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Rites of Passage for a Model Railway - 31: Let Me Introduce You to Ainthorpe Junction

Alan's interest in the railways of the North East where he grew up, took root again in the 1980s. Follow his 'Rites of Passage' series...

Take a look at the railway world as it was, recreate it your own way using period images. Create a track diagram, modify where needed

See below, the first of my J27's, 65887, nominally complete awaits weathering and other detail touches ...

See below, the first of my J27's, 65887, nominally complete awaits weathering and other detail touches ...

Class A1 60131 'Osprey' enters the picture from left as an unidentified sister A! rounds the curve on the main line

Class A1 60131 'Osprey' enters the picture from left as an unidentified sister A! rounds the curve on the main line

Class V3 2-6-2 enters a junction on Tyneside,seen from signal cabin - could be empty coaching stock on the way to Heaton Carriage Sidings with the now defunct 'Norseman' ferry stock (connection London KX to Bergen in Norway via Tyne Commission Quay)

Class V3 2-6-2 enters a junction on Tyneside,seen from signal cabin - could be empty coaching stock on the way to Heaton Carriage Sidings with the now defunct 'Norseman' ferry stock (connection London KX to Bergen in Norway via Tyne Commission Quay)

In contrast to the rural feel of 'Thoraldby', 'Ainthorpe Junction' is to be on the edge of an industrial town with 'war wounds'...

There are endless possibilities that can be entered into the planning, and I dreamed up a mail order depot to be added into the corner where the main running lines pass on a wide curve. I've since put a name to it, 'Bloomfield's' after one of the suppliers of track and points (a member of the Double O Gauge Association, or DOGA, see below for a link to the association)

31/5/2022: All the power input points are in place, two-way traffic on the Up and Down Main is possible. Additionally, Ainthorpe Coal Depot, Bishopthorpe Yard and Bishopthwaite (goods only) station can be operated independently. Bishopthorpe Yard signal cabin awaits its ModelU downpipes and reservoir at the opposite end to the stairs, as well as the nameplates. The decommissioned (Hornby 'Skaledale' range) Bishopthwaite signal cabin will have its nameplate, as will the almost complete 'Bishopthorpe Yard' and extended Ainthorpe Junction cabins as well as the small one-man operated (Skaledale again) Depot Road signal cabin (two shifts per day and none at weekends, Christmas excepted). Ainthorpe Junction cabin awaits a pair of Ratio (Peco) signal cabin interior kits to accommodate its lever frame length.

So, from now on its infrastructure and scenery ...

More soon...

Changes - and Juice Throughout

Big changes on the layout mean half the work was scrapped and started anew. That was a big step to take - and sometimes in this hobby you have to take a step back to reappraise what's been achieved so far. The main thing is the juice has been tested and the older Gaugemaster dual controller has been wired in, to get the main running lines fit for passenger, parcels and van goods traffic.

Progress wasn't swift, I've got to admit, and one controller had to be sent to Gaugemaster for repair (loose internal wiring). All the same, without stretching my bank manager's patience too much on account of my personal interests, progress has been at the back of my mind all the time. It's been a steady advance, working back from the tunnel mouth on Unit 3 - was Unit 4 before the short Unit 2 was scrapped - to avoid having to work in a cramped situation with a shelf unit hindering progress. Track laying has been completed throughout. Enough space is available in the fiddleyard for trains of up to six carriages plus a main line locomotive such as an A1 Pacific with an early rail tour (plus buffet car), a B1 4-6-0 or a British Railways Standard 2-6-0 with semi-fast or holiday working. There won't be any full expresses on account of available track length in either fiddleyard. Goods or freight trains will incorporate vans (parcels or goods), mineral hoppers and various bogie wagons with heavy loads (or empties going the other way). I have a long shelf of various loads to make life interesting.

Take a look at the various unit write-ups to see how things are going, and maybe the locomotive profiles ...The 'juice' has been tested track alterations made, and an order to be made week commencing 11th April 2022 for replacement Peco pointwork and track to follow through on and complete the mineral and freight branch line as well as the mail order depot and print works ... Then more tests before I'm satisfied the whole set-up will work smoothly. One controller was sent to Gaugemaster for investigation and since wired up into the system. Another (twin, with brake simulators) has been wired up. and the third (plain twin controller) already operates Bishopthorpe Yard, and wiring was undertaken to allow movement within Bishopthwaite station without affecting the Down Main, off which it branches as a supplementary goods depot. The passenger facility remains closed with a United Automobile Services stop across the road, complete with waiting passengers.


