BRC Website Home
Quainton Virtual Stockbook
Quainton News archive - Quainton News No. 36 - Autumn 1978
The Wotton Tramway: Rise and Fall Part 13 - The Metropolitan Railway 2-4-0T's
The 2-4-0T's used on the Brill branch from 1903 until the advent of the Metropolitan 4-4-0T's did not completely displace the two Manning, Wardle saddle tanks, Brill No. 1 and Wotton No. 2 and for the first decade of this Century they are believed to have shared the duties. Their 10 tons leading axle weight and the thrusting action of this radial axle must have been more testing for the track, especially in sidings with sharp curves compared with the total weight of 19 tons on the three coupled axles of the 0-6-0ST's.
The inside framed D Class 2-4-0T's, Nos. 71 to 76 were all built at Sharp Stewart & Co's Atlas Works, Glasgow in 1895 under the superintendency of T F Clark. They carried the Maker's Nos. 4055 / 6 / 75 - 8 and only differed in that the first two had radial axle boxes with check springs to control the lateral motion on the leading axle while the other four had the side play controlled by the use of inclined surfaces on the principle of the axle boxes designed by Cortazzi. 73 to 76 also had condensing equipment for working over the tunnel sections of the Metropolitan Railway. When new they had the standard crimson lake livery with the side tanks lined out in three panels and the inscription Metropolitan Railway within a double oval in the centre panel. Brass numbers were carried on the front of the chimney in a similar manner to the 4-4-0T's. This neat design of 2-4-0T was first sold by Sharp Stewarts to the Barry Railway in 1889 when Nos. 21/2, (Maker's Nos. 3528/9) and 1890 when Nos. 37 and 52, (Maker's Nos. 361 0/26), became the C Class on that railway. Cylinders were 17in. x 24in., the leading wheels 3ft. 6in. dia., the coupled wheels 5ft. 3in. dia., the wheelbase 15ft. 3in. including 7ft. 9in. coupled, and the side tanks held 800 gallons. A further engine with similar dimensions was supplied to the Neath and Brecon Railway, their No. 6, in 1893, Maker's No. 3884, and this became G W 1400 at the grouping.
Oddly enough five of the six D Class were disposed of to South Wales. The purchaser was a machinery merchant, Charles Williams of Morriston, Swansea and it is known that in 1919 No. 75 was resold to a firm called Baldwins Ltd. where it became No. 6 and was scrapped in 1930. Also No. 74 was bought about 1923 by the United National Collieries Ltd. and used at Risca Colliery, Mon., and another worked at Ocean Colliery, Treorchy. No. 72 is believed to have been acquired by the Ministry of Munitions in the 1914 war but its fate after the Armistice is not known.
The only alterations known to have been carried out to the D Class in Metropolitan days were the increase in the coal capacity achieved by building a raised flared section higher than the side tank top and the fitting of what appears to be a toolbox on the tank top. If any member has any further information on this interesting class the Editor will be pleased to hear from him.
Text © Quainton Railway Society / Photographs © Quainton Railway Society or referenced photographer
Page Updated: 17 November 2017