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LMS Route: Trent Valley Line

LMS Route: Nuneaton to Leamington

Nuneaton Station: lnwrns1634

LNWR 2-2-2 Problem class No 1 'Saracen' is seen standing at Nuneaton station's original platform three on a North bound express service

LNWR 2-2-2 Problem class No 1 'Saracen' is seen standing at Nuneaton station's original platform three on a North bound express service circa 1904. This class, designed by John Ramsbottom who became locomotive Superintendent of the LNWR Northern Division (lines north of Rugby) based at Crewe, was also known as the 'Lady of the Lake' class and sixty were built between 1859 and 1865. In the middle of the 19th century it was standard railway design practice to use only one set of driving wheels as it was felt this would provide better freer running that coupled wheels and the use of very large diameter wheels were employed to reduce piston speeds. The increased loads of trains required more powerful locomotives to be employed and the advent of a 2-4-0 configuration was initiated. The use of sanding to aid grip on the rails when starting or during wet weather led to an Indian summer for the single driver design and prolonged their use until it was eventually realised that coupled wheels, initially of 4-4-0/4-4-2 and then later 4-6-0/4-6-2 configuration, could be used without impacting on the ability of the locomotive to run at speed.

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