GWR 2-8-0T, No 4270 is set to guest at the North Norfolk Railway’s Bank Holiday Steam Gala on Saturday 27, Sunday 28 and Monday 29 August. The 103 year old Great Western heavy freight locomotive will be one of up to seven engines in steam for the three day event which will feature a varied schedule of passenger services including double-heading, non-stop expresses and local workings. The special intensive timetable will also include demonstration goods trips.


4270 Was built at the GWR’s Swindon Works in 1919 to handle the heavy goods trains in the coalfields of South Wales. The 82-ton 2-8-0 performed these duties until withdrawal in 1962 and then languished for over two decades at the famous Woodham Brothers’ scrapyard at Barry. After rescue in the mid-eighties, restoration was a protracted affair with 4270 finally returning to service in 2014. The locomotive is owned by Locomotive Services Limited and is based at the Gloucester Warwickshire Railway.


The visiting tank engine will be joined by the NNR’s five working tender locomotives including fellow 2-8-0, 7F No. 53809 which was built for the Somerset & Dorset Joint Railway in 1925; the line’s pair of 2-10-0s locomotives, BR Standard 9F No. 92203 “Black Prince” and War Department No. 90775 “The Royal Norfolk Regiment”; 1957-built BR Standard 4MT No. 76084 plus the line’s oldest working locomotive, centenarian GER Class Y14 No. 564. Additionally, the line is hoping to secure a second visiting locomotive for Bank Holiday event.


The line’s varied collection of rolling stock will also be showcased at the gala with the line’s train of unique 4- and 6- wheeled carriages dating from Victorian times running along with the unique “Quad-Art” set. The LNER teak bodied, articulated carriages dating from the 1920s have been out of service for the first half of this season receiving periodic maintenance. This has included revarnishing of all four carriages and specialist reprofiling of the wheels, which has seen a state-of-the-art mobile wheel lathe used on the historic vehicles.


The characterful 4-car suburban set will also be amongst the carriages in use while the line will also field two sets in 1950s and 60s livery which will include on-board catering from the art-deco Gresley bar car or a Mk I buffet.


Commercial Manager, Graham Hukins, commented “The event will serve up one of the intensive timetables full of variety that has come to characterise our galas.  There’s a chance to ride behind several different locomotives and experience steam train travel from Victorian times to the 1960s and our stations afford passengers with excellent photographic opportunities too. We are looking forward to welcoming 4270 and giving visitors the unusual opportunity to see a Great Western tank engine on East Anglian metals.” 


One, two and three day rover tickets are available for the special event which sees trains running from approximately 9.00am – 6.00pm on Friday and Saturday and until 5.00pm on Sunday.  One day tickets are £22.50 when booked in advance while two days unlimited travel is £40.00 and the full three days will cost just £55.00. Full details can be found at www.nnrailway.co.uk.


Following the event, the NNR’s daily programme of steam and heritage diesel services runs until 30 October – full details can be found at www.nnrailway.co.uk.