Controlling the layout: Gaugemaster controllers

Older Gaugemaster DS dual controller with brake simulator has been linked up with two inputs on fiddleyard Unit 1 for the Up and Down Main lines

Older Gaugemaster DS dual controller with brake simulator has been linked up with two inputs on fiddleyard Unit 1 for the Up and Down Main lines

The cables have been kept in order behind the road bridge ... Needs a little more work to hide it from the scenic side

The cables have been kept in order behind the road bridge ... Needs a little more work to hide it from the scenic side

... And lead through cable clips to the Power Terminals either side of the Up and Down Main lines in the fiddleyard

... And lead through cable clips to the Power Terminals either side of the Up and Down Main lines in the fiddleyard

Gaugemaster Model D has been applied to the singled mineral and freight branch, controls Ainthorpe coal Depot with two access points to the Down Main side. Some disguising has been achieved. A removable cover needs to be added over the terminals

Gaugemaster Model D has been applied to the singled mineral and freight branch, controls Ainthorpe coal Depot with two access points to the Down Main side. Some disguising has been achieved. A removable cover needs to be added over the terminals

The newer Gaugemaster Duo has been applied to Bishopthorpe Yard and Bishopthwaite Station for independent operation

The newer Gaugemaster Duo has been applied to Bishopthorpe Yard and Bishopthwaite Station for independent operation

The input terminals for Bishopthorpe Yard ...

The input terminals for Bishopthorpe Yard ...

Controlling, and adding 'juice' to the 'Ainthorpe Junction' layout:

The top - dual - controller bought many years ago at The Engine Shed, Leytonstone High Road - now a ladies' salon - was for the largely single track 'Thoraldby' countryside layout (feeds were into the fiddleyard ends under bridges) and will come in use to operate the main through running lines via Unit 4, The lower one that was bought at the same shop controlled my son's smaller (now recycled) 'Kirk Rigg' layout.

They both have the same purpose, not just to regulate speed but to simulate the application and release of loco and guard's van (or compartment on passenger trains) brakes. The effect is that you don't see trains suddenly lurch to a stop or break into a 'gallop' from the start, which in many modellers' eyes was a huge step forward when first introduced (1980's I think).

The older dual controller with simulated brake I have now will operate the through running lines, whilst the single unit will operate the coal depot.

The older controllers, the dual that operates the Up and Down Main and the single, both with simulated brake, and the newer twin are all 'harnessed' and tested. Time for some fun as well as infrastructure and scenic work.

Scroll to Continue

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Just as you think, "What's next after the J27 from Oxford Rail?" the heavens open and a deep voice tells you, "J26"

Class J26 0-6-0 5738 of North Eastern vintage in LNER days. They were spread across the former NER system as Class P2;, the LNER re-classified them as J26 and first withdrawals came in BR days in the late 50s-early 60s

Class J26 0-6-0 5738 of North Eastern vintage in LNER days. They were spread across the former NER system as Class P2;, the LNER re-classified them as J26 and first withdrawals came in BR days in the late 50s-early 60s

This is J26 65767 of Newport (51B) - in 1958 when Thornaby shed (51L) opened and several Teesside sheds closed (Newport, Middlesbrough, Saltburn) 65767 didn't make the transfer, nor did 65738 (see above) and was possibly scrapped that year.

This is J26 65767 of Newport (51B) - in 1958 when Thornaby shed (51L) opened and several Teesside sheds closed (Newport, Middlesbrough, Saltburn) 65767 didn't make the transfer, nor did 65738 (see above) and was possibly scrapped that year.

Although not as widespread as Class J27...

All fifty members of the class were shedded on Teesside in BR (NE) days. Members of Wilson Worsdell's earlier Class J26 served their purpose around Teesside (southern County Durham and the North Riding of Yorkshire, down along the coast to Skinningrove works, inland to Lingdale and Kilton Mines. Newport (Middlesbrough) shed's allocation was 42).

Duties varied, as you can imagine, in an area of industrial activity with several graving docks on both banks of the Tees, steel and chemical works, railway yards and branches that fed the works with ironstone until imported ore took precedence from the late 1950's. None of the class saw preservation. Their successors, Class J27 dealt with the bulk of work between Selby and north of the Tyne on coal traffic until the end of steam in the North East in September 1967.

