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 for the start of the 2019 season.

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.

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.














Monday, 3 December 2018

A Tender behind, 03rd December 2018

With the engine chassis almost complete, work has turned to the tender chassis.  Here the front face plate has been riveted in place with the countersunk rivet heads ground flush.  The steps have been temporarily fitted to drill holes in the support plates, these will be removed to enable the wheels to be fitted shortly.


The rear buffer beam riveted in place.


Rivet head close up.


The tender wheels with the journals polished up.


The bearings have been white metalled and machined.


The journals have had engineers blue applied to check the contact face of the new bearing.  LM denotes left hand / middle axle.


The bearing is then scraped to leave the centre (blue area) in contact with the wheel journal, whilst the lead in edges are scraped back a few thousands of an inch to provide an oil lead in. 
The lubrication of this type of bearing is by an oil pad taking oil from a reservoir in the bottom of the axle box.  This pad is in contact with the under side of the journal which as it rotates deposits a film of oil on the journal.  The bearing is on the top of the journal so as the journal rotates the oil is forced into the lead in, causing the blue area of the bearing to ride on a cushion of oil.


The axle boxes have had the horn guide faces re- white metalled and machined.


The tender spring hanger pins, nuts, and suspension rubber holders have all been refurbished.  seen here having been painted in dark grey undercoat.


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