British Railway History Item
LNER Class Thompson London & North Eastern Railway Class B17/6 4-6-0
Built 1943-48. Designed by Edward Thompson.
Total Number Built 73 - Total to BR 73.
B17/6 Rebuilt 1943-1948 by Thompson from B17/1 and B17/4 with 100A boiler. Total 3.
Boiler pressure of 61664 remained at 180 lb until 1948.
Number Series (see locomotive numbers below).
61600-61609 1928 North British Locomotive Co., Glasgow
61610-61661 1930-1936 London & North Eastern Railway, Darlington Works
61662-61672 1937 Robert Stephenson & Hawthorn Ltd.
These engines were built to replace the Class B12 and Directors on the Great Eastern and Great Central main lines respectively:-
In 1927 Gresley was asked to produce a new class of 4-6-0 passenger engine to supplement the Class B12 on passenger duties. The first ten were built by the North British Locomotive Co., with subsequent orders being undertaken by Darlington Works (with some utilisation of Armstrong Whitworth boilers) and Robert Stephensons. By 1937, 73 engines had been introduced in successive batches, in addition to changes in the braking system and types of tender fitted.
The third engine to be delivered on 7th December 1928 was numbered 2800 and given the name Sandringham and headed the class which took its name from this loco. The first forty-eight engines were named after English country houses and the following 25 after Football Clubs, although some name changes were made in later years.
In September 1937 Nos. 2859 and 2870 were streamlined similar to the Gresley Class A4 pacifics and became Class B17/5 for working the East Angian service between Norwich and London Liverpool Street, being renamed East Anglian and respectively. In 1951 the streamlining was removed and the locos were reclassified as Class B17/6, the subdivision of the class as applied to those locomotives carrying the B1 type boiler..
After Edward Thompson succeeded Gresley, standardisation plans were introduced to reduce the large number of classes then in existance. The Class B17 were amongst several classes selected for rebuilding, but in the event only nine B17/1s and one B17/4 were rebuilt between 1945 and 1949 as Class B2 with two cylinders and Class B1 type boilers. The first loco the be rebuilt at Darlington was No. 2871 Manchester City which emerged in August 1945 with its original 4200 gallon tender, In April 1946 it was renamed Royal Sovereign for working the Royal trains to and from Wolferton station for Sandringham.
The class was found with varying types of tenders of GER, NER and LNER origin.
Many of the class roamed away from their Great Eastern roots and although being allocated to sheds as diverse as Lincoln, Colwick, Gorton and Leicester, all the remaining engines had returned back to the old Great Eastern Section by 1951, where the saw out their final years.
Wholesale withdrawal took place in 1958-59, and all of the Class had gone by 1960.
The first loco withdrawn was 61622 Alnwick Castle on 27 September 1958 from Yarmouth South Town shed.
The last loco withdrawn was 61664 Liverpool on 1 June 1960 from March shed.
None are preserved.
Motive Power Details
Weight: Loco 77 tons 5 cwt
Tend 52 tons 0 cwt
Boil Press: 225lb/sq in Su
Valve Gear: Walschaerts with derived motion (piston valves)
Cylinders: Three 17?" x 26"
TE: 28,555 lb
Class Total: 3
Allocation and Withdrawal Details
Last Updated : Monday 30th December 2002 14:03