J36  65210 – 65346  0-6-0  NBR  Holmes 

 

j36.jpg

Power Classification 2F
Introduced 1888– 1900
Designer Holmes
Company NBR
Weight – Loco 41t 19cwt
               Tender 33t 9cwt
Driving Wheels 5ft 0ins
Boiler Pressure 165psi
Cylinders Inside – 18¼in x 26in
Tractive Effort 20,240lbf
Valve Gear Stephenson – (slide valves)

 

Drummond introduced an 18in diameter cylinder 0-6-0 goods locomotives (LNER J32) to the North British Railway (NBR) in 1876. However, the NBR reverted back to 17in cylinders for all 0-6-0 goods designs until Holmes introduced his class C (LNER class J36) locomotives in 1888. These locomotives were similar to the Drummond engines, but with a level fire grate instead of a sloping one. The boiler was of similar dimensions, but an increase in the number of tubes resulted in a significant increase in the boiler’s heating surface. The J36s were built in small batches of six or twelve on an almost continuous basis. Eventually, 168 were built between 1888 and 1900. All but thirty were built at Cowlairs. Neilson & Co. and Sharp, Stewart & Co. both built fifteen each in 1891-2. The boiler pressure was increased from 140psi to 150psi for the final twenty-four locomotives.

656 was experimentally fitted with New Century apparatus in 1905. This included an extended smokebox in which a mixture of compressed air and steam was superheated, before passing to the cylinders. Extensive mainline express goods trials reportedly resulted in marked coal and water savings. These were either insufficient or there were maintenance problems, as no other J36s were fitted with this apparatus, and 656 soon reverted to a conventional smokebox.

All of the J36s were rebuilt between 1913 and 1923, using side window cabs and slightly larger boilers. Eight un-rebuilt engines survived into LNER ownership, but these were all rebuilt in 1923. The new boilers were 4ft 8.125in diameter, compared to the original boiler diameter of 4ft 6.2in. Early non-lifting injectors were replaced with combination injectors, and the lock-up safety valves were moved from the dome to the firebox. Rebuilding also resulted in an increase in the boiler pitch. This necessitated the replacement of the original tall Holmes chimney with either a tapered Reid chimney or a straight Chalmers chimney.

Cowlairs produced engine diagrams in 1928 that distinguished between J36s according to their springs. Locomotives with Reid springs were classed as J36/1, and those with Chalmers springs were classed as J36/2. These diagrams were never adopted by Doncaster, and the sub-classifications eventually fell out of use. Most (possibly all) of the J36s were converted to the Reid arrangement, but records are incomplete.

From their very beginning, the J36s were often used for snow-plough duty. A number of J36s were fitted with small ploughs that were carried regularly during severe weather. Very large ploughs were also used when deep snow drifts had to be cleared. For these and other duties in exposed areas, a number of J36s were also fitted with tender cabs or tender weatherboards. Many of these fittings survived into British Rail (BR) ownership including on 65345 which hauled the last BR steam working in Scotland from Seafield Colliery in Kirkcaldy on the 23rd March 1967.

Nicknamed the ‘Eighteen Inchers’, the J36s proved to be a very useful and sturdy class of locomotive. Combined with their large numbers, it was natural that they could be found all NBR main sheds and a number of sub-sheds. They were initially used for long distance goods work, but even by 1900 they were being regularly used on passenger duties. Typically, these passenger services were local or branch line in nature, but occasionally a J36 would be called upon to haul a mainline passenger service.

During the First World War, the Highland Railway (HR) borrowed a variety of locomotives from other companies for war-related work. Three J36s were included in these loans. Twenty- five were also loaned to the Government for use in France, in October 1917. The Railway Operating Department (ROD) men in France found the J36s to be capable, easy to maintain, and relatively comfortable. All were returned to the NBR between April and July 1919. To commemorate this war work, these J36s were named after famous military leaders and places connected with the First World War when they returned. The names were painted on the middle splasher, but at nationalisation (and also at various other times during BR days) many of the engines ran nameless.

Although they were partially displaced by the J35s, the J36s continued to work many of their main line duties until significant numbers of superheated J37s were introduced in 1918.

 j36 small J36 introduced by H on the NBR in 1888.
 j37 small J37 introduced by Reid on the NBR in 1914.

This was a time of rapid withdrawals of J31s, J32s, J33s, and J34s; and many of the J36s were moved to the local mineral, trip pilot, and banking duties that these locomotives had been used for. These changes in duties did not result in many allocation changes. J36s continued to be used for some branch line passenger work during the 1920s and 1930s.

The former Great North of Scotland Railway (GNSR) had preferred to use 4-4-0s for goods work. In need of new locomotives, the GNS section borrowed 786 between 1923 and 1925. This trial proved very successful, but the NB section could not spare any further J36s and no permanent transfers occurred until after Nationalisation in 1948. However, short term loans of J36s to the GNS section did occur, and a number of J36s were repaired at Inverurie Works.

