Embsay and Bolton Abbey Steam Railway

No. 69

69 at work during it's NCB ownership. (C) Doug Hardy (Les Richardson collection) 69 is another of the railway's austerity tank engines. Like Wheldale, Monckton, No. 8 and 68005 it has 18" cylinders and is an ideal locomotive for running the line. It was built by Hunslets (3785) in 1953, and came to the railway from NCB South Hetton Colliery, County Durham, entering traffic almost at once.

Whilst it was in service here, it became a very well liked locomotive, and it would be interesting now to see how it performs on the section from Bolton Abbey to Skibeden summit against the other austerities.

69 in platform 2 not long after its arrival at Embsay. (C) Charles Boylan 69 was withdrawn for a major overhaul in 1984, which has yet to take place, which will include a lot of work on the chassis as there is a lot of play in everything, as was discovered when trying to bar it along the shed base to get at S112 during its current overhaul! Despite this, 69's owner and his family are currently giving it a cosmetic overhaul to tidy it up ready for when the new Yorkshire Industrial Locomotive Museum is completed.

Further information on the South Hetton system can be found at: http://www.cirsel.freeserve.co.uk/Hetton.htm. Special thanks to Les Richardson (who runs the site) and also to Doug Hardy for allowing us to use the photo of 69 at work in industrial ownership.

South Hetton Colliery no longer exists, but Tom Ireland's photos taken in December 2004 show the memorial marking the existence of the pits.

(C) Tom Ireland (C) Tom Ireland

69 has now been reassembled and moved off the shed base. This entailed it being slid from road 5 to road 4 and then shunted across to the carriage sidings to allow the cladders access to the shed base.

Work on 69 at Embsay

(C) Tom Ireland Although 69 is not having any serious work started at this stage, Tom was keen to remove the tubes from his father's loco, to prove it wasn't being forgotten about! (As well as generally causing DESTRUCTION and BURNING things!!)
(c) Tom Ireland
(C) Tom Ireland
(C) Tom Ireland The tubeplate (showing the ends of the tubes cut through to enable their removal) and inside the boiler.
(c) Tom Ireland
(C) Tom Ireland

More photos of 69 at Embsay

(C) Charles Boylan Date unknown for this photo - probably shortly after its arrival at Embsay. No. 69 is seen on the coal dock (the former cattle dock) at Embsay. Behind the cab the old water tank can be seen - not some strange modification to the loco itself! No. 69 was well liked by the crews at Embsay, but its current condition is not good - requiring a major overhaul.
(c) Charles Boylan
(C) Charles Boylan Spring 1977 has been suggested as the possible date for this photo - which could have been 69's first run on the railway. Seen here from the footbridge (or on the roof of one of the AERPS coaches?), 69 moves through platform 2 at Embsay, with the newly installed crossover to the rear of the picture.
(c) Charles Boylan
(C) Charles Boylan Taken at the same time as the previous photo, showing the loco in ex-NCB condition, simmering in platform 2.
(c) Charles Boylan
(C) Charles Boylan No. 69 is seen here having been repainted at the Skibeden terminus of the line. The date is some time in September 1984 as part of the "Harvest of Steam" which was run. These have since given way to the Vintage / Gala weekends, which have proved popular in recent years. Sorry for the poor quality of the enlarged photo - requires re-scanning.
(c) Charles Boylan
(C) Charles Boylan No. 69 and Slough Estates No. 5 are seen here at Embsay during part of a shunting move (I assume). The loco immediately behind them is (or was) Dorothy - now being rebuilt as 'Thomas'. 69 looks almost ex-works (from a repaint). Sorry for the poor quality of the enlarged photo - requires re-scanning.
(c) Charles Boylan

Top Locomotives

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