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Following experience of occasional cracks appearing near the spring brackets of the Britannias and Clans, a substantial rearrangement took place in this area that resulted in the locomotive riding on three cast steel "sub-frames" carrying the ten front-most spring brackets and lengthened spring brackets behind the rear driven axle.
The Duke is currently based at Tyseley and is currently undergoing a overhaul in order to return it to mainline operational condition.
A number of modifications will also be required in order to maintain compatibility with the latest developments in railway technology.
It is the objective of the Trust to achieve this by the end of 2018 and, within the constraints imposed by operation on the 21st century railway, to restore the Duke as closely as possible to its original 1954 external condition and livery on completion of the overhaul. To do this simply subscribe as a member of the Trust. You will be helping us to fund the return of the Duke to mainline operation and will be making a valuable contribution to the preservation of our railway heritage.
A gap now existed in the roster for locomotives with 8P power classification, of which the demand was high for the efficient operation of heavy expresses on the West Coast Main Line between London Euston and Scotland.
However, the size of the cylinders in order to achieve the 8P power classification would have put the design over the British loading gauge limit and so a reluctant reversion to the three-cylinder layout ensued.
Only the prototype was constructed, which was named Duke of Gloucester.