The WMCQR 0-8-0 Saddletank

GCR 0-8-0T No. 400B, ex-Wrexham Mold & Connah Quay Railway

This was the oldest locomotive to survive into LNER ownership, due to accidents of history and a number of rebuilds. It was originally built by Sharp, Stewart & Co in 1846 as a long-boilered 0-6-0 for the Manchester & Birmingham Railway. Originally numbered No. 30, it was renumbered as No. 430 in 1857 by the London & North Western Railway (LNWR). A year later, the LNWR rebuilt No. 430 as a saddletank. In 1866, it was renumbered again, this time to 1222.

In 1872 it was then sold to the Wrexham Mold & Connah Quay Railway (WMCQR), who named it No. 6 Queen. The WMCQR rebuilt it in 1880 as a 0-8-0ST with a new boiler. In this form, the long wheelbase tended to damage the WMCQR's inferior track. Hence in 1888, it was rebuilt as an 0-6-2ST. After suffering serious damage in an accident in 1890, No. 6 was rebuilt again in 1892. This time, it had new frames and a new water tank, but kept the 1880 boiler and the 0-6-2 wheel arrangement. After all these rebuilds, No. 6 had very little of the original 1846 locomotive, and in 1905 the Great Central Railway (GCR) would list No. 6's build date as 1892. It also appears to have lost the name Queen before this rebuild date. The final rebuild would occur in 1903 when it became an 0-8-0ST again. This rebuild featured a smokebox extension with another new boiler.

In 1905, the WMCQR became a part of the GCR. During GCR ownership, No. 6 became No. 400B. It is unsure when this number was allocated, but it is thought to have been between 1907 and 1912.

After Grouping in 1923, this unique locomotive was withdrawn from service before a class and locomotive number could be allocated.

Technical Details

These details are from the GCR records immediately prior to Grouping in 1923.

Cylinders (x2): 18x24in.
Motion: Stephenson
Boiler: Max. Diameter: 3ft 10.25in
Pressure: 150psi
Heating Surface: Total: 971 sq.ft.
Firebox: 77 sq.ft.
Tubes: 894 sq.ft. (135x 1.75in)
Grate Area: 12.75 sq.ft.
Wheels: Coupled: 4ft 3in
Tractive Effort: 19,829lb (@ 85% boiler pressure)
Total Wheelbase: 18ft 6in
Engine Weight: (full) 47 tons 2cwt
Coal Capacity: 2 tons 10cwt
Water Capacity: 1200 gallons
Max. Axle Load: 12 tons 4cwt


This unique locomotive was scrapped in August 1923.


I am not aware of any models of WMCQR No. 6 (GCR No. 400B).