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PostPosted: 27 May 2011, 17:35 
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Location: North Cambridgeshire, UK
Bryan Blundell drew my attention to this today:
http://railways.national-preservation.c ... LNWR-Crane

Does anyone here know anything about the reported move of this crane?


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PostPosted: 20 Jun 2011, 09:08 
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Location: Poole, Dorset
The mystery of the disappearing crane is solved, and sadly the answer is not good.

The CVR scrapped the crane during April 2011 after it suffered damage from scrap metal thieves. Another one gone, this sadly of colossal historical value.


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PostPosted: 21 Jun 2011, 12:42 
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Location: Toton
According to the latest on the National Preservation link above it has not yet been scrapped but is in a scrap yard and can be bought for £15k


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PostPosted: 21 Jun 2011, 22:46 
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It has been a day of drama and fast developments concerning MP21, and I regret that it has not always been possible to keep this topic up to date.

As of this moment, the crane is still extant and is stored in the yard of Reid Freight Services in Stoke on Trent. David Reid, owner and proprietor of this firm, was contracted by the current owner, James Watson (metal recycler) of Stafford, to move the crane, but immediately recognised that it was something out of the ordinary and felt that it should if possible be saved and offered for sale. He persuaded James Watson to allow him to try to do this.

David Reid has contacted a number of heritage railways etc and there has so far been some interest in the crane, but no firm offers (the asking price is a minimum of £15k and probably nearer £20k). I spoke to him this afternoon and he has agreed to do what he can to prolong the stay of execution for a while, although the increasing price of scrap may make this difficult if there is no serious interest in the near future.

I have also spoken to Robin Jones of Heritage Railway and supplied him with a brief history of the crane and the background of the current situation, together with what I hope is a convincing explanation of why this crane is worth saving - I am sure that one of the root causes of this disaster is that few people know one crane from another! Robin will try to run an article in the next issue of HR, due out in the first week of next month.

I have also made a considerable number of calls to other influential people during the course of the day, amongst other things to try to ensure that, if a rescue can be effected, there is somewhere to move the crane to and someone who can do so. I have been in contact with the NRM as well.

There are some questions developing at the moment on the subject of how thorough the discussions that the CVR had with the NRM actually were, or indeed whether there were any discussions at all. There has also been a suggestion, which I am sure is scandalous, that the decision to sell for scrap may have been influenced by the current high price of scrap making this a more attractive option than simply transferring the crane to another museum or charity.

Hopefully in the very near future the CVR can quell both these suggestions by providing the minutes of the meetings at which the disposal was discussed, and a list of the organisations and individuals to whom they offered the crane. Failing this, a request under the FOI Act might become appropriate.

I will do my best to keep this thread up to date as and when developments occur. I don't know if we will be able to save this crane, but if we fail it won't be for want of trying!

Roger Cooke.


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PostPosted: 23 Jun 2011, 19:19 
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BDCA member John Woolley has kindly provided a photo of the crane at Carnforth in 1979.
See: http://www.bdca.org.uk/gallery/index.ph ... _Carnforth


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PostPosted: 05 Jul 2011, 17:47 
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I understand that Roger is away from home ground for a few days, without easy access to the internet. Rather than expect him to post a running progress report in both the BDCA and National Preservation forums, I suggest we follow the discussion, to which he is contributing as and when he is able, in the latter (http://railways.national-preservation.c ... LNWR-Crane).


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2011, 09:49 
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Location: Poole, Dorset
I am sure that by now most readers will have seen the excellent article in the July "Heritage Railway" magazine concerning the plight of this crane. There is a follow-up in the August issue which quotes Steve Davies of the NRM saying that serious offers of a new home have been received from the Ribble Steam Railway and from the Crewe Heritage Centre.

Let us hope that something can be worked out, and the crane can move to one or other of these.

The article does make the point that the ease and speed with which two offers of good and appreciative homes have been made suggests that the CVR's original efforts to find a new home might have been somewhat half-hearted.


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PostPosted: 06 Sep 2011, 14:31 
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I understand that there is an article in the latest "Railway Magazine" stating that the crane has been bought by (someone at) Crewe Heritage Centre. If so, and this is consistent with rumours circulating, it is probably the ideal result - I doubt a better home could be found!


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PostPosted: 07 Oct 2011, 16:49 
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Joined: 23 Dec 2010, 00:07
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Location: Poole, Dorset
Latest news:-

The latest Heritage Railway Magazine (Issue 155) reports that the crane has been bought by David Lewis, organiser of the Crewe Heritage Centre Railwayana Auctions.

The crane will be on display at Crewe on 29th October when the next auction takes place, and David has appealed for donations to help with its restoration.

All in all, an excellent result!


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PostPosted: 22 Feb 2012, 12:36 
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A lot of water has passed under the bridge since this topic was last active, and as we all know the crane is now safe in private ownership and located at the Crewe Heritage Centre.

I found the post quoted (in part) below this morning on the WNXX forum, and thought it was interesting enough to quote here:-

The LNWR steam crane was saved by a private individual and now has a much brighter future having moved to the Heritage Centre last October. It's of 1908 vintage and is the oldest surviving steam crane, can't remember the number off the top of my head. I know it still looks in a very poor condition but is actually far more complete than had originally been reported earlier last year. The only things missing are boiler fittings, a builders plate and a couple of axle box covers. The plates and axle box covers have been removed and a full set of replicas have been cast and await fitting. ... It looks as if the crane has been exposed to the elements for a long time on one side and quite sheltered on the other as the jib runner's tool boxes are rotten down one side and completely solid down the other. There are also some minor chassis repairs to do but nothing structural

(Source: http://www.wnxxforum.com/interactive/vi ... 9&#p534799)

I thought it was interesting that by the sound of it the damage that the crane had reportedly suffered from metal thieves was far less severe than originally stated.


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