After 1930 the only locomotives newly
introduced on the line were standard types of the L.M.S., S.R. and
LMS 'Black Fives'
From 1954, BR Standard type locos were used on the line, including:
Class 3, 2-6-2's
Motive Power 1930 - 1966
Even after the 1923 grouping, the S.& D.J.R. retained its independence, and not until January 1st 1930 did the London, Midland & Scottish Railway absorb the locomotive stock and allocate new numbers within the framework of its own numbering system.
At the beginning of 1930, there were 80 locomotives, of six different wheel arrangements in use on the S&D:
No immediate radical change was made apart from
re-numbering, change of livery and lettering, it being the policy to
allow the older non-standard machines to be withdrawn and replacements
to come in the shape of L.M.S. standard or ex-Midland types already
common to the line.
In 1932 the last survivor of the 1896/7 M.R. Derby
built 5 ft. 9 in. 4-4-0s, No. 303 (originally No.45), was withdrawn, as
was No. 1207, the last of the 1200-1207 0-4-4 tanks, and No. 2884, the
last of the 11 0-6-Os of the 2880-2890 series. The same year two of the
large-boiler 2-8-0s, Nos. 13809 and 13810, received smaller boilers
while undergoing repairs at Derby works.
It was apparent by 1938 that, with the completion of a
bridge strengthening programme on the ex-Midland line between Bath and
Mangotsfield, rather more modern power could be introduced, and after a
trial run by No. 5228 in March, six of the Stanier class '5P5F' 4-6-Os
were transferred to Bath and, on May 2nd they entered regular traffic,
the southbound 'Pines Express' being hauled that day by No. 5440.
With the onset of hostilities in 1939 the re-equipping of the S.D.J.R. locomotive stock with standard designs was cut short. All but two of the class '5' 4-6-Os were sent away almost immediately and eventually there was a period when none of the class remained on the line. Replacements came in the shape of No. 1046, a compound 4-4-0, and, in 1941, 17 ex-London & South Western Railway locomotives, on loan from the Southern and consisting of the whole of the 'S11' class 4-4-Os Nos. 395-404, one 'T9' class 4-4-0 No. 304, and Nos. 1-6 of the 'T1' 0-4-4 tank class. Most, if not all, of the loaned 4-4-Os were fitted with tablet-exchange apparatus and performed on the main line, although several of the 'S11' class migrated to other Midland sheds, while the tank engines were engaged on branch duties.
In 1943, three L.M.S. standard class '8F' 2-8-Os
appeared on the line but their stay was only for a month or so.
Shortly after the end of the War in 1945, the nationalisation of the railways was announced, although before this a stranger from ex-Lancashire & Yorkshire stock, an 0-4-0 tank, No. 11202, was transferred to Radstock for colliery work and another S.D.J.R. class disappeared when No. 1230, the last of the 1230-1232 0-4-4 tanks, was withdrawn in 1946.
Shortly after nationalisation little immediate change
was made, for although the Southern Region was allocated the whole of
the line and branches, the motive power arrangements remained mainly
Another type new to the line was the ex L.M.S. class
'2' 2-6-2 tank which made its debut in the autumn of 1949, when Nos.
41240-41243 appeared on Highbridge local services as well as working to
Bristol from Bath.
About a year later the Southern authorities examined the question of the haulage of the heavier trains in an effort to dispense with piloting over the steeply graded Mendip sections. Six Southern light 4-6-2s were transferred to Bath after trials by No. 34109 during March. Three of these were soon back at Bournemouth when it was found that the greater power available, compared with the class '5' 4-6-0s, was not quite as advantageous as had been originally hoped. If the advent of the Stanier 4-6-Os had not resulted in quite as striking an advance over previous standards as had been expected, how much less was the case when the Southern 4-6-2s, with their low adhesion arrived, as the Mendip Hills permitted no rousing rushes, only solid slogging in the vicinity of Masbury or out of Bath. Undoubtedly the 4-4-Os had thrived on hard pounding and could be (and were), thrashed, and it was that class, together with the 2-10-Os yet to come, which could be nominated as the classic passenger performers of the line.
