GWR 2-8-0T No 2873

Hidden away at Buckfastleigh are the frames and wheels of locomotive 2873.

Built in 1918 to C. B. Collett's design, 2873 is one of the successful 28xx class of heavy freight locomotives introduced in 1903. 2873 is an original version of Churchward's 2-8-0 with inside steam pipes rather than the C.B. Collet 2884 version of which 3803 is an example.

The engine was purchased as a source of spares from Woodham Bros' scrapyard in South Wales and has been at Buckfastleigh since the 1980s. As to her future use, well, despite her lack of boiler, who knows?

Incidentally, no fewer than six other members of Collett's 28xx class made it into preservation and are rather more complete than 2873, including the National Railway Museum's no. 2818.