By Jonathan Webb
AFTER years of open air storage, and having not been started since 2009, former National Railway Museum Class 50 No. 50033 Glorious erupted into life at the Severn Valley Railway’s Kidderminster diesel depot on September 15.
The ‘Hoover’ has had a chequered life since withdrawal in March 1994. It was first being claimed by the NRM after being given a repaint by Laira depot staff, before the museum decided in 2003 that it had no place for it in the National Collection after all.
Its next custodian was Vintage Trains at Tyseley, where it spent the majority of time stored outside, although the engine was manually barred over on a regular basis to ensure it did not seize. This basic act alone saved much work and money being needed to get it going again.
With no requirement for it – VT has its own working Class 47 – in February this year an agreement was made where No. 50033 would be loaned to the Fifty Fund for an initial three-year period and VT would provide some of the money to restore it to working order.
Although grateful for any funding, it was clear that the money provided by Vintage Trains would be nowhere near enough to complete the task, so a huge fundraising campaign commenced to ensure that the 50 would be able to appear at the SVR’s Golden Jubilee 50 event on October 4-6.
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