Embsay and Bolton Abbey Steam Railway


Unlined at Bolton Abbey. (c) Tim Warner Beatrice passing at Stoneacre. (c) Tim Warner Beatrice at Bolton Abbey. (c) Oliver Harrison Beatrice with lining at Embsay. (c) Tim Warner

(C) John Furness. Beatrice dates back to 1945, being Hunslet's No. 2705, but came to the railway from NCB Acton Hall Colliery, Pontefract, where it had worked with two of the other engines which are based at Embsay; S112 and Airedale No. 3. As can be seen in this photo taken by John Furness at Acton Hall Colliery, Beatrice was identical to Primrose - the stovepipe chimney having since been replaced by one of original pattern. Not only is she of the same design as Primrose, but also the same as Darfield No. 1, which was formerly based on the railway.

Beatrice shortly after arrival, now fitted with a cast chimney. (C) Charles Adams. Beatrice has proved to be a strong engine, although it was withdrawn for its current overhaul before the line opened to Bolton Abbey. This will no doubt be something worth seeing, when the time arrives.

(C) YDRMT Collection. The overhaul is taking quite a long time, although there is a lot of work going on, as there has been a lot of wear with all the use it has had. So far it has had a brand new firebox fitted to the boiler, and the rest of the loco has been completely stripped down for repairs before being slowly re-assembled.

The loco is currently in the new shed and has been re-wheeled, with the axleboxes and springs seeing not inconsiderable attention. New eccentrics have been made and delivered, the new slidebars have had the final finishing work completed and the rest of the valve gear is to go away for overhaul along with that belonging to Primrose. A new genuine Hunslet smokebox was recovered for this engine, and has had repairs carried out after being stood outside on a colliery site!

The drilling and tapping of the new firebox was carried out by owner John Beesley along with volunteers, before being dispatched for the stays to be rivetted over. Work has since concentrated on the ashpan and grate linkages with painting being ongoing. The valve gear is currently being tackled.

Beatrice completed te running-in turns successfully, was lined out and entered traffic bu has now been withdrawn following some problems with the crossheads / slide bars. Work is underway and the loco should re-emerge from the sheds early in 2013.

Photos of Beatrice undergoing current overhaul

(c) Tim Warner Owner John Beesley caught on camera brandishing a new brass for one of his engine's axleboxes.
(c) Tim Warner.
(c) Tom Ireland Seen on the lathe, Beatrice's eccentric is being turned. A lot of work has gone on behind the scenes during the rebuild of this loco, and things are beginning to come together.
(c) Tom Ireland.
(c) Tim Warner The eccentrics are now seen fitted to the axle, which also has its axleboxes on, ready to be rolled under the loco when it is lifted on the jacks. Re-wheeling has since taken place.
(c) Tim Warner.
(c) Tim Warner (c) Tim Warner (c) Tim Warner Working outside, John Beesley and Dave Sanderson tap out the holes to accept the stays which support the new inner firebox.
(c) Tim Warner.
(c) Tim Warner (c) Tim Warner More work continuing on the firebox, showing the sheeting arrangement to provide some shelter from the elements for both the boiler and the workers.
(c) Tim Warner.
(c) William Lister (c) William Lister (c) William Lister Back in the new shed and looking at the chassis, the new ashpan is lowered into the frames by John and Colin Davies. The boiler will be fitted onto this. The new design of hopper ashpan has been produced by John, and he has since worked out the linkages required to operate the hopper part.
(c) William Lister.
(c) Tim Warner The boiler is seen here shortly after being returned to the Railway with all the stays riveted over and the boiler hydraulically tested. It has since been boiled and prepared for its steam test prior to refitting to Beatrice's chassis which is now approaching completion. The second picture shows John attempting to get the water gauge fittings to seal.
(c) Tim Warner.
John at work on Beatrice. (c) Tim Warner
Beatrice with boiler, flying! (c) Tim Warner The boiler has been returned to the chassis, which in turn has been lifted in the shed to allow access to the underneath. The standard of the paintwork should assist crews in cleaning the loco, but it also looks great!
(c) Tim Warner.
A close up of the paint finish. (c) Tim Warner
A new hopper ashpan and rocking grate has been designed by John Beesley for Beatrice, in an attempt to make life easier for crews and to improve the design of the loco. The linkages have been designed and are to be tested in plywood before the proper ones are made.
(c) Tim Warner.
Underneath the loco showing the new ashpan. (c) Tim Warner Underneath the front of the loco. (c) Tim Warner
The boiler on the ground showing the newly rivetted smokebox. (c) Tim Warner Beatrice's boiler was lifted out of the frames to allow the foundation ring to be caulked once the smokebox had been rivetted in place. Whilst the boiler is out of the frames, the opportunity to refit the motion has been taken. John has also devised another modification to ensure the smokebox seals better, by preparing to bolt a strip of metal to the cylinder block which will then be rivetted to the smokebox. This means the metal will corrode, rather than the smokebox itself and should ensure a much better seal.
(c) Tim Warner.
Drilling out old studs. (c) Tim Warner

More photos of Beatrice at Embsay

(c) M.G.Riley Beatrice stands at the head of the train in Embsay station, waiting to depart for Stoneacre with a service train. Although this is not an authentic livery, it sits very well on Beatrice, and she will return in the same.
(c) M. G. Riley.
(c) John Furness Beatrice hauls the Wine & Dine train approaching Skibeden Loop from Embsay. The Gresley Restaurant Car would be newly outshopped at this time.
(c) John Furness.
(c) Robert Milner Sitting on the coal dock, the two 16" Hunslets Primrose and Beatrice prepare for hauling the Santa Trains with a covering of snow on the ground. The two locos should return to steam at roughly the same time...
(c) Robert Milner.

Top Locomotives

Yorkshire Dales Railway Museum Trust (Holdings) Limited
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Bolton Abbey Station, Bolton Abbey, Skipton, North Yorkshire, BD23 6AF
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