There’s something about old black and white photographs, particularly the pre-Nationalisation ones. No.2507 Singapore, became No.42 Singapore in 1946 and 60042 Singapore in 1948, she was built, at Doncaster, in December 1934, and withdrawn, from St. Margarets, (Edinburgh), in July 1964. During her first month in service she ran from Newcastle to Kings Cross at an average speed of 72.5mph – not too shabby for 1934.
I know everybody has there own tastes in these matters but, I do like the A3s in this form, single chimney, no smoke deflectors and they look very tidy at the front of a train of teak coaches. From the ‘shade of grey’, in the photo, I’m guessing No.2507 Singapore is Apple Green, which is even better. From the look of the exhaust the fireman is putting a few rounds on and ‘making smoke’. It is a generally rising gradient for much of the way from Darlington to Bradbury, which is a few miles beyond Aycliffe on the down road, so No.2507 Singapore will have been working fairly hard at this point.
The subject of A3s tends to be dominated by ‘Flying Scotsman’. However, if you go beyond the hullabaloo and celebrity status the A3s were solid and relablie performers with the last one, No.60052 Prince Palatine, remaining in service until 1966, ‘they think it’s all over’ it was then!!
According to the details on the back, this is ‘working a down express near Aycliffe’; the print is by Photomatic, the photographer isn’t named and there’s no date.
If you have enjoyed my blogs – I have written a book about my 60 years involvement with railways, from trainspotter, via steam age footplateman, to railway author and photographer, this is a link to it: