eventually found a home at Tunbridge Wells and finished their days on stopping trains to London via the Oxted line.

Both lost their names in Southern days, when they became SR Nos. 2325 and 2326. They survived to become BR Nos. 32325 and 32326, but both were withdrawn in 1951.

Driving wheels – 6’ 7½”, Cylinders – 21”x 26”, Pressure – 170 lb., Tractive effort – 20800 lb., Weight – 89 tons, Classification – J1 (No. 325), J2 (No. 326)


Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era 1901 – Wainwright 4-4-0 South Eastern & Chatham Railway

Steam Locomotives of a More Leisurely Era

1901 – Wainwright 4-4-0

South Eastern & Chatham Railway

1493No.1493 of Class D 

H.S.Wainwright’s first express engines for the newly formed SECR.  The first forty came out in 1901-3, numbered 726-50 and with scattered numbers earlier in the South Eastern list replacing older engines which had been scrapped.  Another eleven of the class were built in 1906-7, bringing the total to 51.  These engines were known as Class D.  Class E, consisting of twenty engines, was built between 1906 and 1908, and they were generally similar but had Belpaire fireboxes and less ornamental splashers.  Later the E class received extended smokeboxes and two of them were superheated.

743No. A 743 (later 1743) of Class D1 in the early 1930s

In 1919 No. 179 was completely rebuilt by Maunsell with superheater, increased grate area and larger diameter piston valves.  The frames were also cut away to clear the coupling rods in Midland fashion, and this in fact was not the only Derby characteristic in the rebuilt engine.  The reconstruction was achieved with practically no increase in weight, a necessary provision in view of the severe restrictions then in force over the Chatham main line.  Between 1920 and 1927 ten more engines of Class E and twenty of the Ds were similarly rebuilt and, although distinguished by the classifications D1 and E1, they became virtually the same class and were almost indistinguishable in appearance.  They did an immense amount of tremendously hard work over the difficult Chatham road with its heavy holiday traffic, for many years being the heaviest engines allowed on that line.31160All the rebuilds passed into BR hands in 1948.  Under SR ownership their numbers had been increased by 1000 and now were similarly renumbered into the 31000s.  Withdrawal began in 1950, but in 1959 there were still over a dozen in service.


Restored 31737Class D 4-4-0 locomotive 737

Ex South Eastern and Chatham Railway (SECR) Class D 4-4-0 locomotive 737 (SR A737-1737, BR 31737 numbers) built at Ashford locomotive works in 1901 to a design by Wainright SECR design  © Copyright Ashley Dace and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

 The remaining engines of Class D and E were never rebuilt, and all had been taken out of service by 1956.  No. 31737, however, has been preserved for restoration to its original SECR colours.  With their elaborate livery and abundance of brasswork coupled with their well-proportioned outline these were amongst the most handsome engines ever designed.


Class D – Driving wheels – 6’ 8”,  Cylinders – 19”x 26”,  Pressure – 175 lb.,  Tractive effort – 17453 lb.,  Weight – 50 tons,  BR classification – 2P

Class E – Driving wheels – 6’ 6”,  Cylinders – 19”x 26”*,  Pressure – 180 lb.,  Tractive effort – 18411 lb.,  Weight – 52 tons 5 cwt, – BR classification – 2P

Class D1 – Driving wheels – 6’ 8”,  Cylinders – 19”x 26”,  Pressure – 180 lb.,  Tractive effort – 17950 lb.,  Weight – 52 tons 4 cwt,  BR classification – 3P

Class E1 – Driving wheels – 6’ 6”,  Cylinders – 19”x 26”,  Pressure – 180 lb.,  Tractive effort – 18411 lb.,  Weight – 53 tons 9 cwt,  BR classification – 3P

Class E1 –The two superheated engines, Nos. 36 and 275, had 20½”x 26” cylinders and increased tractive effort.


