SR 34027 Taw Valley

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SRSouthern Railway 34027 Taw Valley
TawValley Eardington 18092015.jpg
34027 Taw Valley at Hay Bridge in 2015
Built By SRSouthern Railway Brighton Works
Configuration 4-6-2
BRBritish Rail or British Railways rating 7P6F
Status In Service
Loco Number 34027
Other Numbers SRSouthern Railway 21C127
History
Built 1946
Designed By Oliver BulleidOliver Vaughan Snell Bulleid, Chief Mechanical Engineer (CME) of the Southern Railway 1937-1948
Type SRSouthern Railway West Country Class
1964 Withdrawn by BRBritish Rail or British Railways
1985 Arrived on SVRSevern Valley Railway
1998 Entered service on SVRSevern Valley Railway
Technical
Length 67ft 4¾"
Weight 86t
Tractive effort 27,720 lb
Pressure 250 lb/sq in

Steam Locomotives

34027 under overhaul at Bridgnorth in 2015

34027 Taw Valley is a SRSouthern Railway West Country Class 4-6-2 'PacificLocomotive with a 4-6-2 wheel configuration' designed by Oliver BulleidOliver Vaughan Snell Bulleid, Chief Mechanical Engineer (CME) of the Southern Railway 1937-1948, CMEChief Mechanical Engineer of the Southern Railway (SRSouthern Railway). Lighter in weight than their sister locomotives, the Merchant Navy class, they could be used on a wide variety of routes including in the south-west of England and the Kent coast. They were a mixed-traffic design, being used for both passenger and freight trains, and were rated 7P6F by British Railways. Originally built with innovative features including air-smoothed casings and chainAs a unit of measurement, 22 yards or 1/80th of a mile-driven valve gear, many of the locomotives including 34027 were rebuilt by British Railways in the late 1950s.

34027 Taw Valley in service

Taw Valley was built in 1946 at the SRSouthern Railway’s Brighton Works and named after a river in Devon. It was originally allocated to Ramsgate where it entered service as SRSouthern Railway number 21C127. The locomotive was re-numbered 34027 by BRBritish Rail or British Railways following nationalisation.

In 1947 Taw Valley moved to Exmouth Junction, working mainly in Devon and Cornwall. Here the locomotive would have hauled named trains such as the ‘AtlanticLocomotive with a 4-4-0 wheel configuration Coast Express’ and ‘Devon Belle’. In 1957, after being rebuilt, Taw Valley moved to the Southeast and worked commuter services from Brighton. Following transfer to Salisbury in 1963, Taw Valley was withdrawn from service by BRBritish Rail or British Railways in August 1964 and towed to Barry Scrapyard.

34027 Taw Valley in preservation

After being saved from BarryWoodham Brothers Scrapyard, Barry, South Wales. The source of many locomotives now in preservation., Taw Valley’s restoration began elsewhere. The locomotive was moved to the SVRSevern Valley Railway in August 1985 by her then owners, Bert Hitchen and Brian Cooke.

First boiler ticket

Restoration was completed in October 1987 when trial running began. The locomotive entered service in June 1988, with a formal re-naming ceremony taking place on 4 June.

Following a loaded test run from Derby to Sheffield and back in May 1989, Taw Valley spent a good deal of time on the main line as well as on the SVRSevern Valley Railway. This included regular excursions on the North Wales Coast Express in 1989 and 1990, and the Welsh Marches Express in 1991. In summer 1991, SVRSevern Valley Railway News announced that Taw Valley was unlikely to return to the SVRSevern Valley Railway after its current commitments[1]. A brief return to the SVRSevern Valley Railway took place between July and early September 1992[2], following which the locomotive again left the Railway.

Mileage as reported in SVRSevern Valley Railway News was as follows:

Year Mileage
1987 574
1988 2,416
1989 4,425
1990 11,525
1991 660
1992 1,070

Note: The 1991 and 1992 mileage figures appear not to include main line working. Mileage post-1992 was not published in SVRSevern Valley Railway News.

Second boiler ticket

By 2000, Taw Valley was again working on the main line, notably appearing around the country that year in maroon livery as ‘Hogwarts Express’ to publicise the Harry Potter books which were then being published.

The locomotive arrived back on the SVRSevern Valley Railway on 11 April 2001, having been put up for sale by Bert Hitchen and acquired by long-standing SVRSevern Valley Railway member Phil Swallow via Taw Valley Limited. The boiler was re-stayed within this ticket during the summer of 1982[3].

Main line running continued until May 2005. This included a number of rail tours in which the locomotive ran as sister locomotive 34045 Ottery St Mary. The locomotive also appeared in the Autumn Steam Gala of 2005 as 34036 Westward Ho, the last gala appearance before going out of ticket.[4].

