The new front tubeplate has had all its holes drilled and is now ready for the new smokebox to be constructed. The next operation will be to mount the new tubeplate on the cylinder block so that the smokebox wrapper plate which was delivered some months ago can be shaped and fitted correctly. This may require the engine to be turned again for access.
More pictures taken during 1178's repair, including the large-size originals of those shown here, can be found here.
There were previous news items about this locomotive's repair on 4 April. Much more information about 1178 can be found at the Southern Locomotives Society's 31178 Restoration page.