THE engineering team at the Chasewater Railway pulled out all the stops during the early part of May to ensure that Bagnall 0-4-0ST Dunlop No. 6 (2648/1941) was available for traffic by the second bank holiday weekend.
The former Royal Ordnance Factory, Burghfield, loco has not steamed at Chasewater in four years, this most recent overhaul proving to be quite challenging.
A number of hurdles have had to be overcome to make good older repairs, while other parts such as the ashpan have had to be renewed. The loco has also had its original deeper bufferbeam profile restored.
The red letter day was May 14, when the Bagnall, wearing a mixture of its former blue livery and green undercoat, worked the last train of the day from Brownhills West to Chasetown.
Further testing proved successful and the loco hauled its first rostered passenger turns on May 28-29, albeit after the application of more green undercoat.
Unfortunately, the long-anticipated sight of two 1941-built Royal Ordnance Factory (ROF) locos in steam together was dashed on the Bank Holiday Monday when Peckett 0-4-0ST Teddy (No. 2012) ‘popped a tube’ during steam raising that morning. The ex-ROF Llanishen loco was subsequently withdrawn pending repairs, which at the time of writing were underway.
Dunlop No. 6 will now maintain the bulk of the railway’s steam services until the planned return of Hunslet 0-6-0ST Holly Bank No. 3 (3783/1953) later in the year. It will be finished in a modified version of its Dunlop green livery at the earliest opportunity.
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