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Hunslet 0-4-0ST No. 287 Trym


Trym is an example of a contractor's locomotive, built for use on the light temporary trackwork of construction sites and railway works. With the advent of modern earthmoving equipment, the practice of building a temporary railway to move materials and spoil is less common, though by no means unknown.

This particular engine is now the oldest standard gauge Hunslet in existence. It was delivered new to the Cardigan Ironstone Company (now Stewarts and Lloyds) of Corby, originally being named Vigilant. In 1903 the company disposed of its four-coupled engines and No. 287 was sold to Whitaker Brothers, a public works contractor from the West Riding of Yorkshire. The locomotive was very soon sold again, however, being purchased by Harold Arnold and Son of Doncaster, who used it in the construction of Embasy Reservoir near Skipton, Yorkshire, between 1904 and 1909. Very little is known of the next few years, other than that in 1919 the engine was rebuilt, and in 1920 sold to Nott Brodie and Co. of Northampton. It was believed that the name Trym was acquired in about 1922 when it was employed on the construction of the Bristol - Avonmouth Portway, the River Trym, being a small tributary of the Avon.

The early 1930s saw Trym under the ownership of Sir Robert McAlpine and Sons Ltd, working on the Otterspool sea wall contract for Liverpool Corporation. Another change of ownership occurred in March 1940 when Howard Farrow Ltd of Hendon purchased the locomotive. A second rebuild followed in 1942 when it was fitted with a new boiler. In 1943 Trym was used for the construction of a new marshalling yard and goods relief lines at Exeter on the GWR. It is thought that the engine may have been on hire to the Ford Motor Co. at Dagenham in 1954, although to date, no proof has been found to substantiate this. In fact it is possible that the engine may not have worked at all after 1947.

A short article appeared in the July 1963 edition of the Railway Magazine which mentioned that Trym was for sale. As a result it was purchased by a Quainton Railway Society member, and after storage at Luton, arrived at Quainton in April 1969.

In November 1989 Trym moved to the Northamptonshire Ironstone Railway Trust, where the locomotive was renamed Vigilant. The Northamptonshire Ironstone Railway has cooperated with the Rutland Railway Museum at Cottesmore to enable the full restoration back to running order, the loco moving to Cottesmore in September 2010. By July 2011 Vigilant was back on its wheels after axlebox and journal work. Replacement seasoned oak buffer beams have been cut to size,drilled and fitted.  Boiler overhaul is now under way, with the front-tube plate currently being replaced.

Current Location - Rutland Railway Museum, Cottesmore


Builder :- Hunslet Date Built :- 1882 Works No. :- 287
Running No. :- - Name :- Trym Wheel Arrangement :- 0-4-0ST
Tractive Effort :- 4, 090 lb Boiler Pressure :- 120 psi Cylinder Dimensions :- 10" x 15"
Weight :- 12t 7c Driving Wheel Dia. :- 2' 9"

Text © Quainton Railway Society / Photographs © Quainton Railway Society or referenced photographer
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Page Updated: 30 September 2017