After being fully restored to working order this was the first steam running tests in August 2005 for locomotive LNER 246 Morayshire at the Bo'ness and Kinneil Railway.
The engine was based at Falkirk and used on the main line until withdrawn from service in 1983. The engine was partially dismantled at Falkirk and due to relocation of the SRPS to Bo’ness and other priorities overhaul work only restarted in earnest in early 2000. This overhaul was completed in late July 2003 in time to participated in the open day at Doncaster works. The locomotive became operational on the line at Bo’ness in August 2005. In 2011 the engine was removed from traffic to fit new tyres to the driving wheels and re-metaling of the axle boxes. The tender wheel sets also have had their tyres re-profiled and springs re-furbished. The locomotive was turned out in BR lined black for the remainder of its boiler ticket.
A heavy overhaul is being carried out by the Llangollen Railway Engineering Co. The locomotive is now almost complete awaiting the boiler. Repairs to the tender are now complete. The boiler has had extensive repairs to the fire box outer wrapper, back head and throat plate. New transverse and longitudinal stays together with a full set of crown stays have been fitted. The boiler is now fully tubed and the new smoke box and door is being manufactured. The locomotive was scheduled to be back at Bo’ness sometime in 2019 when it will be repainted in to LNER apple green prior to entering service.
History of ‘Morayshire’
The engine was completed at Darlington in February 1928 as No.246 and during the time from 1928 to Nationalisation was shedded at Dundee, Perth, Haymarket and St Margarets. By the time she reached Haymarket in 1944 Morayshire had undergone five general overhauls and one heavy overhaul. These included new frames and cylinders in 1935 and the boiler changed 4 times. When originally built the engine was fitted with westinghouse air braking. After nationalisation the engine had five general overhauls with the boiler being changed four times. In the LNER renumbering of 1946 ‘Morayshire’ was allocated 2712 and under BR was amended to 62712. In 1958 the engine was moved to Thornton Junction and after 2 years was transferred to Hawick. July 1961 saw Morayshire, by then the last remaining member of her class, being withdrawn but instead of being cut up for scrap was moved to Slateford Landry in Edinburgh for use as a stationary boiler. This lasted until January 1962 at which time she was put into store at Dalry Road Edinburgh.
Acquisition & Restoration
In 1962 Ian Fraser who had worked on the class of engine at Darlington had become interested in the fate of Morayshire and after negotiations with BR it was transferred to Dawsholm Shed in Glasgow pending further developments. In 1964 the engine was hauled by ‘Gordon Highlander’ to Inverurie Works for restoration. ICI at Ardeer was able to store the locomotive until 1966 when it then moved to the Royal Elizabeth Dockyard at Dalmeny where she was officially handed over to the Royal Scottish Museum in Edinburgh. In 1974 the Royal Scottish Museum agreed to loan it to the SRPS with the aim of returning it to steam. The engine had work carried out on the boiler and running gear and participated in the 150th Anniversary of the Stockton and Darlington Railway at Shildon in August 1975. The engine was based at Falkirk and used on the main line until withdrawn from service in 1983.