Steam locomotive 85 is heading to the Bluebell Railway

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No. 85 & No. 43924 at Oxenhope
No. 85 & No. 43924 at Oxenhope // Credit: RailAdvent

The Bluebell Railway has announced that Taff Vale 85 is heading to their railway for their Branch Line Weekend.

The locomotive will be visiting the Bluebell Railway for this year’s event, which runs from 3rd – 5th April.

85 visits the Bluebell Railway thanks to the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway.

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A brief history of 85

Taff Vale 85 was built in 1899 by Neilson Reid for the Taff Vale Railway. The locomotive worked for the TVR until the railway was taken over by GWR in 1922 when the locomotive became surplus to requirement. In 1927 the locomotive was withdrawn and in 1929 the engine was sold to the Lambton, Hetton & Joicey Colliery Co. in County Durham to haul coal trains between the inland collieries and the coast.

85 became No. 52 when the coal industry was nationalised in 1947 and remained in service until 1968 when it was withdrawn and sent to the Worth Valley Railway, where it arrived in 1970.

The locomotive was rebuilt in the 1990s by the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway and gave good service until it was withdrawn in 2010. After a 6 year overhaul, it re-entered service in 2016.

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