Hunslet 0-6-0ST Errol Lonsdale

Built in 1953, works number 3796, by the Hunslet Engine Co in Leeds for the War Department, this locomotive was given the number 196.

One of the famous Austerity locomotives built from 1943 onwards by various manufacturers for the war effort, no. 196 spent much of his working life on the Longmoor Military Railway in Hampshire wearing a smart blue livery, where he became one of the best known locomotives on the line in the years running up to the LMR's closure. While on the LMR, no. 196 gained stardom in the film The Great St Trinian's Train Robbery, appearing with George Cole and a number of St Trinian's pupils on the footplate!

He was purchased for preservation on the Mid Hants Railway where he was named Errol Lonsdale in March 1978 by Major General Errol Lonsdale, Colonel Commandant of the Royal Corps of Transport from 1969 - 1974. Arriving on the South Devon Railway early in the days of operation by the South Devon Railway Trust when steam locomotives were somewhat at a pinch, Errol Lonsdale was soon put into service hauling even the heaviest trains. He was soon repainted from LMR blue livery and given BR black livery - a number of Austerities were taken into LNER and later BR stock - as BR no 68011.

Errol Lonsdale was sold by the SDR in 2009 and has moved to a preservation site in the Netherlands. 

 

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