according to head office instructions, as 6104's wheels would still circulate she must not be taken off the train, so, twenty-two minutes late, the ‘Precursor’ shouldered her load of 550 tons and sent the sparks so high climbing Whitmore that they came down cold. The run must have been stirring indeed: twenty-four late at Whitmore, twenty-two at Stafford, fifteen at Rugby and nine at Watford. With a slight check outside Euston the ‘Royal Scot’ drew in eight down.
What amazing feats of prowess those ‘Wessies’ could achieve. With these nostalgic thoughts of a colourful era I looked idly over to the horse dock, and saw a ‘Midland 2' nosing up to the buffer stop - ah well, they don't fit bye-pass valves nowadays."
Wild Duck, Charles Dickens and others achieved similar feats.
Worn out and with LNWR practice out of favour, withdrawals commenced in 1935, and by 1939 only 9 engines remained. British Railways inherited just 3 LNWR express engines in 1948. All had succumbed to the cutter's torch by May of that year with the sole remaining Precursor, 'Sirocco' soldiering on until 1949.
Just before they were cut up, 'Sirocco', the last Prince of Wales and Claughton No 6004 formerly 'Princess Louise' were lined up in 1948 for a photograph at Crewe Works where they were built, in the hope that they'd be saved. Sadly, it was not to be and the last remaining 20th century LNWR express engines were duly despatched. Ten years later and it might have been a different story. The time is ripe to write a new chapter!