80097 was built at Brighton in December 1954 at a cost of £17,600. It was based on the Eastern Region working on the London, Tilbury and Southend Line (LT&S) working commuter services out of London until that route was electrified in 1962.
It spent time under the management of three different regions whilst in Service with BR. It moved from the Eastern to Western Region in 1962 and in September 1963 it was transferred to the London Midland when Oswestry and Machynlleth depots were transferred to the London Midland from the Western Region.
Motive power depot allocations.
|June 1962||Swansea Est Dock|
80097 was withdrawn from service in July 1965 and sold for scrap to Woodham Brothers and arrived at their scrapyard in Barry in January 1966. It was the last of the standard tanks to leave the yard when it left after over nineteen years in May 1985 following its purchase by The Bury Steam Locomotive Company Limited for £9,000 plus VAT.
There were three remaining standard class 4 locomotives left at Barry by then. 80072 had no roof and a cut bogie wheelset, 80150 which had a bad report on its boiler and 80097. Thus 80097 was chosen. The journey by low roader to Bury was not without incident. The driver told the owners that he was going to stop overnight at Knutsford services but instead continued on towards Bury. When the locomotive did not arrive at Bury the owners contacted the police who checked but could not locate it. It subsequently turned out that the driver had driven as far as Heywood (which is close to Bury) and stayed overnight there. The following morning the low loader proceeded towards Bury but suffered a puncture which caused major delays to other traffic
Like many other locomotives purchased from Barry had many parts missing and had suffered from the long period of storage in the open air near the sea.
Restoration work on the locomotive has been undertaken by the Bury Standard 4 Group at Bury.
The chassis has received significant attention with virtually all components having been stripped, cleaned, de-rusted and refurbished. Work on the wheel sets, both driving bogie and pony truck, has extended to re-profiling the tyres, re-machining the journals and then marrying them with the re-furbished axle boxes. This then enabled the frames to be reunited with the wheels.
The many and varied boiler fittings and other non-ferrous items that had attracted the attention of others whilst at Barry have had to be replaced. These, in the main, have been remanufactured at significant cost and all now await re-fitting. The extensive network of lubrication pipes that feed the axle boxes, motion parts and cylinders have been replaced, and this has included some painstaking work in ensuring that the final pipe work arrangements mirror the original BR design drawings.
Replacement of those missing valve motion components, side rods and connecting rods has been a monumental exercise which has required ‘original’ parts to be tracked down and also new parts having to be manufactured. Work on refurbishment of the valves and cylinders has been equally meticulous and extensive. The side and rear water tanks/bunker have been extensively repaired and have been reunited with the loco along with a new smokebox which has been trial fitted to allow other work to proceed in anticipation of the return of the overhauled boiler.
In October 2011 the smoke box, smoke box door and chimney were fitted.
The last stage of the work to restore 80097 to steam is to overhaul the boiler which was estimated to cost around £90,000.
In March 2014 80097 was moved from the workshop used by the Bury Standard 4 Group to the Baron Street works where the locomotives on the East Lancs Railway are serviced.
The new boiler was then moved to the back of the workshop of the Bury Standard 4 Group along with the Weltrol wagon containing the firebox. This enabled work on the firebox to be undertake under cover rather than in the open air. There are many holes to be drilled in the new outer side sheets of the firebox to accommodate the new stays that have to be manufactured and fitted.
The final boiler work is being completed by Adam Dalgliesh Engineering (now called Northern Steam Engineering) who had anticipated that the boiler work would be completed in July 2016. This date went back until November 2016 after problems with longitudinal stays and after further delays it is now planned to undertake hydraulic testing of the boiler in May 2017.
It was hoped that 80097 would be in steam again in the middle of 2017 but this was not possible. The boiler was returned to Bury in September 2017 and was immediately lifted back onto the engines frames.
By the end of 2017 the smokebox had been riveted to the barrel and the superheater fitted. Also in place were the main steam manifold, steam heat valve, topfeed clacks and steam brake bracket, with the pipework to these being formed.
It is hoped the locomotive will be operational in the middle of 2018.
By April 2018 the boiler cladding had been trial fitted before being removed for painting in readiness for final steam testing of the boiler.
At the end of April 2018 the boiler passed a full steam test and preparations were being made to fit the boiler onto the frames. The boiler was lifted onto the frames in June 2018.
In October 2018 the locomotive moved under its own steam again running light engine. This was its first running whilst in preservation – it was withdrawn from service with BR in July 1965.
The locomotive was subsequently lifted of its wheelset in order to deal with an axlebox which had run hot in October.
In mid January the locomotive successfully undertook a loaded test run before being taken into the workshops to be fully painted. It then entered traffic later in January 2019.
The owners originally thought that the restoration of the locomotive would be completed in four years. It actually took 35 years and cost £350,000.
During its first year back in operation the locomotive clocked up nearly 6,000 miles on 89 steaming days.
In July 2022 the locomotive was taken out of service after the discovery of a second split steam tube and the boiler inspector insisted that all of the small tubes must be replaced. This is only three years after the boiler was overhauled by a specialist.
After fitting new tubes and passing hydraulic and steam tests the locomotive returned to traffic on the East Lancs Railway in August 2022.
|Home Base||Current Status||Owner|
|East Lancashire Railway||Operational||The Bury Steam Locomotive Company Limited|