Open main menu

The Great Northern Railway (GNR) Class L1 (LNER Class R1) was a 0-8-2T side tank steam locomotive designed by Henry Ivatt. It was originally designed for suburban passenger traffic on the Metropolitan City Lines.[1]

GNR Class L1
LNER Class R1
GNR 0-8-2T locomotive 116 (Howden, Boys' Book of Locomotives, 1907).jpg
GNR Class L1 0-8-2T locomotive
Type and origin
Power typeSteam
DesignerHenry Ivatt
BuilderDoncaster Works
Serial number1004, 1056–1065, 1097–1106, 1119–1138
Build date1903–1906
Total produced41
 • Whyte0-8-2T
 • UICD1 n2t
Gauge4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)
Driver dia.4 ft 8 in (1.42 m)
Trailing dia.3 ft 8 in (1.12 m)
Length38 ft 7 14 in (11.767 m)
Loco weight71.35 long tons (72.49 t)
Fuel typeCoal
Fuel capacity2.5 long tons (2.5 t)
Water cap1,500 imp gal (6,800 l; 1,800 US gal)
Boiler pressure175 psi (1.21 MPa)
CylindersTwo, inside
Cylinder size20 in × 26 in (510 mm × 660 mm)
Performance figures
Tractive effort27,626 lbf (122.89 kN)
DispositionAll scrapped

A prototype was built in 1903, but it was overweight, so it was rebuilt with a smaller boiler and shorter side tanks. Ten more engines were then built to this modified design. During the "small boiler" era, the cylinders were lined to 18" to match the boilers.

In 1905 and 1906, thirty more engines were built for working goods trains in the West Riding of Yorkshire. The original eleven engines were not a great success on passenger services so, in 1907, they were moved to the West Riding for goods work.

Condensing apparatusEdit

The first eleven locomotives were fitted with condensing apparatus for working in tunnels. The thirty built for the West Riding were probably not so fitted, but this is subject to confirmation. It is not known whether the condensing apparatus was removed from the original eleven when they were moved to the West Riding.


Between 1909 and 1926 the locomotives were gradually rebuilt with larger boilers to the original specification. Seven locomotives had superheaters fitted and, on these, the working pressure was reduced to 170psi.

Proposed diesel conversionEdit

In 1932 there was a proposal to convert some of the locomotives to diesel power. The prime mover would have been an 8-cylinder diesel engine of 400 horsepower, driving a 4-cylinder air compressor to charge an air reservoir. Compressed air from the reservoir would have been heated, both by the diesel exhaust and by steam from an oil-fired steam generator, and would then have entered the locomotive's original cylinders at about 150 psi. The use of steam to heat the air is reminiscent of the Mekarski system. This diesel-pneumatic proposal never became a reality but a German one of 1929 did.[2]


The engines were withdrawn between 1927 and 1934 and none are preserved.


  1. ^ "The Ivatt R1 0-8-2 Tank Locomotives". The London & North Eastern Railway (LNER) Encyclopedia.
  2. ^ "The German Diesel-Pneumatic Locomotive". The Self Site.