Category Archives: Coal Tank

Building a full head of steam!

On the 3rd August, the LNWR Society held its 40th anniversary celebrations at Kidderminster Railway Museum, kindly hosted by the Severn Valley Railway. The event was well attended and proved to be enjoyable and informative with a good deal of lively discussion and debate ensuing on all matters ‘Premier Line’. The presentations included the Crewe to Shrewbury Line by Bob Yate (author of The Shropshire Union Railway, The South Staffordshire Railway volumes 1 and 2 among other titles) and the restoration and operation on ‘Coal Tank 1054‘ by Peter Skellon (who wrote the book on the Coal Tanks, Bashers, Gadgets and Mourners.)

Trustee Paul Hibberd and young Trust supporter Tom Mainprize were also there presenting the project and outlining the plans to the gathering in an hour-long Q&A session, which was warmly received. Indeed, I think we can safely say that the response we received far exceeded our expectations – to wit, thanks to the generosity of the members of the LNWR Society and other visitors, on the day we received in excess of £3,000 excluding the Gift Aid that will arise from the bulk of these donations. This places us in a position to order the frame plates.

On behalf of the LNWR George the Fifth Steam Locomotive Trust, we would like to humbly thank the many individuals who gave their financial and moral support for the project on the day. We firmly believe that this day constitutes a real inflection point for the project and a gathering of momentum, and that with your support, together we will build a new LNWR George the Fifth! As to the progress on the door and the intention to commence fabrication of the frames-plates, we hope to make further announcements soon. We also hope that we can soon confirm a number of other related developments underway that will no doubt please our members and supporters and provide a real filip to the project.

Watch this space as they say.

It should be noted that since the inception of the LNWR George the Fifth Steam Locomotive Trust, we have enjoyed a strong working relationship with the 700 strong membership of the LNWR Society, who have been tremendously supportive of our endeavours. That support arose under the auspices of the previous Chairman, Peter Stanton and continues with the personal support of the current Chairman, Brian Hayes.

We were of course, very happy to be a part of the LNWR Society’s 40th anniversary celebrations and we heartedly recommend becoming a member to anyone with in interest in the London & North Western Railway or even in Britain’s rich railway history and heritage generally. Membership provides direct access to a wealth of knowledge, artifacts and rare archival material – material that has been painstakingly preserved and collated over the years by the Society’s members to become the largest single repository of information and relics pertaining to the London & North Western Railway and its constituents. This tremendous depth of knowledge also extends to the membership and social events are a regular occurrence. More information on the LNWR Society can be found on their website here.

A sample of this rich collection was showcased on the day with the LNWR Society displaying a number of artifacts including nameplates, which helped to bring a past era alive again. The nameplates included Sirocco, the last LNWR 4-4-0 (a Precursor rebuilt to the George specification) – an engine that our trustee Bruce Nixon snapped as a young lad at Chester in 1949.

As mentioned, the bonds between the LNWR Society and the LNWR George the Fifth Steam Locomotive Trust are strong and abiding. The previous Chairman of the LNWR Society, Peter Stanton has been a redoubtable supporter of the project since its inception.  As a member of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers and a Chartered Engineer, Peter has been actively involved with the minutiae and the nuts and bolts of the project particularly in relation to mainline access. He is our ”Competent Independent Person’.

In addition to Peter Stanton and Richard Coleby, who was the subject in February 2013 of this post on this very blog, Peter Skellon of the Coal Tank Group (mentioned above) has long been tirelessly at hand in answering our many inquiries (and trust me, we’ve had a few in relation to the fabrication of the smokebox door!). Finally, it would be remiss of us not to again mention the invaluable support provided by Ted Talbot, who only recently has made available to the Trust a copy of the June 1911 pamphlet produced by Schmidt’s Superheating Co (1910) Ltd. entitled ‘The Application of Highly Superheated Steam to Locomotives‘ which specifically refers to the successful results achieved with the Georges. We would like to thank these gentlemen for their efforts and in bringing their great experience and knowledge to bear on this project.

All our members and supporters whether that support be financial, knowledge and expertise or moral are the very lifeblood of this project and we again thank you. Support which I should hasten to add, increasingly extends far and wide, including Australia and New Zealand, where notably one benefactor ‘downunder’ recently donating the sum of £500 to the project! So to our supporters (financial and otherwise) in Australia, New Zealand and elsewhere, we also extend a warm thanks. Wherever you are in the world, you are a part of the LNWR George the Fifth Steam Locomotive Trust family. Momentum grows and with it, so does our support-base, which is now widespread extending to all corners of the globe and across a broad-cross-section of the community in terms of age and profession.

Finally, here is a collection of photos from the LNWR Society day at Kidderminster. The first shows young Trust member, Tom Mainprize manning our  booth surrounded by the magnificent artwork of  Gerald Broom, Roger Markland, John Wardle and others. The second shows two LNWR nameplates including that of the LNWR George the Fifth class ‘Coronation‘, a photo of which can be seen on our main website. The third shows Peter Stanton while the fourth shows Mrs Muriel Higgs, is the widow of a driver/fireman.

