H.A.V. Bulleid’s book Bulleid of the Southern is recommended for the full story of how the Southern Railway’s chief mechanical engineer arrived at the idea of building three diesel-electrics. What is often forgotten is that they were designed before H.G. Ivatt’s Co-cos for the LMS. However, Bulleid’s locomotives were not authorised until afterwards. 10201/202 were built at Ashford in 1950/1951. They were powered by 1,750hp versions of LMS 10000/10001’s English Electric 1,600hp engines. 10203, built at Brighton in 1953/54, sported a 2,000hp version of the same engine. 10203 entered service at Nine elms in July 1954. It spent just over a year on the Southern before it was transferred to Camden, on the London Midland Region, in August 1955. Southern drivers appreciated the riding qualities and the power but, apparently, passengers didn’t like the smell. during the late 1950s, 10203 lost its black and silver livery for BR lined green. Willesden became its new home from November 1959 and, sometime afterwards, its Southern-style whistles were replaced by air horns. The locomotive was put into store at derby on October 15 1962 and was finally withdrawn on december 12 1963. It was finally scrapped by Cashmore’s in March 1968.
2: Bulleid designed his diesels to match the body profile of his coaches. The shape suited black and silver but, arguably, looked less striking in lined green. 10203 passes Birdswood, Cheshire, with the Down ‘Royal Scot’ on April 27 1957.
1: 10203 is in excellent condition at Eastleigh on September 24 1955. Its transfer to Camden must have taken place after the four weeks ending August 13 1955, which was noted on its Engine History card. The position of the roof vents by the horn is clearly visible.
3: 10203’s airhorns are prominent in this view of the Bulleid diesel in store at Derby works in December 1962. It was not scrapped until March 1968.