Dukedog No. 3217 Earl of Berkeley steam locomotive
Credit: Bluebell Railway

The Bluebell Railway have announced that Dukedog 4-4-0 No. 3217 ‘Earl of Berkeley’ is in their overhaul queue to bring back to steam.

Locomotive Director Chris Hunford said “The plan is for the overhaul to start in 2019.”

“This will involve boiler platework, new tubes and general overhaul”

“The earliest the locomotive is likely to re-enter service is 2021”

Nicknamed “Dukedogs” these locomotives were a mix of chassis from a “Bulldog” and a boiler from a “Duke”.

History of Earl of Berkeley

Earl of Berkeley was introduced in 1938 using frames from “Bulldog” No.3425 (built 1906) and boiler and cab from “Duke” class No.3282 (originally named “Chepstow Castle” and built in 1899). The locomotive was used on the Cambrian lines mainly until it was withdrawn in 1960. It arrived at the Bluebell Railway in 1962 and last ran in 2003.

A few locomotives from the class carried Earl names, though No. 3217 didnt receive any until the preservation days. GWR wanted Earl names to be used on prestigious locomotives so tranferred them to the Castle class of locomotive.

Michael Holden avatar
I have had an interest in Railways for as long as I can remember. I am a member of a number of heritage railways and actively volunteer at 2 of them. I enjoy all types of railways, real life, model and simulations. I started RailAdvent in 2014 and am the main editor of the site.