Talk:BR Riddles 4MT 80079

Regarding Patrick's recent edit, can anyone confirm to what extent the Standard Class 4 tanks were used on the Severn Valley branch in service? The BR Database suggests several were withdrawn from Kidderminster shed in 1965, so they were certainly in the area. However I've seen photos in various books of at least 6 different Class 3 tanks on the line (82000/04/05/09/21/32) but I don't remember a photo of a Class 4. --Robin (talk) 13:36, 27 March 2017 (UTC)

Based on route availability arguments, it seems unlikely - at least with any regularity! The "Locomotive Route Availability" booklet available on Michael Clemen's site shows 3MT tanks as Yellow, whilst 4MT tanks are rated as Blue. Given the SVR's classification as dotted blue from Bewdley to Buildwas, any 4MT tank would be limited to 25mph. --Danny252 (talk) 15:11, 27 March 2017 (UTC)
...on the other hand, we do have historic photos of 80072 pottering about the line on multiple days in 1963! Photo 1 Photo 2 Photo 3 Seems those route availability restrictions didn't phase BR planners. --Danny252 (talk) 20:31, 28 March 2017 (UTC)
Interesting find - the weather certainly looks right for Winter 62/63! The BR Database has 80072 allocated to Swansea East Dock at the time – I wonder how it finished up working services on the SVR from there? Maybe locos ended up in the wrong place because of the snow and BR just used what was available. --Robin (talk) 13:27, 29 March 2017 (UTC)
...Possible answer, the 80072 loco website suggests an earlier spell at Shrewsbury not mentioned in the BR Database. The exceptional weather could certainly be a reason to take liberties with the route classification. --Robin (talk) 13:38, 29 March 2017 (UTC)
...Additionally, from the article, "I refer in the article to it moving on to Shrewsbury - this was because I have documentary evidence of it there at this time. However, I have established that it wasn't shedded there then but would be a likely visitor because it was working the Central Wales line which ended up at Shrewsbury..." Fits the hypothesis that BR used it because it was there at the time. --Robin (talk) 13:46, 29 March 2017 (UTC)
Just noticed there is a photo in SVR News 15 of 80078 at Bridgnorth in 1963 with the 5.32pm from Shrewsbury. The loco was allocated to Croes Newydd at the time, so possibly another ad hoc working. --Robin (talk) 13:24, 30 March 2017 (UTC)
I wonder if Shrewsbury shed was suffering from a shortage of motive power in 1963 (perhaps due to the winter weather, as you say). Perusing Michael Clemens' book on Shropshire lines, I couldn't find any photos of 4MT tanks on the SVR, but the similarly rated 41xx tanks were regularly seen on freight, plus one or two exceptional passenger services on the Tenbury branch. --Danny252 (talk) 17:14, 30 March 2017 (UTC)
I've seen Michael Clemens does talks at the branches, If someone is in contact with him, he might know more? As for my original edit, I was sure I had seen photos both of standard 3 and 4 tanks--Patrick Hearn (talk) 17:20, 30 March 2017 (UTC)
Digging into the BR Database a bit further, a handful of Class 4 tanks were shedded at Shrewsbury from mid-1962 onwards, including 80078 briefly. I have found this paragraph in "The Severn Valley Railway" by DJ Smith (1968) which may explain: (only just acquired, yet another Severn Valley book to be added to the Bibliography!)
"For a short period in 1957 three Standard Class 3MT 2-6-2 tanks of the 82xxx series were stabled at Shrewsbury and became fairly common on the northern part of the line. From 1962 the Shrewsbury Shed began to employ a trio of ex LMS Stanier Class 3 2-6-2 tanks on local passenger trains. When the latter were withdrawn in 1962, they were replaced by LM Ivatt class 2MT 2-6-2 tanks of the 412xx series. These worked with BR Standard 2-6-4 tanks displaced from the London Tilbury and Southend line by electrification. The last two types remained until the end of passenger working, especially north of Bridgnorth."
As well as the pictures of at least six 82xxx tanks, I'd also seen pictures of at least five Ivatt Class 2s in use (41202/203/209/240/304), but not the BR 2-6-4T Class 4s (well I must have seen the one in SVR News, but not noticed it!). So Smith's information supports your original edit, give or take the word 'regularly'. Either the Class 4s were infrequently used, or they managed to dodge the photographers. A good idea on asking Michael Clemens if anyone does catch him. --Robin (talk) 21:30, 30 March 2017 (UTC)
I asked a regular poster (Reg Storer) on one of the Facebook railway history groups about the 80xxx tanks, the chap being a local trainspotter around Oswestry and Shrewsbury in the 60s. His short answer was "I never saw an 80 on the SV Branch", with the additional comment that the Shrewsbury 4MTs were usually on Cambrian services. --Danny252 (talk) 09:02, 31 March 2017 (UTC)
And now a photo has popped up of an unidentified 80xxx on the last day of service, with a Hartlebury-Shrewsbury service approaching Bridgnorth. Facebook link (though probably not accessible without an account). --Danny252 (talk) 15:17, 18 April 2017 (UTC)
Probably 80102; Magner (1997) has a photo of a northbound 80102 crossing with a southbound DMU at Bridgnorth on the same day. The load was 2 carriages plus one goods wagon - possibly the last station truck? --Robin (talk) 15:35, 18 April 2017 (UTC)

I have added a section incorporating the above information and references, to which fusrther improvenents can be made.--Patrick Hearn (talk) 23:01, 30 March 2017 (UTC)

Please could someone amend the DJ Smith reference to tie in with it being added to the bibliography? Thanks--Patrick Hearn (talk) 17:01, 1 April 2017 (UTC)

Done. Checked with David Postle today, he was aware of one or two photos of the Class 4 tanks in use on the SVR but agreed their use was very limited. --Robin (talk) 19:58, 1 April 2017 (UTC)
Another look at the database shows only 82XXX tanks at Kidder but no 80XXX. I've amended the article accordingly--Patrick Hearn (talk) 12:47, 23 April 2017 (UTC)

A Facebook post from David Giddins‎ to the 'closed' Unofficial Severn Valley Railway Facebook group shows an 80xxx BR Standard Tank on the 3.45pm Hartlebury to Shrewsbury train running into Bridgnorth on the last day of the BR Service in September 1963 (late Russell Mulford).

Stretton captions an image as being 80079 emerging from Bridgnorth tunnel on 30 August 1962 on an empty 7.27p.m. Bridgnorth to Shrewsbury; possibly a Mensing image.[1] BR Database has the loco at Croes Newydd from 15 July 1962. If so, that would be a real rarity, an SVR based loco that ran on the line in service. I can't make out a number. Is there any corroboration?--Patrick Hearn (talk) 16:14, 21 July 2021 (UTC)--Patrick Hearn (talk) 16:14, 21 July 2021 (UTC)

Noting definite turned up in a quick scan of the other likely sources. Tom Ferris (1995) in his book on the commercial history of the SVR fleet said he hadn't found a photo of 80079 on the branch but thought it possible that it could have got there from Croes Newydd. Certainly some locos did, as in the notes above. The particular service John Stretton refers to only ran from Shrewsbury to Bridgnorth and back in the late afternoon / evening – you can easily imagine a loco working its regular service from Croes Newydd up to Shrewsbury and the Operations manager going "We're short of a loco – just run down to Bridgnorth and back while you're here..." --Robin (talk) 19:17, 21 July 2021 (UTC)


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