Dolgoch (locomotive)

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Dolgoch at Tywyn Wharf - 2006-03-05.jpg
Dolgoch at Tywyn Wharf in 2006
Type and origin
Power type Steam
Builder Fletcher, Jennings & Co.
Serial number 63
Model Class Bb
Build date 1866
Total produced 1
Configuration 0-4-0WT
Gauge 2 ft 3 in (686 mm)
Driver diameter 2 ft 3 in (686 mm), formerly 2 ft 4 in (711 mm)
Wheelbase 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
Length 17 ft 5 in (5.31 m)
Locomotive weight 10 tons
Boiler pressure 150 lbf/in2 (1.03 MPa)
Cylinders Two, outside
Cylinder size 7 58 in × 16 in (194 mm × 406 mm)
Performance figures
Tractive effort 4,100 lbf (18.24 kN)
Operator(s) Talyllyn Railway
Number(s) 2
No 2 Dolgoch (then carrying the name Pretoria) at Tywyn Wharf station around 1900
Dolgoch in 1951
Dolgoch in 2008

Dolgoch is a narrow gauge 0-4-0 well tank steam locomotive. It was built by Fletcher, Jennings & Co. in 1866 and is one of the oldest locomotives still in active service. It was delivered to the Talyllyn Railway in 1866[1] and continues to run on this railway.

The fictional Rheneas in The Railway Series by the Rev. W. Awdry was based on this engine.


The design is unusual for a 0-4-0. The well tank engine has a long wheelbase and the driving axle is behind the firebox, which prevents the use of a conventional valve gear layout. Consequently, the Allan valve gear is driven from the leading coupled axle and doubled back to connect to the valve rods.

The engine was renamed "Pretoria" between about 1900 and 1914 in celebration of the relief of the township of Pretoria in South Africa by Lord Roberts during the Boer war. It then reverted to the original name "Dolgoch", which it retains to this day. It is likely that, in the top left photograph, the engine carries the name "Pretoria" - the freshly painted appearance hints that this photograph was taken after the repainting and name change (records indicate it was repainted and renamed around 1900[1], and would have been a bit paint-weary prior to that. Zoom in on the high resolution picture option and you can just make out very faintly ".....ria" painted on the boiler side between the chimney and the side coal bunker). For most of the Railway's life, engine names were painted only on one side of the engines - the North side (the side facing the station platforms which were also only on this side for the whole line). Polished brass nameplates are a feature of current preservation.


  1. ^ Boyd 1988


  • Boyd, James I.C. (1988). The Talyllyn Railway. WildSwan Publications. ISBN 0906867460.