British Railway History Item
LNER Class Thompson London & North Eastern Railway L1 2-6-4 Tank
Built 1945-50. Designed by Edward Thompson.
Total Number Built 100 - Total to BR 100.
Introduced May 1945. Thompson London & North Eastern Railway design.
(a) 67747/53/61/95/98 Modified from 1954 with reduced boiler pressure.
(b) 67770-72/76/79 Modified from 1954 with reduced cylinder diameter.
From Nos. 67730 onwards, the engines had the running plate cut away in front of the piston valves.
Number Series 67701-67800.
Previous Numbers: Engines No. 67701-67716 were formerly numbered 69000-15 until 1948.
London & North Eastern Railway's and British Railway's Doncaster Works.
British Railway's Darlington Works.
North British Locomotive Co.
Robert Stephenson & Hawthorns.
No Lot Nos. yet available.
In May 1945 Thompson produced the first of his 2 cylinder L1 2-6-4 tank engines with a prototype numbered 9000. The prototype engine was subject to extensive tests prior to any further examples being built and it was not until Nationalisation in 1948 that a further 59 were constructed, followed by another 15 1949. A final batch of 25 was constructed in in 1950. They used the same cylinders and motion as Thompson's Class B1 4-6-0.
The 1947 LNER built locos were numberd 9003-9003, followed at the beginning of 1948 by British railways Nos. E9004-E9012 and 69013-69015. To avoid confusion with other classes, Nos. 69050, etc.,it was then decided to renumber the class into the 67700 series, but oddly enough they became Nos. 67701-67716 instead of 67700-67715. The remainder were now built as 67717-67800.
They were built for use as a mixed traffic locomotive for short distance passenger and freight services, but with larger fuel capacities to replace tender locomotives on journeys that were too long for any existing tank engines. Initially it was intended that the class would replace all existing tank engines, including the Class V1, Class V3, Class N2 and Class N7, used on the LNER except those used for shunting.
Unfortunately they were not particularly successful. They steamed badly and required careful handling, otherwise they were unreliable. They were expensive to maintain, the axle bearings were inadequate for the loading and they wore out rapidly as well as the coupling rods and motion.
The duties performed were mainly outer suburban passenger trains. They were based mainly in the London area, East Anglia, Nottingham, Manchester and Darlington areas. Kings Cross used them also for the heavy empty sleeper car trains from Kings Cross to Wood Green carriage sidings which would normally require double heading by Class N2s, as well as outer suburban services to Hitchin and Baldock.
Those based at Stratford ran to Bishops Stortford, Hertford East and beyond to Cambridge on lacal passenger services as well as empty stock workings. Some replaced the Class A5 4-6-2 tanks on the Marylebone suburban services. Other routes that regularly saw them were Nottingham-Grantham, Ipswich-Felixstowe, G.C. lines around Manchester, Woodford Halse-Banbury and lines radiating from Darlington and Tees-side especially to Whitby and Scarborough. Most of the duties were taken over by Diesel multiple units in the late fifties and gravitated to more mundane tasks.
Due to the loud clanking noise the locos made, those based on the ex-Great Northern Section of the Eastern Region were nicknamed 'Cement Mixers' by the men who had to work them!
Electrification of the lines from Liverpool Street to Bishops Stortford, Chingford, Enfield and Hertford East in November 1960 resulted in the first fourteen of the class, based at Stratford shed, being withdrawn.
As the engines were heavy on maintenance, large scale withdrawals took place between 1960 and December 1962, when the last loco was withdrawn.
The first loco withdrawn was 67702 in November 1960 from Stratford shed.
The last loco withdrawn was 67800 in December 1962 from ??? shed.
None are preserved.
Motive Power Details
Weight: Loco 89 tons 9 cwt
Driving Wheel: 5' 2"
Boil Press: 225lb/sq in Su ; 200lb/sq in Su (a)
Cylinders: Two 20" x 26" (outside) ; Two 18?" x 26" (outside)(b)
Valve Gear: Walschaerts (piston valves)
TE: 32,080 lb ; 28,515 lb (a) ; 28,180 lb (b)
Class Total: 100
Allocation and Withdrawal Details
Last Updated : Monday 21st April 2003 18:54