Penicuik Silver Band


Thanks to everone who donned their Sherlock Holmes deerstalkers and tracked down information on the loco that I photographed at Wooler.   Particular thanks to Alasdair, Gordon and Jim.


The loco was built by Hawthorn Leslie in 1935 as their Works Number 3799.   It is an outside-cylindered 0-4-0 saddle tank.It was bought by Alexander Cowan & Sons for use in their private sidings at the paper mill at Valleyfield, Penicuik.


The loco, when in service, was painted in a royal blue, inlined livery without any name on the side tank.   It was converted from coal to oil-fired traction during its time at Valleyfield.


On closure of the mill the loco was bought for a private collection based at Lytham St Annes.   At an unknown date the Lytham St Annes collection was broken up & "WeePug", as it was known, was purchased by a consortium whose intent was to open a private railway line from Alnwick to the East Coast Main Line at Alnmouth.


The loco was pictured (August 2007) in the yard of an agricultural engineer, Michael Fairnington, who repairs steam locos as a sideline.   His yard is just outside Wooler on the Berwick road.   The loco is actually owned by the editor of 'VIZ' magazine (Chris Donald) but is (hopefully) destined for use on the Alnwick to Alnmouth line once this is reinstated.


An interesting tie-in with Penicuik Silver Band is that one of the loco's relief drivers during its time at Valleyfield was George Johnstone, one-time conductor of the band.

(See Chapter 12 of the Band History)