Published: 27-11-2011 photo #12612 0 comments 0 votes
Double Fairlie locomotive photographed on 24 April 2007 at the National Rail Museum, York. Originally built in 1885 at Boston Lodge Works for the 23.5 inch gauge Ffestiniog Railway in Wales, to handle slate traffic, replacing horse-drawn traffic.
This locomotive was rebuilt in 1905 with among other things a new steel boiler from the Vulcan Foundry and two new smokeboxes. The original chimneys were re-used but reduced in height by one and a quarter inches. Four new cylinders were fitted in 1907. The boiler was condemned in 1924, but it wasn't until 1929 that it was sent to Avonside Engine Co. for repairs, including a new firebox. The locomotive returned to service in 1932, bearing the name Taliesin, which it kept until 1961 as Earl of Merioneth. In 1971, the locomotive was withdrawn as its boiler had reached the end of its life and was beyond economic repair. The original name, Livingston Thompson (a long-serving Chairman of the Company during the 19th century), was finally restored in 1988,
It currently has the wheels of earlier Double Fairlie James Spooner and the original bogies for Merddin Emrys. In 1988 restoration of the derelict body, to a condition fit for display in a museum, was completed by Winson Engineering of Penrhyndeudraeth, using a pair of bogies no longer fit for revenue service. In October of that year the locomotive, hauled by its older brother Merddin Emrys enjoyed a last trip up the line from Porthmadog to Tan y Bwlch where a ceremony to hand it over, on long term loan, to the National Railway Museum, was performed.