No. 40 was built by Robert Stephenson and Hawthorn Ltd. of Newcastle, in 1954. It was one of a pair (No's. 39 and 40) supplied to the National Coal Board specifically designed for working passenger trains on the once extensive NCB system at Ashington in Northumberland. Their duty was the conveyance of miners to the various Collieries within the system, a task they performed until being replaced by diesels in the late 1960's
No. 39 was scrapped, but No. 40 was more fortunate and went to the North Norfolk Railway for preservation. The locomotive was soon resold and moved to the Colne Valley Railway in 1974. It is finished in lined out BR black. The Loco was situated on the Colne Valley Railway in Essex, prior to purchase by the Weardale Railway Trust in 2006.
At present No 40 is undergoing a thorough overhaul. The largest component is the rebuild of the boiler. This has entailed replacement of a large part of the barrel and a new front plate, firebox and ash tray.It will be fitted with new stays and tubes. The work is being carried out by McEwen's, Boilersmiths, near Skipton. The work has taken far longer than we expected, but it is nearing completion and we can expect the boiler back and reunited with its frame soon.
Back at the Wolsingham depot, the loco has been stripped for repainting, which has been started, the axle horn guides and axle boxes have been refurbished, a new spring hanger fitted, new pistons made and fitted, the valve guides rebushed and the valves retimed. The frame has been reset on its wheels and the motion refitted.
When the boiler is returned, there will be a few months work to do, but we are hopeful that we will see the loco on the Railway in the summer 2019.