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On the weekend of 21/22 July 2007 celebrations are being planned to celebrate the 80th anniversary of C 17 802. On Sunday, 22 July 2007, Mayor Vernados-Mayor of the Cooloola Shire-will unveil a commemorative plaque attached to C 17 802. This ceremony will occur before the 10.00 am departure.

Here is some infomation on this engine.

The completion of the North Coast Line between Brisbane and Cairns in 1924 created the need for more steam locomotives to handle the increased rail traffic. At that stage the decision to build more of the C 17 class locomotive was taken. The C 17 class of locomotive was a lightweight Queensland design that was suited to the lightweight track and sharp curves of the Queensland Railways. Weighing in at just over 80 tonnes and with eight driving wheels, the C 17 class became the mainstay of the Queensland Railways steam fleet. It could handle the light branch line work and also haul the crack mail trains of the Queensland Railways-in fact 227 of this type of locomotive served with Queensland Railways from 1920 through to 1969 when steam locomotives were finally withdrawn from service.

The need for this type of locomotive was so desperate that the Queensland Government of the 1920’s ordered locomotives from the English firm of Armstrong, Whitworth and Company. These locomotives were completed in England and shipped to Australia arriving in 1927. C 17 class locomotive No 802 arrived from England in 1927 and entered service in July of the same year. The total cost of C 17 802 in entering service was 5011 pounds.

802 worked mainly in the Maryborough region during its working life. This is evident in that most the lights repairs that were carried out on C 17 802 were performed at Maryborough workshops. From Maryborough 802 would have worked the Murgon, Gayndah and Monto branches. In its 42 year career with Queensland Railways, C 17 802 travelled many miles and it was involved in a few incidents. In March of 1953, its tender de-railed at Gayndah. In December 1953, the locomotive was partly de-railed at Monto. In February of 1955, the loco de-railed at Murgon and in May of 1955 it was involved in a collision at Baddow, just outside of Maryborough.

Alterations that occurred to 802 were it received the tender of C 16 511, in April 1957 and this tender was to stay with C 17 802 all its working life. It received a Pyle National Electric light generator during the Second World War and it was re-boilered in 1942, 1947, 1951 1955 and 1961. In the late 1960’s the end of steam locomotives was announced by Queensland Railways and in June of 1969 C 17 802 was condemned. It was donated to the Roma and District Tourist Association where the locomotive of 802 was preserved with the tender of B 18 ¼ 866.

C 17 802 was to remain in Roma until 2000, when it was removed from the park where it had remained for 31 years, by the Mary Valley Heritage Railway. The intention was to restore 802 to working order. In 2003 this was achieved by the MVHR and since then it has run continuously and is the steam motive power of the MVHR fleet. In May of 2003, C 17 802 teamed with C 17 45 to run a special train to celebrate the 5th Anniversary of the MVHR. The only time that C 17 802 has not been in service was during a period from October 2005 to March 2006 when all of its axle-boxes were replaced. During this time the motive power for the MVHR was the Queensland Railways owned AC 16 221 A, which was leased from QR by the MVHR. Since then C 17 802 has continued to be the mainstay and the main attraction for the Mary Valley Heritage Railway. It is amazing to think that a piece of machinery is still performing the work it was designed for eighty years ago.   



Queensland Railways: Service History of 802.
John Armstrong. Locomotives in the Tropics. Vol 2.  1994. ARHS Qld Div.


Here is a picture of C17 802 taken at Amamoor in August 2005 with a 9 car set behind her.

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802 is an awesome loco! I knew her in the park in Roma and never dreamed she would ever run again. It was a surprise to me to ride behind her at MVHR in July 2004 and to learn that she was the "Roma park loco"! My initial reaction was disappointment that it wasn't No 45, that soon changed. Last December I had the wonderful privilege of riding in her cab from Dagun to Gympie, certainly an experience I will never forget. Well done 802 :clap:
Just to add a little more to 802's history.
Maryborough's allocation of C17 engines was reduced from 19 to 3 following the dieselization of the Gayndah - Monto Branch in 1967.
802 spent the last of its working life attached to Ipswich. There it was used on the Brisbane Valley Line as well as coal and local shunting trains.
Here are two photos of 802 in regular service.
The first shows the engine taking water at Esk with 361Dn goods on 12 October 1968.
The second was taken at Toogoolawah on 2nd November 1968. The consist behind the engine is that of the previous evening's 370Up passenger train from Ipswich. The engine would return to Ipswich working a goods train later that afternoon.

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And here is a photo of 802 as a "Park Loco" in Roma in 1997...

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Um...didnt it have a roof over it in the end? Was it the one opposite the motel on the road to Injune? Or was there two engines in parks in Roma?
dateline= Wrote:[cite] Rolls Royce:[/cite]Um...didnt it have a roof over it in the end? Was it the one opposite the motel on the road to Injune? Or was there two engines in parks in Roma?
It was in Apex park on the Injune Road. Not sure about a Motel opposite and I never saw a roof over it. Don't know of any other loco in a park in Roma...
dateline= Wrote:[cite] Graham4405:[/cite]
Quote:[cite] Rolls Royce:[/cite]Um...didnt it have a roof over it in the end? Was it the one opposite the motel on the road to Injune? Or was there two engines in parks in Roma?
It was in Apex park on the Injune Road. Not sure about a Motel opposite and I never saw a roof over it. Don't know of any other loco in a park in Roma...

I think Rollers thinking about the C17 at Jandowae. It had a roof over it from memory!
dateline= Wrote:[cite] geinthend:[/cite]I think Rollers thinking about the C17 at Jandowae. It had a roof over it from memory!
...and still does! :an_wink:
Are you thinking of 253 which was undercover at Munduberra?
Nope, nope, and nope!:bigsmile:

Maybe it didnt have a roof.... might have just been shady. I recall having to spend a day in that old motel (what a dive), and remember having a look at the engine sitting in the park, because I couldnt sleep and went for a walk. It was nearly ten years ago, so anything is possible.