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Unrebuilt ex-Southern Railway 'West Country' Class 4-6-2 number 34005 'Barnstaple' at Chinley during the 1948 Locomotive Exchange Trials.
These trials were organised by the newly nationalised British Railways in order to compare the locomotive designs constructed by its four constituent companies: the Great Western, Southern, London Midland and Scottish, and London and North Eastern Railways.
Various individual locos were selected and worked over the former routes of the different companies in an attempt to obtain comparative data as a prelude to the design of a new standard range of engines by BR. In fact, the Trials had more publicity than scientific value and the BR Standards that appeared from 1951 were largely derived from LMS practice.
It can be seen in this view that 34005 - which was used on the St Pancras-Manchester route through the Derbyshire Peak District - was paired with an ex-LMS tender. This was because there were no water troughs on the Southern Railway so the loco's normal tender would not (unlike the LMS version) be fitted with a scoop for picking up water en route. Water troughs, laid between the rails at certain locations, avoided the need to stop at stations to take on water and thus prolong journey times.
Picture the Past would like to thank Dave Arnold for his contribution to this caption.