This contractor's locomotive was used (hence its name) in the construction of the Lewes and East Grinstead Railway by the contractor Joseph Firbank, and so is of great historic interest to the Bluebell. It is seen above being propelled at Horsted Keynes by "Baxter" during the 1982 Lewes & East Grinstead Railway centenary celebrations.
The photo on the right (by Richard Salmon) shows the loco as re-located for display at Horsted Keynes in 2003.
Note that the spelling of the Locomotive's name differs from the modern spelling used for Sharpthorne village.
Built: 26 Feb 1877, Maning Wardle & Co, Leeds. Works No.641
Purpose: General contractor work
Names and Numbers carried: 'Sharpthorn', No.4, 'Solomon'
Withdrawn from service (Samuel Williams & Co., Dagenham): 1958
Preserved: 1958, Dagenham,
then on loan to Bressingham for 12 years
Arrived on Bluebell Railway: 3 April 1982
Length: 19ft over buffer planks
Weight: 19 Tons
Water capacity: 450 Gallons
Boiler Pressure: 120 lb/sq.in
Driving Wheels: 3 ft 1.5 in diameter
Cylinders: (2, inside) 12" x 17"
Tractive Effort: 6,660 lbs
Owner: Bluebell Railway
Current status: Static display
Above right: 'Sharpthorn' on display between the car park and the Bessemer Arms, 1 April 2001. (Lewis Nodes)