Steam Locomotives of a Leisurely Era 1887 – London & South Western Railway Adams 0-4-2

Steam Locomotives of a Leisurely Era

1887 – London & South Western Railway

Adams 0-4-2

No. 644 at Strawberry Hill in 1921.  The brass beading to the splashers was latterly removed from most of the engines

First appearing in the fiftieth year of Queen Victoria’s reign, the engines of this class were always known as ‘Jubilees’.

The 0-4-2 tender was new to the LSWR at this period although it had been found previously on the neighbouring LBSCR and a few other lines, notably the Great Northern and the Glasgow and South Western.  The new engines were intended, and were in fact used, for all manner of duties, except top-link expresses, for which they were hardly suited.  It is recorded, however, that one of them did on one occasion in an emergency work the famous 11 o’clock West of England from Waterloo (later known as the Atlantic Coast Express).

In all, ninety of the class were built: Nos. 527-57, which came out from Nine Elms in 1887-9, followed by another forty from Neilson & Co. in 1892-3, Nos. 607-46, and a further twenty at Nine Elms in 1893-5, Nos. 597-606 and 647-56.  The later engines differed slightly from the original thirty in having the steam chest between, instead of below, the cylinders, and lever reverse together with a few minor improvements.  They were very efficient engines and put in a lot of hard work until they gradually began to be scrapped from 1928 onwards.  Nos. 618, 627,629 and 636 survived until 1948 to be absorbed into BR stock, but were withdrawn in that year, none of them being renumbered in the 30000 series.No. 617 in Southern Region livery – Mike Morant Collection

They all gradually lost their Adams stove-pipe chimneys in favour of the Drummond pattern, and a few of them latterly carried Drummond type boilers.  Most of the first batch were originally given old second-hand tenders of Beattie origin, later replaced by newer ones from scrapped engines of other classes.  A few were latterly dual fitted with both Westinghouse and vacuum brakes.  Otherwise the class remained unaltered throughout its existence.  No. 555 had the distinction of hauling Queen Victoria’s funeral train from Gosport to Fareham on 2nd February, 1901, where the train was handed over to the LBSCR.

 Driving wheels – 6’ 0”,  Trailing wheels – 4’ 0”,  Cylinders – 18”x 26”,  Pressure – 160 lb.,  Weight – 43 tons 8 cwt.,  LSWR classification – A12 (527-56), 04 (597-656),  SR classification – A12 (the whole class),  LSWR and SR power classification – J.No. 643 at Raynes Park – Mike Morant Collection

Steam Locos of a Leisurely Era 1885 Stirling4-4-0 South Eastern Railway

Steam Locos of a Leisurely Era

 1885 Stirling4-4-0

South Eastern RailwayNo.A172, one of the last remaining unrebuilt engines of Class F, in 1928.

James Stirling’s express engines for the South Eastern Railway were all 4-4-0s of two main classes.  The earlier consisted of 88 engines built between 1883 and 1898, and the second of 29 engines turned out in 1898 and 1899.  All had the characteristic Stirling domeless boiler, and the first lot had his typical round cabs.  The later ones, which were larger engines, had square cabs and also tenders with the springs below the footplate, as distinct from the older engines.Nº1043.  photograph: Mike Morant collection

Of the first lot, all except twelve were rebuilt by Wainwright with domed boilers and new cabs, and all but one of these again later received extended smokeboxes.  The same treatment was applied to the later class with the exception of two engines, Nos.34 and 458, which were scrapped in 1930-1 without being rebuilt.  The unconverted members of the smaller type lasted to between 1925 and 1930, but one rebuilt engine, No.20, had been broken up as early as 1920.  This one never received the extended smokebox.

The numbers of the earlier class were scattered throughout the range between 2 and 250, whereas the later ones were 440-59, and nine others with miscellaneous numbers.  Most of both classes survived into SR days to have 1000 added to their numbers, but although nine of the smaller ones and sixteen of the larger came into BR possession in 1948, they did not last long, and only one of each variety, Nos.31151 and 31146, ever bore a BR number.  Both were scrapped in 1949.

