5 Shannon 0-4-0WT Sandy & Potton Railway

Shannon No 5 Didcot April 2012.jpg

Power ClassificationUnclassified
CompanySandy &  Potton Railway
Driving Wheels2ft 11ins
Boiler Pressure120psi
CylindersOutside – 9in x 12in
Tractive Effort2,754lbf
Valve Gear

It was built in 1857 by George England and Co. of New Cross, London for Capt. William Peel, the owner of the Sandy and Potton Railway, at a cost of £800.Five years later it was sold to the London North Western Railway and numbered 1104. After an unsuccessful two week trial on the Cromford and High Peak Railway it left to become a Crewe Works shunter.

In 1872 it was renumbered to 1863 and given the name Shannon. Six years later Shannon was sold to the Wantage Tramway Company for £365 8s 1d and moved under its own power from Crewe to Oxford then on Great Western Railway lines to Wantage Road Station. Here it was renumbered to 5 and given the unofficial name Jane. During its service on the Tramway the engine was little altered, although new cylinders were fitted in 1882. It also had two heavy repairs at Swindon works in 1896 and 1921, followed by one in 1929 by the Avonside Engine Co, of Bristol. In 1939 another return to Swindon saw it gain a works plate carrying the words Registered by GWR No. 209, 1941.

In 1946 the Wantage Tramway closed and the Great Western Railway bought No. 5 for £100. Visiting Swindon works again the name Shannon was reapplied and in 1948 it was placed on display on the platform of the GWR station at Wantage Road.

Wantage Road was closed in 1965 and Shannon moved into storage at Grove on the premises of the Atomic Energy Authority. Whilst there some employees who were also members of the Great Western Society took an interest in the locomotive which following negotiations with the Wantage Town Council resulted in Shannon moving to Didcot in January 1969.

Restoration work began at Didcot and Shannon steamed again later in 1969.

Shannon was a major attraction at the part of 150th anniversary of the Stockton and Darlington Railway in 1975.

Subsequently cracks were discovered in the firebox which require major work before it can steam again.

5 Shannon is part of the National Collection. It is one of only five George England engines still in existence and the only one that is standard gauge. It is housed at the Didcot Railway Centre.

Home BaseCurrent StatusOwner
Didcot Railway CentreOn static displayNational Railway Museum NRM Object Number{1978-7013}
5 Shannon 0-4-0WT Sandy & Potton Railway – Photo by John Wiltshire on unknown date
Shannon taking part in the Stockton & Darlington 150th anniversary cavalcade – August 1975
Shannon at Didcot – January 2011
Shannon No 5 Didcot April 2012.jpg
 Shannon at Didcot – April 2012
Shannon at Didcot – January 2018
Shannon at Didcot – April 2019
Shannon at Didcot – May 2021

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