Stroudley D1 class 0-4-2


Nº290, "Denbies", built June 1879, in full LB&SCR livery, location unknown.

photograph: Dave Searle collection

What, one might have wondered back in the 1870s, would Stroudley come up with next after his hugely successful Terriers? The answer was simple, the equally famous D Class 0-4-2 tanks! A much "stronger" class that was, like the Terriers, destined to have a long and successful career. Pure Stroudley through and through, the locomotives were ideal for both suburban and country traffic and were quite at home on a fast mainline service - provided there was time for a water stop or two! Some of the class were fitted with Stroudley's "speed recorder" which was, quite simply, a fan driven by a driving wheel that forced a jet of air into a tubular water container forcing the water to rise as the speed built up. Simple but effective, it was more of an "indicator" than a "recorder".

Built over thirteen years, the first, "Sydenham", appropriately bearing the number '1', appeared in November 1873 whilst the last, the 125th, was not built until December 1886. Initially built at Brighton, Some 35 examples were built by Nielson & Co of Glasgow, after which the remainder were once again Brighton-built.

With such a large class it is not surprising that there were a number of variations. Initially built with 150 lb sq in boilers, from 1892 RJ Billinton fitted 160 lb boilers whilst one, ex-"Carlshalton" of June 1873 (who carried no less than five numbers in LBSCR days) was rebuilt in 1910 as class D1x with a larger, 170 lb, boiler that made for a decidedly tubby looking locomotive! When Marsh took over at Brighton he replaced the 150 lb boilers with 170 lb ones. Although the increased boiler pressures led to a useful increase in performance, the D1x doesn't seem to have been much of a success and no more D1s were rebuilt. Considered unsteady at anything over 45 mph, the D1x worked her last years on the 'Cuckoo Line' between Eastbourne and Mayfield.

Denbies Another view of Nº290 Denbies, this time with A1 class Knowle. Note that the trailing wheels of the D1 class were not much smaller than the driving wheels.

photograph: Dave Searle collection

Nº278 Groombridge believed to have been photographed at West Croydon in 1904.

photograph: Mike Morant collection

Nº627 was the first of the class to be converted for working motor trains, oil-fired and with two Marsh control-trailer coaches she handled the traffic on the Epsom Downs branch most capably on all but big race meeting days. After being converted she carried the initials 'L & B' in large, some called them vulgar, letters on her tank sides.

The original series of Brighton-built locomotives had wooden brake blocks, but from the last of this series (Nº268 "Baynards") onwards, iron blocks were fitted. One odd thing to note about the Nielson engines was that the first was the last! Brighton works provided Nielsons with half a set of motion which they used in the first locomotive, Nº233 "Handcross", which was then used as a 'pattern engine', eventually leaving the works in March 1883, some four months after the penultimate locomotive.

B248 Starting in 1906 Marsh removed the names from most of the engines and painted LBSC in plain letters on the side tanks. Here is Nº248, formerly Ashurst, of 1881, in this condition at Addison Road, most probably sometime between June 1910 and June 1917, with Kensington South Main box in the background. Note the GWR 4-4-0 also in the background!

photograph: Mike Morant collection

NºB290 (formerly Denbies) once more, this time photographed at London Bridge station during early Southern Railway days.

photograph: Mike Morant collection

B359 At and unknown location, and on an unknown date, D1 NºB359 (formerly Egmont) photographed on shed during early Southern Railway days.

photograph: Mike Morant collection

NºB614, formerly named Chelsea, photographed at Oxted during early Southern Railway days.

photograph: Dr Ian C. Allen/Mike Morant collection


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This page was last updated 29 August 2010

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