45337 (LMS 5337 & BR 45337)

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45337 entered service as 5337 in 1937 following being built at Armstrong Whitworth at Newcastle-on-Tyne at a cost to the LMS of £6,244. It was later numbered 45337 following nationalisation of the railways and the formation of British Railways in 1948.

BR motive power depot allocations since 1948.

Date ArrivedDepot
January 1948Agecroft
August 1963Southport
November 1964Carlisle Kingmoor

It was withdrawn from service in February 1965 and sold for scrap to Woodham Brothers at Barry where it arrived in January 1966. It remained at Barry until May 1984, following its purchase by the 26B Railway Co Ltd in 1983 for £7,500. The 26B being the shed code for Agecroft where the locomotive was based for most of its life in service. In 1985 a tender for 45337 was purchased from Barry for £1,500.

45337 was restored to full working order at the East Lancashire Railway in Bury and steamed again in 1995 having cost in excess of £150,000. The locomotive had two years service on the East Lancs Railway before visiting Peak Rail in Derbyshire for two summer seasons in succession. After this the engine visited the Nene Valley Railway and Mid Hants Railway and later the West Somerset Railway and the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway.

In 2005 it was withdrawn at Bury for its 10 year boiler re-certification with the boiler work being undertaken on the Llangollen Railway.

In 2010 45337 returned to steam on the East Lancs Railway before moving on to the Llangollen Railway in 2011 where it is now included on Llangollen’s boiler insurance schedule with engineering support provided by Llangollen. It does not necessarily become part of the Llangollen regular operating fleet but if required, and not committed to hire elsewhere, it will handle Llangollen Railway services, but the arrangement does not commit Llangollen to an agreed number of operating dates. The locomotive is most likely to undertake hires at other heritage lines. Although no longer ‘officially’ an East Lancashire engine, its owners have made it clear it could visit the ELR if requested.

45337 sometimes runs as 45156 Ayrshire Yeomanry and sometimes as 45337 with the name Ayrshire Yeomanry.

In 2014 45337 was out of service for a while after a steam leak developed (apparently around an old BR days repair) earlier in the year while it was on hire at the Nene Valley Railway. This required attention, including a boiler lift, at Llangollen. It returned to service in June 2015 and has a boiler certificate which is valid until 2020.

At the start of 2017 it was out of service whilst it underwent repairs at Llangollen following a valve head failure when it was based on the North Norfolk Railway in the summer of 2016.

The locomotive will remain on the Llangollen until the boiler certificate expires in 2020.

Plans were in place to overhaul the locomotive at that time.

As a result of the locomotive failing in July 2017 it was taken out of service and the boiler was lifted off in October 2017. As the boiler certificate was due to expire in 2020 it was decided to do all the work required to get a new ten year boiler certificate. As a result the locomotive was not expected to return to traffic until the summer of 2020 at the earliest.

Following the impact of Corvid-19 the locomotive is unlikely to steam before late 2021 or during 2022.

In December 2020 it was reported that the locomotive would be moved to the East Lancs Railway in January 2021 (Covid-19 restrictions permitting) where its overhaul will be completed. The first task will be to strip the locomotive down to assess the work required. It is thought the cost of the overhaul could amount to up to £300,000.

Home BaseCurrent StatusOwner
Llangollen RailwayUnder overhaul26B Railway Company
45337 climbing Shap at Bessygill on a train from Aberdeen to Manchester – July 1964
45337 on Crewe North shed – July 1964
45337 in Woodham’s scrapyard at Barry – c1983
45337 on the East Lancs Railway – June 1996
45337 at Bury on the East Lancashire Railway – October 2010
45337 at Bury on the East Lancashire Railway – October 2010
45337 at Heywood on the East Lancashire Railway – October 2010
45337 at Llangollen – September 2011
45337 at Llangollen – September 2011
45337 running as 45156 Ayshire Yeomanry on the North Norfolk Railway – September 2012

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