Y9  68092 – 68124  0-4-0ST NBR Holmes

y9 1y9 2

Power Classification 0F
Introduced 1882– 1899
Designer Holmes
Company NBR
Weight – Loco 27t 16cwt
               Tender 6t 0cwt
Driving Wheels 3ft 8ins
Boiler Pressure 130psi
Cylinders Outside – 14in x 20in
Tractive Effort 9,845lbf
Valve Gear Stephenson – (slide valves)


The NBR Class G locomotives were introduced by Holmes. The first two were purchased in 1882 from Neilson & Co of Hyde Park Works, Springburn, Glasgow, to their standard design that had been developed for industrial customers in the 1870s.

Originally purchased for dock shunting, they proved to be eminently suitable for light shunting in both docks and the small yards with tight curves. A total of 38 were built, with the last being built in 1899. Apart from the first two all of the engines in the class were built at Cowlairs.

Although the term pug was used for different engines on different railways (eg. the Caledonian men called all tank engines pugs), the NBR reserved the name pug for these engines.

Typically, the Y9s were driven by the youngest drivers and firemen. However, senior men would also be posted on the Y9s for health reasons, or as a form of demotion for misdemeanors on the mainline. Apparently more than one driver known for speeding, ended up spending a number of years shunting Y9s at Leith Docks.

 NB pug North British Railway Pug introduced by Holmes in 1882
 cal pug Caledonian Railway Pug introduced by Drummond in 1885 which were developed from the NBR Pug

Rebuilding with new boilers started in 1913. Three locomotives (308, 343, and 344) were withdrawn in 1921/2, and had not been rebuilt. Five had not been rebuilt by Grouping in 1923 of which four were rebuilt and one withdrawn that year. At Grouping, the LNER classified them as Class Y9.

One (LNER 10087) was withdrawn in 1938, and the remaining 33 survived until 1953. These were withdrawn between 1953 and 1962.

The Y9s were renumbered many times during their life with the NBR, and received preliminary numbers from the LNER, before being given 9000 series numbers in 1924.

The new boilers fitted between 1913 and 1923 had similar dimensions to the originals, but the safety valves were located under the dome. The only other major change with these rebuilds, was the replacement of the leading coupling rod ends with a solid-bushed pattern.

The Y9s were fitted with dumb buffers. Originally these were solid wood, but were eventually replaced with a metal framework covered with plate. However, the wooden buffer beams were kept.

Due to the small size of the coal bunkers (18cwt), various 4-wheeled wooden coal carriers were used as tenders. When used, these were connected with a conventional three-link coupling. For main-line running, two safety chains were added. In 1939, 9308 had its rear buffers removed, and a central drawgear added, so making the tender a permanent fixture. In 1944 another five were similarly fitted (9011, 9063, 9144, 9146, and 10083). Eighteen of thirty-three members of the class that came into BR ownership were fitted with tenders.

Locomotive allocations during British Railways operation


1952 1955 1958 1960 1961


Dundee Tay Bridge


  6   5


Dunfermline Upper


  1   1   1 1 1








  7   7   7 5 3




  2   2   2


St Margarets


13   9   5 2 2





33 26 16 9 6


The engines based at St Margarets worked at Leith Docks.

A number of locomotives spent short periods based at industrial premises.

  • 68095 and 68122 in 1950 based at Caldwell’s Paper Mills at Inverkeithing
  • 68122 also at JK A West Kilbargie in 1951
  • 68105 at NCB at Redding in 1950
  • 68119 at Scottish Agricultural Industries Leith in 1951
  • 68124 at British Electricity Authotity at Yoker in 1950, Scottish Tar Distilleries at Shettleston in 1951 and Motherwell Gas works in 1951


Back to LNER

Back to Locomotives