Essex 21-tonne steam engine falls off lorry trailer

  • 21 May 2014
  • From the section Essex
Giant Panther steam engine on the roadside Image copyright Barleylands
Image caption The Giant Panther steam engine tipped off the low-loader in Crays Hill

A 21-tonne steam engine that tipped off a low-loader and "slid down a road" could cost more than £100,000 to repair, its owners said.

The 1917 Fowler engine, worth £250,000, came off the trailer in Crays Hill, Essex just missing an electric pylon.

The engine was being returned from its inaugural appearance, following a full restoration, at Young Farmers event near Chelmsford.

"The primary thing is that no-one was hurt," said the owners.

Image copyright Barleylands
Image caption "We had to make sure the road was closed before we vented the steam from the engine," said Phil Burrows
Image copyright Barleylands
Image caption The road was closed for almost four hours while the engine was recovered

Phil Burrows, from Barleylands farm park, who owns the Panther said they were "unsure" what caused the incident at about 19:00 BST on Sunday.

"I got the scene and wanted to make sure no-one was hurt and the lorry diver was OK. Machines and metal can be replaced but people can't.

"The driver was devastated and the chap who looks after it was a bit distraught at the state of his poor old engine."

The engine had been "lovingly restored from a wreck to working condition" over the last five years, had "just finished its repair" and was on "its first outing before our country show in September," said Mr Burrows.

"It took about two hours with three cranes to right it and then another hour to get it onto the low-loader.

Image copyright Barleylands
Image caption Three cranes were used to lift the 21-tonne steam engine onto a low loader

"All the steering arms were bent so you couldn't steer it. Due to its age and value, we had to spend a lot of time working out how to lift it as not to exacerbate the damage.

"With a steam engine you cant just buy something off the shelf everything has to be handmade so a lot of craft work and skill goes into it."

The engine's flywheel, boiler and steering mechanism were damaged in the accident.

Image copyright Barleylands
Image caption The 1917 Folwer ploughing engine was one of a working pair at Barleylands farm park

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