No. 49 - p85-91

© AUGUST 1973




    The records of Thos. W. Ward Ltd show that on 18th March 1920 they purchased for £200 at Walkden, Lancs, a 12in six‑coupled saddle tank named FRANCIS (Manning Wardle 311 of 1870): the vendor was Jesse Wallwork, Mining Agent to the Earl of Ellesmere, Bridgewater Offices, Walkden, Manchester. It was allotted Ward's plant number 30826 and taken away in a truck to their Charlton Works in Sheffield. On the same day Ward's bought another 12in six‑coupled saddle tank (Manning Wardle 902 of 1884 - named ALBERT) from the Lewes Portland Cement & Lime Co Ltd at Lewes in Sussex: the purchase price was £150 and plant number 30827 was allotted. ALBERT also travelled on a truck to Sheffield and on 15th February it was transferred to the Charlton Scrap Dept. It is recorded that "Boiler with Firebox, Tank, and sundries from this Loco fitted to Loco No.29660, and the scrap old parts of Loco 29660 scrapped along with scrap parts of 30827. Debit 29660 with good parts at say - £100"; "Side Rods, Bunker, and sundries from 30827 fitted to Loco 30826 and scrap old parts of Loco 30826 scrapped along with scrap parts of 30827. Debit 30826 with good parts at say - £25".

    FRANCIS and ALBERT were both Manning Wardle class K locomotives, and so too was Ward's 29660. On 29th May 1923 FRANCIS went out on hire at £12 per week to the Glapwell Colliery, Derbyshire, of the Sheepbridge Coal & Iron Co Ltd, returning to Charlton Works on 17th July 1923. Subsequent hirings were to the South Leicestershire Colliery Co Ltd, Snibston Colliery (£12 per week from 22nd August to 31st October 1923); Clay Cross Co Ltd, Ladmanlow, Derbyshire (£8 per week from 12th April to 18th November 1924); and at £7 per week from 8th May 1924 to a location at Gravesend, Kent, for the Bury firm of Chas Walmsley & Co Ltd. On 2nd June 1926 FRANCIS was sold to this firm for £350 "where lying at Gravesend". Does anyone know the later history of FRANCIS ?

    An employee of Ward's recalls that a six‑coupled Manning Wardle named ALBERT was still at Charlton Works when he started work there in 1933, and that it was broken up about 1935. Ward's advertised a six‑coupled Manning Wardle for sale from at least December 1926 to at least May 1935, but under plant number 29660. This was one of five locomotives purchased in October 1919 by Ward's from Fuller, Horsey, Sons & Cassell who auctioned surplus equipment at the "Government Depot, Port of Richborough," the details (abbreviated) as quoted in Ward's records being as under:

29659 Lot 1196 £125 2-2-0 side tank, 10in x 14in cylinders, London & South Western Rly No.740
29660 Lot 1201 £380 0-6-0 saddle tank, 12in x 17in cylinders, Manning Wardle No.394
29789 Lot 1194 £220 2-4-2 side tank, 16in x 22in cylinders, London & North Western Rly No.60
29790 Lot 1195 £220 2-4-2 side tank, 16in x 22in cylinders.
29791 Lot 1200 £160 0-6-0 saddle tank, 11 in x 17in cylinders, No.132

    Built at Nine Elms Works, London, in 1906, LSW 740 was one of ten small "motor-tanks" of Class C14 intended for working push-and-pull local passenger trains. It travelled on its own wheels from Richborough as far as Wellingborough where it was loaded on a truck for the remainder of the journey to Sheffield. On 19th March 1920 it was sold for £500 to Frank Hayes of Century Buildings, North John Street, Liverpool, but the actual destination is not recorded. Hayes was an engineer and contractor with whom Ward's had done business previously. On 3rd September 1917 they had sold him Avonside 1405 of 1899 which they had purchased on 6th June the same year from Cravens Ltd of Darnall, Sheffield: it was delivered to Templeborough for Hayes. Avonside's invoice records show that Hayes was using 1405 at Frodingham, Lincs, on extensions to the Appleby Ironworks between at least September 1918 and June 1919, and at the works of Steel, Peech & Tozer in March 1921. (SPT's works are at Templeborough, near Sheffield.) 1405 had moved to Brentford by May 1923 where Hayes was engaged on the construction of the Great West Road for Middlesex County Council. Whether LSW 740 was used on any of these contracts is not known, but in any event Ward's records disagree with some of the information in Part 2 of "Locomotives of the L.S.W.R." (RCTS, 1967). On page 124, presumably due to a misprint, 740 is shown as working at Bournemouth in July 1912 when at the same time it was said to be stored out of use at Nine Elms Works! It was sold by the LSW in December 1916 to the Inland Waterways & Docks at Richborough where it worked until transferred to Shoeburyness in October 1917. On page 125, 740 and two other ex‑Government C14's are said to have been purchased by James Brown Ltd of Sittingbourne, Kent, in October 1921 and broken up: yet a subsequent mention on the same page indicates that 740 was broken up at Ashford Works in May 1924! Comments welcome.

