1338 Cardiff Railway 0-4-0ST


Power Classification 0F
Introduced 1898
Designer Kitson & Co
Company Cardiff Railway
Weight 25t 10cwt
Driving Wheels 3ft 2.5in
Boiler Pressure 160psi
Cylinders Outside – 14ins  x  21in
Tractive Effort 14,540lbf
Valve Gear Hawthorn Kitson

The Cardiff Railway was owned by the Marquis of Bute and was the smallest railway absorbed into the Great Western in 1923. It operated a ‘main line’ of 11 and a half miles connecting to the Taff Vale railway (also absorbed into the GWR in 1923) and 120 miles of dock and colliery sidings. It owned only tank locomotives of various sizes. Two locomotives of this class were built with one of them being scrapped in 1934.

This little engine was built as Cardiff Railway No. 5 in 1898 by Kitsons of Leeds (works number 3799), to replace an older No. 5. It was fitted with Hawthorn Kitson valve gear with a link above the running plate instead of below. No coal bunker was fitted.

With its twin, No. 6, it was inherited by the GWR in 1923, who-renumbered them 1338 and 1339. 1339 was cut up in 1934, but 1338 remained, initially in store but then loaned to Stewarts & Lloyds Ltd of Swansea during the Second World War. At the time of nationalisation of the railways in January 1948 the locomotive was based at Bridgewater but it was transferred to Taunton depot in May 1953 for working in Bridgwater docks, then to Swansea docks in June 1960. From there it was finally withdrawn in September 1963, becoming the last withdrawal of all standard gauge locomotives absorbed into the GWR. It ran 354,000 miles in GWR and BR service, a huge mileage for such a small engine.



In April 1964, 1338 was saved from scrapping and moved to behind the up platform at Bleadon & Uphill (Somerset) station, where it could be detected amongst the bushes from passing expresses.

1338 at Bleaden & Uphill-1968 .jpg 1338 at Bleadon & Uphill in 1968

In 1987 it was brought to Didcot, and was restored to working order, though the boiler certificate has now expired and the locomotive is on display in non-working condition.

Home Base Current Status Owner
Didcot Railway Centre Static display Great Western Society Limited

1338 at Didcot-2011.jpg 1338 at Didcot in 2011

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