Nutty finds new home at Leighton Buzzard
By: Robin Jones
NOMADIC former brickworks Sentinel vertical-boilered locomotive Nutty has found a new long-term home at the Leighton Buzzard Railway.
Supplied to the London Brick Company's Hicks No. 1 works at Fletton near Peterborough, and called after the nickname of its driver of 30 years, 'Nutty' Rowell, No. 7701 of 1929 was built to the unusual 2ft 11in gauge.
Replaced by diesels, it was presented to the Narrow Gauge Railway Museum Trust in 1964. Re-gauged to 2ft 6in, it entered service at the nascent Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway, but proved unpopular, and became a static museum exhibit at Tywyn, moving to Whipsnade in 1991, and dismantled for an overhaul which was never completed.
In 1994, the parts were taken to Railworld in Peterborough, and later cosmetically restored at a local factory, but has now not been on public display for over 20 years.
It is not intended to restore Nutty to working order at Leighton Buzzard as its gauge cannot be reduced further, so it is not compatible with the 2ft gauge track.
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