Mileage as reported in SVRSevern Valley Railway News was as follows:

Year Mileage
2001 6,210
2002 1,357
2003 4,302
2004 7,532
2005 TBA

Mileage pre-2001 and post 2004 was not published in SVRSevern Valley Railway News.

Main line appearances

As noted above, Taw Valley spend considerable periods of time on the main line during both her first and second boiler tickets. The table below has been compiled from various sources including Six Bells Junction, UK Steam and SVRSevern Valley Railway News. However it may not be complete.

Date Tour name Route Notes Web SVRSevern Valley Railway News
12 May 1989 Derby - Sheffield + return Loaded test run 93-19
02 Jul 1989 Crewe - Llandudno - Holyhead + return First run 93-19
04 Jul 1989 North Wales Coast Express Crewe - Llandudno - Holyhead + return Various North Wales Coast Expresses around this time SBJ
16 Aug 1989 North Wales Coast Express Crewe - Llandudno - Holyhead + return Returned to SVRSevern Valley Railway for ASG 23 September 94-41
13 Aug 1989 North Wales Coast Express Crewe - Llandudno - Holyhead + return Returned to SVRSevern Valley Railway for ASG 23 September SBJ
11 Nov 1989 Robin Hood Derby - London Marylebone Low water at Banbury, fire dropped, later relit and continued. SBJ 94-13
02 Dec 1989 William Shakespeare Marylebone - Stratford + return SBJ 95-36
30 Dec 1989 Marylebone - Stratford + return SBJ 95-37
20 Jan 1990 Robin Hood Marylebone - Nottingham + return Due to return from Marylebone 31 March (95-8) SBJ
31 Mar 1990  ?-Kings Sutton-Hatton-Nottingham-Lenton Jn-? Included on PSOV DVD 'Taw Valley 1990-1994'
16 Jul 1990 North Wales Coast Expres Crewe - Holyhead - Crewe "Successful season.." 97-23, winter at Holyhead 98-15 SBJ
01 Aug 1990 North Wales Coast Expres 98-9
08 Aug 1990 North Wales Coast Express Locoperf
26 Aug 1990 North Wales Coast Express 97-52
09 Feb 1991 Welsh Marches Express Crewe - Hereford SBJ
16 Feb 1991 Welsh Marches Express?  ?-Abergele-Llandulas-Llandudno Jn-? PSOV DVD
23 Feb 1991 Welsh Marches Express Crewe - Shrewsbury - Hereford SBJ
6 Sep 1991  ?-Hasland-Pear Tree-Small Heath PSOV DVD
12 Sep 1991 Shepway Festival Folkestone Harbour - Folkestone Train Roads (multiple) SBJ
13 Sep 1991 Shepway Festival Folkestone Harbour - Folkestone Train Roads (multiple) SBJ
19 Oct 1991 Fen Line Steam Weekend Kings Lynn - Ely - Cambridge + return SBJ
30 Nov 1991 Welsh Marches Express Hereford - Shrewsbury - Chester - Crewe SBJ
14 Dec 1991 Cumbrian Mountain Express Lostock Hall Jn - S&C - Carlisle SBJ
28 Dec 1991  ?-Horton-Selside-Ais Gill-? PSOV DVD
08 Feb 1992 Cumbrian Mountain Express Carlisle - S&C - Farington Jn SBJ
25 Apr 1992  ?-Condover-Marshbrook-Onibury-? PSOV DVD
06 Jun 1992 Ashford 150 Festival Specials Ashford - Appledore - Rye - Hastings + return (multiple) SBJ
10 Jun 1992  ?-Romney-Salisbury-? PSOV DVD. D/H with 75069
18 Oct 1992 South Western Limited  ?-Crewkerne Bank-? PSOV DVD SBJ
10 Apr 1993 Salisbury-Yeovil-Salisbury PSOV DVD
29 Aug 1993 Didcot-Bristol PSOV DVD [http://www.sixbellsjunction.co.uk/90s/930829fs.htm SBJ)
5 Sep 1993 Rougemont Limited Exeter-Waterloo PSOV DVD SBJ
12 Sep 1993 Salisbury-Waterloo SBJ
9 Sep 1993 Exeter?-Waterloo PSOV DVD
26 Sep 1993 Eastleigh-Yeovil-Waterloo PSOV DVD. D/H with S15 828 SBJ
19 Feb 1994 South Western Swansong London Waterloo - Yeovil Junction + return SBJ
23 Feb 1994 Yorkshireman Banbury-Sheffield Locoperf
26 Feb 1994 Cumbrian Mountain Limited Bradford-Carlisle PSOV DVD SBJ
5 Mar 1994 Carlisle-Bradford PSOV DVD. Last run before overhaul.
04 Mar 2000 Shap Attack Crewe - Shap - Carlisle SBJ
08 Apr 2000 Cumbrian Mountain Express Carlisle - Shap - Crewe UKS