 

 

 

Posted in Australia, Coal Tank, Fabrication, Frames, Fundraising, General News, LNWRS Society, New Zealand, Peter Stanton, Public Events, Richard Coleby, Social Media, Tad Talbot, Ted Talbot | Leave a comment

The London & North Western Railway Society 40th Anniversay Meeting

The trust will be present at the 40th Anniversary meeting of the The London & North Western Railway Society at Kidderminster Railway Museum on the Severn Valley Railway on the 3rd August.

Admission is free and open to the public. Events kick off at 10:30AM and will continue through to 5:30PM.

10.30am-12.30pm – “The Crewe – Shrewsbury Line” by Bob Yate, author of The Railways and Locomotives of the Lilleshall Company, By Great Western to Crewe” (the Wellington – Market Drayton – Nantwich line), The Shropshire Union Railway and Canal Company and The South Staffordshire Railway, plus numerous articles in magazines and journals. 

1pm – 2pm – The Build a George the Fifth Project – A Progress Report.

2.30pm-5.30pm – “Coal Tank 1054 – its Restoration and Operation” by Pete Skellon, author of Bashers, Gadgets and Mourners, the Life and Times of the LNWR Coal Tanks.

 Exhibition of paintings by Gerald Broom, Roger Markland and John Wardle. 

There will also be a number of stands, including our own displaying LNWR artifacts including nameplates, memorabilia, archives and models. The LNWR Society will also host a stand.

We cordially invite our followers, supporters, their families and friends to come along.  Please drop by to say hello and while you’re there be sure to check the exhibits at the Kidderminster Railway Museum and take a ride on the marvellous Severn Valley Railway.

Posted in Coal Tank, Fundraising, Galas, General News, History, LNWRS Society, Preservation Steam, Public Events, Volunteers | 1 Comment

2012 HRA Steam Railway Readers Award – it has to be the Coal Tank!

The latest Steam Railway magazine (No.404 July-August) has details on the 2012 HRA Steam Railway Readers Award – part of the HRA annual award scheme for Heritage Railways.

We at the LNWR George the Fifth Steam Locomotive Trust believe that the The LNWR Webb Coal Tank Webb Coal Tank 1054 (BR 58926); the sole surviving member of a class of 300, which has recently undergone an extensive restoration to working order, thoroughly deserves nomination.

And George agrees!  He says, support one of his relations.

So why would anyone want to nominate the Coal Tank?

Well – lots of reasons really!

  • The engine now operating is the result of a high quality, and totally volunteer-based, extensive overhaul.
  • Historical research has benefited the completion of the engine in an authentic manner and provided information for the publication of an award-winning book and audio CD.
  • Detail features such as the manufacture of replica LNW headlamps and engine driver’s caps for the footplate crew enhance that authenticity.
  • Carefully considered renumbering/livery changes are helping to interpret the story of the engine during it’s working life, such as the re-creation of the last train from Abergavenny to Merthyr.
  • Completion of the project has made us more aware of the Coal Tank’s importance in the whole spectrum of railway and locomotive heritage. Precious Few LNWR engines have survived into preservation and the Coal Tank is a unique glimpse of a class which was once a mainstay of the London & North Western Railway. Operational Late Victorian engines are a rare site in preservation steam as it is, and the Coal Tank is the only operational Late Victorian Engine representing the old LNWR.

For more information on the Webb’s Coal Tanks, check out the Wikipedia page here. Further information on 1054 (BR 58926) and on the dedicated team behind her careful and considered restoration to working order can be found here.

The nomination form can be found on page 20 of the current issue of Steam Railway. (Well worth the subscription we might add).  The nomination form states: “I nominate… because…” We’ve outlined just a few of the reasons why the Coal Tank deserves the nomination here to help you out!

Completed forms should be sent to:

HRA Steam Railway Awards
Steam Railway
Bauer Media House
Lynchwood, Peterborough PE2 6EA

Name, address, home and mobile telephone and email must be supplied. Photocopied forms will not be accepted however you can email your nomination (i.e The Coal Tank of course!) to: steam.railway@bauermedia.co.uk

Let’s give the team behind the restoration of the Coal Tank and this marvellous little engine the credit they thoroughly deserve!

 

Posted in Coal Tank, General News, Preservation Steam, Public Events | Leave a comment

Back from Railfest!

This gallery contains 2 photos.

We’re back from Railfest in York and we’re exhilarated and overwhelmed by the enthusiastic response we received there. People of all ages came to chat and many signed the email lists and took donation and subscriber forms. A highlight of the event for the Trust was undoubtedly the donation of a genuine LNWR steam whistle – a physically small yet symbolically momentous piece of the new locomotive. The voice of our new George will be authentically LNWR! Paul Hibberd, one of the Trustees, was presented with the whistle from Robin Dean in the cab of ‘Hardwicke‘. Robin told us he was given the whistle by someone at Wolverton carriage works … Continue reading

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