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Building a locomotive

Swindon Works

Where it all begins – the Swindon Works Drawing Office.  This is where ideas become reality. Locomotive components were cast in the foundry (J Shop).  It was a hot and dark place to work. A firebox gets riveted in the boiler shop (V Shop).  A locomotive has throusands of rivets. A locomotive is lowered onto its wheels in the erecting shop (A Shop).  Not a hard hat in sight! The finished produced – A Great Western Railway King Class locomotive, King George V, built in 1927.

The Swindon Works built and repaired thousands of locomotives from the 1840s to the 1980s.  By the 1920s the Works was producing three steam locomotives a week. 

The Works employed 14,000 men at its height and was the pride of British engineering.


Images Copyright: STEAM Museum - S22 073, S16 051, S18 034, S13 031, L14c 038

This page is part of Industrial Hey-Day