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.

Monday 28 December 2020

Progress up to Christmas.

 Inside the cab the backhead has been painted black, with the roof receiving a coat of white.

Another view of the cab backhead.

On the left hand side of the loco the vacuum exhauster steam return pipe has been fitted. Also the hand rail and the copper pipe from the clack, which curves around the boiler and ends at the injector.

The staging then moves to allow work on the right hand side.

At the front end 5025 has received its identity with the fitting of the smoke box number plate.

A close up showing that the clack pipe and hand rail have been completed.

Another view of the right hand side.

At the right hand side of the smoke box the steam pipe cover has been repaired and is being fitted.

The tender has been fully coaled to allow it to be weighed, this in turn allows the springs to be set at the correct loading for each spring.


Thursday 12 November 2020

Up date, 12 November 2020.

 Work on 5025 has resumed after the enforced lay off during the summer.  The inside of the smoke box is almost complete with the spark arrestor designed, manufactured and fitted.

The base of the smokebox has been levelled with a concrete floor.  The remaining job is to fit the vacuum ejector exhaust steam pipe which is seen sitting on the floor.

The pipe fits between the base of the chimney and the hole on the side of the smokebox.

 At the other end the angle iron that finishes the cab to the firebox cladding joint has been formed and riveted permanently to the cab front.

 The vacuum ejector is fitted and now just needs the exhaust steam pipe run between it and the smokebox making up.

 The sanding pipes are all now fitted, this is the left hand side.

The right hand side sand pipe.

Inside the cab the steam manifold, pipework and fittings are progressing.

Another cab view

Lower cab view of the area that will be under the cab floor.

The tender has been coupled to the engine, here we see the coupling pin in the center with the two safety pins either side.

The fall plate between the cab floor and the tender floor has been fitted.

The cab floor has been made and fitted.

Another cab floor view.

The tender water level float and indicator has been fitted.

 New lengths of copper pipe, just need to bend them to shape and cut to length.

 Various methods of preventing the copper pipe collapsing when it was being formed into the various shapes have been tried.  This pipe was filled with lead, the heating up of the pipe is the process of removing the lead now that the pipe has been bent.

Some of the pipework in place.  Two new injectors have been cast, machined and fitted, this is the left hand one.

The right hand injector.

Another view of the left hand injector.

Murray starting to give the inside of the cab a coat of paint.

Tuesday 24 March 2020

Update 24.03.2020

After the boiler was returned to the frames and the engine returned to the shed.  The first task completed was to drill the holes and bolt the smokebox to the saddle.

This was followed by the riveting of the smokebox to the boiler.  Up to this point the smokebox had only been fixed to the boiler using a handfull of bolts, just incase any adjustment was needed.

Insulation was applied to the remaining boiler band, which was left clear as it was the point used to lift the boiler into the frames.

closely followed by the fitting of the steel cladding sheets.

 The next job to be undertaken was the fitting of the superheater header.  This is a tight fit into the smoke box and bolts onto the circle that can be seen above the tubes.

The header has now been fitted, as well as its support brackets.  These can be seen below the header, one on each side, fixed to the smokebox.

 The super heater elements were fitted next.  There are 21 of them, they slide into each of the flue tubes (the larger holes) and are clamped into the underside of the header.  The regulator rod has also been fitted, this is located behind the central plate that has 5025 written on it.

The chimney was lifted into place.

This was to allow a plumb line to be dropped down,  This is to make sure that the blast pipe is fitted in line with the chimney.

The blast pipe base and blast pipe itself has been fitted.

Some work has also been done on the firebox back plate, with some fittings being added.

Lastly a view of the rivet detail on the side of the tender tank.

Wednesday 19 February 2020

Boiler back in the frames. 19th February 2020

Following on from the previous post, the cladding was removed and insulation applied to the boiler.

The wash out plug recesses were fixed to the cladding.

The rear of the cladding sheets then had a coat of red oxide primer applied.

The cladding sheets were then replaced onto the boiler.

The outside of the sheets were then given a coat of red oxide primer.

When the primer was dry, the joint covering bands were fitted, painted with primer and then a coat of black paint.

The boiler and engine were then taken outside, the boiler was lifted by the crane and placed into the frames.

Boiler and frames reunited.

Another view

Rivet detail on the rear of the tender.