08 Jul 2000 Hogwarts Express Promotion Train Kings Cross-Didcot-Kidderminster-Crewe UKS
09 Jul 2000 Hogwarts Express Promotion Train Crewe-Manchester-Bradford-York UKS
10 Jul 2000 Hogwarts Express Promotion Train York-Newcastle-Edinburgh UKS
11 Jul 2000 Hogwarts Express Promotion Train Edinburgh-Calisle-Preston UKS
07 Oct 2000 Southern Scot Crewe - Glasgow Central SBJ
14 Oct 2000 Cumbrian Taw-Tourer Workington - Barrow - Crewe As "Hogwarts Express" SBJ
22 Dec 2001 Christmas Chester Chuffer Birmingham Int'l - Crewe - Chester - Shrewsbury - Bham Int'l SBJ 139-13
29 Dec 2001 Cannon of Kent Finsbury Park - Orpington. Cannon St. - Margate - Finsbury Park Stalled leaving London SBJ 139-13
12 Oct 2002 Parisian Steam Express Victoria - Dover As 34045 "Ottery St. Mary". UKS
13 Oct 2002 Parisian Steam Express Dover - Victoria As 34045 "Ottery St. Mary". UKS
26 Jul 2003 Victoria-Oxford-Worcester-Oxford-Victoria UKS
27 Jul 2003 V.S.O.E. Bournemouth Belle London Victoria - Salisbury. Bournemouth - Southampton As 34045 "Ottery St. Mary". Stalled leaving London SBJ
22 Aug 2003 Surrey Hills Luncheon Victoria-Guildford-Victoria As 34045 "Ottery St. Mary". UKS
06 Dec 2003 Lincolnshire Poacher Preston-Doncaster, Doncaster-Manchester Vic UKS
01 Sep 2004 Sunny South Special Kensington Olympia - Weymouth - Clapham Junction SBJ
05 Sep 2004 Cathedrals Express Waterloo-Salisbury-Exeter and Yevil Jc-Waterloo UKS
06 Nov 2004 Victoria - Salisbury + return(?) As 34045 "Ottery St. Mary". SBJ
19 Nov 2004 Victoria - Woking - Guildford - Victoria SBJ
06 Dec 2004 Surrey Hills Xmas Luncheon Victoria - Woking - Guildford - Victoria SBJ
10 Dec 2004 Victoria - Woking - Guildford - Victoria SBJ
02 Mar 2005 Victoria - Bath Spa + return SBJ
11 Mar 2005 Victoria - Woking - Guildford - Victoria SBJ
27 Mar 2005 Cathedrals Express Victoria - Canterbury + return SBJ
02 Apr 2005 Victoria - Oxford + return SBJ
14 Apr 2005 Downsman Victoria - Woking - Guildford - Victoria As 34045 "Ottery St. Mary". SBJ
20 Apr 2005 Cathedrals Express Victoria - Bristol + return As 34045 "Ottery St. Mary". SBJ
11 May 2005 Cathedrals Express Waterloo - Littlehampton, Portsmouth Harbour - Waterloo SBJ
For further information on sources and references, see The Severn Valley Railway on the main line

Present boiler ticket

Taw Valley’s heavy overhaul had begun by the spring of 2006[5]. This overhaul was completed in time for Taw Valley to re-enter service on 16 May 2015, hauling an incoming "British Pullman" rail tour consisting of 12 coaches and a Class 67 diesel from Bewdley to Bridgnorth,[6] and an SVRSevern Valley Railway service from Bridgnorth to Kidderminster. Taw Valley is the only SVRSevern Valley Railway steam locomotive, apart from 600 Gordon, equipped to work with air braked rolling stock.

Taw Valley is currently in BRBritish Rail or British Railways Green livery featuring the ‘Late Crest’. The coat of arms on her name plate were not carried in service.

See also

Steam Locomotives
The Severn Valley Railway on the main line
SVR-based locomotives visiting other events
Locomotives running under different identities

References

Service history from fleetsteam.co.uk
  1. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 99
  2. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 103
  3. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 141
  4. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 152
  5. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 153
  6. I. Walker, "Steam Locomotive Notes", SVRSevern Valley Railway News 190 (2015) p. 28

Links

SR West Country and Battle of Britain class locomotives on Wikipedia