Stirling’s 120 Class of 0-4-4BTs (back tanks) were designed to improve the rough bunker-first running experienced on both his and Sturrock’s earlier 0-4-2Ts. The Midland had already introduced successful 0-4-4T designs for Widened Lines duties in Kirtley’s 690 and 780 classes, and the 120 Class were in many respects a bogie version of his 126 Class 0-4-2WT, however, the 120s had a 1000 gallon tank located in the bunker (as the bogie precluded the use of a well tank) and there was still room for 2½ tons of coal on top.

Forty two members of the class were built in small batches between 1872 and 1881, and over the years twenty six of the class were fitted with condensing apparatus to work on the Widened Lines. From 1886, all bar two of the class had their 4′ 2½” boilers replaced by 4′ 5″ straightbacks, and five locos eventually gained domed Ivatt boilers in the early years of the 20th century. During their lifetime many members of the class had modifications to their wrap-over cabs in an attempt to give the crews more protection, and the five which received domed boilers were also fitted with Stirling’s enclosed cabs wrapped laterally.

In the photo above, number 244 of 1878 is seen at Hatfield in 1902. She had received the 4′ 5″ straightback boiler in 1891, her splasher cutouts were plated over around this time, and she was to last in service for another eleven years. The tank condensing vent pipe can just be seen in the bunker hard up against the rear of the wrap over roof, on the side nearest the camera.

Not much chance of a kit appearing for this loco, so I’m looking for a drawing which will aid in scratchbuilding her – any help much appreciated.

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