County class 1013 'County of Dorset' Swindon shed. 26 April 1964
Photo courtesy of ricsrailpics on Flickr, all rights reserved.

What is it?
A GWR 4-6-0 – as if we don’t have enough of those, you might think. Well, these were among the very latest of them, introduced in 1945. The locomotive was based on the existing Hall class, with a boiler very closely based on that of the Stanier 8F (built at Swindon during the war, despite being an LMS design); initially the County was intended as a test-bed for a GWR pacific that never emerged. This recreation project is somewhat controversial, as the ex-Barry 8F being dismembered to donate the boiler is the only surviving LNER-built example. However, work is underway and it won’t survive much longer. The frames are being adapted from an unrestored Hall. This locomotive will not be the ‘next’ member of the class; instead, it will bear the identity of a previously extant locomotive. Given the extensive re-use of components from other engines, including some smaller items salvaged from other Counties, that might be fair enough.

Status: Frames in existence, many components machined and fitted but wheels delayed. Boiler exists but requires re-build and restoration.

Possible completion date: not given