John Speller's Web Pages Reid Locomotives

John Speller's Web Pages - North British Railway

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William Paton was the first Locomotive Superintendent of the Edinburgh & Glasgow Railway, a constituent of the North British Railway. He was held partly responsible for a fatal accident in 1845 as a result of which he received a one-year jail term for culpable homicide, following which he resumed his duties. His daughter married his Carriage and Wagon Superintendent, Robert Reid. Robert Reid's son, William Paton Reid (1854-1932) entered the Cowlairs, Glasgow works of the North British Railway as an apprentice in 1879, and rose to become Chief Mechanical Engineer in 1904, retiring in 1919 on reaching the age of 65. Largely in recognition of his services to the Railway Operating Department during World War I, he was appointed a Companion of the British Empire in 1920. His is best known for his massive "Atlantics" which were among the finest locomotives of their day. Reid would have preferred a 4-6-0 design, but was not allowed to pursue a six-coupled passenger design by the Directors. At the time all three of the East Coast Main Line companies were using 4-4-2 type locomotives, the Great Northern using the Ivatt "Atlantics," and the North Eastern using "Atlantics" designed by William Worsdell. Quite a few of Reid's designs -- the D-29 and D-34 4-4-0s, the J-35 and J-37 0-6-0s, the C-16 4-4-2Ts, the N-14 and N-15 0-6-2Ts, and the J-88 0-6-0Ts -- lasted into the second half of the twentieth century and came under British Railways' control in 1948. Mr. Reid was an excellent artist, and in his retirement designed a number of fine posters for the London & North Eastern Railway.
Prototype Reid "Atlantic" No. 968 "Aberdonian," built in 1906, from a color plate in the Railway Magazine for 1907
Preserved Reid D-34 "Glen" Class locomotive No. 256 "Glen Douglas" on an enthusiasts' special at Mount Vernon station, Glasgow, in 1960
Postcard view of the North British Railway's "Lothian Coast Express," which ran from Glasgow to Dunbar via North Berwick between 1914 and 1933, behind one of Reid's D-34 "Glen" Class 4-4-0s
William Paton Reid, CBE (1854-1932), Chief Mechanical Engineer of the North British Railway 1904-1920
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