Andrew Barclay Works No 2323    No 6   No 9 0-4-0ST

Andrew Barclay 2323 at Irchester Iron Ore Quarry - October 1966.jpg

Driving Wheels3ft 7ins
CylindersOutside – 16in x 24in

This locomotive was built in 1952 by Andrew Barclay and was delivered new to the Dorman Long & Company at Lackenby at Grangetown near Middlesborough where it became No 6.

The arrival of diesel power at Lackenby in the early 1960s meant that the locomotive was no longer required there and in April 1964 it was moved to Irchester to work in the ironstone quarries.

As there was already a locomotive carrying the No 6 at the quarries the number plate was turned upside down to read No 9.

South Durham Steel & Iron company Limited was amalgamated with Stewarts & Lloyds Limited and Dorman Long & Company Limited in June 1967. Dorman long became British steel & Tube company Limited and the other companies became subsidiaries of it.

By January 1969 traffic had declined and the locomotive was not used on a regular basis if at all. The ironworks at Hartlepool and Cargo Fleet, which Irchester had supplied since 1922 were being closed and the iron ore was not suitable for the new works at Lackenby. The last train of ore was in July 1969.

The locomotive worked at Irchester until May 1969 after which it was donated to the Irchester Parish Council.

In June 1979 the locomotive was moved to Wicksteed Park in Kettering, Northamptonshire, where it was placed in the childrens’ playground. After 13 years on display the engine was moved again to the Rushden Historical Transport Society in August 1992, where it remained unrestored until early 2019.

A change of ownership saw the locomotive moved to the Northampton & Lamport Railway in February 2019 for restoration to working condition. It is planned to return as No.9, the number it carried at Irchester, but the livery is yet to be determined.

Andrew Barclay 2323 at Irchester Iron Ore Quarry - October 1966.jpg
2323 at Irchester Iron Ore Quarry – October 1966
2323 in the playground at Irchester – April 1976
2323 in Wicksteed Park at Kettering – 1982
2323 awaiting restoration at Rushden Station Transport Museum – September 2017
2323 awaiting restoration at the Northampton & Lamport Railway – July 2019

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