After discussions with Alan Keef Ltd the Corris Railway is targeting having its new steam locomotive Falcon No. 10 in steam, but not ready for traffic, at Keef’s 50th Anniversary Open Day on September 24th. This follows a review of the work required which will need thirty six thousand pounds to be raised by then if the target is to be met.
This sum, which includes a margin for over running of costs, is in addition to projected income from existing sources.
The locomotive’s wheels and motion are complete and have moved by means of compressed air, the boiler has been placed in the frames and the cab erected. The smokebox and other components have been manufactured.
To take matters further and reduce costs whilst work is underway at Keef’s, Corris Railway Society volunteers with engineering skills will take on production of various components including the saddle tank, fire hole door mechanism, ashpan and finishing the cab amongst other jobs. Volunteers have already produced components for the brake gear and, during the pause in work at Keef’s have been working on safety valve components. Part of this involved cooling the valve seats in a domestic freezer and burning a bag of nightlights under the dome. With the dome slightly expanded and the valve seats duly contracted the fitting work was achieved. Thanks also go to Barr and Grovesnor of Wolverhampton who have produced components for the safety valve equipment. Four springs, including spares, for the safety valve assembly have been supplied at a cost of £75 each and these can be sponsored along with other components at the foot of the Falcon section of the website www.corris.co.uk
One-off donations towards the September steaming costs can be made via the Falcon Locomotive section of the Corris website or cheques payable to Corris Railway can be sent to Peter Guest, 38 Underwood Close, Callow Hill, Redditch, B97 5YS. Standing order payments will help smooth out cashflow and assist with monitoring the finances and Peter can supply the necessary forms for these to be taken out.
Although the target is to have the locomotive steaming in September there will be other components that will be required to have the engine in service on the revived section of the Corris in the Dulas Valley, north of Machynlleth, including air pumps for braking, sanding gear and painting. This phase would require an extra forty thousand pounds to be raised. These will include fully stripping down and painting, finishing drawgear, fitting buffers, and final steam testing and commissioning. Further funding will be required for this work.
However the September steaming target must be reached first.
Should the targets be reached 2023 will see two Corris Railway owned steam locomotives at work in the Dulas Valley for the first time since the GWR purchased the Corris in 1930. This will be a short window before Tattoo 0-4-2ST No. 7 falls due for its next 10 year overhaul in 2024.