75029 was built at Swindon in May 1951 and in May 1957 was fitted with a double chimney.
Motive power depot allocations.
|May 1954||Laira (Plymouth)|
|March 1963||Croes Newydd|
|June 1965||Llandudno junction|
|March 1967||Croes Newydd|
It was withdrawn from service in August 1967 when it was bought by David Shepherd for £2,000 along with 92203 for £3,000. He said the money was from the proceeds of his recent New York painting exhibition.
75029 was later given the name Green Knight which had previously carried by 73086.
After acquiring the locomotives, he realised he needed a home for them and the Longmoor Military Railway which not only had a huge yard at Longmoor but also one and a half miles of track which linked up with the main line network at Liss. Part of the line was leased for a year, but due to local opposition it did not work out and by 1971 all the remaining locomotives had been removed.
David Shepherd then looked at 31 sites for a base for his engines and in November 1971 he visited Cranmore. He describes this visit below.
“My first view of Cranmore could not have been more depressing. The icy rain seemed to be coming straight for me horizontally as I struggled up the pot-holed lane to the little station in front of me. The site was derelict. There was no station house, and the lamps, seats and fencing on the platform had long since gone. Several windows of the little station were boarded up and weeds and rubbish were everywhere. It was all so typical of those many sleepy little country branch lines stations which were victims of the Beeching axe and which seemed to be so much a part of the tragic end to Great Britain’s steam railway era.
The scene that confronted me as I fought my way in what by now had become a howling gale, through knee-high nettles and dank grass up to a site where we might possibly build a loco shed, was even worse. There was a building here but it was just an old tin shed. One corner had rotted away completely, the roof was sagging dangerously and the corrugated iron sheets, those that were left, were flapping in the wind to the sound of tortured screeching metal, which in itself seemed to me to be a warning to go away once and for all.
However, there was hope. First of all, I had noticed there were lengths of long disused railway track under the jungle of weeds. I knew they were there because I kept tripping over them. This meant there had been some sort of railway operation here at some time in the past. Furthermore, and much more important, Cranmore was still linked to British Rail and this would obviously be of inestimable value when or if we could bring our stock into its new home. So perhaps we could make something of this depressing place.”
Whilst a site of dereliction, he could see the potential and so he and some friends purchased the site, and the Cranmore Railway Company was born. In 1973, the line opened offering Brake Van rides before extending first to Merryfield in 1980 and then to Mendip Vale and into Cranmore station itself in 1985. This was the birth of the East Somerset Railway.
When the Longmoor Military Railway closed in 1973 75029 and 92203 were moved to a siding at Eastleigh for which BR charged £20 week rent. It moved to the East Somerset Railway during 1973.
In May 1973 took part in the open day at Eastleigh Railway Works and in August 1975 it was one of the locomotives in the Stockton and Darlington 150th Anniversary Cavalcade at Shildon.
After spending a few years based at Cranmore 75029 was sold to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway to pay for the overhaul of 92203.
For use on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR) 75029 has been fitted with Train Protection & Warning System (TPWS) to enable it to work between Battersby and Whitby over Network Rail track.
75029 returned to steam after its last overhaul in 2012.
In 2017 some initial stripping work on the locomotive was undertaken a at the NYMR in readiness for a further overhaul which will be given a high priority. Due to the extensive work required to the firebox the locomotive is unlikely to be back in service before 2019.
|Home Base||Current Status||Owner|
|North Yorkshire Moors Railway||
|North Yorkshire Moors Railway|