John Speller's Web Pages J. G. Robinson Locomotives

John Speller's Web Pages - Great Central Railway

J. G. Robinson Locomotives Great Central Horizontal Menu Great Central Horizontal Menu
J. G. Robinson of the Great Central was one of the great locomotive designers of the early twentieth century. The LNER Directors were far from stupid in inviting him to become the first Chief Mechanical Engineer of their railway. Robinson's suggestion of H. N. Gresley as an alternative was probably the best second choice.

Thanks to Robinson's excellent locomotives the Great Central was running some of the fastest trains in Great Britain in the first quarter of the twentieth century. During World War I, Robinson's Class "8" (LNER Class "O-4") 2-8-0 freight locomotives were chosen for mass production as part of the war effort. It could almost be said that they won World War I for the Allies. They could be found all over the world in places as far distant as Europe, China and Australia, and many of them remained there giving stalwart service into the third quarter of the twentieth century. After the war, however, quite a few of these locomotives came back to Britain, with the result that some of them were selling for as little as 340 each -- probably a tenth of what they had cost to build. The Great Western and London & North Western Railways availed themselves of the opportunity of buying some very fine freight locomotives at rock bottom prices.
Robinson's Class "9K" (LNER Class "C-13") 4-4-2T, built in 1905 for Suburban Passenger services
Robinson Class "8" (LNER Class "C-4") 4-4-2 No. 358, built in 1905
Robinson Class "9N" (LNER Class "A-5") 4-6-2T built for hauling heavy suburban passenger trains out of Marylebone
The culmination of Great Central motive power. J. G. Robinson's elegant "Sir Sam Fay" Class "1" (LNER "B-2") 4-6-0 built in 1912-13
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