GWR 1450

GWR 1450
1450 20150320.jpg
1450 at Bewdley in 2015
Built By GWR Swindon Works
Configuration 0-4-2
Power class GWR: Unclassified, BR: 1P
Axle load class GWR: Unclassified
Status Out of Service
Loco Number 1450
Other Numbers 4850
Built 1935
Designed By Charles Benjamin Collett
Type GWR 1400
2014 Arrived on SVR from DFR
2021 Left the SVR for overhaul
Length 29ft 11in
Weight 41t 6cwt
Tractive effort 13,900 lb
Pressure 165 lb/sq in

Steam Locomotives

1450 and autocoaches at Highley

1450 is a GWR Collett 1400 class 0-4-2T locomotive, designed for work on small branch lines.


1400 Class information

1450 (originally 4850) is a GWR 1400 class 0-4-2T locomotive. These locomotives, which were originally numbered in the 4800 series, were designed by C.B. Collett as a replacement for the elderly Wolverhampton '517' class, and were intended to work mainly on small branch lines. 75 were built at Swindon in three batches between 1932 and 1936, being fitted from new with auto gear for working with trailer cars and also with ATC (automatic train control) equipment. 20 other locomotives of the same class, numbered 5800-5819, were built in 1933 without auto gear and ATC, although some were retro-fitted with the latter. Following nationalisation BR rated the class 1P.

The GWR 1400 Class locos were used on the Severn Valley Branch where they worked services at the southern end of the line, including some as far north as Bridgnorth. They included No. 1440 which was photographed at Arley paired with autocoach 39.[1][note 1] Local depots that had allocations were Hereford, Kidderminster, Stourbridge Junction and Worcester.[2]

Post-1945, coal shortages led to plans being put forward to convert a number of GWR engines to oil burning. 12 of the 2800 class freight engines were modified and renumbered in the 4800 series. As a result the entire 4800 class was renumbered 1400 to 1474 by the GWR in 1946.[3]

Three other members of the class have survived into preservation; 1420 at the South Devon Railway, 1442 at Tiverton Museum and 4866 at the Great Western Society in Didcot.

1450 in service

4850 was built in 1935 to lot number 288 and first entered service at Oxford in July 1935.[4] It was re-numbered 1450 by the GWR in 1946 and re-allocated to Slough in April 1951. While based there it was photographed in 1955 at Bourne End working an autocoach service to Maidenhead.[5] A return to Oxford in September 1959 was followed by reallocation to Exeter (July 1962) which included The Locomotive Club of Great Britain's 'The West Countryman Limited' railtour over the Hemyock line on 24 February 1963 and timetabled operation of services from Tiverton.[6][7][8] Further re-allocations followed to Taunton (November 1963) and Yeovil Town (October 1964) before a final move to Exmouth Junction in February 1965. 1450 was finally withdrawn from service by BR in May 1965[9] after a working life totalling 823,012 miles.

1450 in preservation

1450 spent her early life in preservation at the Dart Valley Railway (now the South Devon Railway) where it carried the name 'Ashburton'.[10] She was purchased in 2001-02 by her present owner Pull Push Limited, of whom Mike Little is sole director, and re-located to the Dean Forest Railway.

1450 arrived at the SVR from the DFR in March 2014, initially on hire for the year. Subsequently 1450 has been listed as part of the home fleet. Although not powerful enough to haul service trains on her own 1450 did so in 2014, double heading with 4566 to provide the required power, due to a number of ongoing locomotive repairs leaving the SVR unexpectedly short on engines. The locomotive was regularly used on Footplate Experience duties, as well as appearing on charters and at galas on the SVR and elsewhere. She was often paired with the owner's autocoaches 178 and 238 which are also resident on the SVR.

Whilst 1450 was winterised at Bridgnorth MPD over 2017-18 she returned to GWR livery, at the owner's request, for the remainder of its boiler ticket.[11]

During 2019 the locomotive visited the Didcot Railway Centre from the end of April until early September.[12] GWR Large Prairie 4144 was on loan to the SVR from Didcot for summer 2019, an arrangement which suited both parties.

At the end of 2019, 1450 had recorded a total of 13,503 miles in preservation on the SVR. The reported total may include mileage on hire to other railways.[13]

It was withdrawn from traffic in December 2020 at the expiry of its boiler certificate. The owner made arrangements to send it for overhaul at the Flour Mill in the Forest of Dean and it left on 4 August 2021[14][15].

1450 on the main line

On 15 July 1973 1450 with GWR autocoaches 190 and 231 ran on the main line between Marlow and Bourne end during the "Marlow Donkey Centenary Day", an event held to commemorate the centenary of the Marlow branch. 1450 was a late replacement for Didcot's classmate 1466.[16][17]

In 1988 1450 ran three days of 'The Dawlish Donkey' mainline trips, from Exeter to Newton Abbot and return.[18] In subsequent years the operation was expanded, with larger locomotives hauling longer trains over longer routes.

See also


  1. The photo caption in Vanns gives the date as 7 September 1932. However the locomotive is numbered 1440 which it would not have carried until after renumbering in 1946.


  1. Vanns (1998) p. 17.
  2. BR database (Retrieved 21 October 2020)
  3. Rail UK Steam Loco Class Information -- GWR 1400
  4. Great Western Archive
  5. Signalman’s Reflections, Adrian Vaughan, 1990, p68
  6. Six Bells Junction
  7. Dimmer, M., '1450 L C G B The West Countryman Limited Rail Tour 24 February 1963 ', Railway Photography on Smugmug (Retrieved 26 October 2020)
  8. Dimmer, M., '1450 Tiverton 5 October 1963', Railway Photography on Smugmug (Retrieved 26 October 2020)
  9. BR Database
  10. SDR web site, retrieved 25 January 2015.
  11. SVR Twitter 1 January 2018
  12. Didcot Railway Centre website
  13. SVR News 210, SVR-based Steam Locomotive Mileage 2017-2019, Duncan Ballard
  14. Branch Lines July 2021
  15. Heritage Railway magazine Issue 281, 6 July 2021
  16. Photos on Marlow & District Railway Society website (retrieved 26 November 2020)
  17. Timetable on 26 November 2020)
  18. uksteam website (Retrieved 11 July 2019)