LMS Stanier Class 5 45110

LMS Stanier Class 5 45110
45110 20131006.jpg
45110 at Highley
Built By Vulcan Foundry, Newton-le-Willows
Configuration 4-6-0
BR rating 5MT
Status Out of service
Loco Number 45110
Other Numbers 5110
Built 1935
Designed By William Stanier
Type Black Five
1970 Arrived on SVR in working order
1971 Named "R.A.F. Biggin Hill"
1980 Withdrawn for overhaul
1998 Reentered service
2008 Withdrawn for overhaul
2023 Sold and left the SVR
Length 63ft 7¾"
Weight 72t 4cwt
Tractive effort 25,455 lb
Pressure 225 lb/sq in

Steam Locomotives

45110 is an LMS Stanier Class 5 4-6-0 mixed traffic locomotive, the type being commonly known as the Black Five. It was one of the very last steam locomotives to be used by BR, ending its working life at Lostock Hall Shed, Preston, from where it worked the return portion of the 'Fifteen Guinea Special', the last steam passenger service run by British Railways.

The locomotive was resident from 1970, acquired by SVR(H) in 1975 and left the railway when sold in August 2023.


LMS Stanier Class 5

LMS CME William Stanier had previously worked for the GWR. One of his first designs for the LMS was the Class 5 2-6-0 'Stanier Mogul', of which forty were built between October 1933 and March 1934. Realising the need for larger locomotives, he went on to develop the Stanier Class 5 4-6-0. This shared a number of design features with the GWR's equivalent Hall class, including the cylinder arrangement (two outside), internal boiler design and size and 6-foot driving wheel diameter.

The Stanier Class 5 was an immediate success when introduced into service in 1934. It was a mixed traffic locomotive that could handle anything from express passenger traffic to goods trains. 842 were built between 1934 and 1951, more than any other class of locomotive before or since. Over half of those were built by contractors (100 by the Vulcan Foundry and 327 by Armstrong Whitworth), with the rest built at the LMS works at Crewe, Derby and Horwich. They were never painted any colour but black, originally earning them the nickname "Black Staniers".[note 1] Following nationalisation they were classified 5MT by British Railways (with the nickname accordingly becoming "Black 5") and quickly became used throughout the country. The design of the British Railways Standard Class 5 was largely based on the Black 5.

Locomotives of the class visited Bewdley on bank holiday excursions under BR.[1]

Eighteen Black Fives have been preserved. Sister locomotive LMS 5000 was resident on the SVR between 1977 and 1991 while on loan from the NRM. 44871 was hired by the SVR to operate the 2012 Santa Specials and New Year festive services. The latter and three other classmates have visited the SVR for galas.

45110 in Service

45110 was one of the third batch of Stanier Class 5s ordered by the LMS. It was built by the Vulcan Foundry as works number 4653 of 1934 and entered service at Holyhead in June 1935 as LMS 5110. From there it worked express passenger and freight trains to Chester, Crewe, Birmingham, London, Manchester and Liverpool, and local trains to Bangor, Llandudno Junction, Rhyl and Chester.[2]

Following nationalisation, 5110 was renumbered as 45110 by BR in 1949. Although Black 5s were regularly exchanged between depots all over the LMS (and post-nationalisation the wider BR network), 45110 remained allocated to Holyhead for almost 29 years, a remarkable record of service at one depot. Type 4 diesels eventually spread to the North Wales coast area in the 1960s, with a consequential run down of steam, and in March 1964 45110 was reallocated to Stafford depot where, as one of three Black 5s based there, it was regularly seen on freight workings to Bescot and the Black Country, and also on passenger services to Birmingham and Shrewsbury.[2]

After Stafford closed to steam, 45110 was transferred to Bolton in July 1965 as part of the 'last stand' of steam in the north west. There it became a favourite at the shed and was first choice for a Williams Deacon's Bank Club railtour on 17 March 1968, during which it variously double-headed with 70013 Oliver Cromwell, 45447 and 4472 Flying Scotsman. The locomotive, which had been kept exceptionally clean by a Bolton enthusiast,[note 2] was again requested for the "North West Tour" railtour on 20 April 1968, jointly organised by the Manchester Rail Travel Society and the Severn Valley Railway Society. On this occasion 45110 as pilot and 44949 worked the first steam leg of the tour from Stockport to Stalybridge via Buxton.[2]

