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South Eastern Railway O1-class No.65

O1-Class No.65 at the SECR Centenary Gala - Jon Horrocks - 1999

No.65 at the head of a pre-grouping train of SECR and LBSCR coaches at the SECR Centenary Gala
in August 1999 just two days after its re-launch into public service (© Jon Horrocks)

O1 and C on freight train - Peter Edwards - 15 March 2000 Built in 1896 at Ashford as a Stirling "O" class locomotive, it received a rebuild to class "O1" in 1908, and ran on until finally withdrawn in 1961. In 1963 it was obtained by the late Mr Lewis-Evans and kept at Ashford Steam Centre until its closure. Thereafter its location was something of a mystery until it was brought to the Bluebell Railway for overhaul, and was returned to steam for the centenary of the amalgamation of the SER and the LCDR in August 1999.

0-6-0s were the commonest locomotives in this country, and the Bluebell now hosts a sequence of three unique survivors of this type, demonstrating their development through the first half of the 20th century, from the O1 through the SECR C-class to Maunsell's Q-class built by the Southern Railway.

Following its return to steam in 1999, it operated for a decade. Subsequently, the Bluebell's spare O1/H boiler has been overhauled at The Flour Mill workshop, and has now been fitted in place of its previous boiler during the recent overhaul, which took place at Sheffield Park. Returning to steam in July 2017, it is on loan to us for the duration of its current boiler certificate.

The photograph above right shows it double-heading with SECR C-class locomotive No.592 on 15 March 2000. That below shows it as Southern A65 at Ashford shed on 11 February 1934 (© Kenneth Nichols).

A65 at Ashford shed - 11 February 1934 - Kenneth Nichols

Go to The O1 and Wainwright Interest Group's Web page for this Locomotive or their 65 Picture Gallery.
Further photos of the restored loco are available on Jon Horrocks Flickr site and the Villa Team's Loco Photo Archive page for No.65.

O-Class in original form Class: O1
Wheels: 0-6-0
Designer: Patrick Stirling
Built: O-class, September 1896 at Ashford Works, SER
Rebuilt: O1-class, September 1908
Numbers carried: 65, A65, 1065, 31065
Withdrawn from BR service: 24 June 1961
Preserved: 1963
Arrived on Bluebell Railway: 1997
Previously period of operation: 5 August 1999 to 7 July 2009
Returned to service: 15 July 2017
Current status: Available for service

Weight: 66 Tons 10 cwt
Water capacity: 2,000 Gallons
Coal capacity: 2 Tons 15 cwt
Boiler Pressure: 150 lb/sq.in
Driving Wheels: 5ft 2in diameter
Cylinders: (2, inside) 18" x 26"
Tractive Effort: 17,324 lbs
Valve gear: Stephenson
BR power classification: 1F

Owner: Private

Above right: The original form of the O-class, with Stirling's domeless boiler and rounded cab.

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