The locomotive was built by British Railways to GWR specifications at Swindon in January 1949, and named after the Yorkshire stately home. Initially based at Cardiff Canton, it was finally withdrawn by British Rail in 1966 from Oxford shed after being honoured as the engine chosen to work the Western Region’s last steam-hauled passenger train. In markedly better condition than the other survivors, it was selected by the Great Western Society to represent the typical two cylinder Great Western tender locomotive, no others at that time being expected to survive.
BR motive power depot allocations.
|July 1949||Cardiff Canton|
|May 1958||Shrewsbury (stored from September 1958)|
|November 1960||Fishguard Goodwick|
|January 1961||Old Oak Common|
6998 was selected by Oxford depot to work the 2:10pm service from Bournemouth to York on 3rd January 1966 over the section from Oxford to Banbury when it was in the process of being purchased by the Great Western Society. This was the last steam hauled scheduled service on the Western Region. After the run it returned light engine to Oxford and was placed in store.
6998 was withdrawn from service in December 1965.
Delivered in steam to the Society’s Totnes depot in April 1966, it was moved to Didcot in December 1967. Here it has been in virtually continuous service, also with plenty of main line and preserved railways use. It was withdrawn from service in 1996 and is stored complete at Didcot awaiting its turn in the queue for overhaul.
|Home Base||Current Status||Owner|
|Didcot Railway Centre||Awaiting overhaul||Great Western Society|
- 6960 Raveningham Hall
- 6984 Owsden Hall
- 6989 Wightwick Hall
- 6990 Witherslack Hall
- 7903 Foremarke Hall
- 7927 Willington Hall