Hunslet  Works No 3788    NCB  Monckton No 1 0-6-0ST

Hunslet 3788 Emsay & Bolton Abbey  March 2010.jpg

This locomotive was built in 1953 for the National Coal Board (NCB) by the Hunslet Engine Company to the design used to supply to the Ministry of Defence and is thus regarded as an Austerity type locomotive.

See LNER class J94 for details.

This locomotive started its working life with the National Coal Board (NCB) at NCB Monckton Colliery at Royston near Barnsley.where it became N.C.B. Monckton No.

New Monckton had three shafts, and adjacent to it was a cokeworks, which is still active today, and has been of great assistance to the railway with gifts of trackwork. The railway system was extensive with lots of sidings to serve such a big complex, but also lines to the Aire & Calder navigation, the spoil tip, the Midland Railway and the Hull & Barnsley sidings at Shafton.

Each day three engines worked the day shift (6a.m. – 2p.m.), two worked the afternoons (2p.m. – 10p.m.) and one engine was kept in steam overnight in case of emergencies. One of Monckton’s duties was to shunt the coking plant’s sidings. With larger wagons and better locomotives, the size of the fleet required reduced to four engines, and in 1963 Monkton No.1 was converted to run using the Hunslet underfeed stoker and gas producer system. (See Hunslet Works No 2868/3883 for more details of the system).

In November, after the colliery closed in 1967, Monckton No.1 was transferred to North Gawber Colliery, Mapplewell, some three miles north of Barnsley. There the underfeed stoker system was not liked, as it just put the coal on in a heap, which then had to be spread.

Upon arrival at North Gawber Colliery, it was considered to be a good locomotive, and from September 1968, it was the only working locomotive. When prospects improved, two locomotives were again used, and after having a couple of tubes replaced, Monckton No.1 seems to have been relegated to being the spare engine, with the tyres reportedly in very bad condition. 1974 it was re-wheeling with newly re-tyred wheels and the corroded bunker was repaired with filler.

In 1980 the engine moved to the Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway where initially it was used on freight trains..

In 1981 it had a repaint and again worked the freights and passenger trains after fitting it with vacuum pipes.

It was then taken out of service after suffering persistently with leaking tubes and was left in store until 1997 when an overhaul of it commenced.

The overhaul was protracted as there was a shortage of volunteers which resulted in long periods of inactivity. It was not until May 2002 that the locomotive was steamed again before running at the Foxfield Railway Gala the following month.

Back at Embsay the loco has been hauling service trains, and has also had some further attention to adjust components as they bed in. Further painting work is still outstanding, but this will take place at some stage shortly, along with other minor jobs.

The locomotive was taken back out of service towards the end of 2005 with leaking tubes and firebox problems. These issues took a year to resolve but after a short time in service it was withdrawn again and it was decided that it required a new firebox.

The locomotive is currently stored on static display at Bolton Abbey awaiting an overhaul.

Hunslet 3788 Emsay & Bolton Abbey  March 2010.jpg 3788 at the Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway – March 2010

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