In 1897 Dick, Kerr & Company bought a disused factory in Preston and commenced the manufacture of trams and electric locomotives and in June 1905 this works became known as the United Electric Car Company Ltd.
The English Electric Company Limited was a British industrial manufacturer formed after the armistice at the end of 1918. It was created to make one of Britain’s three principal electrical manufacturing concerns by amalgamating five businesses which, during the war, had been making munitions armaments and aeroplanes including Dick, Kerr & Company.
It initially specialised in industrial electric motors and transformers, railway locomotives and traction equipment, diesel motors and steam turbines.
At the Ribble Steam Railway we are celebrating some of those engineering achievements throughout the year.
The English Electric DP1/1955 Deltic Prototype celebrated 60 years since being built in Preston whilst on loan from the NRM in our Museum, about a mile and half from where she was designed and built.
On display in the museum is another Preston built EE locomotive, on a much smaller scale than the Deltic, its English Electric EE788/1930, This 70hp battery electric locomotive is the only one left from hundreds of this type that were built. It worked at the Stafford works of English Electric, after being built by the company at the Dick Kerr works on Strand Road in Preston.
English Electric EE2098/1955 ‘671’, the locomotive is of significant importance, as prior to equipping with radio control this locomotive was formerly numbered 601 – the first of the 600 class locomotives. The first ten 600 class locomotives were the only ones entirely built at English Electric’s Dick Kerr Works, Preston. 671 retains it’s radio control equipment and it is intended to update and re-commission this system in due course. The loco’s livery was recently refreshed, and it stands in the museum, awaiting the attention which may return it to service.
English Electric VF2160/D350/1956 ‘663’ – built one year later than 671, this locomotive has been restored to working order and whilst still undergoing a complete body repaint, and will be hauling train services along the line on certain special dates.
Ribble Steam Railway
Chain Caul Rd, Preston, Lancashire PR2 2PD