4253 Locomotive Company Ltd
25 Winser Road
Kent TN17 4NL
We are restoring an 82-ton steam locomotive which will eventually run on the Kent & East Sussex Railway, a not for profit company run entirely by volunteers. The 4253 locomotive arrived at Rolvenden Yard in June 2011
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Future Role on the Kent and East Sussex Railway
The plan is to rebuild the loco to support the future extension of the K&ESR to Robertsbridge when larger motive power with more capacity will be required.
History of 4253
The GWR 42xx class of 2-8-0T locomotive was designed by George Jackson Churchward and 4253 was built for the Great Western Railway in 1917 with a principal role of hauling 1000+ ton coal trains through the Welsh valleys. This was a job which needed good steaming capabilities and formidable tractive effort, due to the heavy weight of the trains and the steep gradients. 4253 spent all her working life allocated to one shed, namely Newport (Pill). From here she would have worked the short haul heavy coal trains from the pits in the Eastern and Western Valleys to the docks and the steelworks, as well as local mixed freight duties. The 42xx tank’s duties were gradually taken over by diesels and so, in 1963, locomotive 4253 made its last journey as a British Railways engine from Newport to Barry where, like many of her class, she arrived at the infamous Barry Scrap Yard for cutting up. Luckily due to the Beeching modernisation plan there was plenty of redundant rolling stock and track to be recycled and so 4253 languished at Barry, escaping the cutters torch. In 1987 the locomotive was rescued and taken to The Pontypool and Blaenavon Railway. However owing to a lack of resources, the engine remained in an unrestored state until the present owners brought her to the Kent and East Sussex Railway in June 2011.