NORTH BRITISH RAILWAY ‘C’ 0-6-0
Before the war: The NBR had not received any new goods locomotives since 1876 so Chief Engineer Matthew Holmes made amends in 1888 with his ‘C’ 0-6-0. The design was so successful that regular batches were turned out up to 1900; some 168 ‘Cs’ were built, a fifth of the NBR’s locomotive stock.
The class had started to receive new boilers, springing arrangement and cab windows when war was declared.
Call-up: The ROD requisitioned
25 ‘Cs’ in October/November 1917:
Nos. 176, 605/08/11/12/15/20/21/27/ 28/31/43/46-48/50/57/59-62/66/73/ 76/82. A further three, Nos. 614, 672 and 742, were loaned to the Highland Railway to help with the supply trains needed for the Royal Navy’s base at Scapa Flow.
Theatre of operations: In France, they were used at Bergues, near Dunkirk, and on the Hazebrouck-Merville line. Most were allocated to Verquigneul, near Bethune, for working coal and military trains.
Demobilisation: All 25 ‘Cs’ returned to the NBR between April and June 1919. The LNER completed the rebuilding programme to what it now called ‘J36’.
BR inherited more than 120 ‘J36s’. Some ended up working on former London, Midland & Scottish Railway lines in Scotland while others were drafted in to work on former Great North of Scotland Railway metals. Their wide route availability kept them employed long after newer yet larger classes had become extinct. Two ‘J36s’ made it through to 1967 before they retired, having outlasted many LNER and BR Standard designs in Scotland.
Survivors: The sole survivor is No. 65243 Maude, on static display at Bo’ness.
Unlike Lieutenant General Sir Frederick Stanley Maude, who served in the Mesopotamian campaign, ‘J36’ No. 65243 Maude worked in France between November 1917 and June 1919 as ROD No. 5673. It is pictured here on display at the National Railway Museum, but currently resides at its Bo’ness home.