CHURCHWARD ‘28XX’ 2-8-0 No. 2807 will work the last trains of its current 10-year boiler certificate at the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway on December 31-January 1.
No. 2807’s ‘ticket’ expires on March 10, but the 1905-built veteran will be withdrawn on January 2 to enable work on its overhaul to begin.
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The loco’s owning group Cotswold Steam Preservation Ltd (CSPL) considered a number of options, including withdrawal at the end of the 2019 operating season, withdrawal on expiry of the current boiler certificate in March, or whether to seek an extension to keep the 2-8-0 running beyond next spring.
However, at a board meeting on November 16, CSPL voted in favour of early withdrawal.
A key factor in the decision was ensuring the group’s plans for No. 2807’s overhaul fitted in with the railway’s needs, so it will act as standby loco during the ‘Santa Special’ season before bowing out in the New Year.
The boiler is being sent to a specialist contractor for overhaul, with CSPL hoping to award the contract by the end of the year.
No. 2807 returned to steam in 2010 after a 29-year restoration by CSPL volunteers, largely carried out in the open air at Toddington. Since then it has been a regular and reliable performer on Gloucs-Warks services, clocking up in excess of 40,000 miles during the decade.
CSPL has launched a share offer to help finance the overhaul. Shares cost £150 each, which can be paid for in instalments from as little as £5 per month.
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