1922 Briggs Atlantic

2 1/2″ Atlantic ‘Charles Rous-Marten’ (The Anticipator)

By William Briggs (1922)

An historic scratch built gauge 3 (2.5″ gauge) live steam Atlantic type 4-4-2 tender locomotive ‘Charles Rous-Marten’, 214. Designed and built by William Briggs, with valve gear designed and built by LBSC (Lillian ‘Curly’ Lawrence).  William Briggs was an engineer apprenticed at Brighton Works (L,B&SCR), before moving to the Daimler works in Radford, Coventry (which is where the reference to Radford Works originates from on the works plate) and then to the Napier factory in Manchester.

This is a well documented and historic spirit fired model and she is recorded as being the first 2.5″ gauge locomotive to pull an adult passenger in 1922 (although our research suggests this to be apocryphal). Its an unusual loco, the tender has two fixed rear wheels, and is then articulated through a bogie that forms the leading tender wheelset and the rear wheel of the locomotive. The works plate  reads ‘Radford Works 1922’.

LBSC referred to her as ‘The Anticipator’ referring to the GNR locomotive built soon after with an articulated tender. She visited 121 Grange Road, Purley Oaks (Lawrence’s home) for a major overhaul in 1941. A photograph of model appears in the book “LBSC, His Life & Locomotives” by Brian Hollingsworth and reference to its historic importance is made in an article by LBSC in The Model Engineer, (11th December 1947, page 632).