Locomotive, Steam 1709 | NSW Environment & Heritage

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Locomotive, Steam 1709

Item details

Name of item: Locomotive, Steam 1709
Other name/s: 1219 (From 1924), H 381 (From 1887)
Type of item: Movable / Collection
Group/Collection: Transport - Rail
Category: Railway Locomotives & Rolling Stock
Primary address: Thirlmere Railway Precinct, Thirlmere, NSW 2572
Local govt. area: Wollondilly
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Thirlmere Railway PrecinctThirlmereWollondilly  Primary Address

Owner/s

Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
RailCorpState Government 
RailCorpState Government 

Statement of significance:

Locomotive 1709 has heritage significance. The locomotive was constructed in 1887 and is associated with the operation of mainline passenger and mail service in NSW from the late 1880s until the 1950s when it was relegated to branch-line service. It demonstrates the motive power available to the NSWGR for branch and rural line services at the turn of the twentieth century and was associated with the operation of the former NSWGR Vintage Train during the 1960s. It has a high level of aesthetic significance, as it demonstrates the design and style of a locomotive of the late Victorian era, with the tall dome and chimney, high spoked wheels and large prominent splashers. Technically, the locomotive demonstrates an interesting synthesis of British and North American railway practice of the day, with the cylinder configuration and the arrangements for controlling valve gear events. The locomotive is rare as an example of an early form of motive power for mainline passenger service in the State, and is the only survivor of its class.
Date significance updated: 13 Nov 09
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.

Description

Designer/Maker: Vulcan Foundry Ltd, Newton Le Willows, England
Builder/Maker: Vulcan Foundry Ltd, Newton Le Willows, England
Physical description: 1709 is a two-cylinder, simple, non-condensing, coal-fired, saturated ‘American’ type, 4-4-0 steam locomotive.

EXTERNAL
It has large diameter spoked wheels, run in plain journal bearings with deep-feed oil axleboxes. The locomotive has outside cylinders with overhead valve chests and an enclosed cab with cutaway sides. Fitted with inside plate frames, it has inside Stephenson link motion but of the American rocking shaft type, driving the valve events via rocker arms. It is fitted with a Belpaire firebox, tall cast-iron chimney and brass dome. It is currently fitted with a non-original six-wheel tender (ex P class) with outside suspension and of riveted construction, and both the locomotive and tender are painted in overall maroon livery.

All wheels are spoked, run in plain journal bearings with drip-feed oil axleboxes.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Operational Status: Non-Operational
General Condition: Good Condition
External Condition: Good Condition
Internal Condition: Good Condition

EXTERNAL CONDITION
The underside of the locomotive is heavily fouled with oil and dirt, making it difficult to determine the condition of individual components. Rat droppings were noted under the footplate. The frames appear to be in good condition. Cylinder cladding is in good condition with intact anti-corrosive paint system in place. All running gear; driving, bogie wheels are oily and dirty. There is minor surface corrosion on all items of motion.
Boiler cladding is in very good condition with an intact paint system, though the external boiler condition is unknown under the lagging (fibreglass). A firebox wash-out plugs have been removed (one was noted under tender footplate).
Brakes are intact. The Westinghouse compressor, steam cylinder cladding and paint is also in very good condition.
The cab roof and structure is in very good condition with paint system intact.

INTERNAL CONDITION
Boiler and smokebox internal condition is unknown.
All boiler mountings in the cab appear intact and in very good condition.

HAZARDOUS MATERIALS
There is a risk of asbestos being present in the boiler and air pump lagging. It may also be present in jointing materials on pipe flanges. Lead is presumed present where any original paint survives.
Date condition updated:11 Nov 09
Modifications and dates: 1887 - constructed by Vulcan Foundry Ltd at their Newton Le Willows workshops in Merseyside, England as works number 1172
1887 - final erection at Eveleigh Workshops& entered service as Locomotive 381
Early 1900s - boiler repairs carried out with the Belpaire pattern firebox
1924- recoded 1709
Mid 20th century - part of the ‘Vintage Train’
February 1970 - renumbered to 381 in, when it was regularly paired with 176 (1243).
1975 - transferred to the New South Wales Rail Transport Museum
1994 - was restored to operation in 1994 for use in celebrations for the 140 years of NSW railways in 1995
Current use: NSW Government Railways Collection
Former use: Steam Locomotive

History

Historical notes: Locomotive 1709 was constructed in 1897 by Vulcan Foundry Ltd at their Newton Le Willows workshops in Merseyside, England as works number 1172. Following final erection at Eveleigh Workshops, it entered service on the NSWR, being allocated road number 381 in 1887. It was intended that the H class of 12 engines were to work the challenging gradients of the short north and south coast lines, though immediate response to their performance was unfavourable. Compared to the earlier C79 class, the H 373 class were dogged by design flaws such as high axle loading, low factor of adhesion and rough riding.

