British Rail Class 26

British Rail Class 26

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British Rail Class 26

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The British Rail Class 26 diesel locomotives, also known as the BRCW Type 2, were built by the Birmingham Railway Carriage & Wagon Company (BRCW) at Smethwick in 1958-59. Forty seven examples were built, and the last were withdrawn from service in 1993. Like their higher-powered sisters, the BRCW Classes 27 and 33, they had all-steel bodies and cab ends.


The BR Modernisation Plan contained a large requirement for small diesel locomotives in the - range and under BR's 'Pilot Scheme', small batches of locomotives were ordered from numerous different manufacturers for evaluation. BRCW obtained an order for 20 mixed traffic diesel-electric locomotives powered by Sulzer 6LDA28 engines.

The Birmingham Railway Carriage and Wagon Company was a rolling stock manufacturer, although they were building diesel multiple units for BR. The first standalone locomotives made by the company were produced in 1956-57 BRCW : 12 diesel locomotives for the Irish railways Córas Iompair Éireann (CIE 101 Class), the order going to BRCW due to capacity problems at CIÉ's own Inchicore Works; a partnership was established between BRCW and the Swiss diesel engine manufacturers Sulzer Brothers at that time.

The Sulzer LDA28 range was found to be particularly suited to BR's needs. In addition to BRCW's Class 26, the 1160 hp 6LDA28 variant was also used in BR's own Class 24 design, while the 1250 hp 6LDA28-B was fitted in the later BRCW Class 27 and BR Class 25.

Work history

The Pilot...
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