See the appraisals of both classes below...

"Here's one I made earlier", a profile of Wilson Worsdell's NER Class P2, LNER and BR Class J26 0-6-0

Class P2 1678 at the coaling stage days in NER days

Class P2 1678 at the coaling stage days in NER days

 Class J26 65774 passes through Thornaby station in BR days with a long Down freight. In 1950 she was a Newport (51B) engine, transferred 1958 to the newly opened Thornaby (51L) shed, withdrawn before or by June, 1962

Class J26 65774 passes through Thornaby station in BR days with a long Down freight. In 1950 she was a Newport (51B) engine, transferred 1958 to the newly opened Thornaby (51L) shed, withdrawn before or by June, 1962

J26 65756 was also a Newport allocation that made the move to Thornaby in 1958 - she;s seen here on Flatts Lane near Normanby brick works,  the man on the road possibly giving the driver instructions

J26 65756 was also a Newport allocation that made the move to Thornaby in 1958 - she;s seen here on Flatts Lane near Normanby brick works, the man on the road possibly giving the driver instructions

George Gibb, General Manager of the North Eastern Railway visited the USA on a fact-finding mission in 1901

One outcome of this trip was the decision to enlarge the NER's freight locomotive fleet.

Further, NER Class P2 0-6-0 was introduced, in many features the same as their Class P1 but fitted with a larger boiler, increased in its girth by 15". The firebox was also 12" longer. As the firebox was too wide between the rear wheels a sloping grate was fitted, the frames extended by 11".

Thirty Class P2 locomotives were built at Darlington 1904-5, twenty more at Gateshead in 1905. Initially the class was built with a high working pressure of 200 p.s.i, to be reduced to 180 p.s.i in May 1905. The last to be built had the lower pressure. The class was modified again in 1906 to produce Class P3. Changes included a small reduction in the number of boiler tubes, as well as a reduction in the angler of the grate.. The original P2 grate had a 12" slope to give wider clearance over the rear axle, avoiding needless bearing overheating. The decision was made to reduce the slope - class P3 was built with a shallower grate that permitted making the firebox 6" deeper. The differences between boiler types was small and a standarisation of both classes meant the P3 boiler was fitted to both classes.. The first batch of P2 received the new boiler in 1910, the last to be converted was in LNER days, in 1925. By this time the classes were P2 = J26 and P3 = J27 respectively. Class J26 needed minor stay alterations to enable fitting the new boilers. .

Another boiler change came in 1937 when the LNER changed Diagram 57 to produce Diagram 57A. The altered design included a sloping throat plate that resulted in a firebox that measured 6" longer overall. The boiler was 5" shorter to compensate. The boiler barrel - previously a three-plate construction - was now a single plate..Tubes were increased in number to 273 with a net heating surface of 1655.6 square feet. Most obvious was the relocation on Dgm 57A of the dome, now 12" further back. The last J26 received a 57A boiler in 1958. By this tíme withdrawals had begun and some rebuilt locomotives had already seen their 57A boilers exchanged back to 57. Diagram 57 and 57A boilers were both of the saturated and superheated type, only Class J26 receiving the saturated boilers.

As on other NER locomotives Ramsbottom safety valves were fitted at first, i.e. the four-column type mounted in squat brass 'trumpets' as introduced on Class V (LNER Class C6 Atlantic 4-4-2. Initially brass castings, these were later removed.

All Class J26 were built with NER 'porthole' pattern cab spectacles. After the introductioin of Class T2 (Q6) 0-8-0 in 1918 with the large shaped spectacles West Auckland shed peitioned for earlier T1 (Q5) to be changed to the T2 type. After this was carried out both Class J26 and J27 received the new spectacles, 28 of Class J26 missing out.

Traffic/allocation

At first Class P2 were employed mainly on long-distance goods and mineral duties, displaced by the newer Class T2 , Class S1 (B15) and S2 (B16) 4-6-0. At Grouping in 1923, when the smaller companies were incorporated into four larger companies (Greatt Western, London Midland & Scottish, London North Eastern and Southern Railway) the largest J26 allocation went to York (11), West Hartlepool (9), Haverton Hill (7) and Newport near Middlesbrough (6). Other sheds in the region were allocated only one or two each. In the 1930s Selby was allocated eight for work into the South Yorkshire (Barnsley area) coalfield.

