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LBSCR D3/D3x class 0-4-4T

photograph: Mike Morant collection

An unidentified D3 photographed during LB&SCR days. The location is near Ham Bridge Halt, which was between Lancing and Worthing

With the return to Brighton in February 1890 of Robert John Billinton from his position as Chief Draughtsman at Derby (having previously held the same position at Brighton in the early Stroudley years) it was hardly surprising that Stroudley’s designs were followed by something of a more “Midland” flavour - with bogies. With the exception of two Craven 4-4-0s and one 0-4-4T there had not previously been a class of engine on the LB&SCR with a bogie.

His first task was to complete the building of Stroudley’s E class with the final six, which were the first of the E1 class. Having got those out of the way he embarked on his first design, the ‘D Bogie’ 0-4-4 tank, which emerged in May 1892.

The D Bogie, which was designed for working country and semi-fast trains, soon became the D3 class, but presumably not until the withdrawal of the six Stroudley D3 0-4-2 express tender locomotives was completed in 1904! The dome and cab had similarities with the Stroudley style, but that was where all visible similarities stopped, though the front tubeplate was the one used in the B1 “Gladstones”. The trademark Stroudley toolbox behind the bunker all but disappeared with the bunker extending almost to the edge of the buffer beam. One of the class, Nº387 Steyning was briefly converted to oil burning during 1903 but this was obviously not a success as it quickly reverted to coal burning. Sir Julian Goldsmid, a director of the railway, had the first of the class named after him and then insisted on having the outline of the engine reproduced as a copper badge for the loco crews’ caps. In the event the other directors of the railway considered an unassuming 0-4-4 tank of insufficient importance to carry Sir Julian’s name, so the name was transferred to B2 Nº316 in 1895 and Nº387 was renamed Havant, though Sir Julian much admired the little D3.

In 1909 Nº396 and Nº397 were rebuilt by Marsh with the boiler he used for his I2 class, new cylinders and a circular smokebox mounted on a saddle. He increased the working pressure from 160 to 170 lb sq in but reduced the heating area through using fewer but larger tubes. These two locomotives were re-classified as class D3x but the remainder continued as class D3 after being re-boilered with boilers similar to the originals, though at least one engine, Nº2364, still carried the original Billinton boiler in the middle 1930s.

Giving good service from the 1890s until the early 1950s, the D3s were usually to be found on odrinary passenger trains, both on the main line and branches, particularly the LB&SCR’s Kent and Sussex routes with some, such as Nº378 Horsted Keynes, hardly ever venturing up to London. They were also to be found, in Southern Railway days, working lines such as Hastings-Ashford and it was in this area that one, Nº2365, entered the history books when credited with causing the downfall of an enemy aeroplane that attacked it whilst working a local service across Romney Marsh. Apparently a part of the low-flying aircraft came into contact with a part of the engine - it is claimed to have been the dome - causing the plane to crash into the marsh close to the railway line. The boiler burst without causing too much damage to the locomotive, or injury to the crew (who reputedly gave a brief war-dance in celebration of the event). The boiler barrel was damaged on the top and its plates were knocked off the lefthand tank, the steampipe and regulator were bent and the chimney dislodged. A new boiler was fitted and Nº2365 returned to traffic.

When the Southern Railway began phasing out the Stroudley D1 class it started fitting the D3s for motor train working and eventually converted almost all the class.

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  • 32390
    Neither this loco nor the location have positive identification, though the loco is believed to be Nº32390, which is working duty Nº701, and the location is thought to be near Beeding, with its cement works showing on the left.
    Photograph: Mike Morant collection.
  • D3
    Yet another unidentified D3 working a short train near Petersfield during 1933.
    Photograph: Mike Morant collection.
  • 32365
    Newly-numbered 32365 in early British Railways days still has SOUTHERN on her side tanks. This photograph would appear to have been taken at Ashford and the unidentified locomotive behind is a Stirling O1.
    Photograph: Mike Morant collection.
  • 32365
    Several years later Nº32365 was captured at Brighton, shortly before withdrawal. This was the locomotive mentioned above that was credited with bringing down a German aircraft on 28 November 1942.
    Photograph: Mike Morant collection.


The LBSC was better than the other Southern Companies in keeping locomotive classes more or less in consecutive numbers, the D3 class was actually numbered in order of build!
LBSC Nº Name SR Nº # BR Nº * Built Rebuilt as D3x Withdrawn
363 Goldsmid/Havant 2363 - May 1892 - Dec 1947
364 Truscott 2364 32364 May 1892 - Sep 1952
365 Victoria 2365 32365 Jun 1892 - Dec 1952
366 Crystal Palace 2366 * Jun 1892 - Feb 1949
367 Norwood 2367 * Jun 1892 - Jan 1949
368 Newport 2368 32368 Jun 1892 - Feb 1953
369 Burgess Hill 2369 - Oct 1892 - Jul 1933
370 Haywards Heath 2370 * Oct 1892 - Sep 1948
371 Angmering 2371 * Dec 1892 - Oct 1948
372 Amberley 2372 32372 Dec 1892 - Mar 1953
373 Billingshurst 2373 * Jan 1893 - Nov 1948
374 Pulborough 2374 * Jan 1893 - Jan 1949
375 Glynde 2375 - Apr 1893 - May 1935
376 Folkington 2376 32376 Apr 1893 - Apr 1953
377 Hurstpierpoint 2377 * Jun 1893 - Sep 1948
378 Horsted Keynes 2378 32378 Jun 1893 - Aug 1952
379 Sanderstead 2379 32379 Jun 1893 - Nov 1952
380 Thornton Heath 2380 32380 Jun 1893 - Apr 1953
381 Fittleworth 2381 - Oct 1893 - Sep 1933
382 Farlington 2382 - Oct 1893 - Nov 1934
383 Three Bridges 2383 * Dec 1893 - Dec 1948
384 Cooksbridge 2384 32384 Dec 1893 - Oct 1953
385 Portsmouth 2385 32385 Jan 1894 - Jul 1953
386 Chichester 2386 32386 Jan 1894 - May 1952
387 Steyning 2387 * May 1894 - Feb 1949
388 Emsworth 2388 32388 May 1894 - Dec 1951
389 Shoreham 2389 * May 1894 - Feb 1949
390 St Leonards 2390 32390 May 1894 - Sep 1955
391 Drayton 2391 32391 Jun 1894 - Oct 1952
392 Polegate 2392 - Jun 1894 - Mar 1933
393 Woodside 2393 32393 Mar 1896 - Sep 1951
394 Cowfold 2394 32394 Mar 1896 - Nov 1951
395 Gatwick 2395 * Apr 1896 - Jun 1949
396 Clayton 2396 - Apr 1896 1909 May 1937
397 Bexhill 2397 * Nov 1896 1909 Jul 1948
398 Haslemere 2398 * Nov 1896 - Mar 1949
# Between 1923 and 1928 SR numbers were the LBSC numbers with the added prefix 'B'
* Not all locomotives that survived into British Railways’ ownership carried 323xx numbers. Those that did not are indicated with an asterisk.

This page was last updated 31 August 2003

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