Posts Tagged ‘A4 Pacific’

A fistful of A4

Posted: November 30, 2018 in Trains
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Any regular reader will not be surprised that before very long in my look back to my early days on the blog, I would start waxing lyrical about Gresley A4’s. Well, they are the best steam locomotives ever built! This collection of action shoots was first posted in April 2013. Was it really 5 years ago that all 5 remaining A4’s were together at York? Time flies.

A collection of A4 tweets. Will be wonderful to see 5 together at NRM York later in the year

Some more pictures of 4464 Bittern at the Mid-Hants Railway spring gala

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It was fitting that 4464 Bittern should return to Mid-Hants railway since she was restored to mainline order at Ropley works.

4464 Bittern at Alton

4464 Bittern at Alton

4464 was built at Doncaster works in 1937, a sister to engine to the famous ‘Mallard’. In all 35 A4 pacific’s were built and of these 6 remain in preservation. Bittern now carries a plaque commemorating her part in the celebrations of the 75th anniversary of Mallard’s steam speed record.

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4464 was initially based at Newcastle and was responsible for hauling the Flying Scotsman express between London and Newcastle. After the second world war she pulled the Talisman express from Kings Cross to Edinburgh. The A4s were replaced on these services by diesel locomotives in 1963 and 4464 went to Aberdeen to pull express services between there and Edinburgh or Glasgow. However 3 years later they were withdrawn from service.

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4464 was purchased by a private owner and ran railtours but she quickly developed a cracked frame and had to be withdrawn from service and it was not until 2000 that work began at Ropley works to bring her back to running specification.She returned to service in 2007 and in 2013 she undertook 3 90mph runs as part of the celebrations of the 75th anniversary of Mallard’s record of 126mph in 1938 (as commemorated on her new plaque). Bittern made a top speed of 93mph.

The Great Goodbye

Posted: March 10, 2014 in Trains
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And so it ends. It is unlikely that the 6 remaining A4s will be seen together again. Its been a great experience to see these great machines standing together. I echo the thanks to those who have worked over the years to preserve and restore them so that we today can still experience their majesty

Phil Lambell

THEY’RE just machines aren’t they? One hundred and two tons of metal forged and hammered into shape to fulfil a function.

Image Mallard at The Great Goodbye

Well yes, and no. If that’s all they were we wouldn’t care about them would we?

Not only do we care, we are in awe of these machines. This morning I involuntarily smiled when I heard one of them whistle, a sound carried on the breeze across the north of Darlington, as it made its way down the branch line from Shildon.

And we cared in huge numbers over the last week or so as the remaining six Class A4 Pacific steam locomotives went on show at Locomotion in Shildon (http://www.nrm.org.uk/PlanaVisit/VisitShildon) in an event named The Great Goodbye.

I was one of 18,000 to visit on Saturday. Organisers expected 72,000 visitors over the nine days, they eventually welcomed 120,000. Shildon, not a…

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Bittern in Action

Posted: December 21, 2013 in Trains
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A brilliant video of Bittern in Steam

Video by Matti Ward on YouTube