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Great Eastern Railway Neilson & Co coffee pot tank locos

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I'm currently building a Neilson & Co 0-4-0ST. I'm looking at finishing it in its 1894-5 pre rebuild state. What livery would they be in at this time? Also were any of them used on any of the GER's light branches in Suffolk, Essex or Norfolk?



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I stand to be corrected but they probably would have been black .


however it is said by some that they may have had red lining, there is a photo on the basilica fields site of a T18 with a coffee pot in original state painted in blue livery.


That probably doesnt really help  as always I think pictures of the loco modelled are essential. I am sure that more knowledgeable contributors will step forward to clarify this,


The locomotive magazine extracts from 1913 or so indicate that black lined red was the case.(you can get these from the GER society)

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The Coffee Pots dated, I believe, from 1874-5, and were cabless until the Holden rebuilds of 1894-5. 


The original livery is thought to be Johnson green for the first batch and Adam's black lined vermillion for the second, though both batches were ordered under the superintendency of Adams.


However, the lined ultramarine livery became standard for new-built locomotives from 1882 and for re-paints after that date.


Unlined black was introduced for goods locomotives in 1890 (though with some of the humblest engines lined in vermillion).


So, if your Coffee Pot was repainted at any time between 1882 and 1890, it should have carried lined ultramarine blue, and I suspect that there might well have been a repaint within the 15-16 year period from entering service, and may well have fallen within the 8-year period in which lined blue would have been applied.


Black lined vermillion makes sense for the rebuilt condition, and the Stratford-built 1897 and 1903 locomotives, which are outside the scope of the OP, which I suspect is what the Locomotive Magazine shows, unless it depicts the original state of the 1875 batch.


EDIT: I went in search of Robert17649's reference, and it is a photograph of a T18 in photograph grey at Stratford, dated 20th July 1887.  You can just make out a Coffee Pot in the background, stated to be in lined ultramarine. This makes perfect sense given what we know of the livery change in 1882 and the likelihood of a repaint at some stage: https://basilicafields.wordpress.com/2014/03/03/rise-of-the-buckjumper-the-t18-class/.


BTW, I imagine that modeller's licence would be required to place these little shunters out on a rural branchline at any point, and certainly not in their early years. 


The first pair were allocated to shunt at installations with tight curves; goods yards at Devonshire Street at Mile End, and the Pepper Warehouses at Blackwall .


Initially the second pair were used as station pilots at Liverpool Street, but were displaced and went to Stratford as works shunters.


One of the 1903 batch, complete with side skirts and cow catcher, went to shunt the docks at Colchester.  One sold out of service in later years ended up at Chepstow!


In your timeframe, pre-1894-5,I don't suppose they ventured outside The Smoke at all.  

Edited by Edwardian
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I love the way posts take you off in unanticipated directions.


I thought I'd see what the natural habitat of a Coffee Pot might look like, and found this picture of the GE goods yard at the former East India Company's Pepper Warehouse at Blackwall, on Bow Creek: https://eastsidepilot.files.wordpress.com/2011/02/bow-creek-21.jpg


Perhaps the Class 209s should have been called "Pepper Pots"? [groan]

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