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G. J. Churchward started to develop his new designs in 1901, before he took over from William Dean in 1902. His first production express locos were a series of Atlantics and 4-6-0s (2971 - 2990) They all had 6’ 8 1/2” driving wheels, 3’3” bogie wheels, inside steam pipes and 3500 gallon tenders. These appeared in 1905 and were classed as Scotts as they bore the names from Walter Scott’s Waverley novels. 1906 saw the completion of ten further 4-6-0s (2901 - 2910) called ‘The Ladies’. They were fitted with both long or short cone boilers.
‘Lady of the lake’
They all had the square footplate drop forward of the cylinders and no drop at the cab end. 1907 saw the first of the true Saints, Nos 2911 - 2930. These all had the long cone No 1 boiler with curved footplate drop at front and rear, and carried the names of Saints. The final version appeared in 1911 as the Courts (2931 - 2955).These were visually the same as the Saints but incorporated a number of technical advances. In December 1912 there was a revision of the Company’s numbering scheme and all the above groups were classed as Saints. None of the Saint class were preserved but Didcot have a long term project to reverse the development process and turn Maindy Hall back into a square framed Saint with detachable rear frames so that it can be turned into a Scott Atlantic.
Collett followed Churchward in 1922 and in 1924 rebuilt Saint Martin with 6’ driving wheels, 3’ bogie wheels and a cab with side windows. The design was a great success. Renumbered 4900 it became the first of the Mixed traffic ‘Hall’ class. Production started in 1928 with a batch of 80 completed by 1930. These all had outside steam pipes and up to 4942 were fitted with the standard 3500 gallon tender. From then on Colletts new ‘intermediate’ 3500 gallon or later, the 4000 gallon tender were used. Other than tender variations and brief foray into oil firing, the design remained remarkably stable for the whole of the class of 258 locos. The last one was finished in 1943. There are eleven Halls in preservation, not including Hawksworths Modified Halls.
Even before the Hall was developed, the operating department had suggested a version of the 43XX Mogul, fitted with the Saint No 1 boiler. By 1936 the early Moguls were beginning to be withdrawn. Collett retained ten used sets of 5’ 3” driving wheels, cylinders, motion and tenders from these locos and together with the No 1 boiler, built the first of the new Grange class.
These were an immediate success, so 100 moguls were dismantled, their parts recycled and the batch increased to 80 (6801 - 6879). None of this class have been preserved but there is a replica under construction using parts from an ex-Barry Hall.
The last loco in our quintet was Collett’s Manor. There was a need for a loco with the power and route availability of a Mogul but which created less damage to the track than the 2-6-0 s.
Collett’s answer was to take the Grange design, shorten it slightly behind the rear wheels, and again, using wheels and motion from Moguls, fit a smaller, lighter boiler of a new design. Whereas all the proceeding classes were restricted to Red Routes, the Manor would be classified as Blue route but still have a ‘D’ power rating. A batch of 20 were built in 1928 but their steaming ability was poor. The problem was eventually solved by Sam Ell at the Swindon works. He revised the smoxebox arrangement, including a new chimney, and transformed it into a very successful design.
In 1950 a further 10 were built by BR to the same design but, as all the mogul spares supply had been exhausted, everything was new. Nine of the class have survived into preservation.
Our prototype of the Hall