By Jonathan Webb and Robin Jones
The Great Western Society is gearing up for its 60th anniversary in 2021 and has announced that Collett 0-4-2T No. 1466 is to be overhauled in time for the big event.
The locomotive was the first to be acquired by the GWS, along with auto coach No. 231, so it is fitting
that it should be returned to steam for the anniversary.
No. 1466 is also a rare example of a locomotive which broke BR’s post-August 11, 1968 main line steam ban.
Before the ban was imposed, the GWS had already obtained permission for it and auto trailer No. 231 to operate a service on the Cholsey to Wallingford branch on September 21, 1968, and BR kept its word. Several thousand passengers rode from Cholsey station to the ABM sidings at Wallingford.
No. 1466 is due to leave Didcot by road on November 11. Timeline Events is organising a last chance to photograph the locomotive in BR black before departure on November 17.
The overhaul will be carried out at the Dean Forest Railway by Western Steam Engineering Ltd and will include repair or replacement of the cylinder block, axleboxes, brake gear, valve gear, motion and plate work – including new bunker, repair of water tanks and manufacture of ashpan.
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