About the Trust

Work on the overhaul of 5025 began at the beginning of 2012. This was thanks to grants or promises of support from the Strathspey Railway Company, the Strathspey Railway Trust, the Heritage Lottery Fund the Strathspey Railway Association and the significant amount which had already been raised from our supporters though appeals.

Major progress has been made on the locomotive and tender frames, axleboxes, motion, dragboxes and valve gear at Aviemore and on the major rebuild of the boiler, reprofiling of the tyres of the locomotive and tender wheels and construction of a new tender tank at Riley Engineering of Bury. Work has also included the casting and machining of a pair of new cylinders

The WEC Watkinson Trust originally hoped to return 5025 to service in 2015, however owing to the amount of work needed, we now hope that the engine will be ready towards the end of the 2019 season. ( see edit below)

We are still on track for 2019 to be the year in which the oldest and best example of a L.M.S. Black Five steams again. Due to a very tight budget the original intention was to return 5025 to traffic by carrying out the minimum necessary work. However, she is an iconic locomotive and quite early on the sensible decision was taken to restore her to “as new” condition. This has resulted in considerable extra work and expense and has left the Watkinson Trust desperate for funds.

Edit, we were heavily delayed waiting for the boiler, this has put the completion date back to around summer 2020.

Further edit, owing to covid lockdown, this has been further delayed, completion date is now summer 2021.

The original budget of £354,050 has been spent wisely and with care. However, additional boiler work has cost a further £39,345, new cylinders and frame repairs £33,350, and other work such as a new cab, injectors and super heaters upwards of £22,500.

Although most of the work now being carried out is labour intensive, certain costly goods and services are essential to finishing the job and it is only with your help that we can make it happen.

We still need to complete the tender tank and the under frame, produce boiler cladding, purchase copper pipe and various fixings and fastenings and pay for transport, crane hire and specialist machining.

The Watkinson Trust would like to thank you for any generous donation you are able to make towards a successful conclusion.

Please use the “Donate” facility below to support this worthwhile project through Paypal.

Tuesday 9 February 2016

February 2016 update

 Although there is not much happening to the black 5, there is still a great deal happening.  Unfortunately at this time of year the work has to be concentrated on our servicable engines.

White metalling bearings is in full swing, shown below are bearings from Ivatt class 2 46512 and Caledonian 828.  These have been tinned ready to recieve the moulten metal.

 Below is the next stage of the operation.  The bearing is inside the mould which is being heated prior to the pouring of the metal.

The bearing has now been removed from the mould and is awaiting machining.

The bearing below is in the machine and is at an early stage in the machining process.

The white metalling process has its other uses as well, shown below are two items that have been cast for Queen Anne.  Queen Anne is a Ruston 48DS which used to run at a local distillery.

This is a piston head being machined for Ivatt class 2 46512

The piston head is hollow, the holes are given a thread and then filled by the core plugs shown below.

Nathan and Benny fitting a core plug.

The core plug is screwed into the piston head using a wrench.  The plug is tightened until the top breaks off, at this point the plug is deemed to be tight enough and will not come loose again.

The black five has not been completely neglected, these are refurbished parts ready for fitting.

This is part of the running plate for 5025, the part where the reverser lever runs underneath.

Back to 46512, this is the blank from which new piston rings have been made.

The piston rings, new on the right with the old ones on the left.