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4247 - Steam Locomotive

Type: Steam Locomotive
Operation: GWR 42xx Class 2-8-0T
Number: 4247
Built Date: 1916
Built in: Swindon
Condition: Serviceable
Livery: BR Unlined Black


No 4247 was one of a class of 2-8-0 tanks from the 42xx Class (and later ‘5205’ Class), built from 1910-40 by the Great Western Railway.  The principal role of the class was working the 1,000+ ton coal trains from the pits to the ports in South Wales, a job which required a high tractive effort, due to the train weights and steep gradients, and good steaming capabilities.  Whilst the majority of the class worked predominantly in South Wales a few locomotives, including No 4247, also spent time on similar work on china clay trains in Cornwall.

          No 4247 was built by the GWR at Swindon Works in 1916 at a cost of £2,918.   During its career with the GWR and, later, British Railways the locomotive was based in South Wales, but also worked out of St Blazey shed in the 1950s.  It was withdrawn in 1964, ending up in a scrapyard in Barry.

          No 4247 was rescued from there by the 4247 Preservation Society in 1985. After an extensive restoration, the engine returned to steam in 2001, and since then it has worked on several heritage railways.   However, following an agreement struck with the Bodmin & Wenford Railway Trust, No 4247 is now based permanently at Bodmin, where it has proved itself ideally suited to working our heaviest trains on the line’s steep gradients.