A WWII wartime measure saw class J26 concentrated around Teesside, the larger allocation (39) to Newport. Minor changes were made in the early 1950s. In 1958 Middlesbrough (51D), Newport (51B), Stockton (51E), Haverton Hill (51G) and Saltburn (51K) sheds were closed, many of their allocations of Class J26 transferred to the newly opened Thornaby (51L) with some held back for scrapping.. Withdrawal began apace around this time, their last duties including mineral workings on the difficult curves of the Kilton and Lingdale ironstone mine line, as well as the heavily graded branch from West Auckland to Durham. Individual withdrawals were slowed owing to a lack of suitable replacements.

Widespread introduction of type 2 diesels saw the end of Class J26 however, the last sighting being 65735 of West Auckland (51F) on the Wearhead branch, County Durham, in May 1962 . The last withdrawal was in June, 1962.

Allocations 1950-58

Newport (51B): 42, West Hartlepool (51C): 2; Middlesbrough (51D): 6 [50]

In model form:

Union Mills produce a 2mm scale, N Gauge kit; Dave Alexander produce a 4 mm scale, OO Gauge kit; DJH have a 7mm scale, O Gauge kit.

Oxford Rail announced their intention to produce a 4 mm OO Gauge ready-to-run model (their J27 appeared in the third quarter, 2021). Livery variations of the J26 will include LNER and BR livery (early and late emblems).

Wilson Worsdell's Worthy Workhorse - Class J27, harking back to that title image... Second introduction to the locomotives you'll see on the layout

J27 65819 at the coaling stage, South Blyth (52F) allocated here possibly before 1950, and remained until May, 1967 when South Shed closed, probably going for scrap. There is no mention of being transferred to Sunderland (54A) or Hartlepool (51C)

J27 65819 at the coaling stage, South Blyth (52F) allocated here possibly before 1950, and remained until May, 1967 when South Shed closed, probably going for scrap. There is no mention of being transferred to Sunderland (54A) or Hartlepool (51C)

65816 was a West Hartlepool (51C) allocation throughout her working life. Seen here at rest on shed

65816 was a West Hartlepool (51C) allocation throughout her working life. Seen here at rest on shed

The one that got away - 65894 owned by NELPG since 1st December, 1966, bought direct from British Railways' North Eastern Regions. Seen at Grosmont between duties. Fitted with vacuum pipes, steam heating and screw couplings for passenger working

The one that got away - 65894 owned by NELPG since 1st December, 1966, bought direct from British Railways' North Eastern Regions. Seen at Grosmont between duties. Fitted with vacuum pipes, steam heating and screw couplings for passenger working

Different viewpoint - this time a model, 65894 in 4 mm scale, OO Gauge ... In revenue earning service (up until 1967) these locos were unfitted and carried three-link couplings, as shown here

Different viewpoint - this time a model, 65894 in 4 mm scale, OO Gauge ... In revenue earning service (up until 1967) these locos were unfitted and carried three-link couplings, as shown here

A modification of forerunner, NER Class P2 (LNER/BR J26) and been made welcome when it arrived in model form ...

... The most important change from Worsdell's earlier Class P2 0-6-0 (LNER/BR J26) was the deeper firebox with a shallower, sloping fire grate, achieved by raising the boiler.

Accompanying this modification was the reduction of the of the clearance between the firebox and rear axle. In the locomotive being earmarked for heavy freight work within the region they were never (in NER/LNER/BR days) fitted with vacuum brake and screw couplings for faster running on the main line. At first 80 of Class P3 were built between 1906-09 in five batches at North Road Works (Darlington), North British Locomotive Company (Glasgow), Beyer Peacock & Co., and Robert Stephenson & Co. on Tyneside. Twelve years on, when Vincent Raven was Locomotive Superintendent, a further batch of five was built at Darlington with Schmidt superheaters and piston valves. These were delivered 1921-2, followed by a last order of ten - also through Vincent Raven - from Darlington in 1923 (including the preserved J27 65894 in the care of NELPG - see below). The superheated locomotives were identified by extended smokeboxes.

