Tuesday, 8 January 2013
Anyone with a litle knowledge of this now gone but much loved route will know that te above is a load of old balony. However various engine types were tried out over the former Somerset & Dorset Joint Railway network, with some quite oversized engines appearing during the line's final few years. In the autumn of '63 BR Standard Class 9 locos with their large (by British standards) 2-10-0 wheel configeration returned, not to haul summer Saturday expresses but the Bath to Bournemouth 3 coach stopping service. Later BR Std Class 4 tanks appeared to on the 'mainline' too as dieselisation cascaded engines to 'lesser routes'.
Much of the 'Branch' (Evercreech to Highbridge and Burnham on Sea) went across the Somerset Levels following the route of the old Glastonbury Canal, and I believe much of it floated over the extensive peat bog probably using branches from the locally willow tree as a base. For this reason light weight engines were usually the norm. A railtour in the early 1960's did however bring a couple of SDJR 7f goods locos down the line and I imagine Highbridge Loco before 1930 bought severaly bigger types through too.
However despute the above, I do think the above large Stanier Class 4 tanks fit in quite well, so in that parallel universe of 'it's my trainset' who knows!