The T.W.Worsdell Class D22 (NER Class F) 4-4-0 Locomotives

D22 No. 684, works photograph (M.Peirson)

T.W.Worsdell became the North Eastern Railway's (NER) Locomotive Superintendent in 1885, taking over after McDonnell's very short tenure in the post. The NER needed to increase its locomotive fleet at a time when many older locomotives were in urgent need of new boilers, so T.W.Worsdell's initial priority was increase the output from the NER works and reduce the boiler construction backlog. T.W.Worsdell quickly adapted many of his Great Eastern Railway (GER) designs and produced the J21 0-6-0 (NER Class C1), N8 0-6-2T (NER Class B1), and F8 2-4-2T (NER Class F8) designs to meet the NER's immediate needs. Tennant's stop-gap E5 2-4-0s had already established themselves as capable express passenger locomotives, and the need for such a locomotive was not as urgent.

T.W.Worsdell first described a new express passenger type in a professional paper in 1886. Named as "Class D", this was a 2-4-0 that was similar to E5 but with Worsdell-von Borries compound expansion, a larger boiler, and a deeper firebox. The boiler pressure was quoted at 140psi, but was updated with various design changes. The final locomotive was built at the end of 1886 with a 175psi boiler, and weighing one ton more than the design in the paper. The 18in diameter high pressure cylinder was positioned on the left. The larger 26in diameter low pressure cylinder was on the right, and inclined at a gradient of 1 in 60. Both cylinders had strokes of 24in and were fitted with slide valves operated by Joy gear. In an attempt to equalise the work produced by the two cylinders, the low pressure cylinder had a later cut-off than the high pressure cylinder. T.W.Worsdell fitted the large cab from his Class C (LNER J21) to the D22, and also fitted a long two-axle splasher. This was the first time such a splasher was used on an NER locomotive, and it would become a characteristic feature of later NER 4-4-0 types (e.g.. the D17s and D20s).

A second Class D was built in 1888 with W.M.Smith's experimental piston valves. The piston valves were fitted with spring loaded relief valves to allow trapped water to escape. This would be the last 2-4-0 built by the NER, and the delay was possibly due to problems with the new valves.

The first class D engine was quickly followed by twenty Class F & F1 4-4-0 locomotives in 1887. Due to an exhibition related to Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee, the first Class D had only seen limited running at this point. Despite this short period of trial running, it was already clear that the 2-4-0 wheel arrangement was not suitable for a compound expansion locomotive. Hence the new locomotives replaced the leading axle with a bogie. The resulting Class F engines were otherwise very similar to the Class D engine. The batch of twenty was divided between ten Class F compound locomotives, and ten simple expansion Class F1s. The simple F1s were fitted with 18in diameter, 24in stroke cylinders and operated at 140psi.

After the last class D, there was a pause until the final fifteen Class F locomotives were built in 1890-1. This pause was due to the construction by T.W.Worsdell of two 4-2-2 express passenger designs - neither of which survived into LNER ownership. The reversion back to the Class F design is of note, and probably mirrors British railway practice which was moving towards multiple driving axles for express passenger work at about this time. This final batch of Class F locomotives also had tenders with increased coal and water capacities. Further Class F locomotives were ordered in 1892, but the order was modified to the simple Class F1s, and were eventually replaced by orders for larger 4-4-0s (LNER D17s and D19) designed by T.W.Worsdell's brother, W.Worsdell.

In 1893, the NER management ordered an investigation into the compound locomotives, and it was decided that all of T.W.Worsdell's compound locomotives should be converted to simple expansion. The express passenger locomotives were given priority, and W.Worsdell took the opportunity to rebuild all of the Class D, F, & F1 locomotives into one 4-4-0 class with 18in x 24in cylinders, piston valves, and Stephenson motion. Rebuilds started in October 1896 and were completed by June 1911. Due to their riding problems, it was natural that the first two engines to be rebuilt would be the Class D locomotives. However somewhat strangely, the simple Class F1 engines tended to be rebuilt before the compound Class F engines. The entire class was reclassified as "Class F" from 1914.

Shortly after these rebuilds, the NER started to fit Schmidt superheaters. The entire class received superheaters between 1913 and 1920. Superheated engines could be distinguished by the longer smokebox required to house the superheater. Ross pop safety valves were fitted to the last ten superheated boilers to be built (1916-7). Unusually for an NER class, most of the D22s were withdrawn with the earlier Ramsbottom safety valves still intact.

The D22s were initially used on the express passenger services for which they were designed. Although they were only slightly more powerful than the Tennant E5s, and the compound engines could be a little temperamental at starting and stopping; they proved to be very free running once started. As with most of the NER's contemporary compound locomotives, quoted fuel savings were rarely realised during normal duties. However, the D22s successfully took over the "Races to the North" during 1888 and hauled most of the services between Newcastle and Edinburgh.

The D22s were displaced to secondary passenger duties in 1892-4 with the introduction of W.Worsdell's Class M (LNER D19) and M1 (LNER D17/1) locomotives. After rebuild with piston valves and superheaters, the D22s proved to be very good at these secondary duties.

By Grouping (1923), the introduction of further express passenger types (ie. the D20 and NER Atlantics) had displaced the D22s further down the scale, and they were typically being used for branch line stopping services. At this time, they could be found across the NER network, but most (29) were concentrated in the Scarborough / Selby / Hull area. The remaining allocations were Carlisle (3), Starbeck (2), Alnmouth (1), Gateshead (1), and Waskerley (1). Duties during this era were not strenuous and tended to be local. A typical example is the Selby allocation which was used for stopping passenger services to Leeds, Wetherby, York, and Bridlington.

Between 1926 and 1927, three D22s (Nos. 777, 1540, & 1544) were loaned to the GE section to alleviate motive power shortages.

The first D22 withdrawal was No. 96 which was badly damaged during a head-on collision at Hull Paragon station on 14th February 1927. The introduction of the LNER D49 Hunt/Shires during the late 1920s made the D22s redundant. Withdrawals started in January 1929 and typically occurred when locomotives required new boilers. The last D22 was No. 1537 which was withdrawn from Selby in November 1935.

Technical Details

Cylinders (x2): (inside) 18x24in.
Motion: Stephenson
Valves: 7.5in piston
Boiler: Max. Diameter: 4ft 6in
Pressure: 160psi
Diagram No.: 70
Heating Surface: Total: 1092 sq.ft.
Firebox: 112 sq.ft.
Superheater: 185 sq.ft. (18x 1.1")
Tubes: 525 sq.ft. (105x 1.75in)
Flues: 270 sq.ft. (18x 5.25in)
Grate Area: 17.3 sq.ft.
Wheels: Leading: 3ft 7.25in
Coupled: 6ft 8in
Tender: 3ft 9.25in
Tractive Effort: (@ 85% boiler pressure) 13,210lb
Wheelbase: Total: 43ft 10.75in
Engine: 21ft 11in
Tender: 12ft 8in
Weight (full): Total: 85 tons 18cwt
Engine: 48 tons 8cwt
Tender: 37 tons 10cwt
Max. Axle Load: 17 tons 6cwt


None of the D22s survived into preservation.


I am not aware of any models of the D22 locomotives in any scale.


Thank you Malcolm Peirson for the photograph of No. 684.