Morris Lubricants Supports New ‘Patriot’ Class Steam Locomotive ‘The Unknown Warrior’

Britain’s leading family-owned, independent oil blenders and marketers, Morris Lubricants, is throwing its weight behind an exciting £1.5 million project to build a new 'Patriot' steam locomotive.

The Shrewsbury-based company, which is the market leader in steam heritage lubricants, is enthusiastically supporting the project to build a locomotive to the original Sir Henry Fowler parallel boiler design, capable of running on the mainline.

The project team hope to complete the new national memorial engine, named 'The Unknown Warrior', in time for the 100th anniversary of the Armistice in 2018.

Failure to preserve an original Patriot has left a massive gap in the story of LMS express power.  'The Unknown Warrior' will provide the link between the Royal Scot and Jubilee classes and enhance the UK steam collection.

Morris Lubricants is contributing towards the cost of manufacturing the pattern for the bogie centre casting. In addition, the company will provide the metalworking lubricants during the manufacturing stage and specialist steam lubricants for the new locomotive.

“We are delighted to support an exciting project of national importance,” said Morris Lubricants’ managing director Andrew Goddard. “As the new national memorial engine, it will be a locomotive close to the hearts of the nation.

As the market leaders in steam heritage lubricants, our support for this project reinforces out longstanding commitment to this sector.”

The project team has ordered the front bogie and hope it will be completed in time to fit under the engine, which is going on display at the Warley Model Rail exhibition at the NEC Birmingham in November.

The engineering skills and facilities necessary to produce a new steam locomotive in the UK are in place and proven and many original LMS drawings have been obtained. New drawings are being created using CAD techniques where the original drawings cannot be found.

Parts for the new loco are being sourced are being sourced mostly from UK suppliers.

Assembly of the 'The Unknown Warrior' began in 2009 led by Dave Owen, chief mechanical engineer at the Llangollen Railway Works. Other workshops around the UK now involved include the Boro Foundry, The South Devon Railway Engineering, L.N.W.R. Heritage and Tyseley Locomotive Works.

Most of the parts for ‘The Unknown Warrior’ are being made from new. However, two Fowler designed tenders from Barry scrapyard have been obtained. The best parts of both are being overhauled and a brand new tender body will be built.

Fundraising for the new boiler for 'The Unknown Warrior' began last year with the national launch for the £500,000 Boiler Appeal taking place at Crewe. LNWR Heritage at Crewe, the company founded by pop mogul and steam enthusiast Pete Waterman, has started building the new parallel boiler. The first section to be completed is the firebox.

The new locomotive will serve as a permanent memorial to all those who fought and died in the First World War and all subsequent wars. The project has been endorsed by The Royal British Legion.

“The Unknown Warrior is making excellent progress, with the last of the frame stretchers having been cast and the driving wheels completed,” explained David Bradshaw, LMS-Patriot Company chairman, who launched the project. “Those components will be delivered to the Llangollen Railway Works, where the team led by Dave Owen, will assemble the frames. The rolling chassis will be completed later this year.”

Mr Bradshaw, a key member of Didcot's Great Western Society 'County' project, is supported by a team of seven directors and trustees. The project is being funded by public donations, regular contributions, legacies, commercial sponsorship and grants.

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