After WWII Class J27s were taken off mixed goods working - although some were on branch pick-up goods, such as 65894 from York until transferred to Sunderland in 1967. Withdrawal started March, 1959. In June 1966 thirty-six still worked hard on coal traffic in County Durham and southern Northumberland. The last J27s were withdrawn from the Blyth area near the coast north of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, where they worked on short trips from nearby pits to coal staiths on the Tyne. The last J27 was withdrawn September, 1967.

Number 65894 was bought from BR by North Eastern Locomotive Group (NELPG) on 1st December, 1966 with restoration work following to full working order, being moved around from storage at Tyne Dock shed via National Coal Board shed at Philadelphia workshops (not far from Washington CD!) to Thornaby's newer roundhouse (opened 1958 to locomotives from decrepit sheds around Teesside bombed in WWII) and finally to ICI Billingham before transfer to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway in her NER lined black livery as P3 2392, October, 1971. She appeared in this livery in the S&DR 150 steam cavalcade at Shildon on September 25th, 1975. Withdrawn from active service for boiler repairs, she was exhibited at the National Railway Museum, 1977-82. Turns have seen her on various preserved railways from the North to the East, on the North Norfolk Railway. More recent performance saw her more recently, August 2018, on the Wensleydale Railway between Leeming Bar and Redmire.

Allocations, BR/NE 1950-58: York (50A): 8; Selby (50C): 9; West Hartlepool (51C): 8; Stockton-on-Tees (51E): 3; Haverton Hill (51G): 7; Saltburn (51K): 1; Heaton, Tyneside (52B): 12; Percy Main (52E): 24; North & South Blyth (52F): 24; Sunderland (54A): 19

All 115 accounted for 1950-58

Oxford Rail's J27 in early British Railways' livery turned up early in the third quarter of 2021. At the price it was first advertised, £90.50 I was well able to afford the couple I've bought, and have changed the loco number, smokebox number plate and shed plate. The cab interior needs work to show its age before I install the ModelU crew I've painted. Since December 2021 I've upped the ante to four of the class, the last being 65782 of West Hartlepool (51C) shed.

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North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group (NELPG)

  • North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group
    The North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group (NELPG) exists to foster interest in, and to preserve examples of, steam locomotives, rolling stock and other items of railway interest connected with the North East of England.

NELPG - Preservation of North Eastern steam icons

...Owns one example each of four of the classes shown on this page, in earliest production date onward: Wilson Worsdell designed NER Class E1 (LNER/BR J72) 0-6-0 tank engine built originally 1898, last batch built 1951 of which 69023 is one; NER Class P3 (LNER/BR J27) 0-6-0 tender locomotive 65894 built September, 1923 - one of the last of a building programme started in 1901 with Class P1, P2 and P3 in 1906; NER Class T2 (LNER/BR Class Q6) 0-8-0, of which 63395 was also one of the later batches from 1918 that commenced construction under (Sir) Vincent Raven in 1913; LNER/BR Class K1 2-6-0 designed in 1945 and modified by Arthur Peppercorn before production from 1949 in BR days by North British Locomotive Works, of which 62005 was from one of the earlier batches and spent her working life in the North East of England.

See also the NELPG page for a range of images of their 'fleet' (the link for that is another of the page profile slide show).

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Unit 2:assembly from beginning to track laid - ballasting to come...

Notice the curve measuring tool? Easy to assemble, only needs one willing body to mark where the vertical touches on the stretchers. Then mark where the risers should go. Repeat for inner curve and back road (to a lesser extent, away from the corner)

Notice the curve measuring tool? Easy to assemble, only needs one willing body to mark where the vertical touches on the stretchers. Then mark where the risers should go. Repeat for inner curve and back road (to a lesser extent, away from the corner)

View from the top, over the bridge, mineral branch (left) and siding (centre), Up and Down Main (right)

View from the top, over the bridge, mineral branch (left) and siding (centre), Up and Down Main (right)

Back: the long siding runs from behind the junction signal cabin.to the print works at the back, and the mail order warehouse. A loop here will allow room for either a bogie van and four-wheeled van or two, and the other will be the loading platform

Back: the long siding runs from behind the junction signal cabin.to the print works at the back, and the mail order warehouse. A loop here will allow room for either a bogie van and four-wheeled van or two, and the other will be the loading platform

'Bloomfield's Mail Order depot trackwork is down (at last!), leaving the way clear for building and platform structure - Western Region GUV stands in the platform road, we imagine having brought goods for 'sale or return' to the North Riding