45110 was transferred to Lostock Hall during July 1968.[3] On 21 July it was involved in another railtour, the Roch Valley Railway Society "Manchester - Southport Steam Excursions" (the railtour's objective being to travel between the two named towns via four different routes), working the final leg solo from Southport back to Manchester. It worked its last 'ordinary' passenger train on 29 July, deputising for a diesel on the 08.15 Preston-Windermere return working. The return trip was worked tender first as Windermere turntable had been removed the previous day! It then worked its last freight on 1 August, the 19:14 Colne-Preston parcels.[2]

The last 'official' steam-hauled passenger train run by BR was a 'farewell to steam' special on 11 August 1968, 8 days after regular steam services had ended. The special train '1T57' became known as the 'Fifteen Guinea Special' after the price of tickets. 45110 took the train from Liverpool to Manchester, from where 70013 Oliver Cromwell continued to Carlisle. Two other Black 5s (44781 and 44871) began the return leg, while the honour of the final return to Liverpool fell to 45110, which thereby entered history as the last BR-owned standard gauge steam locomotive to haul a service on the national network.

45110 in preservation

First boiler ticket

45110 was initially saved for preservation by "The Stanier Black 5 Locomotive Preservation Society", mainly through fund raising efforts of its President Mr David Porter, Principal of the “Flairavia Flying Club” at Biggin Hill Civil Airport. On 8 January 1969 the locomotive was hauled 'dead' from Lostock Hall to Clapham Sidings. Three days later 45110 was moved again to a temporary home at the privately rented former BR Ashford shed. There it was worked on by members of the Flying Club and steamed on several open days, during one of which it first carried temporary name plates bearing the name R.A.F. Biggin Hill.[2]

It became clear that a new home for the locomotive at a heritage railway was needed and Mr Porter considered the SVR to be the most suitable. 45110 left Ashford on 17 August 1970, being hauled dead to Bescot on 19 August. There the motion was reattached and a fire lit, so when the locomotive arrived at Bewdley on 20 August 1970, it continued to Bridgnorth under its own steam. Minimum work was required before 45110 entered service on Sunday 20 September 1970.[2] A naming ceremony was held on 12 September 1971, at which the locomotive was formally named R.A.F. Biggin Hill.[4]

David Porter (who was also associated with 417 Invicta) became a Director of SVR(H) when it was first established in late 1972.[5] On 11 August 1973, with his agreement, 45110 took part in a Derby Litchurch Lane Carriage Works "Open Day". The locomotive travelled there and back in steam with LMS 24617 Corridor Composite, LMS 26986 Brake Third Corridor and Stove R 32919, thereby becoming the first Severn Valley locomotive and rolling stock to work unassisted on the BR network in preservation.[6] The move also resulted in the locomotive leaving facing south and returning facing north, thus becoming only the second locomotive on the SVR to work facing in each direction.[7][note 3]

During 1975 45110 was one of the locomotives used in the filming of The Seven-Per-Cent Solution. Shortly before that time 45110 was put up for sale, and although it was not SVR policy to own locomotives, the joint Boards decided that it should stay on the SVR if possible, so an exception was made and the purchase of 45110 was successfully negotiated.[8] The terms agreed were £19,000 with a 25% down payment and the balance payable over three years, subject to signature of the film contract. The decision caused great upset amongst members at the time, with threats of petitions being raised and membership cards torn up.[9]

45110 was re-tubed in winter 1976-77. The following summer saw an unusual incident with the locomotive being derailed by a lump of coal in the yard at Bridgnorth.[10] Winter 1977-78 saw further maintenance including repairs to the back of the tender and a new smokebox,[11] while winter 1978-79 included a visit to Tyseley for tyre turning. Usage in 1979 was limited to just 7 days in steam by the need for further repairs to the tender.[12]

On 17 May 1980 the SVR hosted two incoming main line rail tours through to Bridgnorth on the same day, with SVR locomotives hauling the carriages between Bewdley and Bridgnorth. 45110 worked the Bridgnorth departure of the ITV Railtour Society's returning charter to Southampton, on the occasion of the announcement that "The next service will call at Bewdley, Basingstoke, Winchester, Eastleigh and Southampton. Change at Bewdley for Leeds, Keighley, Haworth and Oxenhope."[13]. By autumn of that year the locomotive had been withdrawn from service after recording 21,185 miles in use and was then stored awaiting a place in the overhaul queue, which at the time comprised 8233, 46443, 4566, 47383 and 45110.[14]

