Skip to main content
sales@mediastorehouse.com
Home > The Railway at War > Second World War

Second World War Gallery

Choose from 130 pictures in our Second World War collection for your Wall Art or Photo Gift. All professionally made for Quick Shipping.


US 2-8-0 tender locomotive No. 1604 at Paddington Station, 1942 Featured Second World War Image

US 2-8-0 tender locomotive No. 1604 at Paddington Station, 1942

On December 11th 1942, for the very first time, an American built locomotive steamed into Paddington Station. Acute shortages of locomotives on the GW network due to locomotives being sent overseas caused operational problems that threatened to affect the service the Company could offer to both the government and the general public. This was alleviated in part by borrowing locomotives from other British Railway Companies and also reinstating previously withdrawn engines back into service. In 1942 however, a number of American locomotives were shipped over to Britain to assist the domestic transport network. In a ceremony held at Paddington Station on the 11th December 1942, United States 2-8-0 tender locomotive No. 1604, pictured here adorned with the British and American flags, was formally handed over to Lord Leathers, Minister of War Transport, by Colonel N.A. Ryan, Chief of Transportation for the American Army, who stated that he hoped the locomotive "will do as good work for you as British Engines have done already for us"

© STEAM Museum of the GWR

LMS coach no.6204 converted to an ambulance train car, 1939 Featured Second World War Image

LMS coach no.6204 converted to an ambulance train car, 1939

This official photograph of an ambulance train car was taken on behalf of the Swindon Works Drawing Office in October 1939. This is one of 16 LMS 57ft corridor third class coaches that were converted at Swindon during late 1939 for use in ambulance trains both at home and overseas. Car no. 6204, featured in this image, was converted into an administrative car that formed part of an ambulance train for use on Britain's railways. The administrative car was comprehensively fitted out with a sick officers compartment, kit store, pharmacy compartment, office and medical store. The exterior of the car was painted khaki with a white and red cross in the centre of the body on each side, and it is interesting to note that blackout precautions were taken into account during the conversion of the vehicles with all the external windows of the carriage painted black

U.S. 0-6-0T shunting tank engine No. 1940 in its black War Department livery, 1942 Featured Second World War Image

U.S. 0-6-0T shunting tank engine No. 1940 in its black War Department livery, 1942

This is an unusual inclusion in the photographic collection at STEAM, being an image of a U.S. 0-6-0T shunting tank engine which never actually worked the Great Western network. Nevertheless, this class of engine is still worth a mention as part of the Great Western war story. 382 of these Class S100 engines were shipped over to Britain from America with the intention of them operating on the railways of Europe after D Day. They arrived at the Great Western's Newport Docks from July 1942 from where they were towed to GW sheds where their final assembly was completed and they were run in and steam tested. Whilst the majority of the U.S. 0-6-0's then continued on their journey to Europe, some were temporarily put to use as shunting engines at various GW locomotive depots and 42 were put into storage at the Company's Newbury Racecourse Station where they remained, unused, until 14 were acquired by the Southern Railway after the war. This image shows the rather dusty engine No. 1940 in its black War Department livery