Restored by the Glenreagh Mountain Railway


1919 approaching Tallawudjah Creek during a Glenreagh Mountain Railway operating day on 6 January 2007.


Beyer Peacock & Co, Manchester

Builder’s Number & Year

1761 of 1878

Wheel Arrangement


No. in class



Originally supplied from 1877 as main-line freight locomotives, the A(93) / (Z)19 class locos were progressively superseded by more powerful 2-6-0 and later 2-8-0 freight locomotive types, however they found a niche as light-line motive power on steeply graded mountain branches such as the Batlow / Kunama, Oberon and Dorrigo lines, as well as shunting roles such as the extensive sidings and wharf lines at the former Darling Harbour yard.

Preserved locomotive 1919 was first issued to traffic as A 114 of the A(93) class, becoming 1919 of the (Z)19 class at the NSWGR’s 1924 renumbering scheme.  Among its travels around the New South Wales, it was allocated to South Grafton for use on the Dorrigo line during the 1950’s and features in contemporary photographs and recollections of Dorrigo line operations in Ron Preston’s excellent book “Tender into Tank” which documents the various (Z)19 class operations (and their 2-6-4T tank engine cousins, the Z(20) class) around New South Wales.

1919 has had an interesting and varied preservation career.  She was one of the last steam locomotives in NSWGR service when finally retired from Darling Harbour shunting duties (after some earlier periods of storage) around 1972/3.  1919 features in one of the webmaster's early railway memories; together with 3075T it ran a NSWRTM rail tour to Picton and Moorebank on 16 April 1972 as the last steam train on the Moorebank / Holsworthy branch.  On a family outing we intercepted this train at Liverpool and a series of photographs in the family album show the arrival of the train and engine repositioning operations as 1919 was readied to take the train solo onto the Moorebank / Holsworthy branch.  I clearly recall flustering my father with a series of "why why why" questions as he explained to his 3 year old son that 3075T was too heavy for the branch's bridge over the Georges River, and thus 1919 would take the train alone.

1919 was initially preserved for the Lachlan Vintage Village at Forbes.  It was stored for a few years at Parkes before reaching the Lachlan Vintage Village, being plinthed as the gatekeeper in 1979 and later painted a gaudy sky blue livery with silver dome and chimney.  The Lachlan Vintage Village was an interesting museum featuring relocated historical buildings, a recreated Aboriginal camp and other displays relevant to the region.  From a railway perspective it included a 2’ gauge line using ex-sugar industry locomotives and a standard gauge railway which ringed the site.  Unfortunately the Lachlan Vintage Village did not succeed as an ongoing concern and the railway assets were progressively sold off.  Standard Goods loco 5367 was sold to the Lachlan Valley Railway, the ex-Sugar industry locomotives passed into private hands and the remaining standard-gauge steam locos 1919 (on gate duty), 3112 and Beyer-Garratt 6042 went to auction in November 1986.  1919 and 6042 were purchased by the Dorrigo Steam Railway & Museum and 1919 was road hauled to Dorrigo, joining the collection of DSR&M exhibits stored there.

1919 later passed to the Glenreagh Mountain Railway, whose focus is the restoration of the lower portion of the Dorrigo branch from Glenreagh to Lowanna, and was transferred to their Glenreagh West base in 2000.  Following overhaul, 1919 returned to operation in July 2004 and ran tourist trains over the GMR’s restored section of railway from Glenreagh West to Tallawudjah Creek, which was a fitting return given 1919’s allocation to the Dorrigo line during the 1950’s.  Glenreagh Mountain Railway operating days often coincided with community market days at Glenreagh West and the webmaster enjoyed such a trip on 6 January 2007 (as shown in several photos on this page); at that stage the GMR trains were running frequently and filled to capacity with visitors from the adjacent markets.  Unfortunately GMR operations have since been suspended while the organisation works to meet new regulatory requirements but hopefully this setback will soon be overcome, allowing the GMR to restart operations and extend their line over Tallawudjah Creek, up the escarpment and through the No.1 & 2 Tunnels towards Lowanna.  In the meantime 1919 is stored at Glenreagh West depot; I understand it is nominally serviceable but requires (at least) full mechanical and boiler inspection and documentation before it can be recertified for traffic.

For more general information about the A(93) / (Z)19-class locomotives, refer to the page for sister 1905.  Wikipedia also provides further information and technical details for the A(93) / (Z)19-class.

Happy days on the Glenreagh Mountain Railway as another trainload of visitors approach the halt at Tallawudjah Creek.

These trains ran full as the Glenreagh markets were operating at the other end of the line and attracting large crowds.  6 January 2007

1919 approaches Tallawudjah Creek as a lone S-truck sits in the paddock on the left.

A scanned photo of 1919, recently arrived at Dorrigo in approximately 1987.

It is still wearing the sky blue livery it received when the gate guardian at the Lachlan Vintage Village.

This view of 16 April 1972 shows 1919 on a tour train at Liverpool.



"A Compendium of New South Wales Steam Locomotives" compiled by Alex Grunbach,

published by the Australian Railway Historical Society, New South Wales Division, 1989.


Kramer, J. 'The Dorrigo Steam Railway & Museum - an Illustrated Guide',

published by the Dorrigo Steam Railway & Museum, 1987.


Preston, R.G. ‘Tender into Tank’, published by the

New South Wales Rail Transport Museum, 1984.


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Page updated:  18 April 2014

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