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  • Manning Wardle 0-6-0ST No.5 ‘Littleton’

    • Pre TOPS number: 5
    • Construction year: 1922
    • Builder/Number: Manning Wardle (2018)
    • Stored out of service

    This unique locomotive spent its working life with the National Coal Board (NCB) at the Littleton Colliery.

    Littleton No. 5 was built in 1922 by Manning Wardle for the Littleton Colliery in Cannock in the South Staffordshire Coalfield. It was the largest locomotive built by Manning Wardle and the first designed purely for Industrial use to employ 18ins diameter cylinders. The locomotives were required to work the colliery yard and four miles of steeply graded connecting line from the colliery to the exchange sidings at Penkridge. This unique locomotive spent its working life at Littleton Colliery until taken out of service after 50 years’ service in 1972.when it was purchased for preservation. It is the sole remaining example of this class and totally unique.

    The preservation life of the locomotive started at the Foxfield Railway in October 1972 but only spent a year there before moving to the Great Central Railway. For several years up to the end of 1977, it was the unlikely mainstay of the Main Line Steam Trust’s passenger services. It spent several years operating on the Great Central Railway before moving to the Avon Valley Railway in 1980, where it underwent a major overhaul, before returning to operational service. It had the honour of hauling the inaugural service to the newly extended line to Oldland Station in 1991.

    Now volunteers are beginning the task of building up a fighting fund to cover the costs of having the locomotive stripped down, for an in-depth evaluation to be carried out on the locomotive to ascertain the work required for her eventual return to steam. We are currently engaged in The Big Give Christmas Challenge to get the funding necessary to have the locomotive restored off site, as our own staff and volunteers are already fully engaged with the restoration of the Avonside the RSH and The Sentinel.
    Our aim is to return our very powerful industrial tank engine back to full working order so that she can retake her place as a valued member of our running fleet, particularly to handle trains through to Bath, when the line is extended.

    Any Donations towards The Big Give Christmas Challenge 2019 For The Littleton 5 Project Will Be Gratefully Received And DOUBLED! This runs from Midday on Tuesday 3rd December To Tuesday 10th December. If you would like to make a donation, please visit Donate to the Big Give Campaign for Littleton No 5.


    Reproduced by kind permission of the RCTS Image Archive

    Reproduced by kind permission of the RCTS Image Archive

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