DCC Type: DCC Ready
Designer: Sir Nigel Gresley
Entered Service: 1923
Detail: Sprung buffers, cab and tender detail
Purpose: Express Passenger
Wheel Configuration: 4-6-2
Special Features: Cab detail, Fixed cartazzi wheel assembly, Loco drive, NEM Couplings, Sprung Buffers, Tender Detail
The 4-6-2 configured Class A1 and Class A3 locomotives were both designed by Nigel Gresley, originally for mainline passenger service on the Great Northern Railway (GNR) which was absorbed into the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER) in 1923. Between 1922 and 1935 a total of 52 Class A1 locomotives were built, 32 at the LNER Doncaster Works and 20 at the North British Locomotive Co.
Competition between the railway companies of the time was very fierce as they vied to produce a powerful locomotive capable of pulling heavy trains long distances at an economical cost.
This led to refinements of the original Class A1 locomotives, while the 70′ 5″ wheelbase remained the same, the axle load was increased from 20 long tons to 22.05 long tons. Water capacity increased from 5,000 to 6,000 imperial gallons and the boiler pressure increased from I80psi to 220psi. Outside Walschaerts gear was replaced with inside Gresley conjugated. The right hand drive was also changed to left hand drive, which was less convenient for right-handed firemen but better for sighting signals. Both Classes were capable of a maximum speed of I08mph. Of the original 52 Class AI locomotives, 51 were rebuilt as Class A3. A further 27 new build Class A3 locomotives were also produced.
The first of these ‘Super Pacifics’, No. 274 3 ‘Felstead’ was outshopped from the Doncaster Works on the 22nd August 1928.
The rebuilding of the A1s continued with little further variation except for a ‘banjo dome’ on the new type boilers. The first of these domes was hidden beneath the casing of ‘Cock of the North’ in 1934 and was subsequently applied to all the streamlined Class A4 locomotives. The rebuilding of the Class lasted right through until 1949, with locomotive No. 60068 ‘Sir Visto’ being the final one.
Withdrawal of the Class began in 1959 and was completed by 1966. The only surviving member of the AI/A3 Class is No. 4472, ‘Flying Scotsman’ which is now on permanent display at the National Railway Museum at York.
The locomotive represented in this pack, LNER No. 2599 was outshopped from Doncaster Works on the 12th July 19 30, and named ‘Book Law’. When the locomotive passed to the newly formed British Railways in 1948 it was renumbered as 60088 and stationed at Shed 52B, Heaton. On the 14th October 1963, ‘Book Law’ was withdrawn from Shed 52A, Gateshead and cut up at the British Railways Darlington Works on the 15th November 1963.