Four diesel electric locomotives return to Australia
The Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation (KCRC) today said farewell to four diesel electric locomotives. All four locomotives are returning to Australia after serving KCRC and Hong Kong for half a century.
The four diesel electric locomotives are respectively, number 52, the Lady Maurine; number 53, the H.P. Winslow; number 54, the R. Baker; and number 55, the R.D. Walker. The oldest of the four, locomotive number 52, the Lady Maurine, was named after the wife of former Governor Sir Alexander Grantham.
Built in 1954, the Lady Maurine entered service in September 1955 as KCRC’s second diesel electric locomotive. Together with the Hong Kong’s first diesel electric locomotive, the Sir Alexander, named after the then Governor, Lady Maurine heralded the transition from the age of steam-driven locomotives to the age of diesel. The other three locomotives arrived in Hong Kong in 1957 and entered service the same year.
When KCRC’s passenger service became fully electrified in 1983, KCRC’s diesel locomotives began hauling freight and engineering trains, a task they performed until 2004 when they were replaced by new environmentally friendly locomotives.
In 2004, KCRC restored Hong Kong’s historic the Sir Alexander to its original appearance and donated it to the Hong Kong Railway Museum, where it is now on permanent display.
As for the Lady Maurine, after her many decades of service in Hong Kong, she and her colleagues set sail for Australia today where they will continue to serve the railway systems there.
After serving KCRC for nearly 50 years, four diesel electric locomotives today begin their journey to their original home, Australia.