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No. 60145 Saint Mungo

No. 60145 was built midway in the construction of the A1s and in several ways was always ‘in the middle’ for events like repainting – but became notable as the final member of the British Railways-built class to survive. It was authorised on 2nd May 1946, in LNER days, as part of that year’s programme. The Darlington Works Order to build Nos. 60130-52 was issued in January 1947. Two years later, under BR, No. 60145 was noted “nearly complete” on 28th February. As Darlington Works No. 2064 it was completed in March with No. 60144, making them the 15th and 16th of the 23-strong Darlington batch. With No. 60124 complete in Doncaster this made March’s trio the 25/26/27th of the class – about midway. Like all Darlington A1s, plus No. 60114-26 of the Doncaster build, No. 60145, carrying boiler No. 3946, was turned out resplendent in LNER green with black and white lining but with BR’s name spelt out in block capitals on the tender. Like all the previous 14 Darlington examples old gold was used (as in the post-war LNER livery) for the numbers and letters instead of the usual light cream. Other features in common with other Darlington A1s were the casings for the splashers over the rear coupled wheels dipping towards the rear and the cabsides and tender having the rivets countersunk to give a smooth finish. As with the rest of the class a ‘plain’ double chimney of sheet metal with beaded edge was fitted, one school of thought being that a lipped one would obscure the view by disturbing the airflow set up by the smoke deflectors.

Entry into service was from Gateshead (GHD) on 23rd March 1949, one of a dozen shedded there, a number soon to increase to 14. Our first sightings show it at Darlington on the 25th, on Darlington shed on 3rd April then hauling the 14:12hrs Darlington-Leeds train on 16th April. The A1s coped with all kinds of work on the ECML. As early as 14th May, No. 60145 was hauling the most prestigious ‘namer’, ‘The Flying Scotsman’ with 13 coaches, from Edinburgh to Newcastle. The Durham coast route was worked too with the 22:25hrs from Newcastle to King’s Cross on 20th August. It took part in another typical A1 run of the time: the 09:20hrs Delaval-Holloway ECS leaving Stockton as usual, double-headed by a Class B1 No. 61206, to Thirsk with the 18 coaches. Before the year was out No. 60145 had travelled along much of the East Coast Main Line (ECML), being seen from Edinburgh Waverley (and Haymarket shed) to Neville Hill shed and Grantham.

On 19th April 1950, No. 60145 returned to Darlington Works for weighing. However, it was to Doncaster Works where it went for its first general overhaul from 17th July to 23rd August. This was the occasion when locomotives were named and the apple green A1s were repainted blue with black and white lining but with plain black cylinder covers.  With Nos. 60124 and 60145 turned out in blue that August this made them the 22nd and 23rd so repainted and given more of an identity. Saint Mungo refers to the Celtic saint Kentigern who was born in Fife but later moved west. His nickname Mungo means ‘dear one’. A community formed round him called ‘Clasgu’ (“dear family”) hence he is regarded as the founder of Glasgow. In fact, Glasgow Cathedral is built on the site of his 7th century wooden church. He is said to have performed four miracles in Glasgow. Back in traffic, No. 60145 hauled another named express when, on 22nd December, the down ‘West Riding’ was worked. From this time lipped chimneys were fitted to all A1s, usually in the course of repairs at Doncaster. 1951 saw No. 60145 in Gateshead Works on 10th June. An uncommon working was the 17:17hrs Leith-Marylebone train which pulled into Newcastle on 21st July. The up ‘North Briton’ was worked into the Tyneside city on 15th September. Saint Mungo spent Christmas 1951 at ‘The Plant’ undergoing a general overhaul and its first boiler change (for No. 29862), a repair that included repainting into BR green with orange and black lining, one of four A1s dealt with that month, making them the 19th to the 22nd ones so treated.

The 1950s have been said to be the A1s’ heyday when they were able to produce power to haul big loads and keep time competently especially while the A3s were in poor condition. From 1952 Saint Mungo worked expresses like ‘The Flying Scotsman’ many times for the next six years, more so than other named trains. After a return visit to Doncaster during September 1954 for another general repair which included fitting boiler No. 29837, late 1954 and early 1955 found Saint Mungo entering Newcastle with the up train on 25th and 26th October, 6th and 13th November, the 2nd, 18th, 29th and 31st December and 12th and 26th February. Other ‘namers’ included the up (into KX) and down ‘Tees-Tyne Pullman’, down ‘Northumbrian’ and the up train into King’s Cross, down ‘North Briton’ both into and from Newcastle, up ‘Heart of Midlothian’ and Down ‘Talisman’ from King’s Cross. No. 60145 called at ‘The Plant’ again in February 1956 for a ‘General’ and left carrying boiler No. 29818, thereafter not only were ordinary East Coast trains hauled but also specials like the additional Edinburgh-KX train of 3rd August 1956 which it brought into Newcastle and the Down X387 troop special leaving Tyneside at 11:40hrs. Parcels trains worked were usually the York-Edinburgh one and goods trains were hauled too, the first noted being the Penzance-Aberdeen from Newcastle on 20th June and a dozen times between October 1956 and January 1957 No. 60145 hauled the Colwick-KX goods. Workings between Edinburgh-Newcastle via Carlisle were 20th March 1955’s seed potatoes and 28th August 1956’s ‘Flying Scotsman’. Saint Mungo returned to ‘The Plant’ during September for a further general overhaul and boiler change (No. 29820 fitted) and the later BR crest was applied to the tender.  During this decade the locomotive was one of a number of A1s to have their electric lighting and Stones generator removed.

