50 Years Of Preserved Steam On The Main Line DJ 1989 Whitely & Morrison

50 Years Of Preserved Steam On The Main Line DJ 1989 Whitely & Morrison

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50 Years Of Preserved Steam On The Main Line DJ 1989 Whitely & Morrison
 
50 Years Of Preserved Steam On The Main Line By J S Whiteley & GW Morrison Dust Jacket 1989
August 1968 witnessed the end of steam traction on British Railways, and although a few preserved steam locomotives had worked on the lines of BR prior to that date, it was inconceivable then that such a renaissance would happen during the next twenty years. Tribute indeed to the dedication and effort which has been made by a relatively small number of individuals and preservation societies for which the many thousands of enthusiasts and the general public at large owe a huge debt of gratitude. Had this not been the case, steam locomotives would no doubt simply have survived as static museum exhibits. Time and effort alone has not produced the remarkable results which have been achieved, hut at times also, a considerable financial investment, and without the co-operation of British Rail it would not have been possible to see main line steam running as it exists today.
Following the elimination of steam traction from the main lines of BR. in August 1968, only No. 4472 Flying Scotsman was allowed to run for a short period. However, in October 1971, BR relaxed its main line steam ban following concerted efforts by enthusiasts preservationists and locomotive owners, and No. 6000 King George V was allowed to work a main line train of "Cider Pullmans" from Hereford. A demand for organized steam-hauled tours was quickly identified by both the Steam Locomotive Operators Association and also British Rail and successful excursions have subsequently been run over a number of scenic routes using a variety of locomotives which have been meticulously restored to the exacting mechanical standards demanded by BR.
Preservation of any kind is an on-going thing, and the preservation and restoration of steam locomotives to running condition is no exception. Although hardly a year goes by nowadays without at least one additional locomotive to the ranks of those passed for main line operation, a number that have seen use in the past are currently out of action or restricted from running on BR metals. The first preserved steam locomotive permitted to run on the main line was the historic occasion when Great Northern Railway No.1 worked a number of specials in 1938. Now, 50 years later there is an ambitious project by the North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group to restore Peppercorn A2 class Pacific No. 60532 Blue Peter. It is already well under way at ICI Wilton and it seems quite conceivable that this fine locomotive will be in steam once again during 1989. With various other schemes in the pipeline, not least of all the intention of the Bluebell Railway to construct a new LBSCR Marsh Atlantic using an almost indentical Ivatt GNR boiler which has been obtained, it seems that we still have a remarkable variety of preserved steam locomotives to see on the main line in the years to come.
In this book we have attempted to illustrate as comprehensively as possible the wide variety of preserved locomotives that have worked trains on the main lines. On the whole locomotives hauling public fare-paying trains are shown, and a deliberate attempt has been made to exclude pictures of the various engine movements which have taken place in connection with exhibitions and celebrations over the years. The choice of photographs has been extremely difficult and I would like to offer my grateful thanks to fellow photographers who have kindly allowed me to use their pictures, and whose assistance has hopefully helped produce an interesting and balanced selection.

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