GWR 4073 Class

Ranked #244 on the list Best Locomotive class of All Time

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About GWR 4073 Class

  • Locomotives of this class: GWR 4073 Class 5043 Earl of Mount Edgcumbe
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The GWR 4073 Class or Castle class locomotives are a group of 4-6-0 steam locomotives of the Great Western Railway. They were originally designed by the railway's Chief Mechanical Engineer, Charles Collett, for working the company's express passenger trains. A development of the earlier Star Class, 171 Castles were built, over a 27-year span from August 1923 to August 1950. They were numbered 4073–4099; 5000–5099; 7000–7037. Although most were built new, 16 locos were rebuilt from older locomotives— 15 Star Class locomotives; and the Great Western Railway's sole 4-6-2 locomotive, number 111 The Great Bear. The Castle class was noted for superb performance overall, and notably on the Cheltenham Flyer during the 1930s: for example, on 6 June 1932 the train, pulled by 5006 Tregenna Castle, covered the 77.25 miles from Swindon to Paddington at an average speed of 81.68 mph start-to-stop (124.3 km at an average speed of 131.4 km/h). This world record for steam traction was widely regarded as an astonishing feat. The origins of this highly successful design date back to G. J. Churchward’s Star Class of 1907. Stars were 4-cylinder 4-6-0s with long-travel valves and Belpaire fireboxes, and

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