The two-day spectacular
doubled as a celebration of the return to service of the Bluebell's oldest engine, 0-6-0T "Fenchurch" of 1872. Built originally for the London, Brighton & South Coast Railway, Fenchurch was one of 49 similar small tank engines designed by LB&SCR master mechanic William Stroudley for service on lightly laid branch lines. Because their light axle loadings allowed them to traverse docks and industrial spurs which no heavier engine dared attempt, several of these diminutive "Stroudley Terriers" remained in service after other more modern steam locomotives had been cut up. Indeed, at the time of her retirement in 1964, "Fenchurch" herself was the oldest steam engine in service with British Railways. Here was see "Fenchurch" flanked by a sister Terrier and the London & North Western/London Midland & Scottish Observation Car 15843 heading south with the 11:23 from Horstead Keynes.



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