'Bloomfield's Mail Order depot trackwork is down (at last!), leaving the way clear for building and platform structure - Western Region GUV stands in the platform road, we imagine having brought goods for 'sale or return' to the North Riding

Unit 2, the curves, nearside mineral and freight, former Branch Down and now empty stock standage beyond that. Main Up/Down running lines and mail order depot

Unit 2, the curves, nearside mineral and freight, former Branch Down and now empty stock standage beyond that. Main Up/Down running lines and mail order depot

The small one-man operated junction cabin, 'Warehouse Road' (Hornby 'Skaledale' range)

The small one-man operated junction cabin, 'Warehouse Road' (Hornby 'Skaledale' range)

The 'bobby' is where he belongs, in his one-man cabin near the junction with the Down Main. The years have been unkind to this 'Warehouse Road' nameboard since Nationalisation...

The 'bobby' is where he belongs, in his one-man cabin near the junction with the Down Main. The years have been unkind to this 'Warehouse Road' nameboard since Nationalisation...

The view down onto the roof from the staircase side. If you saw the 'Thoraldby' layout you'd have seen this cabin minus interior detailing at the end of the platform at 'Ayton Row'. We all have our own crack at recycling ...

The view down onto the roof from the staircase side. If you saw the 'Thoraldby' layout you'd have seen this cabin minus interior detailing at the end of the platform at 'Ayton Row'. We all have our own crack at recycling ...

Unit 2 - was 3 - progress to assembly and track laid...

On Unit 2 some minor adjustments were made to adapt to the new track plan), Unit 3 was to be tackled. I took my time, some materials bought, and linking curves were marked for the trackbed from the front fiddleyard end.

3.1mm Carr's foam was re-laid in an even curve from Unit 3 (coal and lime depot) to Unit 1 (Fiddleyard). Another pack has been delivered. Points now link the coal depot on the Up side to the main running lines (towards Unit 4) and the branch line. A further link is to be made with a large curved point opposite a large straight on the branch side towards Unit 1, where the branch has been singled, with wagon standage on the former mineral & freight line as before.

Both Up and Down Main and Mineral/Freight lines now reach Unit 1, the former is complete. The next jobs being to take the branch line to Unit 1 and link the points at the Up and Down end of Unit 2 at the back for Bloomfield's mail order depot, with a spur for Jones and Holloway's print works (bulk paper deliveries).

The long mineral/freight siding has been laid short of the bridge. The main mineral line has passed through the bridge piers to a left hand medium radius point, which will probably lead to a 'cross-back' for two way traffic, possibly also another point, to give access to a third long track for extra traffic.

A small Skaledale signal cabin - Warehouse Road' - has been positioned near the curved point that leads to the mail order warehouse, 'Bloomfields' to return to or access from the Down Main, and the track has been laid - long enough for two bogie GUV's - where the platform will be, and the slip road for empty stock or vans awaiting collection. .

Business as usual ...

An eight-coupled workhorse from Vincent Raven's drawing board

Now preserved, tried and tested, Q6 63395 rest between shifts at Sunderland shed (54A) in June, 1967 months before withdrawal and an uncertain future

Now preserved, tried and tested, Q6 63395 rest between shifts at Sunderland shed (54A) in June, 1967 months before withdrawal and an uncertain future

Not as lucky, 63407 of Haverton Hill in 1950-58 was moved first to the new shed at Thornaby (51L) when it opened in 1958, then to West Hartlepool (51C) when Thornaby closed to steam in 1964

Not as lucky, 63407 of Haverton Hill in 1950-58 was moved first to the new shed at Thornaby (51L) when it opened in 1958, then to West Hartlepool (51C) when Thornaby closed to steam in 1964

Close-up of 63420 with the fireman holding on, watching out for a signal the driver can't see in good time from his side...

Close-up of 63420 with the fireman holding on, watching out for a signal the driver can't see in good time from his side...

Haverton Hill's 63443 awaits the 'off' - both (Hornby) engines have been weathered by me. As on classes J26 and J27 these locos were unfitted until 63395 was preserved, thus bore three-link couplings for mineral and heavy freight work

Haverton Hill's 63443 awaits the 'off' - both (Hornby) engines have been weathered by me. As on classes J26 and J27 these locos were unfitted until 63395 was preserved, thus bore three-link couplings for mineral and heavy freight work

The human angle, crew on the footplate, driver checking levels ...

