Published at 08:34 on Monday 23rd May 2022
Tags: Crompton, Hoover, Class 33, Class 50, Keighley & Worth Valley Railway, Keighley, Gala, Diesel Gala, Direct Rail Services, DRS, Class 68

The Keighley & Worth Valley Railway will host a number of guest locomotives for its forthcoming Diesel Gala event, which will take place between 10th-12th June.

Joining the previously announced guest, Class 33/0 ‘Crompton’ No. D6515 Lt Jenny Lewis RN is Hastings profile ‘Slim Jim’ classmate No. 33202 Dennis G Robinson, giving visitors the chance to compare the two sub-classes side by side. The 12 examples of the Class 33/2 sub-class were built with a bodyshell that was seven inches narrower than the other 86 ‘Cromptons’ in order to work through the narrow tunnels on the route between Tunbridge Wells and Hastings, a restriction that was eventually removed in the 1980s when the lines through the tunnels were reduced to single track.

Another star guest that has recently been confirmed to attend is Paul Spracklen’s Class 50 ‘Hoover’ No. 50026 Indomitable, the only member of the class to have been purchased from a scrapyard, making it perhaps one of the most unique survival of the 18 preserved members of the type. Indomitable languished in CF Booth’s scrapyard in Rotherham for around a year before being rescued for preservation in 1993.

The other expected visitor has now been confirmed as a DRS Class 68, although the identity of the actual locomotive will not be announced until immediately prior to the event. The four visitors will work alongside several members of the home fleet, including Class 20 No. 20031, Class 37 No. 37075, Mersey Docks & Harbour Board Hunslet 0-6-0DM No. 32 Huskisson, British Railways Hudswell Clarke Class D2/12 0-6-0DM No. D2511, English Electric 0-6-0DE No. D0226 Vulcan, and recently preserved Class 144 ‘Pacer’ DMU No. 144011, the latter making its first passenger runs in preservation.

An intensive timetable will be in operation throughout the event, and Class 08 shunters Nos. 08226 and 08993 may also take part, subject to availability.

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