Big milestone for Mid Norfolk ‘Austerity’

THERE was cause for celebration at Mervyn Mayes’ Yaxham yard on December 20 when the boiler of Norfolk Heritage Steam Railway Ltd’s Hunslet 0-6-0ST Norfolk Regiment (3193/1944) was reunited with the frames after a seven-year absence.

The boiler of Hunslet ‘Austerity’ 0-6-0ST No. 3193 reunited with the frames at Yaxham on December 20, and passing its out-of-frames steam test on November 17. BOTH: NHSR LTD

Progress on the ‘Austerity’ has continued rapidly over the past few months, most notably on November 17 when the boiler passed its out-of-frames steam test at Yaxham.

A successful hydraulic test had been completed three weeks earlier, and having achieved the magic 180psi in steam the race was on to get the boiler back where it belonged.

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With the December 20 date in the diary the overhaul team set about freeing up the rolling chassis, which had not moved for the best part of four years.

This took place on December 8
when, after checking out the lubrication system, the chassis was barred back and forth with relative ease. This happened just days after Horsley Loco Restoration came in to set up and calibrate the loco’s braking system.

Come the 20th and the boiler was lifted from its hard standing to enable the new ashpan to be fitted.

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The assembly was then put onto a flatbed lorry and moved to where the frames stood waiting, the boiler being lowered in with apparent ease and almost inch perfect.

Work will now turn to fitting the newly acquired smokebox and boiler lagging, along with the assembly of the cab.

The eventual aim is for No. 3193 to take up residence on the nearby Mid Norfolk Railway, a role for which the loco was acquired from the Lavender Line in 2009.

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