    Manning Wardle 394 was supplied new on 25th November 1872 to Lucas Bros, contractors, London, as LUCAS BROS. No.13. Smith & Cole in Part IV of "Contractors' Locomotives" (Union Publications, 1970) offer no suggestion as to where it worked. After purchase by Ward's it was taken away on a truck from Richborough to Sheffield and then rebuilt (as recorded above) with parts from Manning Wardle 902. Carrying 902's tank it was presumably as ALBERT that it went on hire to the "Staveley Coal & Iron Co Ltd, N'ham" from 27th October 1923 to 18th November 1924 at £8 per week, and in March and April 1927 at £7 per week to Ellis & Everard Ltd, Bardon Hill Quarries, Leicestershire. At this time the Staveley Company's operations were essentially in Derbyshire, and "N'ham" presumably stands for Nottingham (shire): would ALBERT perhaps have worked at Staveley's Warsop Main Colliery? ALBERT met its end in 1935 when it was "transferred to Charlton Scrap Dept. [from Charlton Loco & Crane Dept.] 10/12/1935 at £40/‑/‑ lump sum".

    LNW 60 travelled on its own wheels to Sheffield, but saw no further service and was transferred to the Charlton Scrap Dept on 18th January 1921. The second 2‑4‑2 side tank, not shown as LNW although described similarly to LNW 60, also went on its own wheels to Sheffield: it was charged direct to the Charlton Scrap Dept and was presumably cut up straightaway. The last of the quintet went in a truck to Sheffield where it was "scrapped April 14th/1920. Sent to Charlton Scrap Dept." The number 132 suggests it may have formerly worked for Lucas & Aird or S. Pearson & Son Ltd - the former are supposed to have had a six‑coupled Manning Wardle with this running number; whilst Pearson's had locomotives numbered as high as 159, although a specific No.132 is not recorded. Ward's show 132 as having 11in x 17in cylinders, 3ft 0in wheels, 10ft 3in wheelbase, 400 gallons water capacity and dead buffers. It could well have been a Manning Wardle.

    Apart from two 2ft 6in gauge LMS contractors-type locomotives (Bagnall 1410 and Hudswell Clarke 340) purchased by Ward's from the LMS at Crewe in February/March 1941 for £27 each delivered to Templeborough Works, Sheffield, only two other locomotives from main line railways appear in Ward's Charlton Works stock books that I've been able to consult. These are Cardiff Railway 0‑6‑0 saddle tanks Nos.20 and 22 which were purchased on 21st February 1917 at £725 the pair from F.T. Danks, Apsley House, Quinton, Birmingham, "as and where inspected at the Cardiff Railway Co's East Moors Loco Sheds". They are described as "two very old Locos" but published information shows them as dating only from 1877 and 1880 respectively. Both were despatched from East Moors to Ward's yard at King's Dock, Swansea, in May 1917, "to be scrapped". According to Part 10 of "The Locomotives of the Great Western Railway" (RCTS, 1966) little is known of the early locos of the Cardiff Railway, and as Ward's record details which both correct and add to the RCTS information it would appear worthwhile quoting in full. No.22 (Ward's No.25159), "understood to have been originally built by Parfitt & Jenkins," had been rebuilt in 1891. When measured up by Ward's it had 3ft 10in wheels with 1¾in tyres, 13ft 9in wheelbase, hand brakes, sand boxes, spring buffers, two injectors, 24ft 0in overall length without buffers, 13ft 0in height, copper firebox of 7/16in plates, 142 yellow metal tubes 12ft x 15/8in diameter, and a nett weight of about 30 tons. No.20 (Ward's No.25160) was almost the same as No.22, but differed in the following particulars: 4ft 0in wheels with 23/8in tyres, 152 yellow metal tubes and a copper firebox measuring approximately 3ft 9in x 3ft 6in x 4ft 0in deep of 7/16in plates.


