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Northamptonshire Ironstone Railway Trust

Hunsbury Hill Road, Camp Hill, Northampton NN4 9UW. Tel: 01604 702 031

03 May 2018
Submitted by Carl Hinton

9365 'Belvedere' Sentinel 4wVBT (Built 1946 for British Thomas-Houston Ltd - Rugby) - is in a bit of a mess


BUT, with lot of tender care and money this lovely steam locomotive can be restored to working order

Rusting loco

The Sentinel steam locomotives were British designs built by the Sentinel Waggon Works of Shrewsbury, England. They had squat vertical boilers and two-cylinder vertical steam engines connected to the wheels by chain drive. The unusual technology was derived directly from the Sentinel steam waggons, with little modification. This might sound like a bodge-job, but in fact the Sentinel locomotives used quite sophisticated steam technology, and were very successful for shunting operations and general industrial use. Their short wheel base meant they could negotiate tight curves, and their geared steam-motor design meant they gave no hammer-blow so light rails could be used. Standard Sentinels had a two-cylinder vertical engine giving 100HP. The recommended engine speed was 500rpm, with Sentinel setting a maximum of 600rpm, corresponding to a locomotive speed of 21mph. Typically, the engines were run at lower speeds around 300rpm which gave good fuel economy.

Sentinel locomotives were textbook illustrations of adapting existing parts to make different designs.

New Trustees of Belvedere are in the process of being appointed; a full assessment of work that needs doing will begin in earnest as soon as the restrictions due to Covid-19 are relaxed. 

We need your help. 

NIRT thinks that we will need around £40,000 to complete the renovations needed for this locomotive - if you have any helpful suggestions, please add your comments below.

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