Ironstone duo makes Spa Valley triple for 2017

KENT’S Spa Valley Railway (SVR) will be able to call upon three operational steam locomotives this year when Hunslet 0-6-0ST Ring Haw (1982/1940) joins the working fleet on hire from the North Norfolk Railway.

Hunslet 0-6-0ST Ring Haw departs from Rowsley for Matlock during its first day in service on hire to Peak Rail on November 19 last year. The North Norfolk Railway-based loco will spend much of 2017 on the Spa Valley Railway.

The ex-Nassington Quarry locomotive will be making its first foray to the south-west of England from May 22, and is expected to stay on the SVR until the end of October.

Its presence at Tunbridge Wells West will enable it to pair up with another former ironstone engine – resident Robert Stephenson & Hawthorns ‘56’ class 0-6-0ST No. 62 Ugly (7673/1950) –
which like the Hunslet spent its pre-preservation career in the East Midlands ironstone fields, albeit with Stewarts & Lloyds at Corby.

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The third loco making up the 2017 fleet is James Hymas’ ‘Austerity’ 0-6-0ST No. 72 (5903/1945), which has had its hire period extended until January 2018. The Vulcan Foundry-built engine was the mainstay of services during 2016, and together with Ugly will take part in the railway’s Spring Steam Weekend on April 22-23.

Read more in the April issue of The RM – on sale now!

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