    The issue dated 17th July 1852 of "The Illustrated London News" makes brief mention of the Portland Breakwater, but unfortunately the accompanying engraving does not show any locomotive. 'The stone with which the breakwater is formed is an admixture of rough large blocks [and] small rubble [which] is tipped into the sea from railway waggons, trains of which are hauled along the Breakwater by locomotive engines. ... The works are being constructed for the Admiralty. ... Mr. J.T. Leather is the contractor for the same.'

    John Towlerton Leather was an eminent civil engineer and contractor, and "Building News" for 4th January 1867 records that he was also associated with other Admiralty contracts - on his own at Spithead for the construction of marine forts, and in association with George Smith of Pimlico (London) as Leather, Smith & Company on a £2 million contract for extensions to Portsmouth Dockyard. He was at that time the owner of the Hunslet Engine Company which supplied between 1867 and 1871 no fewer than eleven four- and six‑coupled saddle tank locomotives for the Portsmouth contract - Hunslet nos. 18, 23, 25‑27, 32‑35, 54 and 61. As regards Portland, a locomotive was offered for sale at the Breakwater there in 1866 by a Mr J.G. Brown: the advertisement, which appeared in "Colliery Guardian" for 19th May 1866, stated that it was a broad gauge four wheels coupled tank engine with 10½in x 22in cylinders. In his letter on QUEEN elsewhere in this issue, Mr Lacey mentions that four 7ft gauge E.B. Wilson 0‑4‑0 well tanks were acquired in [or, rather, about] 1875 by I.W. Boulton from Portland Breakwater, of which one is supposed to have been named QUEEN. Two 0‑6‑0 tender locomotives named LORD WARDEN and LORD ROBARTES were also purchased by Boulton from the Breakwater at this time. Unlike the E.B. Wilson's these were standard gauge locomotives, having 15in x 24in cylinders and 5ft 6in wheels, and the suggestion has been put forward that they were built by Robert Stephenson. Although there is a substantial difference in wheel sizes, it is suggested that LORD ROBARTES may have been Robert Stephenson 619 of 1846, a much travelled engine which, if it ever was at Portland, probably did not arrive before 1873.

    However, the Breakwater was not completed until 1872, the last stone being laid on Saturday, 10th August, by the Prince of Wales. As far back as 1794 the Admiralty were urged to construct a Breakwater at Portland. Fifty years later a Commission was appointed to look into the specific question of harbours of refuge, and surveys were made at Portland in 1846. An Act for the construction of the Breakwater was obtained in 1847, and although preliminary work started in August of that year, it was not until 25th July 1849 that the foundation stone was laid by the Prince Consort. "The Times" for 10th August 1872 devoted three columns of small type to this event, and "The Engineer" and "Engineering" drew heavily on "The Times" for the reports which appeared in their issues dated 16th August 1872. None mentioned the name of the contractor (although this is not unusual) and only "Engineering" gave details of the railways used during the construction work. The Breakwater was constructed of Portland stone quarried nearby by convict labour, some 600 to a thousand prisoners being continually employed. Three inclines, each about 1500ft in length on gradients varying from 1 in 10 to 1 in 15, carried the stone from the quarries which were about 380ft above sea level. "Each incline had a double set of broad-gauge rails, and was worked by wire ropes passing over drums... Along the line of the breakwater works was a temporary [wooden] staging, which was pushed forward as the rubble mound progressed. On this staging five lines of railway were laid, and the materials were carried to the end of the platform in wagons drawn by locomotives..." The inner breakwater was in use in 1872 as a landing and coaling place for large vessels, and a railway was laid along it. The motive power at this time was as above, and the first Admiralty locomotives at Portland of which we have records are the four Bagnall 0‑4‑0 saddle tanks supplied new in 1896, works numbers 1493-1496.

