34073 249 Squadron

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Re: 34073 249 Squadron

Post by Bob Brown on Sat Dec 18, 2010 11:27 pm

Hi everyone I just registered.

I have long felt that loco preservation should now recognise that for an increasing part of the general public, the individual identity of a loco is irrelevant, as long as it is a functioning steam loco.

That's why I am proposing that 34073 should be restored as 34055 "Fighter Pilot" as a recognition of ALL Fighter Pilots who served and died in the Battle of Britain and before and since in the service of the RAF and its antecedents.

Churchill used the expression "Fighter Pilot" in his "The Few" speech. Every time I hear those two words I just think of how much support would be generated by a mobile Battle of Britain memorial.

This was lit in my mind only a week or so ago when BBC R5 interviewed Wing Commander Don Neill who is 91 and one of the few. He said how much he felt a bond with ALL of his fellow pilots who served in the Battle of britain and afterwards.

Afterwards I discovered that Don Neill served in, you guessed it, 249 Squadron...

The preservation world has already accepted "Ottery St Mary" rather than "Taw Valley" or at least learned to live with it. How much more approporiate to recreate 34055?

And of course I did see the original in service a number of times on the East Sussex line in the early 1960's!

Bob Brown

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Re: 34073 249 Squadron

Post by 35012 on Sat Dec 18, 2010 11:52 pm

If it secures the future of the locomotive then I am with you Bob, besides, what is to stop the loco running in both guises as you previously mentioned with Taw Valley and Ottery St Mary?!

35012

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Re: 34073 249 Squadron

Post by Bob Brown on Tue Dec 21, 2010 1:09 am

Exactly. When you see what happens with many locos for "photo specials" what really is the difference?

The difference is, "Fighter Pilot" is an expression everyone knows, it was used on the BBC on Saturday night Sports Review when one sportsman said: "when I was young I wanted to be a FIGHTER PILOT."

34055 had a narrower cab than 34073 but I think the cab itself has virtually ceased to exist and would have to be built from new. As would the tender of course, but this is not new technology.

By the way in 1963 I was taken down to Bournemouth by my father for a holiday behind...35012. Since then it has always been my favourite MN though regrettably of course it did not go to Barry.


Bob Brown

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Re: 34073 249 Squadron

Post by 35012 on Tue Dec 21, 2010 4:23 am

As you may have guessed 35012 is my favourite as well. Interestingly the loco's original tender No 3122 survives and is preserved with 34101 Hartland on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Additionally another tender that the loco was paired with later in life No 3343 also survives with 34105 Swanage at the Mid Hants Railway. It is also thought that a wheelset (1 axle) survives with another loco but I have no idea whether it is a driving, pony or trailing wheelset nor which loco it is under!!

35012

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Re: 34073 249 Squadron

Post by Bob Brown on Tue Dec 21, 2010 9:49 pm

I did find the definitive book about the MN's for sale in my local library about a year ago and remember it said that "US Line"'s original tender had survived, I guess with 9.5 preserved out of 30 that's likely.
I wonder what happened to the plates though? As indeed what happened to those of 34055? Presumably the Squadrons and air bases were given one of the pair.
I believe 34055 was one of the first Bulleids to be withdrawn, but I did see a photo of it somewhere as a stationary boiler, very sad.
It used to pass through South Croydon in the 1960/61 period about 3.40 on the 1.59pm Brighton-Victoria via Uckfield which it then after watering took the "terrible 6.10" pm heavily loaded commuter train back to the coast.
There were an amazing number of different Pacifics on this train; ones I remember in the 1960-62 period:

34008*
34012
34013
34014
34016*
34019 (the first I saw)
34025
34034
34038
34050
34055*
34057*
34067
34068
34070
34092*
34097
34098
34100

plus some of the Squadrons, I think 602 and 222 from memory. * were regulars.

The interesting part if I got to the station early enough or the train was delayed at the signals at selsdon waiting for a path on the main line was to work out if it was an original or rebuilt from that distance.

Bob Brown

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Re: 34073 249 Squadron

Post by Bob Brown on Tue Dec 21, 2010 10:02 pm

Apologies re my post on Saturday, it should be WIng Commander Tom Neil from 249 Squadron, must wash my ears out.

Bob Brown

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Re: 34073 249 Squadron

Post by 35012 on Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:15 am

Many of the W.C. and B.O.B. loco's had 3 sets of plates made with the third set being presented to the town or squadron after which they were named.

35012

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Re: 34073 249 Squadron

Post by Bob Brown on Wed Dec 22, 2010 11:20 pm

Missed my golden opportunity of owning a nameplate in about 1972, I saw an ad for "Lord Collingwood" off 30862 - my favourite LN - but it was coupled with a "SOUTHERN" dartboard off the front of a Bulleid Pacific and the owner wouldn't split. I think he was asking about £400 for the two.

If only I had bought both...

Bob Brown

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Re: 34073 249 Squadron

Post by 35012 on Fri Aug 12, 2011 10:00 am

Does anyone have any idea who 34073's new owner is?

35012

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Re: 34073 249 Squadron

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