Second boiler ticket

The overhaul began in late 1986 but became a protracted and expensive affair. Milestones were reported as follows:

  • Winter 1986-87: the overhaul was under way with work mainly focussed on the tender. The boiler had also been lifted from the frames, and examination revealed that new pistons and valves would be required[15]
  • Winter 1987-88: the boiler had been …all but completely dismembered, the copper box having been removed from the outer steel box. The steel door plate was scrapped and a new one was to be manufactured by Pridhams.[16]
  • Autumn 1990: the new steel doorplate had been delivered but progress on the boiler had stalled due to the theft of the inner copper door plate "some years ago". At the time, GM Michael Draper hoped for the overhaul to be complete in 1993 which would mark the 25th anniversary of the end of steam on BR.[17].
  • Winter 1991-92: a new inner copper door plate had been delivered, and the decision had been taken to re-tyre the whole locomotive including the tender. Manufacture of a complete new tender body was almost complete.[18]
  • Summer 1992: Work on the locomotive by the paid staff had recommenced and would "proceed as fast as money permits".[19]
  • 1994: By spring the overhaul was "on the back burner again, due to financial restraints". The boiler was still a kit of parts. Work had been carried out on the frames including optical alignment. The wheels had been re-tyred with profiling and journal turning completed at Bridgnorth. 45110's completed tender was to be paired with 42968 while the Stanier Mogul's own Fowler tender was rebuilt with a new tank and tyres.[20]
  • Summer 1995: Work continued "at a snail's pace because of the limited finances that are available for it"; however all the suspension items had been overhauled and the frames painted in top coat.[21]
  • Spring 1996: springing had been completed and other parts had refitted as time permitted, although completion was still some way off because of the state of the boiler.[22]
  • Winter 1996-97: 10 years after the overhaul had started, the rods and motion parts had been fitted including the valves and pistons. Cab platework and lubrication pipework was in progress.[23]
  • Spring 1997: The 'bottom half' was almost complete although some smaller items were required as "…we suspect over the years that these have been robbed to keep other LMS locos in service." Reassembly of the boiler was in progress in the boiler shop.[24]
  • Autumn 1997: the locomotive was close to being a rolling chassis although further work was required on the rear drag box. New parts which had been made by the paid staff included a blast pipe base, blast pipe, blower ring, ejector ring and chimney.[25]

The locomotive was eventually steamed successfully on 6 August 1998, with one month's running required before beginning work both on the SVR and the main line. Alun Rees summarised the overhaul as "Without any doubt, it has had one of the largest and most comprehensive repairs of any standard gauge locomotive in preservation". The return to steam coincided with the 30th anniversary of the end of steam on BR.[26]

45110 made a number of main line appearances between September 1998 and May 2000 as follows:

