Steam Railway (UK) - - End-Of-Steam Survivors -

For the fi­nal day of timetabled steam work­ing on Au­gust 3 1968, No. 45231’s job was a hum­ble bal­last train duty from Water­slack Quarry to Far­ing­ton Junc­tion, af­ter which it re­turned light en­gine to its home shed of Carn­forth – and into preser­va­tion. Its pur­chaser, Michael Stephen­son, moved it to the Great Cen­tral Rail­way in 1973, and it hauled the pre­served main line’s re­open­ing train on Septem­ber 30 that year. Apart from a pe­riod at the Nene Val­ley Rail­way, it re­mained at Lough­bor­ough for over 30 years un­til it was sold to Bert Hitchen in 2003 – and re­turned to the na­tional net­work two years later.

Its main line ca­reer seems set to con­tinue for many years, fol­low­ing an­other sale in 2015 in which it joined Jeremy Hosk­ing’s Lo­co­mo­tive Ser­vices Ltd fleet. It is cur­rently based at Southall, but will be at the Sev­ern Val­ley Rail­way for its 1968 event on Au­gust 4 and its Au­tumn Steam Gala in Septem­ber.

Its boiler cer­tifi­cate ex­pires in 2021 – af­ter which, says Peter Green­wood of Lo­co­mo­tive Ser­vices Ltd, there are “no firm plans, but it cer­tainly won’t be forgotten about!” Air brakes will be fit­ted as part of this over­haul, the en­gine cur­rently be­ing vac­uum-braked only.

Sta­tus: Op­er­a­tional Lo­ca­tion: Southall Owner: Lo­co­mo­tive Ser­vices Ltd Built: Arm­strong Whit­worth, Au­gust 1936 With­drawn: Carn­forth, Au­gust 1968


No. 45231 ap­proaches Ben­tham sta­tion dur­ing its main line loaded trial on Novem­ber 15 2017.

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