9F steam locomotive - Evening Star, Black Prince etc.

When I was a kid, I mean a child pre-five years old, I had a Hornby model railways catalogue. Hours I would spend thumbing through this admiring the designs of the carriages and engines. I always rated the locomotives on how many big wheels they had. There was always only one class of locomotive that could win this one: the 9F class, and that means 2-10-0... for the un-initiated that means 2 little wheels at the front, followed by 10 big ones for the rest, if you look at it from the side you see a little wheel at the front and five big ones along the body of the engine.

Thus, by wheels, was my favourite locomotive decided upon. And top of the tree number 92220, the Evening Star:

This was different from all the other 9F loco's in that they painted it green as it was the last steam loco built for British Railways. For years the Evening Star was at York National Railway Museum and for years I wanted to go, it just kept never happening. Finally I did make it happen and went up for a couple of days. I spent both days at the museum with my hero! It was do weird after seeing pictures and models for years to actually touch the metal of the real beast. I did have some photos but somehow I lost them all.

Once, later, I was in Sheringham in Norfolk at the North Norfolk Railway, called the Poppy Line. There was a 9F there briefly. This was a slightly rough 9F, but still, right number of wheels!

Then on another visit I chanced upon a great thing: the Black Prince.

The Black Prince no. 92203 at Sheringham - Justin Tuijl
This loco was saved by the artist David Shepherd and named the Black Prince. I have rarely travelled on the Poppy Line, but that day I just had to. This way I could see the lovely thing at every station stop!

2-10-0 the best wheels!
The Black Prince - Justin Tuijl