Month: April 2019

Drivers side of loco showing the reach rod fitted as well as the covers on the side of the smoke box that cover the oil feed fittings to the steam pipe in the smokebox and the regulator valve (also in the smokebox)

Crosshead being trial fitted to check alignment and fit prior to painting plus the fitting of the felt pads that spread the oil across the flat surfaces.
The drive arm to the vacuum (air) pump will be fitted to this crosshead on the rear face.

Boiler barrel and firebox fully clad ready for Injector delivery pipes to be fitted.
Front cylinder cover removed to allow piston and piston rod to be trial fitted.

Boiler back head cladding plates fitted (an oversized jigsaw of separate pieces that can be removed without taking the boiler fittings off to allow access to boiler stays) Boiler fitting being trial fitted. The Hydrostatic lubricator for oil to the cylinders is lying on the footplate.

Die block that drives the piston valve rod runs in the curved expansion link is being set up for machining an oil reservoir in the top.

Once the reservoir has been machined out, it will be closed off with a cover plate that is pressed in as sample alongside

Overview of reassembly work. Outside steam pipes to cylinders shown without cladding. The bolted joints are evident. Also in view is the safety valve/top feed casting on the top of the boiler barrel, feed pipes to be installed, normally this is hidden under the brass bonnet.

Crossheads have been fitted to piston rods, crossheads now being cleaned for painting then they will be split from rods again until piston/rod assembly is in the cylinder bore with the rod passing through the rear cylinder cover. Then the cross head is attached to the piston rod with a tapered key pulling the tapers on the piston rod and crosshead together.

Pipe work for the injector. Pipe work on every engine will be different. Curves in the pipe work allow for expansion as they heat up in use.

The boiler feed delivery pipes that curve around the side of the boiler barrel and connect to the safety valve and clack valve casting on the top of the boiler, normally covered by the brass bonnet.

Eccentric rods and the lifting link for the Stephenson’s valve gear awaiting fitting.

The West Somerset Railway Association are delighted to announce that they have met the fundraising target to put bring GWR locomotive 9351 back into service in time for the Summer Season.  When the West Somerset Railway plc ran into financial difficulties over the winter they asked the WSRA, the line’s principal supporters’ organisation to help.  This has involved raising over £18,000 from supporters in a few months and carrying out the work, including some complex engineering, at their restoration base at Williton.

Jonathan Jones-Pratt, Chairman of the West Somerset Railway plc said:

‘We are very grateful to the WSRA who rose to the challenge we set them, raised the money and are getting the work done.  It shows what we can achieve if we pull together as a united Railway.  I look forward to agreeing further fundraising targets with the WSRA in future.’

Paul Whitehouse, Chairman of the West Somerset Railway Association said:

‘We could not have done this without support from over 70 individual donors and the work of volunteers and staff, particularly Ryan Pope and his team at Williton Works.  Because we are a registered Charity the UK government has contributed over £3,000 of the total via the Gift Aid scheme which adds 25% to donations from UK tax payers.  We stand ready to help where needed.’

Loco 9351 is expected to be back in traffic by the end of May to assist with a busy summer season on the West Somerset Railway which reopens fully on 19 April.  Final stages of the restoration can be followed on the restoration blog at


Loco 9351 being reassembled at Williton








9351 in traffic on the WSRA before starting recent overhaul







Ryan Pope of WSRA Restorations with loco 9351 as she entered the works earlier in the year








For Further comment please contact:

Jacquie Green
WSRA General Manager
T: 01823 433856

New Bronze Die block being machined for fitting into the valve gear expansion link. Ultimately it will be machined with a pair of curved faces to fit the curve of the expansion link.






Boiler cladding sheets in position to be fasten onto the crinoline framing and then held in place by screws and the boiler bands yet to be added.

In the dark interior of the smoke box, the Super heater header casting has been mounted with the super heater flues fitted and the steam pipes to the cylinders installed.
The fitting on the right hand pipe is the inlet for the steam oil feed to lubricate the piston valve and cylinder.
The regulator body casting plus the steam pipes between it and the super heater header are yet to be fitted.