Railways at Portland as shown on 1927 GWR map.

    J.H. Lucking's well illustrated and very comprehensive "Railways of Dorset" (RCTS, 1968), although primarily concerned with main line railways, does contain a little information on industrial lines including those in the Portland area. First on the scene was the 4ft gauge horse- and cable-worked Portland Railway which was incorporated as early as 10th June 1825. A purely industrial line, it was opened to stone traffic from the quarries in October 1826, and closed in September 1939. Then came the railway on the Breakwater, followed by the Weymouth & Portland Railway which was built by contractor John Aird. Completed by April 1864 but not opened to traffic until 16th October 1865, the latter was until June 1874 of mixed 4ft 8½in/7ft 0¼in gauge to accommodate the trains of the London & South Western and Great Western Railways who jointly leased and worked it. Section 62 of the GWR (Additional Powers) Act of 1871 [not mentioned by Lucking] authorised Agreements being made between the Admiralty and the GWR/LSWR with regard to railways and works at Portland between the Admiralty Breakwater and the Weymouth & Portland Railway. An Agreement was concluded on 29th May 1874, and under Section 15 of the LSWR Act of 19th July 1875 the GWR/LSWR constructed for the Admiralty the railway from Portland to the Breakwater, which was completed (per GWR records) by February 1876. [Lucking, however, states that the line, which superseded for part of the distance an existing siding, was completed early in 1877 but for some reason was not opened until the following year: it was mostly worked by horses.] The Admiralty paid an annuity of 4 per cent on the cost until 31st December 1898 when the annuity was redeemed, the railway then becoming the sole property of the Admiralty. By a further Agreement dated 18th June 1906 (applicable as from 1st January 1899) the GWR and LSWR continued to maintain and manage the railway at the expense of the Admiralty.

    The Easton & Church Hope Railway had a chequered career. Incorporated on 25th July 1867, the Portland Extension was covered by Acts of 1884 and 1887 (with five further Acts for extension of time to complete it) and the line was eventually opened to traffic on 1st September 1902. Running powers over the Admiralty railway were granted by Sections 34 and 39 of the 1884 and 1887 ECHR Acts respectively. Lucking states that maintenance of the Admiralty railway was covered by the ECHR Act of 9th August 1901 as the Agreement with the GWR/LSWR had been terminated by the Admiralty in 1900: this is at variance with the GWR records on running powers that I have consulted, and would leave the period 1900-1901 without a maintenance/working agreement. The ECHR, worked jointly by the GWR and LSWR, later GWR/SR, became part of British Railways on 1st January 1948. It was closed to passenger traffic as from 3rd March 1952 (goods from 5th April 1965) and the track was lifted from Easton to the Admiralty sidings at Portland in the latter part of 1966. Further information on the Admiralty railway, and whether BR is currently responsible for maintenance, would be welcome.



    In his PICTURE PARADE on page 144 of RECORD 16, Frank Jones showed two photographs of the several locomotives rebuilt by Sentinel and queried how many of the rebuilds were actually carried out at Shrewsbury. The answer would appear to be none. Information recently acquired from Sentinel records in the form of Job Cards indicates that conventional locomotives were rebuilt to the Sentinel system by Sentinel Industrial Locomotives (England) Ltd of 92 Northgate Street, Chester, a subsidiary of Sentinel Waggon Works Ltd, Shrewsbury. It appears that certain assembly work was carried out on the premises of Jas. Crichton & Co Ltd at Saltney Goods Station, Chester, from parts supplied by Shrewsbury, although the actual rebuilding was done on the customer's premises. The typewritten job cards are basically invoices for the quantities of parts supplied and give no details of the work actually carried out, nor identify the locomotive actually being rebuilt. A special ledger was kept for these Chester locomotives in which the job cards were pasted on to blank pages. Thirty-one job numbers (i.e. works numbers) ranging from 5666 (ordered late in 1924) to 6951 (ordered 26th February 1927) cover twenty-five rebuilds and six new locomotives. No customer is quoted for one of the ordered rebuilds (6663) and it is possible that it was not effected: 5987 and 6743 covered respectively the conversion at Aberdeen of a boat (the steam drifter "Maggie Darling") and at Chester a barge for the Warwickshire Coal Co Ltd. Most of the job cards show the works number with the suffix "CH" and it is known that some of the rebuilds had works plates similarly marked: Sentinel's locomotive history sheets (on which spares orders were booked) show the "CH" in every case - excepting 6663 for which there is no history sheet.