They were displaced by the new P class, their 4-4-0 wheel arrangement not to be used in any further new construction. Boiler renewals were need in the early years of the 20th century and in line with many other classes at this time they were fitted with new boilers fitted with the Belpaire pattern firebox. The locomotive was renumbered to 1709 in 1924. The class was not in service on branch line traffic until withdrawn, the first in 1934 and the last in 1957. Locomotive 1709 was retained and along with a small number of obsolete engines of a similar age, launched the very successful ‘Vintage Train’. It remained in this role until the program was suspended in March 1974 with the creation of the Public Transport Commission. During its service with the ‘Vintage Train’ 1709 was renumbered to 381 in February 1970, when it was regularly paired with 176 (1243).

The locomotive was transferred to the New South Wales Rail Transport Museum, finally arriving at Thirlmere in 1975. Locomotive 1709 was restored to operation in 1994 for use in celebrations for the 140 years of NSW railways in 1995. It was later displayed at the NSWRTM, stored in operational condition. It was reactivated for the 150 years celebrations in 2005.

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Technology-Activities and processes associated with the knowledge or use of mechanical arts and applied sciences Shaping inland settlements-
4. Settlement-Building settlements, towns and cities Accommodation-Activities associated with the provision of accommodation, and particular types of accommodation – does not include architectural styles – use the theme of Creative Endeavour for such activities. Railway workshops-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Leisure-Activities associated with recreation and relaxation Servicing and accommodating railway employees-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
Locomotive 1709 has historical significance for its associations with the operation of mainline passenger and mail service in NSW from the late 1880s until the 1950s when it was relegated to branch-line service. It demonstrates the motive power available to the NSWGR for branch and rural line services at the turn of the twentieth century and was associated with the operation of the former NSWGR Vintage Train during the 1960s.
SHR Criteria b)
[Associative significance]
Locomotive 1709 has a low level of associational significance, as a major component of the NSW Government 'Vintage Train', an important element in the move towards the preservation of the State's rail heritage, for over a decade from the 1960s.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
Locomotive 1709 has a high level of aesthetic significance. It demonstrates the design and style of a locomotive of the late Victorian era, with the tall dome and chimney, high spoked wheels and large prominent splashers. It demonstrates, following modifications, an early attempt to develop a consistent ‘family’ appearance for NSWGR locomotives.

Locomotive 1709 has technical significance, demonstrating an interesting synthesis of British and North American railway practice of the day, with the cylinder configuration and the arrangements for controlling valve gear events. The locomotive demonstrates the last time this wheel arrangement (4-4-0) was specified for a new design of locomotive, and also demonstrates the earliest example of the use of outside valves. It is the oldest surviving example of the use of outside valves (earlier examples, U105, K294, L304 and L436 have all been scrapped).
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
The Locomotive, Steam 1709 is likely to have a degree of social value for the community-based associations who have demonstrated an ongoing interest in its conservation and management. This item may also have a degree of social significance to a broader section of the community linked to its historic, aesthetic and associative values.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
Locomotive 1709 has a high level of research significance with the potential to reveal information regarding the design and construction of a late nineteenth century locomotive, in particular the use of outside valves.
SHR Criteria f)
[Rarity]
Locomotive 1709 has rarity significance as an extant example of an early form of motive power for mainline passenger service in the State, and is the only survivor of its class. It also demonstrates the earliest example of the use of outside valves and is the oldest surviving example of the use of outside valves (earlier examples, U105, K294, L304 and L436 have all been scrapped).
SHR Criteria g)
[Representativeness]
Locomotive 1709 is an excellent representative example of a late nineteenth century 4-4-0 locomotive which, when displaced from the mainline provided further service on country branch lines. It is in a post 1950s condition and in this way cannot represent the mainline motive power of the 1880s.
Integrity/Intactness: The locomotive retains a high level of integrity and intactness.
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.

Listings

Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - s.170 NSW State agency heritage register     

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
SRA Heritage Rolling Stock Stage 2b Heritage Assessments2000 David Sheedy Pty Ltd Architects and Heritage ConsultantsSteven Adams Yes
S170 Rolling Stock Review2009 NSW Department of Commerce  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
WrittenDavid Sheedy Architects Pty Ltd2007NSWRTM Rolling Stock Condition Reports, Part 2
WrittenGrunbach, A1989A Compendium of New South Wales Steam Locomotives
WrittenOberg, L1975Locomotives of Australia

Note: internet links may be to web pages, documents or images.

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Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: State Government
Database number: 4807214


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