In late 1952 No. 51202 returned to the London Midland
Region, as did the ex L.M.S. 2-6-Os in mid 1953. Over optimistic trials
with 'U' and 'UI' class 2-6-Os Nos. 31621 and 31906 respectively in
March 1954 brought no changes, although in May a new class, the B.R.
standard '5' arrived in the shape of Nos. 73050-73052, straight from
construction, displacing three of the L.M.S.-type class '5' 4-6-0s.
Eventually, in February 1958, the provision of motive power for the Somerset & Dorset came under the control of the Western Region. No immediate alteration took place other than the return of the last two of the L.M.S. class '5' 4-6-0s, one of which was the faithful No. 45440, to the L.M.R. These were two of the 66 locomotives handed over to the Western Region at the end of the Southern's reign. One or two B.R. class '3' 2-6-2 tanks were introduced and, as the Southern still had three duties worked from Bournemouth on summer Saturdays, modified 'West Country' 4-6-2s appeared, the first being No. 34039 in 1959.
Apart from a War Department 2-10-0 and a '56xx' class
0-6-2 tank making odd appearances, nothing of great mention occurred
until 1960 and then only ironically, when the fate of the Joint line
could be predicted did motive power to match summer Saturday demands
materialise. Standard B.R. class '9F' 2-10-0 No. 92204 made a trial run
in March and in company with Nos. 92203, 92205 and 92206 took up duties
in Bath for the summer traffic. These engines were allowed to take 400
tons unassisted over the Bath to Evercreech Junction section and pilots
could be dispensed with at last, although in the event they were still
Meantime replacement of the stock inherited by the
Western Region had been accelerated. The need for the Sentinels at
Radstock had gone and so No. 47191 was withdrawn in August 1959, and its
companion, No. 47190, in the February the following year.
The 'customary policy' of providing little service or
modern equipment to doomed lines was in operation by 1963 and a large
turnover of stock commenced due to locomotives constantly being
withdrawn and scrapped rather than being repaired.
At the end of 1964 locomotive stock had fallen to just
34 engines. The S.D.J.R. 0-6-0 was withdrawn at the end of 1964 and was
the last of its class on the line. By mid-summer 1965, the Collett
0-6-Os had gone and so, for the first time for many years, no 0-6-0
tender engine remained on the Somerset & Dorset.
To the varied types of steam engine (diesel traction in any form was virtually unknown) which have regularly done battle with the Mendips there must be added the Southern 'Schools' 4-4-0s, the L.S.W.R. '700' 0-6-0s, Caprotti valve-gear class '5' 4-6-0s, L.N.E.R. 'B12' 4-6-0s, S.R. 'Q' 0-6-Os and others, making infrequent or once-only visits on special trains, to contribute to as fine and brilliant a kaleidoscope of locomotion as any joint line could possibly expect.
|Locomotives allocated to the S&D (1950-1964)|
Type & Class Passed to Passed to In service of locomotive S.R. 1950 W.R. 1958 1964
4-4-0 '2P' (SDJR/LMS) 12 10 - 0-6-0 '3F' (SDJR/LMS) 9 8 - 0-6-0 '4F' (SDJR/LMS) 14 11 1 0-6-0 Collett (GWR) - - 3 2-6-0 '4' (LMS) 3 - - 4-6-0 '4' (BR) - 3 2 4-6-0 '5' (LMS) 5 2 - 4-6-0 '5' (BR) - 5 4 2-8-0 '7F' (SDJR) 11 11 - 2-8-0 '8F' (LMS) - - 6 0-4-0 ST (L&YR) 1 - - 0-4-0 Sentinel(SDJR) 1 2 - 0-4-4T '1P' (MR) 3 1 - 0-6-0T '3F' (SDJR/LMS) 6 6 3 0-6-0PT (GWR) - - 5 2-6-2T '2' (LMS) 4 7 5 2-6-2T '3' (BR) - - 2 2-6-4T '4' (BR) - - 3 TOTALS: 69 66 34
Copyright © Kevin Clapcott
Most recent revision Tuesday July 12, 2011