The human angle, crew on the footplate, driver checking levels ...

... And the fireman's checked he's got enough for a last trip before going back on shed and raking out the smokebox before he signs off

... And the fireman's checked he's got enough for a last trip before going back on shed and raking out the smokebox before he signs off

Vincent Raven's NER Class T2 was re-classed by the LNER from 1923 as Q6...

A class of 0-8-0 steam locomotives meant for heavy freight haulage. A hundred and twenty were built between North Road Works, Darlington and Armstrong Whitworth on Tyneside from 1913 to 1921. They were based in design on Wilson Worsdell's Class T and T1, re-classified as Q5 by the LNER. The fifty Armstrong Whitworth locomotives built from 1919 at the Scotswood were their first locomotives after conversion of the works back from ordnance to civilian use. All were taken into service by British Railways' North Eastern region in 1948, numbered 63340-63459 (prefix '6' added to LNER's 1946 number sequence.

Number 63372 of Consett (54D) was withdrawn after an accident. Withdrawals generally took placed from 1963-67.

NER 2238 (LNER 1946 3395, BR 63395) was withdrawn from Consett in 1967 and it was touch-and-go whether the North Eastern preservation group NELPG had secured her purchase after BR insisted no locomotives should be sold into private hands once released to the scrap merchants. Agreement was reached through one of the founder members of NELPG to release the locomotive into the hands of the group as she had not yet strictly passed into the scrap dealer's yard.

Locomotive Class Q6 axle load RA*6; BR power classification 6F

Allocation area British Railways' North Eastern Region 1950-58: Leeds Neville Hill (50B) 2; Selby (50G) 15; Newport (Middlesbro') 14; West Hartlepool (51C) 15; Middlesbrough (51D) 15; Haverton Hill (51G) 11; Blaydon (52C) 13; Tyne Dock (54B) 4; Borough Gardens (54C) 12; Consett (54D) 11 Total 112

[8 'went adrift' between building and BR ownership, possibly lost in WWI/WWII]

Three Hornby Class Q6 models will appear on the layout: 63420 was a Middlesbro' allocation, 63443 Haverton Hill (between Billingham and the Tees, across the river). Also north of the Tees was 63427 that started the 1950's at West Hartlepool before transfer in 1951 to Consett. When Consett shed closed May 1965 she went to North Blyth, and was sent for scrap shortly after in June 1965. You'll notice the coal carrying capacity of 63420 is greater than that of later-built sister locomotive 63443, and having worked through from Middlesbrough to the exchange sidings at Gascoigne Wood (to pick up a coal load for an industrial destination away from the East Coast Main Line) would have about enough coal to get her back to her home shed and not much further. If there were any other calls on the crew during their shift her tender would need to be topped up.

When Haverton Hill shed closed in 1958 most of the allocation transferred to the new Thornaby (51L) shed. 63443 and two others went to West Auckland (51F); 63420 went to Thornaby - on closure to steam in 1964 the remaining steam allocation was transferred to Darlington, Hartlepool (51C) and Percy Main (52E). There are no records of 63420 making the move.

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Incidentally, if you want to join an association...

... Of likeminded railway modellers who might not necessarily share your particular interests but share your enthusiasm, try the Double O Gauge Association (DOGA). You may be a member of a local club, you may have exhibited, DOGA may have been there too. Wondered what they can do for you, or with you? The link is here to let you look into their activities, their aims, their intentions and their background. They come from all walks of life. Twice a year (normally) at general meetings they share their common goals and display their achievements in modelling competitions. Share those goals, click the link, see how you'd fit in...

Double O Gauge Association

  • The Double O Gauge Association
    The OO Gauge Association is more than an association of railway modellers. It's a fellowship. Join the Forum and see how, come to meetings - the AGT in spring/summer includes a competition in different classes; the winter meeting is a cosy gathering

A little more 'local flavour' in the way of motive power before I progress to LNER designs...

