Andrew Barclay Works No 1944 Gamma 0-4-0F

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is andrew-barclay-1944-at-croda-hydrocarbons-1979.jpg

This locomotive was built by Andrew Barclay in 1928 and delivered new to the Carrow Works of J & J Coleman . It was given the name Gamma.

It was a fireless locomotive which means that it had a steam accumulator rather than a boiler and was charged up with steam from a stationary boiler. It also meant that there was no chance of it starting a fire.

It had 15 inch x 18 inch outside cylinders and 3 feet driving wheels.

In November 1952 the locomotive moved to Midland Tar Distillers Ltd. (later Croda Synthetic Chemical Works Ltd.) at Four Ashes, near Wolverhampton. It became the last working fireless locomotive in Britain when it was finally withdrawn from service in the early 1990s.

Conventional steam traction was unsuitable for the working at Four Ashesdue to the  inflammable chemicals environment. Adjacent to the Stafford-Wolverhampton main line, the works was opened by Midland Tar Distillers in 1950 to process tar produced by the gas industry. Successively owned by Midland Yorkshire Tar Distillers from 1967 and Croda Hydrocarbons from 1975, with the advent of natural gas the company had to diversify into synthetic chemicals production, although it continued to process coke oven tar for some years.

After it was withdrawn from service it moved to the Telford Steam Railway where it remains in store.

1944 at Croda Hydrocarbons – 1979
1944 at the Telford Steam Railway – August 2017

Back to Fireless Locomotives

Back to Andrew Barclay

Back to Industrial Locomotives

Back to Locomotives