Date Tour name Route Notes Web SVR News
26 Sep 1998 Rose of Shires Bescot - York + return UKS 129-13
17 Oct 1998 Blackpool Five Shrewsbury-Blackpool + return UKS 128-76
24 Oct 1998 Royal Duchy Exeter - Plymouth-Newquay D/H with 48773 UKS 129-12
31 Oct 1998 Stannary Staniers Ealing Broadway-Penzance D/H with 48773 UKS
07 Nov 1998 Staffordshire Terrier Birmingham -Chester-Wolverhampton UKS 128-76
14 Nov 1998 Colne Dee Express Nottingham-Chester + return UKS
28 Nov 1998 Lakes Express Crewe-Shap-Carlisle + return D/H with 45407 UKS 129-12
05 Dec 1998 Lincolnian Dorridge-Lincoln + return UKS
19 Dec 1998 Christmas Chester Chuffer Birmingham Int'l-Chester + return UKS
30 Jan 1999 Merseyman Bescot-Crewe-Liverpool-Crewe-Walsall-Bescot UKS 129-52
07 Mar 1999 Ynys Mon Express Crewe-Holyhead + return UKS 129-13
21 May 1999 Private Charter Harrow-Amersham (2 trips) UKS
22 May 1999 Steam on the Met Amersham-Watford shuttles UKS
23 May 1999 Steam on the Met Amersham-Watford shuttles UKS
29 May 1999 Steam on the Met Amersham-Watford shuttles UKS
30 May 1999 Steam on the Met Amersham-Watford shuttles UKS
31 May 1999 Steam on the Met Amersham-Watford shuttles UKS 130-38
15 Aug 1999 Mayflower Bristol-Plymouth-Bristol D/H with 45407, ran as scheduled UKS
02 Oct 1999 Welsh Dragon Birmingham Int-Bescot- Llandrindod- Port Talbot-Newport Driver Ray Churchill, Fireman Arthur Bromley UKS 132-45
23 Oct 1999 Fishburn Flyer Crewe-Carnforth-Crewe To be confirmed UKS
13 Nov 1999 North Wales Venturer Crewe-Holyhead-Crewe To be confirmed UKS
11 Dec 1999 Midlander Nuneaton-Lickey-Gloucester+return, Bromsgrove-Blackwell* *80079 as banker UKS 132-46
18 Dec 1999 Christmas Chester Chuffer Birmingham Int-Rugeley-Chester -Wrexham-Birmingham Int UKS, Six Bells Junction
05 Feb 2000 Peak Forester Derby - Buxton - Crewe SBJ
27 May 2000 Laird of Stranraer Day 1 Crewe - Carnforth (tender swap)-Glasgow D/H with 45407. Borrowed tender from 48151 SBJ
29 May 2000 Laird of Stranraer Day 3 Glasgow Central - WCML - Lockerbie Up Passenger Loop* *Failed with leaking tubes (SBJ has date as 28th) SBJ 133-29
For further information on sources and references, see The Severn Valley Railway on the main line

In early 2002 45110 visited EWS at Toton for tyre turning.[27] Spring 2003 saw all the small boiler tubes replaced and other work including a valve and piston re-bore, a cross-head refurbishment and repair to motion bushes.[28] A second tyre turning was carried out in summer 2006.[29] The second period of service lasted until late 2008, including a 6-month boiler ticket extension which enabled the locomotive to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the end of BR main line steam.

Following expiry of the second 'ticket', 45110 moved on loan to Barrow Hill Roundhouse for a period on static display there. In June 2010 45110's tender was returned from Barrow Hill for a second loan spell with Stanier Mogul 42968, whose Fowler tender had suffered major wheel flats.[30]

45110 returned to the SVR in October 2013 and a few days later was moved into The Engine House, taking the place of 4930 Hagley Hall which had moved to Bridgnorth for overhaul. On 4 August 2018 45110 was moved to Kidderminster to take part in the 'Last Days of Steam' event, marking the 50th anniversary of the 'end of steam' in the BR era. The locomotive then remained at Kidderminster, usually stored in Kidderminster Carriage Shed.

Its TOPS number for working or being hauled on the main line is 98510.

In August 2023 the SVR confirmed the sale of 45110 to a private owner. The locomotive left the railway by road on 15 August for Carnforth Motive Power Depot[31].

See also


  1. A similar nickname "Red Staniers" was given to Stanier's other 4-6-0 Class locomotives, the Jubilees, which carried LMS crimson livery at that time.
  2. The source article did not name the enthusiast who cleaned 45110, but he was presumably a member of the Master Neverers Association.
  3. 46443 arrived facing south but returned from an open day at Tyseley in September 1969 facing north, the only locomotive to be turned before the SVR opened.


  1. 'Roundabout Revisited' (BBC 1961) showed 44966 and an unidentified classmate.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 SVR News 18, "STANIER CLASS 5 No. 45110"
  3. 45110 on BRDatabase
  4. SVR News 21
  5. SVR News 26
  6. SVR News 29
  7. SVR News 115, "North and South before the Turntable", Quentin Haigh
  8. SVR News 37, p.3.
  9. SVR News 37, "The Unpopular Decision", David C Williams (Editor) p.35.
  10. SVR News 43, 44
  11. SVR News 47, 48
  12. SVR News 52, 53, 55
  13. SVR News 56
  14. SVR News 57
  15. SVR News 82
  16. SVR News 86
  17. SVR News 97, 98
  18. SVR News 101
  19. SVR News 103
  20. SVR News 110, 112
  21. SVR News 115
  22. SVR News 118
  23. SVR News 121
  24. SVR News 122
  25. SVR News 124
  26. SVR News 127
  27. SVR News 140
  28. SVR News 142, 143, 144
  29. SVR News 154
  30. SVR News 176
  31. Rail Advent