    However, the first two rebuilds (5666 and 5667) were not carried out at Chester, but at the small engineering works of Blackwell's in Northampton. It appears that this firm had a small trade in repairing industrial locomotives from local systems, and opportunity was taken in 1924 to rebuild an orthodox Manning Wardle 0‑4‑0 saddle tank (1091 of 1888) from the Isham ganister quarries of Thos. E. Gray & Co Ltd. Blackwell's second conversion was of a Manning Wardle 0‑6‑0 saddle tank named MOLTKE (848 of 1882) belonging to the Arlesey Brick Company. Both were fitted with a horizontal engine (as also were loco conversions 5988, 6005, 6006, 6144 and 6754) and, whilst both survived until after World War 2, Sentinel recorded that by May 1936 ANCOATS was dismantled. It is significant that Blackwell's chief engineer at the time, Kyrle Willans, subsequently accepted a position with Sentinel and took charge of the Chester offshoot. He was an uncle of L.T.C. Rolt who, in his autobiography "Landscape with Machines" (Longman, 1971), records that it was in fact Willans who devised and carried out the rebuilding of the prototype ANCOATS, using sundry parts from a secondhand Sentinel road steam wagon. Rolt suggests that because of the successful rebuilding of ANCOATS Sentinel decided to manufacture geared steam locomotives. True, 5666 was the first standard gauge Sentinel, but no fewer than twenty-one narrow gauge locomotives (the majority for India) in addition to twenty-one railcar power units of sundry gauges had been produced by this time. Sentinel's first rail unit (4863) was the power unit for a 56‑seater railcar supplied to the 3ft 6in gauge Jersey Railways & Tramways in 1923: their first locomotive proper (5156) was a 2ft 6in gauge four wheeler with a horizontal boiler built in 1923 for Richard Thomas & Co Ltd, Hendy Merthyr Colliery, Glamorgan.

The Sentinel rebuild of Manning Wardle petrol locomotive 1954 at Sandford Quarry in April 1952. (F. Jones)

    A letter from Eric Tonks elsewhere in this issue refers to Manning Wardle 1954. This was rebuilt under Sentinel works number 6219 (not 6216 as misprinted on page 221 of RECORD 42). Order dates of 30th July 1925 (probably a Sentinel internal stock order) and 2nd December 1925 (probably the customer's order) are quoted on the job cards. On 11th December 1925 jackshaft sprockets and jackshaft centre were sent from Shrewsbury to Crichton's. Between 15th December 1925 and 12th February 1926 there were sundry despatches of parts (including one "Super Sentinel" vertical locomotive engine unit and one "Super Sentinel" boiler) from Shrewsbury to Chas Hill & Co Ltd, Albion Dockyard, Cumberland Road, Bristol. On 25th February 1926 sundry parts were invoiced to Roads Reconstruction Ltd, Stoneleigh House, Clifton Park, Bristol - this was probably the office address as "Mendip Mountain Quarries" is pencilled in alongside. As 6219 lasted until 1960, perhaps readers can contribute further information on the rebuilding, and how the locomotive fared in service. Presumably it made a good impression initially as a new Sentinel locomotive was obtained by Mendip Mountain Quarries shortly afterwards (in March 1927, according to Pocket Book B). This was Sentinel 6090, the first type "DE" (double vertical engine) which was one of the two Sentinel rail vehicles on show at the Wembley Exhibition in 1925. Could the rebuilding of Manning Wardle 1954 have resulted from a possible visit to Wembley of a Roads Reconstruction representative ?