No. 60145 at Newcastle Central station on 1st August 1964 – Michael Denholm

With the introduction of diesels in 1958 most A1s lost their express duties though we have No. 60145 sighted on ‘The Flying Scotsman, ‘The North Briton’ and ‘The Northumbrian’ in 1958/9. Both normal and special ordinary East Coast trains were still hauled.  The new decade dawned with an arrival at King’s Cross on 27th February on ‘The Tynesider’, a diversion via Cambridge on 8th May, ‘The Flying Scotsman’ from the ‘Cross on 18th June and from Newcastle on the 24th then the down ‘Anglo-Scottish Car Carrier’ on 13th August. 20th November brought a transfer to Copley Hill (56C) after eleven years at 52A.  Now named trains from West Yorkshire were rostered and the next two years brought ‘The Harrogate Sunday Pullman’, ‘The Queen of Scots’, ‘The Yorkshire Pullman’, ‘The West Riding’ and ‘The White Rose’, as well as ‘The Northumbrian’.  No. 60145 finished 1960 in Doncaster undergoing a general overhaul and boiler changer (boiler No. 29807 fitted) but by 8th June 1961 Saint Mungo was on Royal Train standby at Selby.  Numerous runs were made on the 18:12hrs KX-Leeds passenger and the 18:28hrs KX-York parcels. A number of visits were made back to Newcastle in the first two months in 1963.  Reallocation to York (50A) was on 8th September. Another general repair was undertaken at Darlington Works between 16th November and 14th December (as such work had been transferred there), including one of very few boiler changes carried out there, the locomotive leaving bearing boiler No. 29875, the last one it was to carry. Between 20th February and 15th June 1964 No. 60145 was stored at Hull Dairycoates shed but the next day it was back in traffic. On the 27th it was hauling a goods past Ryhope on the Durham coast line. A sign of the times was working the Dagenham-Bathgate cars through Newcastle on 14th April 1965. Troop specials were the 1X95 Marylebone-Stirling into Newcastle on 27th June and the 12 coach Chippenham-Newcastle of 11th July. A light engine working to Saltley shed was made to be ready to work 5th September’s Warwickshire Railway Society’s tour between Birmingham and Banbury. Christmas Day saw more normal work with the 18:30hrs relief York-Newcastle and the 28th had No. 60145 from Darlington-York on the 19:30hrs Newcastle-KX. Saint Mungo’s most famous run was on New Year’s Eve when the NER ran a special York-Newcastle and return to commemorate the ending of main line steam. Like others of the class it was bereft of nameplates but its performance still inspired magazine articles two and four decades later.

Saint Mungo on a freight at Goose Hill, Normanton – Roger Bastin

On 2nd January 1966 No. 60145 was transferred to Darlington (51A). It was often on standby at the station. It still did a variety of work: bringing the 20:40hrs ex-Birmingham into its Newcastle destination on 13th January, taking the 16:00hrs Newcastle-York parcels three days later and bringing a goods into Healey Mills yard on 19th March. A number of times in March and April it set off from Newcastle with the 3M30 09:04hrs newspaper empties to Manchester. From 27th March it lay withdrawn on Darlington shed then on 17th April it was reinstated, but from York shed. Next day it was on the early hours newspaper train from Manchester which it took forward from York to Newcastle, returning with the 3M30. Our final recorded working is on 19th April when it worked the 03:50hrs York-Stockton passenger, hauled a parcels to Sunderland, ran light engine to Heaton and returned to York on the 3M30 newspaper empties. Saint Mungo was seen on York shed daily until 20th May and from the next day it was noted minus chimney but on 19th June it was finally withdrawn. It lay at York shed and by 1st August was minus its tender. Despite an attempt by the late Geoff Drury to save it, sale for scrap to A. Draper of Hull came that month though cutting up didn’t start until 26th September.

Saint Mungo at Normanton in 1965 – Roger Bastin

No. 60145 Saint Mungo at Heaton MPD in 1966 – John Arnott-Brown

Saint Mungo, the last A1, had survived No. 60124 by three months. Its lifespan of 17 years 3 months was considerably longer than the A1 average of 15 years 2 months. It had seven boilers in its life. However, all is not lost. A nameplate can be seen, fittingly, in Glasgow Transport Museum. Several years into the 1990s the photo, supplied by Drapers, of Saint Mungo’s scrapping was used by The A1 Trust to inspire people to covenant to build the 50th A1, 60163.

This history was compiled by Phil Champion based on a database compiled by Tommy Knox and with reference to the RCTS book “Locomotives of the LNER Part 2A” as background.  Revised and updated by Graham Langer, July 2020.