W G Bagnall  Works No 3061 Empress 0-6-0ST

Bagnall 3061.jpg
CompanyW G Bagnall
Weight41t 10cwt
Driving Wheels3ft 6½in
Boiler Pressure180psi
CylindersOutside – 16in x 24in
Tractive Effort22,118lbf
Valve Gear

This locomotive was built by W G Bagnall in 1954 for the National Coal Board (NCB). The NCB initially employed it at Measham Colliery and later at Cadley Hill.

Cadley Hill Colliery at Swadlincote in South Derbyshire was one of the last places where steam locomotives were employed. Six locomotives that worked there have been preserved.

  • Bagnall – Works Nos 3059 and 3061
  • Hunslet – Works Nos 2857, 3851 and 3889
  • Robert Stephenson & Hawthorn – Works No 7298

It was purchased for preservation from Cadley Hill Colliery in 1987.

The Central Electricity Generating Board (CEGB) offered the use of the old locomotive shed at Rye House Power station at Hoddesdon in Hertfordshire. It was there that the restoration work on Empress was completed in May 1989, after which it was moved to Mangapps Farm Railway Museum at Burnham-on-Crouch in Essex where it is regularly steamed.

The locomotive was taken out of service in the 2000 for major overhaul. The boiler underwent hydraulic testing in October 2013 but was not steam tested until May 2014.

This was due to the discovery of rust holes in the bottom of the water tank. The tank had already been painted ready for fitting but had to be turned upside down so new base could be welded in. Empress eventually entered service during the late May bank holiday and ran 8 times during the season. This highlighted a few problems which were attended to during the winter and it ran again for the 2015 Easter Steam gala.

In September 2018 the locomotive moved permanently to the Pontypool & Blaenavon Railway. It is currently operational.

3061 at NCB Cradley Hill – August 1971
Bagnall 3061.jpg
3061 at Mangapps Farm Railway – April 2015
3061 at Furnace Sidings on the Pontypool & Blaenavon Railway – September 2018
3061 at the Pontypool & Blaenavon Railway – September 2018

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