7754 RETURNS TO STEAM
Friday 22nd September 2023 – the 6 year overhaul of Llangollen Railway Trust-owned GWR Pannier No 7754 is now complete.
Following completion of painting, the 1930-built 0-6-0 was steamed on Saturday 23rd September for testing and running-in.
This stunning achievement shows just what Llangollen Railway volunteers and staff can do, with the majority of the overhaul being carried out by volunteer labour, with the chassis and boiler overhaul supported by current and former paid staff. The project has seen many contributors, with work originally getting underway on the boiler and chassis nearly 20 years ago through Dave Owen and Llangollen Railway Engineering Ltd. “Team Pannier” have then spearheaded the task of returning the locomotive to steam over the last 6 years – Andy Maxwell, Mark Smales, Chris Hill, Matthew Davies, Iain Ross and fund raising for the boiler overhaul by Paul Bailey. Funds for the overhaul have been financed by donations from Llangollen Railway volunteers and Trust members, with some additional support from the Llangollen Railway Trust.
7754 is finished in early nationalisation livery – GWR green with “British Railways” lettering on the tank-sides, but in GWR font. Although not carried by 7754, this was a livery combination carried by classmates in the early days of BR and is something a bit different.
7754 was built by the North British Locomotive Company in Glasgow with their works number of 24042 to the Great Western “57xx” design. She cost just £2,800 to build – these days the new driver’s vacuum brake valve that has to be made cost nearly as much!
Here’s to many happy years more of steaming for 7754, which couldn’t be any more at home in our railway – both pre-Beeching and in preservation.
Well done Team Pannier!