Worksplate confusion unravelled

July 2018

When Scaldwell left the Museum for Southwold last year (see separate news item in the 2017 archive) it was always the intention that the worksplates which were in the Museum's collection would be donated to the Southwold Trust to complete their restoration (we had already donated the nameplates). However, it then became apparent (and nobody knows how this mistake occurred) that the plates we had at Amberley belonged to Scaldwell's twin locomotive, Lamport which had been scrapped by Staveley Minerals in the 1950s or 60s.

Something of a dilemma.

However, a chance observation by one of the Museum volunteers while he was visiting the Chasewater Railway in the West Midlands brought to our attention that their Museum housed Lamport's nameplate and alongside this was displayed one of Scaldwell's worksplates. Further investigation revealed that the Scaldwell worksplate was owned by and was on loan from the Industrial Railway Society.

A scheme was hatched with the co-operation of Amberley Museum, the Chasewater Museum and the IRS for a three-way swap of the plates to put each where, logically, it should be. So on the occasion of the Museum's annual Railway Gala, a short handing-over ceremony was arranged as follows.

Colin Billinghurst, representing the IRS, and John Stanton, representing the Amberley Museum & Heritage Centre exchanged the Lamport plate (Peckett locomotive No. 1315) and the Scaldwell plate (Peckett locomotive No. 1316) ...

... and shook hands on the deal. Lamport's worksplate will now be displayed with the Lamport nameplate at Chasewater.

Simon Wilson, representing the Southwold Trust, then accepted Scaldwell's worksplate on behalf of the Trust. Eventually, this plate will hopefully be fixed to Scaldwell when the restoration is complete. By the way, if anyone knows of the whereabouts of the second one, and would like to donate it to Southwold I am sure they would love to hear from you.

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Gerry Cork & Amberley Museum & Heritage Centre