The Lord Nelson Class has come to be viewed as an ‘also ran’ amongst express locomotives and is largely overlooked for that reason. It had the misfortune to be sandwiched on Southern metals between the classic and much revered King Arthurs and Schools and by Bullied’s controversial Pacifics. In such company any design might suffer by comparison. And yet when first appearing they attracted plaudits from railway professionals, including the footplate crew, and the public alike. But with only 16 being built their impact was muted and any faults in their design were magnified beyond their actual impact. In truth they deserved far better than this and were, in fact sturdy, reliable performers that served the company well on the heavy boat trains for which they were designed and across their other passenger services for 30 years and more in peace and war.
Much has been written about these locomotives but no story is ever complete, with new information and photographs emerging to deepen our understanding of them. This book provides an in depth view that re-examines these impressive engines using, new material, eye witness accounts, contemporary assessments and more than 200 photographs and drawings.