Two new steam locomotives join the Epping Ongar Railway fleet9th February 2021

The Epping Ongar Railway has welcomed two new members to the steam locomotive fleet.

Numbers 56 and 63 are Robert Stephenson and Hawthorn saddle tank locomotives which worked at the Corby steelworks. A total of nine saddle tank locomotives of this type were built for the steelworks from Robert Stephenson and Hawthorn based in Darlington. The locomotives were often referred to as "uglies" as a result of their short saddle tanks and large fireboxes, giving a somewhat ungainly appearance. However, the locomotives are more powerful than a Hunslet Austerity locomotive. 

Locomotives 56 and 63

Locomotive 56

Number 56 (works number 7667) was the first locomotive in an initial batch of seven locomotives ordered in 1950 and worked at the steelworks until 1969 when replaced by diesel traction. 

Entering preservation, the locomotive initially worked at the Kent and East sussex Railway before moving to the newly opened North woolwich Railway museum on static display in 1984. When that museum closed in 2006, the locomotive moved to the Great Central Railway (North) in Nottingham. Following further service, there, the locomotive was stored upon expiry of its boiler certificate. It was moved to the Epping Ongar Railway in February 2021 alongside its sister engine, number 63. 

The locomotive currently wears a black livery. 

Locomotive 63 and 56

Locomotive 63 "Corby"

Number 63 (works number 7761) was part of a second batch of two locomotives and was delivered to the steelworks in 1954, becoming the eigth of this type of locomotive at the site. It, too, was withdrawn in 1969 when replaced by diesel traction. 

The locomotive was initially preserved at the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway alongside two more of its sister locomotives. In 2011 the locomotive was moved to the Great Central Railway (North) in Nottingham where it was reunited with fellow Stewarts and Lloyds locomotive number 56. It worked, there, alongside number 56 until expiry of its boiler certificate. It was moved to the Epping Ongar Railway in February 2021 together with number 56.

The locomotive currently wears a green livery and is named "Corby".

Both are awaiting an overhaul before they can work any trains, but we’re looking forward to seeing them in service in the future!