No. 5199

No. 5199 was built at Swindon in December 1934, a member of the 5101 class introduced by C.B.Collett in 1929 as a rebuild of Churchward's 3101 class. The loco spent most of its working life in the Birmingham area, working commuter trains and other local passenger services. Diesel railcars took over many duties in the early 1960s, and 5199 moved to Gloucester. However, there was little work for it there, and it was soon withdrawn and sent to Barry.

After spending 22 years in Woodham's scrapyard at Barry, 5199 was purchased by the Great Western Steam Locomotive Group and moved to the Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Railway at Toddington in 1985 for restoration. In 1988 the owners moved the locomotive to Llangollen where work continued for a while. A further move in 1990 came when the frames moved to MOD Long Marston, somewhat closer to many members of the owning group, to aid restoration. Work progressed slowly, with re-wheeling taking place on 18th June 1995, the first major milestone in the restoration.

A change of circumstances saw the locomotive moved to Llangollen during 1996, and the rolling chassis was propelled to Carrog for exhibition during the Great Western weekend that year. Complications arose from the decision to send the tanks away for repair offsite, as they didn't fit on return. Much juggling was required before the side tanks, bunker, and cab roof were all refitted in 1998.

Restoration continued as fund raising via a shop at Carrog permitted, culminating in the loco's first move under its own power for 40 years in February 2003. It is now a regular performer on the Railway.

Pic: Flickr Welsh photographs