    Manning Wardle 1954 (previously mentioned) is also recorded in Pocket Book B as being at the Vobster Limestone Quarries in Somerset which were owned by Mendip Mountain Quarries Ltd before passing into the Roads Reconstruction group in 1934. By June 1920 (per Avonside records) quarry traffic was being handled by the Mells Siding Committee which in some way was connected with John Wainwright & Co Ltd. On 6th November 1920, in confirmation of a telephone call, Wainwright's wrote to Avonside to order a tube expander and ferrules for their Avonside class B4 0‑6‑0 saddle tank (1763 of 1917). The letter concluded: 'We trust you have been able to get these off by passenger train, marked "urgent", consigned to the Mells Siding Committee, Mells Road Station G.W.R. This is the only Loco Engine we now have to work the traffic away from 3 Collieries and 2 Quarries, and so must be repaired at once. Account to be made out in the name of Mells Siding Committee, but sent to our care.' Can any reader offer further information on this set‑up, and in particular identify the collieries and quarries served by the Mells Siding Committee? The example of Wainwright's impressive letterhead in use in 1933 reproduced here includes an artist's impression of a locomotive bearing some resemblance to an Avonside. An earlier letterhead being used ten years earlier shows a train with the same rocky background and hauled by what could be a Hudswell Clarke 0‑6‑0 saddle tank running bunker first - Hudswell, Clarke & Rodgers 153 of 1874 was at Vobster at some period. A half-tone block was used for this earlier letterhead which unfortunately is too indistinct to allow of satisfactory reproduction.

    Pocket Book B records that [standard gauge] locomotives were not used after 1926 at the Hennock Granite Quarries of the Teign Valley Granite Co Ltd at Trusham in Devon, and lists only one locomotive - a standard gauge 0‑4‑0 saddle tank named FINETTA (Avonside 1565 of 1911). According to Avonside records this was one of two class SS1 locomotives with 14in by 20in outside cylinders and 3ft 3in wheels, built to their stock order of 3rd September 1908 and supplied new in 1911 (by July 1911) to Hennock. Spares were sent to TVG until January 1914, and from March 1917 onwards to the War Office: invoices dated May and July 1919 recorded despatches to WD Codford [Wiltshire] where 1565 was running as WD No.16. On 20th October 1919 new brake blocks (? a suggestion of a recent transfer) were ordered by the Sandford & Conygar Quarries Co, and subsequent despatches were to this Company's Sandford Quarry in Somerset. By February 1924 printed notepaper of the Sandford & Conygar Quarries Co was being over-stamped 'Sandford Quarries Co: the proprietors were shown as the Teign Valley Granite Co Ltd, Trusham, Devon. In November (or December) 1926 FINETTA went to Avonside's works at Bristol for overhaul and the fitting of a new copper firebox at a cost of £328 19s 8d, being returned to Sandford on 19th January 1927 repainted unlined green. On 26th June 1929 FINETTA again visited Avonside's works for repairs, and on this occasion received a steel firebox at a cost of £188 18s 5d. After returning to Sandford on 12th September 1929 there is no further mention in Avonside records, but Society records show that it was sent from Roads Reconstruction Ltd's Conygar Quarries in Somerset (date of transfer from Sandford not shown) to A.R. Adams & Son, Newport, Mon, in 1931. It was resold to the Glamorgan Canal Company at Cardiff (where it was named DELWYN) and remained there until 1947 when it moved to ICI's works at Winsford, Cheshire: renamed JOHN L. DEUCHAR, it was scrapped about 1953.

    The note in Pocket Book B suggests that there was a standard gauge locomotive at Trusham until 1926. If this is the case, are further details known ?

FINETTA (Avonside 1565 of 1911) was renamed DELWYN by the Glamorgan Canal Company, although the lettering is not too clear on this photograph.    (Collection G. Alliez, courtesy B.D. Stoyel)

    On 14th June 1926 the Teign Valley Granite Co (Branch of Roads Reconstruction Ltd) placed an order with Avonside for "retyreing petrol loco wheels'. The invoice prepared after the work was done (carbon copy still in existence) shows that "Your Two Pairs Petrol Loco Wheels fitted with 4 new Best Extra Hard toughened Steel Tyres, 18¾" dia. on tread..." were consigned carriage forward on 12th July 1926 to Trusham, GWR, for TVG. The wheel diameter suggests that the locomotive was narrow gauge, but no other information is given.