48305 (LMS 8303 & BR 48305)

48305 was completed at the Crewe Works of the LMS in November, 1943 and was numbered 8305 by the LMS.

It spent a number of years allocated to Wellingborough where it hauled the coal trains to Brent Sidings, Cricklewood, and to Toton.

BR motive power depot allocations since 1948.

Date Arrived Depot
January 1948 Wellingborough
March 1957 Northampton
October 1962 Crewe South
July 1965 Norwich
September 1965 Speke Junction

48305 was withdrawn from service at Speke Junction in January 1968 and sold to Woodham Brothers at Barry for scrap. It arrived at Barry in September 1968 and remained there until November 1985.

During the time spent at Barry scrapyard it was sprayed with the words “Please don’t let me die!” on the smokebox door, but was saved by Roger Hibbert in 1985

The locomotive arrived on the GCR, at Quorn & Woodhouse, in November, 1985. It was hauled to the Locomotive Department at Loughborough where dismantling soon began. It then underwent a long and comprehensive restoration which included the acquisition of a new tender. The locomotive was completely stripped down to its component parts and those repaired and restored or replaced before reassembly. Missing parts were made or found from other sources and the locomotive gradually developed into a complete machine once again. It was completely restored to running order and after running-in trials and final adjustments entered traffic in February 1995.

It worked extensively on the GCR’s passenger and freight services and was particularly at home of the “Windcutter” train, the train of 16 ton mineral wagons so reminiscent of the original GCR. 48305 proved a free steaming and free running engine and was well liked by all the locomotive crews who had the privilege of driving her. 48305 became a much travelled locomotive in preservation, spending periods at the Midland Railway Centre, North Norfolk and Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Railways. It made an appearance at the GCR(N) at Ruddington in 2000 before going to the Churnet Valley Railway at Cheddleton in June of that year for a five-year period.

Whilst boiler repairs became necessary and although some repairs were completed at Cheddleton, it was then sent to L&NWR at Crewe for a ten-year overhaul. Once there it became apparent that the boiler repairs required were more extensive, and thus more expensive, than at first anticipated. A complete re-tube was required and attention and replacement was necessary to the crown stays. Work proceeded as funds allowed.

During this period a desire was expressed to bring the locomotive back to the GCR on a permanent basis. With funds made available from The David Clarke Railway Trust the boiler repairs where completed and the locomotive returned to the GCR in April, 2006. After some further remedial work to the motion and general tidying up of locomotive and tender paintwork the engine returned to traffic in May, 2006.

Towards the end of 2011, whilst half way through its boiler certificate, 48305 was taken out of service for a full ten year overhaul. Tubes were removed from the boiler in October, 2011 and the boiler lifted from the frames in November and the frames lifted and the wheels rolled out. In January, 2012 the driving wheels were painted.

The overhaul of the locomotive on the GCR is still continuing. Th boiler was lifted back onto the frames in December 2017 and a return to steam anticipated in 2018.

In August 2018 the boiler was fitted once again following steam tests in June.

Home Base Current Status Owner
Great Central Railway Under overhaul Great Central Railway
48305 Loughborough 2011.jpg48305 Loughborough 2013.jpg 48305 at Loughborough on the Great Central Railway-2011

 

 

 

The boiler of 48305 outside the works at Loughborough on the Great Central Railway-2013. Next to it is classmate 48624.

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