8 thoughts on “J72 Locos at Thomsons Scrapyard c1965

  1. In the late 70’s me and my mate used to watch trains from the wall adjacent to the bridge at Oxbridge Lane. The line from Thomsons ran adjacent to this wall. One day the shunter passed by and stopped a few yards away. We thought we were in trouble but the driver asked us up to the cab and after 5 mins the two of us left with big smiles on our faces and a story to tell at school of how we got to drive a ‘Rolls Royce’ (It was a Sentinel diesel with a Rolls Royce engine). It was a similar tale at Thornaby yard at the weekend. As timid kids the stony faced railwaymen were pretty intimidating (they would always wind us up when we arrived by sucking through their teeth first when we asked to look round but I can’t remember being turned away). Almost without exception they were great blokes who appreciated our interest and many a cab ride and the odd driving opportunity followed.

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  2. I can remember as a young teenager playing on dozens of old engines lined up in the scrapyard on a railway siding just behind Walley Welding Co.,

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  3. I notice that the smokebox door number and shed plate has been removed. Many footplate railway employees became the owners of these items when the locomotives were sent for scrap.

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    • Thomsons scrapyard in Stockton recently held an auction due to it closing down among the many items were train identity numbers of some form, possibly the same as those you mentioned in your post.

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      • I often wonder what became of the hundreds of locomotive nameplates, taken from scrapped loco’s, especially when private scrap yards entered the scene. I was a regular visitor to Darlington North Road in the early 1960’s, when the yard was owned by BR. a lot of D49’s (shire and hunts) came for scraping in 1961. None of them had their name plates even then, but in the mid 60’s hundreds of named loco’s from all regions were scrapped at various private yards around the country, but very few name plates came up for sale. Apart from the preserved loco’s, where are all the name plates now? Worth a fortune.

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  4. Thomson’s scrapped quite a large number of steam locos from the late 1950s onwards. Originally, most locos had been scrapped at British Railways locomotive works such as North Road, Darlington, but by the early 1960s the sheer scale of steam loco withdrawals – almost 20,000 in some ten years – meant engines were sold instead by B R to private scrap dealers. It usually did not take the latter long to reduce them to a pile of metal,ready for the steel furnaces at home or abroad. However one firm, Woodhams in South Wales, bought many condemned engines and because they instead concentrated on cutting up railway wagons the steam locos in the main survived to be dealt with later. As a result many were later bought from Woodham’s by preservation groups right down until the 1980s and can be seen, beautifully restored, on preserved railways, a very fortuitous event.

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  5. Well thought of locomotives. Ideal for pilot duties, dock work and local freight. The class was built over a period of fifty three years from 1898 to 1951. The later engines 1949-1951 were identical to the engines built in batches from 1898-1925. They were built under three different regimes, North Eastern railway, LNER, and British Railways. Four lasted until January 1965, so these loco’s would probably be those. In earlier times, before private scrapyards began tendering for withdrawn locomotives, it was still possible to see loco’s two years after withdrawal. As a dedicated “spotter”, I spent many an afternoon at North Road scrap yard in the early 1960’s. There was still remnants of loco’s withdrawn in 1958, and 1959, B16’s, D49’s, and J26’s for example. I think these J72’s will not last long. Only one was saved for preservation. If they had been allocated to the Western region, or Southern, instead of the North Eastern, many more would have survived. All the private money was in the South.

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