Britain’s newest steam loco in Somerset & Dorset debut

By Mike Lucas and Robin Jones

FIFTY years after the Somerset & Dorset Joint Railway closed, the newest steam locomotive to be built in Britain has run over part of its trackbed.

John Uphill’s 0-4-2T No. 8 Faith, awaits departure from platform 2 at Common Lane with the 10.30am ‘Pines Express’ on August 29. MIKE LUCAS
John Uphill’s 0-4-2T No. 8 Faith, awaits departure from platform 2 at Common Lane with the 10.30am ‘Pines Express’ on August 29. MIKE LUCAS

It took engineer John Uphill 17 years to build 0-4-2T Faith, mainly at the private Gartell Light Railway, near Templecombe, where it was originally planned to run it. The 2ft-gauge line occupies part of the S&D formation.

Before the locomotive was completed, John retired and relocated to Devon, taking it with him to the Lynton & Barnstaple Railway, where its construction was completed.

On August Bank Holiday Monday, Faith returned to the Gartell Light Railway, where it made its first public appearance, after which arrangements were made for it to be returned to Devon.

Read more in Issue 220 of Heritage Railway

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