Swindon Cranes' Preservation

21 February 2006 - thanks to Roger Cooke for this article

The two Ransomes and Rapier 45-ton steam cranes that have been languishing at Swindon since 1989 have finally moved to preservation sites.

ADRR95209 has moved to Tyseley, and ADRR95210 has gone to the Southall Railway Centre.

Roger Cooke adds

These two cranes are of considerable historic significance since they were the first two cranes of a batch of 6 (2 SR, 4 GWR) ordered on Government account from R&R as a war precaution immediately prior to WW2. They were design to a dynamic envelope conforming to the British Composite Loading Gauge which, together with a 15-ton axle load allowed them to operate anywhere in the UK, including London. Of the batch of 6, at present 5 still exist.

These two cranes went on to become the last two steam breakdown cranes in service with BR, and were withdrawn and sold as recently as 1989. They have stood out of use at Swindon since then.

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