Pitchford Room. Photo Tony Goulding

GWR 4953 “Pitchford Hall” will make a special appearance at the gala after the unexpected withdrawal from service of one of the scheduled guests, LMS 6233 “Duchess of Sutherland”.

Managing Director Helen Smith said: “We are delighted that ‘Pitchford Hall’ is joining us later this month. It truly is a splendid locomotive, and its unusual BR-lined black livery is very eye-catching. He’s never raced on our line before, and we think he’s going to prove to be very popular.

“We’re sorry the Duchess of Sutherland can’t join us for our special event, but like any heritage steam locomotive unexpected issues arise. We hope to be able to welcome the 6233 to the SVR in the not-so-distant future.

Railroad engineering chief Martin White said the Duchess of Sutherland’s locomotive had undergone extensive repairs and maintenance at its base in Ripley, Derbyshire.

“Quite late in the work schedule, a problem was identified with the drive wheel axle boxes. Part of the metal bearing surface had cracked and loosened, requiring replacement. Unfortunately, this will not be completed in time for our event.

“Pitchford Hall joins the other guest locomotive, Saddlebag Tank GWR 9466 and members of the SVR National Fleet for the gala, between September 16-19. Day Rover tickets are pre-bookable at www.svr. co.uk or can be purchased on the day. “


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