Unrebuilt – Driving wheels – 7’ 0”,  Cylinders – 19”x 26”,  Pressure 160 lb.,  Weight – 42 tons 10 cwt.,  Classification – F

Rebuilt – Driving wheels – 7’ 0”,  Cylinders – 18”x 26”,  Pressure 170 lb.,  Weight – 45 tons 2 cwt.,  Classification – F1

Unrebuilt – Driving wheels – 7’ 0”,  Cylinders – 19”x 26”,  Pressure 160 lb.,  Weight – 46 tons 1 cwt.,  Classification – B

Rebuilt – Driving wheels – 7’ 0”,  Cylinders – 18”x 26”,  Pressure 170 lb.,  Weight – 45 tons 2 cwt.,  Classification – B1Class F1 locos 1060 and 1183 double-head a train in 1936. (The stock is out of the picture!)  photograph: Mike Morant collection

Steam Locos of a Leisurely Era 1873 – Stroudley’s D1 0-4-2T London, Brighton & South Coast Railway

Steam Locos of a Leisurely Era

1873 – Stroudley’s D1   0-4-2T

 London, Brighton & South Coast Railway

Illustration:  No.233 Handcross in original state.

Stroudley’s standard suburban and branch tank engine, 125 of which were built between 1873 and 1887.  Numbered 1-34, 221-99 and 351-62, they bore names of villages and localities served by the old Brighton railway, but these were all removed by Marsh from 1905 onwards, when the gay yellow livery was at the same time replaced by the more sombre chocolate.


They were grand little engines, and could be seen as late as the 1920s still taking their share on those sections of the busy London suburban service not then electrified.  In later years most of the survivors were adapted to motor working with pull-and-push trains for the country areas.

Nine of the original1-34 series and also No. 263 were scrapped between 1904 and 1913, but no more withdrawals took place until the grouping in 1923, and even then most of them survived for a number of years and had 2000 added to their numbers by the SR.  By this time all the remainder of the first batch had been renumbered, mostly into the 600s, and in some cases they were altered more than once.  Eighteen still remained in 1948 to be absorbed into BR stock, but they did not survive much longer and none acquired a BR 30000 number.

The last to remain in service on the SR was Np.2252, withdrawn in September 1950, but the last survivor of all was old 357 Riddlesdown, which in 1947 had been sold to the privately owned Whittingham Mental Asylum Railway in Lancashire, on which line it existed until closure in 1957.

During the war a few of them were loaned to the LMS in Scotland, far from their normal haunts; in fact one even reached the now closed Wick & Lybster branch, the rail point most remote from the south on the whole British railway network.  During the same period others were fitted by the SR for fire fighting as an air raid precaution and kept at various important sheds in the London area.

In their later days the types of boiler and chimney carried varied considerably, and most of the more recent survivors had acquired plain cast iron chimneys with Ramsbottom safety valves on the firebox.  In 1920 old 20 Carshalton, then renumbered 79 and which later successively bore the numbers 79A, 349, and finally216, was rebuilt with a much larger boiler and reclassified D1x, but no more were similarly treated.  This engine lasted until 1934.  The only other alteration of note was to No.248, formerly Ashurst, which was badly damaged in a collision in 1920 and emerged from the shops with new square topped side tanks.

The last of the class (357 Riddlesdown) as running on the Whittingham Railway in 1951, in the form to which most of the later survivors were finally altered.


Class D1 – Driving wheels – 5’ 6”,  Trailing wheels – 4’ 6”,  Cylinders – 17”x 24”,  Boiler diameter – 4’ 0”,  Pressure – 170 lb (originally 140 lb and later 150 lb),  Tractive effort – 15185 lb,  Weight – 43½ tons

Class D1x (No.216) – Driving wheels – 5’ 6”,  Trailing wheels – 4’ 6”,  Cylinders – 17”x 24”.  Boiler diameter – 4’ 6”,  Pressure – 170 lb  Weight – 44tons 18 cwt

248  Class  D1 with modified tanks