TS18: Two-Cylindered Traction
Main photograph above, copyright Ben Brooksbank.
If Bossman Games’ Stanier Class 5, which is right around the corner, wasn’t enough fantastic news for LMS fans, rejoice at the fact that Partner Programme developer MeshTools will soon be bringing Stanier’s hard-working 2-6-4 tank locomotive to virtual life!
In the early 1930s, William Stanier designed a locomotive that would be exclusive to the London, Tilbury and Southend Railway. This locomotive, of which there were 37, was of 2-6-4 layout and for express passenger use out of Fenchurch Street station, serving East London and parts of Essex. Known as the Class 4P, it was a rather large tank locomotive with a 3-cylinder design, allowing for good acceleration on frequently stopping services.
With the LTSR catered for, a similar locomotive was to soon be seen across the entire LMS network. Stanier modified the design by removing the third cylinder, allowing for a simpler construction while retaining what was proven to be a successful locomotive. In 1935, work began on the new fleet of 2-6-4Ts, also initially classified as the 4P.
Over a span of 8 years, Derby Works and North British Locomotive Co. churned out a total of 206 2-cylinder 4P locomotives for secondary LMS passenger duties, and they performed as such right up until British Railways’ reign. BR recognised the diversity of the fleet, and gave them a mixed-traffic power rating of 4 – this allowed the class to work all manners of duties throughout the rest of their lives.
A mixed-traffic tank locomotive, with a power rating of 4, gave the class a ‘4MTT’ designation, of which there would be hundreds all based off of Stanier’s design. The 2-cylindered locomotives worked through to the end of steam, and despite there being over 200 in service, none survived into preservation.
The Stanier 4MTT, a backbone for LMS and BR operations, is set to be revived in authentic fashion by MeshTools, who are bringing this long-lost mixed-traffic design to Train Simulator in style!