News round-up August 2011: more progress and more projects

LNWR George the Fifth
Information has recently been passed to New Build Steam about a project to build a new LNWR 4-4-0 George the Fifth. It has its own article here, but is presented for completeness in this update, and also as an excuse to publish another of the numerous photographs kindly supplied by the group.

1014 County of Glamorgan
Still no wheels for this engine, but the project team have received a priced schedule of work from LNWR, which is currently being considered. An order is not expected to be placed in the short term, and interestingly the latest news update refers to it as being essentially a new boiler – which is bound to attract further comment from LNER enthusiasts unhappy at the use of the only LNER-built 8F boiler in the first place.

6880 Betton Grange
The latest news update from the Grange group details progress on the bogie donated by 5952 Cogan Hall and the extensions to the frames (the update is dated June but unfortunately New Build Steam missed it due to a bad link at this end – apologies).

32424 Beachy Head
Another June update somehow missed by this site came from the Brighton Atlantic Group on the Bluebell, and includes pictures illustrating progress on the wheels and smokebox saddle, among other items.

3MT 82045
Progress continues on the 3MT project at Bridgnorth, on which Brian Oldford kindly provided an update in a comment to the overview post.  The smokebox saddle and front pony truck bearing support assembly are now installed, and the next items for attention include the hornblocks (which the team has in stock) and motion brackets (which require casting and machining).

J39 64960
A group has emerged with the stated ambition of building a new LNER 0-6-0 J39. It shares some membership with the Claud Hamilton group, and while New Build Steam’s last update reported that team’s youth with some surprise, they are positive veterans compared to the J39 group, who are all in their teens (although they have the support of adults who can handle the formalities like setting up a Trust for the next few years).

As noted last time, it can only be positive that younger enthusiasts are coming onto the scene; moreover, some of preservation’s early achievements in the 1960s and 70s were managed by people still in their teens. That said, the question of whether a finished locomotive will emerge hangs over every single project reported on this site bar Tornado, and it’s legitimate (though it feels a touch uncharitable) to ask it of such a young team, who could yet have their interest drawn away by aspects of adult life they have yet to encounter.

That said, the group has acknowledged that the project is a long-term one: currently they are assessing interest before announcing a firm intention to go ahead with the project. This will involve holding some public meetings (details currently to be confirmed). Accordingly the project does not yet have its own dedicated category on this site, but you can visit its website and Facebook group.



  1. Thanks for the update David – I’ll include it in the next round-up, and do a quick tweet about VAB acceptance in the meantime.

    Regarding comments elsewhere: 1) the post on the County states “Boiler exists but requires re-build and restoration” and always has done – I totally agree the loco is not getting a new boiler! You may wish to speak to whoever updates the website though, as in the August 2011 update it is described as “basically a new boiler”. 2) the story about the County’s wheels was published in May last year (so I’ve no doubt things have moved on since then, eg as acknowledged in the November and October 2011 updates) and taken from multiple updates on the project’s own website during 2011.

  2. Reference 45551 – VAB approval has been achieved for the wheel repair which is expected to be completed by the end of May. The project has just taken delivery of a complete set of coupling rods and one outside connecting rod previously used on Jubilees. We have also located an inside connecting rod also previously fitted to a Jubilee and are checking its condition and suitability. Please note that Patriots and Jubilees both described as ‘Converted Claughtons’ when first launched had virtually the same motion. The outstanding outside connecting rod forging will be delivered by the end of May. With further smaller outside motion items being delivered shortly the project will have around 80% of the motion required.

    All the items necessary for wheeling the engine have now been obtained. Machining of these is progressing well.

    Re your comments on 1014 County of Glamorgan – the complete firebox will be re-used but the barrel which is too short will be replaced by a fully tapered version. The smokebox is scrap. This is hardly ‘a new boiler’.

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