Orders Placed

Orders Placed Total
Builder

Quantity

1888 Cowlair Works

  6

  6

1889 Cowlair Works

12

18

1890 Cowlair Works

12

30

1891 Cowlair Works

24

Neilson & Co Ltd

15

69

1892 Sharp Stewart & Co

15

Cowlair Works

  6

90

1893 Cowlair Works

  6

96

1896 Cowlair Works

12

          108

1897 Cowlair Works

12

          120

1898 Cowlair Works

12

          132
1899 Cowlair Works

12

          144
1900 Cowlair Works

24

          168

Number in Service

Orders Placed Withdrawals No. in Service
Builder Quantity
Neilson & Co Ltd

  15

Sharp Stewart & Co

15

Cowlair Works

138

   168

1901-25

   168

1926

       1

   167

1927-30

   167

1931

       2

   165

1932

   165

1933

       1

   164

1934

       3

   161

1935

       5

   156

1936

       5

   151

1937

     10

   141

1938

   141

1939

       2

   139

1940-42

   139

1943

       2

   137

1944

   137

1945

       1

   136

1946

       2

   134

1947

     11

   123

1948

       5

   118

1049

   118

1950

       4

   114

1951

     10

   104

1952

       8

     96

1953-54

     96

1955

       1

     95

1956

       2

     93

1957

       6

     87

1958

       1

     86

1959

       4

     82

1960

       7

     75

1961

       8

     67

1962

     35

     32

1963

     21

     11

1964

       2

       9

1965

       1

       8

1966

       5

       3

1967

       3

       0

The first withdrawal was 9676 Reims after an accident in 1926. General withdrawals started in 1931, and were initially slow but steady. There was a pause during the Second World War when only three were withdrawn. In total, 123 survived to Nationalisation (1948). British Rail moved many of the J36s to ex-LMS sheds and ex-GNSR sheds, where they tended to work on coal and local freight duties respectively. The J36s managed to out-survive the larger and younger J35s due to their small size which made them ideal for light branch lines. Six were still busy at work in May 1966, and the last two were finally withdrawn in 1967. These two J36s out-lasted all other Scottish steam – including later LNER designs and BR Standards.

The distribution of J36 class across Scotland and the English border is illustrated by their 1923 allocation.

Aberdeen

  3

Bathgate

21

Berwick on Tweed

  1

Blaydon

  4

Burntisland

  7

Carlisle

  4

Dundee

  4

Dunfermline

10

Eastfield

19

Hawick

  4

Haymarket

  1

Kipps

10

Parkhead

11

Perth

  2

Polmont

11

St Margarets

32

Stirling

  8

Thornton

16

168

During the Second World War, the J36s could often be found on main line goods work again. Two were also allocated to Malton for working pick-up goods duties to Driffield, Kirbymoorside, Thirsk, and Whitby. Another three were hauling local goods traffic in the Newcastle area from Borough Gardens shed.

Locomotive allocations during British Railways operation

Depots as at January

1948 1955 1960 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966

1967

Aberdeen Ferryhill 1

1

Ardrossan 2
Balloch 3 2

1

Bathgate

25

21 14 14 11 6 4

4

Carlisle Canal

5

5 4

4

Dalry Road 1
Dawsholm 2

Dundee Tay Bridge

4

4 3 1 1 1 1

1

Dunfermline Upper

5

6 6 4 3 2 2 1

1

Eastfield

12

5 2

3

Fort William

1

3 2

2

Grangemouth

1

5

2

Hawick

6

5 3 4

1

Haymarket

2

2 2 1

1

Hexham

1

Hurlford

1

Keith

5

Kipps

18

11 10 8

1

Kittybrewster

2

4
Parkhead

5

3 6

5

Perth South

3

Polmadie

2

Polmont

14

10 6 2

1

Reedsmouth

2

St Margarets

13

12 6 7 4 1 1

1

St Rollox

1

2

Stirling

2

Stirling Shore Road

4

Thornton Junction

3

3 3 1 2 1 1 1

1

 123

96 82 67 32 11 9 8

3

Two engines (65285 and 65287) had cut down chimneys and boiler mountings for working on the Gartsherrie Glanbeigh branch. They were shedded at Kipps (Coatsbridge) until late in 1962 when they were transferred to St Rollox.

Accidents and Incidents

On the 19th December 1926 the 3.26 am Newspaper and Mail Express from Edinburgh to Glasgow, when travelling at considerable speed, collided with the front portion of the 11.35 pm Niddrie West to Bo’ness Junction goods train, which was being propelled at the time into a siding on the down side of the line.

Three people were slightly injured and the locomotive J36 class locomotive involved (9676 Reims) in the accident was withdrawn from service shortly afterwards.

65319 Dundee July 1965.jpg

65327 Thornton July 1965.jpg

65319 on Dundee Tay Bridge shed-July 1965. It was withdrawn from service when based at St Margarets (Edinburgh) in November 1966. It was scrapped just one month after being withdrawn.

 

 

 

65327 at Thornton-July 1965. It was withdrawn from service at Thornton in November 1965 and scrapped in September 1966.

Preservation

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