Steam locomotive Wb 299

Wb 299, Westport c 1955. Photo: John Creber

Wb 299 is one of two survivors of a class of twelve built in 1898 by Baldwin Locomotive Works, Philadelphia, U.S.A. The loco was based at Westport on the West Coast of the South Island, hauling coal trains from inland mines to the port. Two Wb class locomotives were originally based at Wellington, working trains to and from the Hutt Valley and Summit.

[Photo: Wb 299 at Westport loco depot, c 1955 - John Creber].

Wb 299 was withdrawn from service in 1957. In January 1960 the loco was dumped as river protection at Seddonville, north of Westport, a common fate for many steam locomotives in the South Island from the 1930's - 1960's. Wb 299, along with sister 292 were recovered in 1989 for preservation and eventual restoration.

Recent posts

1898-vintage Baldwin steam locomotive moved into shed

On Saturday 16 February 2013 the frames of steam locomotive Wb 299 were moved inside the rail vehicle shed at Maymorn. This was made possible by track work completed earlier in the day.

This is the culmination of many years work on the shed and track, and adds to the number of historic rail vehicles in the shed.

18 February 2013

Baldwin Wb steam locomotives

On a snowy August 2008 morning Wb 292 and Wb 299 arrived at Maymorn from Paekakariki. Their journey here begun about 50 years ago when they were dumped into a river near Seddonville on the west coast of the south island as river protection.

In 1989 Hugh McCracken salvaged the two engines and moved them north with the intention of restoring them to service. The locomotives are stripped to components, frames and boilers being the largest recognisable portions.

31 August 2008