This locomotive was built by the Avonside Engine Company in 1933 for the Staveley Coal and Iron Ltd for use at their Lamport Calcine Sidings, Hanging Houghton, Northants. It worked there for all of its life at Lamport as Lamport No3 until September 1969 when it was sold privately.
It then went to the Buckinghamshire Railway Centre at Quainton in March 1970 after being stored in the London Railway Preservation Society London Road garage.
The locomotive moved to the Foxfield Railway at Dilhorne in Staffordshire in October 1971.
Its next move was to Peak Rail at Matlock before going to the Midland Railway Centre at Butterley. It was at the Midland Railway Centre that the locomotive acquired the name Robert.
In 1993 the locomotive was sold to the Kew Bridge Steam Museum where it was cosmetically restored to make it look like a Beckton Gas Works engine. In 1994 the locomotive was displayed on the tracks of Widsor Terrace in Beckton close to the Beckton Gas Works and close to the then new extension of the Docklands Light Railway.
When the Docklands Development Corporation was disbanded in 1999, ownership passed to Newham Borough Council and as Robert had been vandalised it was decided to move the locomotive to a plinth in front of Stratford station.
In 2008 due to bridge construction work in the area the locomotive was move to the East Anglia Railway Museum at Colchester and repainted at the expense of the Olympic Delivery Authority.
In 2011 the locomotive moved back to Stratford station where it is now displayed on the forecourt.
|Avonside 2068 outside Stratford station – April 2005|
|2068 at the East Anglia Railway Museum – December 2009|