Model review: An all-metal Irish masterpiece

A fine model of the once-numerous Great Southern & Western Railway of Ireland Class 101 0-6-0 steam locomotives has been released by OO Works – and it has all the feel of a quality hand-built product, writes Nigel Burkin

The most numerous steam locomotive class to run in Ireland was the Class 101 0-6-0 tender goods engine designed by Alexander McDonnell for the Great Southern & Western Railway (GS&WR) and constructed between 1866 and 1903. 

Records indicate that the first locomotive was a rebuild of an earlier 0-4-2 locomotive which eventually became a member of the class.

Article continues below...
Two liveries are available — CIÉ black and the common all-over grey with yellow markings and pale green ‘flying snail’ logo as shown in this picture.

The first new build locomotive was started in 1867, and the end total was 119 locomotives, including rebuilds.

Some records indicate that the fleet total was 111, but other records suggest that this was because there was never more than that in service at any one time during their long working lives. 

Most of the locomotives were built at the GS&WR’s works at Inchicore, the rest being constructed by outside contractors such as Beyer Peacock.

Article continues below...
During an Irish visit in the very early 1980s, Pete Kelly pictured the preserved Class 101 No 184 with a special train.  

As is usual with large fleets of long-lived locomotives, the Class 101 received numerous changes over the years, including rebuilding with new boilers and the fitting of Belpaire fireboxes and superheating.

Tenders also varied, with both the superheated locomotives and those with round-top fireboxes receiving larger tenders with more modern underframes and springing fitted to the side of the frames. 

Many round-top boiler engines retained the original small tender with outside springing on the side of the tender above the frames.

Article continues below...

For the full article and to view more images, see the March 2019 edition of Modelling – available now!

For a complete list of stockists and how to get your copy, visit:

Article continues below...

Railway Reads

From the history of steam through to 21st century rail transport news, we have titles that cater for all rail enthusiasts. Covering diesels, modelling, steam and modern railways, check out our range of magazines and fantastic subscription offers.

Get The Railway Hub Weekly Round-up

Enter your e-mail address below and you will receive weekly rail news straight into your inbox...

You can unsubscribe at any time.

About the Author