NARROW GAUGE NEWS
Proposed programme of works will enable young volunteers to learn restoration skills.
Volunteers at the Sittingbourne & Kemsley Light Railway are giving Bagnall 0-6-2T Alpha a cosmetic restoration. Built in 1932 and identical to the railway’s Triumph and Superb, it is the only conventional steam locomotive in the SKLR fleet not to have run since the railway was taken over by the LCGB in 1969. Over the years it has been stored at various places around the railway, mostly outside, but more recently in the locomotive shed, and some components have been removed to keep Triumph and Superb going. Designed to prevent existing damage from worsening, the present programme of works will enable the young volunteers involved to learn how to restore a steam locomotive, albeit cosmetically. The railway anticipates that Alpha’s turn in the overhaul queue will come in the late 2020s, along with an estimated £250,000 bill, and that the youngsters working on the cosmetic restoration will be involved in restoring it to running order. The locomotive will be turned out in traditional Bowater’s green livery.
Now the subject of a cosmetic restoration being carried out by young volunteers, the Sittingbourne & Kemsley Light Railway’s Bagnall 0-6-2T Alpha was painted silver to celebrate the Queen’s Silver Jubilee, in 1977, and displayed at Sittingbourne.