Kitson Works No 4263 29 Lambton Colliery 0-6-2T

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Power Classification
DesignerKitson & Co
CompanyLampton, Hetton & Joicey Colliery Company
Weight60t 10cwt
Driving Wheels4ft 5in
Boiler Pressure165psi
CylindersInside – 19in x 26in
Tractive Effort23,500lbf
Valve GearAllen straight link with slide valves

29 was built in 1904 by Kitson & Co at Hunslet in 1904 for the Lampto, Hetton & Joicey Colliery Company (LH&JC). It spent all of its working life based at Philadelphia in County Durham. Like all of the locomotives on the LH&JC railway it was built to a modified loading gauge which resulted in the rounded-cab to enable it to work down the narrow-bored tunnel to Lambton Drops (coal staithes) at Sunderland.

It was the first 0-6-2T locomotive to be deployed on the Lambton Railway. This was a wheel arrangement which worked well on the steeply graded lines in the north east and was used by Collett with his 5600 class.

The LH &JC railway system was extensive, and the locomotives had running rights over main lines in the area. This enabled them to work from the pitheads to the quayside coal staithes at Sunderland.

Steam operation over the system ceased in February 1969 and 29 was then redundant a year after its last overhaul at Philadelphia in only October 1968.

In January 1970 three volunteers went to Philadelphia to examine Nos 5 and 29 with a view to tendering for their purchase. All the other redundant steam locomotives remained at Philadelphia Works. During May they were informed that their bids for Nos 5 and 29 had been successful, and so they commenced the job of preparing them for their journey to the NYMR.

After being inspected at Philadelphia a consortium of North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR) member purchased the locomotive in 1970. At the end of June 1970 29 was examined and passed fit to travel in steam to the NYMR.

The plan was that the locomotive would be hauled by class 46 diesel D186 but the steam locomotive was allowed to propel the train to Thornaby. At Thornaby 29 was fitted with an LMS-style vacuum braking system from an LMS Black Five, and the left leading axlebox was re-metalled. A class 37 diesel (D6899) then hauled 29 and 63395 from Thornaby to Grosmont.

In 1999 a major overhaul was completed which included a new firebox.

An overhaul was completed on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway in 2013.

In late 2014 a crack was found in its cylinder block and it was withdrawn from service.

In January 2019 it was reported that the locomotive could be in steam during 2019.

In July 2019 the locomotive moved under its own steam for the first time since October 2014.

Home BaseCurrent StatusOwner
North Yorkshire Moors RailwayOperationalConsortium of NYMR members
Kitson Works No 4263 29 Lambton Tank at the coaling stage at NCB Philadelphia shed – February 1969
4263 on the last day of steam working on the Philadelphia NCB system with a load from Houghton pit – February 1969
4263 departing from Philadelphia shed area with a loaded coal train
4263 on the last day of steam working on the Philadelphia NCB system – February 1969
Kitson 4263 in front of Robert Stephenson 3377 at Grosmont on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway – November 1972
4263 at Grosmont on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway – 1979
29 Lambton Tank at Grosmont on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway – May 2013
29 Lambton Tank at Grosmont on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway – May 2013
4263 at Swithland on the Great Central Railway – May 2014
4263 at Peak Rail – September 2019
4263 at Diodcot Railway Centre – July 2021
4263 at the Didcot Railway Centre – July 2021

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