Kings lined up waiting for the chop
THIS is a sad sight for railway enthusiasts – three mighty King Class locomotives parked on a siding and waiting their final journey to the scrapyard.
The picture was taken in September 1962 at the Stafford Road Depot in Wolverhampton.
The GWR’S King Class were among the most powerful railway locomotives ever built in the Britain, designed to haul the Great Western’s prestigious express passenger services. They were a frequent sight in the Black Country, working the Wolverhampton-birmingham-padington expresses and several of them were based at Stafford Road over the years.
We can identify only one of the locomotives in this picture, 6017 King Edward IV. Built at the Swindon works in 1928, this engine was the very first King to be based at Stafford Road, arriving there brand new in June 1928.
King Edward IV ended its working life at Stafford Road too and was withdrawn from service in July 1962.
The engine remained in the Black Country. Its last journey was to the scrapyard of Cox and Danks in Tat Bank Road, Langley Green, Oldbury. It was cut up in May 1963.
6017 King Edward IV was one of a dozen steam engines that were scrapped by Cox and Danks at their Oldbury depot – one Castle Class and 11 Kings from Wolverhampton. The others were 5045 Earl of Dudley, 6001 King Edward VII, 6002 King William IV, 6007 King William III, 6012 King Edward VI, 6014 King Henry VII, 6015 King Richard III, 6016 King Edward V, 6020 King Henry IV, 6022 King Edward III, and 6027 King Richard I.
Out of service Kings class locomotives at Stafford Road depot in Wolverhampton in September 1962