2857 was completed at Swindon in April 1918 at a cost including tender of £5,948.
During a working career of 45 years, 2857 recorded a total mileage of 1,276,713 miles and, to judge from the depots to which it was allocated, must have operated over virtually all the GWR routes on which it was permitted to run. 2857 was delivered new to Salisbury GWR depot and then moved successively to Pontypool Road, Aberdare, Old Oak Common, Newton Abbot, back to Aberdare and to Pontypool Road, then Severn Tunnel Junction, Pontypool Road again, Cardiff Canton and Plymouth Laira prior to the nationalistion of the railways in January 1948.
BR motive power depot allocations since 1948.
|January 1948||Laira (Plymouth)|
|February 1958||Chester (GWR)|
|May 1958||Pontypool Road|
|March 1959||Pontypool Road|
|March 1961||Ebbw Junction|
|August 1961||Severn Tunnel Junction|
It was withdrawn from service in April 1963 whilst based at Neath.
2857 was stored for six months before being sold as scrap to Woodham Brothers at Barry Docks in South Wales. From there 2857 was purchased in May 1974 for £5,250 plus £525 VAT (in 1972 the price had been £3,500) by the 2857 Fund and moved by rail to the Severn Valley Railway in convoy with Collett Mogul 7325, arriving in August 1975. It was the first 2800 class locomotive to leave Barry and was considered to be in the best condition of the 15 members of the class there
Restoration started in January 1976 at Bewdley with the first steaming achieved in preservation in September 1979. It then had cylinder problems which was amazingly rectified when a set of scrapped cylinders from a 2800 class locomotive were discovered at Briton Ferry steelworks in 1979 when the steelworks was being dismantled. The repairs were completed in 1984 which was the reason that it was not until August 1985 that 2857 achieved 140 miles in traffic on running-in turns.
In September 1985 the locomotive hauled a goods train on the main line from the Severn Valley Railway to Newport as part of the GWR 150 celebrations.
It was withdrawn for overhaul in December 1994 after which it was returned to service in July 2011.
In May 2018 the locomotive was undergoing test runs after having had a full intermediate overhaul.
The boiler certificate was valid until July 2022 but in June 2022 it was reported that it had been extended for six months.
|Home Base||Current Status||Owner|
|Seven Valley Railway||Operational||The 2857 Society|