Class G5, originally North Eastern Railway class O No. 2087 on shed awaits permission from the 'bobby' (signalman) to join her train

Class G5, originally North Eastern Railway class O No. 2087 on shed awaits permission from the 'bobby' (signalman) to join her train

Period picture taken early 20th Century (pre-Grouping) at Eston, my local station near Middlesbrough. Passenger services from here to Middlesbrough were curtailed in LNER days, 1929

Period picture taken early 20th Century (pre-Grouping) at Eston, my local station near Middlesbrough. Passenger services from here to Middlesbrough were curtailed in LNER days, 1929

North Eastern Railway Class O in original livery and condition before being rebuilt to work push-pull (auto-coach) trains, later also bunker rebuilds

North Eastern Railway Class O in original livery and condition before being rebuilt to work push-pull (auto-coach) trains, later also bunker rebuilds

G5 in BR days - 67282 of Hull Botanic Gardens shed (53B) rests possibly at Hornsea, before returning to Hull whilst driver inspects the loco - trouble?

G5 in BR days - 67282 of Hull Botanic Gardens shed (53B) rests possibly at Hornsea, before returning to Hull whilst driver inspects the loco - trouble?

One of the first decorated samples, to be released second quarter, 2023 - put back a few months. This is my choice, with Westinghouse pump for push-pull working, and hopper bunker to carry increased coal capacity for longer runs. Just right!

One of the first decorated samples, to be released second quarter, 2023 - put back a few months. This is my choice, with Westinghouse pump for push-pull working, and hopper bunker to carry increased coal capacity for longer runs. Just right!

The Model Centre (TMC) near Goathland commissioned a OO Gauge G5 through Bachmann, now to be available second quarter 2023

Class G5 0-4-4 Tank Locomotive

History: Wilson Worsdell re-directed NER passenger tank locomotive policy on taking the reins from his older brother Thomas. Class A 2-4-2 (LNER F8) tank locomotives would make way for a design that harked back to Edward Fletcher's well-tank fitted Bogie Tank Passenger (BTP) 0-4-4. In comparison with Class A, Worsdell's Class O (LNER/BR G5) 0-4-4 had smaller coupled wheels. For that coal and water capacity increased. Altogether 110 left Darlington North Road works between 1894 and 1901 in seven batches. Many BTPs were replaced by the later batches and were thus rebuilt to 0-6-0 tank locomotives as Class J77 or converted to push-pull (auto-coach) locomotive designation.

The Class O/G5 were well suited to their purpose with no substantial alterations made to Worsdell's design by the 1923 Grouping. An amended boiler design with single plate barrel was used by the LNER after 1930 when replacements were called for. The design was again amended from 1937, boiler turbes increased to 205. The design change accompanied a re-positioning of the dome 20 inches back from the initial design.

The class was seen as sturdy and saw long economical service with both the LNER and British Railway's North Eastern* Region on both branch and suburban passenger duties. Speed of up to 60 mph were regularly achieved on Middlesbrough-Newcastle services. The class was replaced on heavier suburban services by the rebuilt Class A8 4-6-2 and Class V1/V3 2-6-2 tank locomotives.

In the later 1920s and 1930s a large number of Class G5s was replaced by steam railcars. By turn the G5 saw out the last of the Class F8 and G6 locomotives. In a further bid for economy on branch line diagrams 21 of Class G5 were converted for vacuum braked autocar services from 1937 (push-pull, to avoid having to run round their trains). The class began to be withdrawn in 1950, having survived without loss until 1949. Most were withdrawn 1955-58, replaced largely by diesel railcars or multiple units. The last withdrawal was 1958.

Technical specifications: As described, onward from LNER ownership: cylinders: 2 X 18"X 24"; Stephenson motion; Boiler size: 4'-3" diameter, 10'-3" length; Boiler pressure: 160 per square inch (psi); Heating surface - Total 1093 sq ft; Firebox: 98 sq ft; Tubes: 995 sq ft (205 X wheels: 3'-1.25"; Tractive effort: (85%): 17.200; Length overall: 35'-9.75"; Wheelbase: 22'-6"; Coal capacity: 3 tons - 10 hundredweight (cwt); Water: 1360 Gallons (Imperial)

* At Shildon in central County Durham (north-west from Darlington) work is well underway to complete a 1:1 scale replica of the class under the auspices of the G5 Project (www.g5locomotive.co.uk), "Recreating a North Eastern icon" (sic). Completion is expected to be 2023 (would have been earlier but for Covid), well in time to be included in the Stockton & Darlington Bicentenary celebrations in September, 2025.

Allocations: The class was fairly well spread out over the system from 1948, as it had been in NER and LNER days after superseding Fletcher's Bogie Tank Passeng