Steam Railway (UK) - - ‘GREAT WAR’ MALLETS -

Be­fore the

war: 1902 was a wa­ter­shed year as ‘large lo­co­mo­tive’ pol­icy was in­sti­gated with two new de­signs. The

Class 8 was a 4-6-0, but what we’re con­cerned with here is the ‘8A’ 0-8-0. It wasn’t pretty but it was ef­fec­tive, and 89 were built be­tween 1902 and 1911. They were put to work on heavy freight trains, in­clud­ing the move­ment of coal from York­shire to the Hum­ber ports.

Call-up: The GCR pro­vided 15 for use in France in AprilJune 1917: Nos. 58/86/91, 135/39/40/44, 401, 1073/75/76, 1141/42/80/82. The­atre of op­er­a­tions:

These lo­co­mo­tives were used around Dunkirk, on heavy sup­ply trains in Flan­ders and on stone traf­fic from Mar­quise quarry.

De­mo­bil­i­sa­tion: All 15 lo­co­mo­tives re­turned to Bri­tain in 1919. Some ‘8As’ re­ceived su­per­heated

boil­ers, but the most dras­tic re­build­ing took place in 1942 when four of what were now called LNER ‘Q4s’ were turned into tank lo­co­mo­tives. The new ‘Q1s’ fea­tured a shorter, raised boiler, new cou­pling and con­nect­ing rods and ‘J50’ tanks and bunkers. Thir­teen ‘Q4s’ were so treated, in­clud­ing ex-ROD No. 58. No. 63243 was the fi­nal ‘Q4’ to be with­drawn in Oc­to­ber 1951 (it had served in France) while the last ‘Q1s’ went in 1959.

Sur­vivors: None.


Robin­son LNER ‘Q4’ (GCR ‘8A’) 0-8-0 No. 6132 pauses at Not­ting­ham Vic­to­ria with an Up goods train, circa 1925. This wasn’t one of the 15 req­ui­si­tioned

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