Nine in steam at Statfold Barn
22 September 2007
Since my last visit, in June 2006, there would have been
changes at Statfold. The Mallet "Pakis Baru No 5" had been
rebuilt and put into service, and I was looking forward to
seeing it in action. But what else?
I was a little puzzled, on our arrival, by the line of rolling stock
standing on the line into the station, with an unrestored Mallet
in the platform ("Tjepper", built by Jung (2279) in 1914). The
reason soon became clear. New platforms have been built on the
bank beside the running shed (and clearly, in due course, will
It seems to be standard practice for the motive power for
Statfold open days to be unannounced. The first time I went,
there were four locos in steam. Later that year, on the occasion
of my second visit, there were five. Today, there were nine! At
the end of the day, as I dropped off to sleep, I tried to remember
all nine, and struggled (beats counting sheep any night). They
were, in no particular order, Mallet ‘Pakis Baru’ No.5 (O&K 1473
of 1905) and close relative No 1 (O&K 614 of 1900). Both
locomotives run on 2'6" gauge (no problem, as the main line is
dual gauge). 2' gauge locos in action were residents 'Jack Lane'
(new build Hunslet 3904 of 2006), 'Trangkil' No.4 (HE 3902/1971),
the Harrogate Peckett (2050 of 1944), and visitors 'Isabel' (from
Amerton, Bagnall 1491 of 1897) and 'Pearl 2' (Alan Civil's 1997-
built locomotive). We mustn't forget 'Emmet', built 1995 from
the remains of an earlier (1938) O&K, on the garden railway...
That's still only eight - the ninth being standard gauge Cockerill
'Yvonne’ (2945 of 1920).
Still more surprises - the first train in from the fields, shortly
after we arrived, was a demonstration freight, in the capable
hands of 'Trangkil' - and the payload? Some very nice "Hunslet"
and "Kerr, Stuart" crates - and two narrow gauge steam
locomotives on a flat wagon! My amazement as this train passed
by and entered the station turned to puzzlement - what were
these two (a little maroon foreign-looking job, and a Wren), and
from where? . The short answer is Beaulieu, in Hampshire, where
they are expected to enter service on a 2-mile line to be built
there (see the Beaulieu Light Railway website). Until recently,
they have been living in South Africa, restored and preserved by
the Sandstone Heritage Trust. Their identity? - 'Bathala',
Decauville 302 of 1899, and 'Little Bess', KS 4031 of 1919.
There was, of course, much else to see. There are locomotives
everywhere at Statfold, in various states and stages of repair
and construction - ranging from the frames, wheels and boiler of
HE 3905, which will be a Kerr, Stuart 'Wren' type locomotive, to a
large standard gauge diesel, partly dismantled in the yard. And,
in the field below the car park, numerous traction engines and
steam rollers chuffed around, hauling demonstration loads, and
from time to time wandering off across the fields beside the
railway. I think perhaps the railway enthusiasts' heaven is
something like this...
Industrial Railway Society
Statfold Barn Railway official website
Geoff’s Rail Diaries