Welcome to the 

Owners and operators of 2 x CLASS 52 DIESEL HYDRAULIC LOCOMOTIVES on the 
Severn Valley Railway....... and at large.

You know the old saying?


Well here's the ideal opportunity to prepare for all that sunshine when you're out on your daily walk - please remember social distancing!

The new WLA baseball cap - 

full details in the online store.

Hydraulics on the China Clay Lines

Fantastic book from Bernard Mills with all colour photos covering the china clay lines in Cornwall from the sixties to the present day. Westerns, Warships, Class 22's,Class 50's and  other diesel electrics all feature. Also HST's and DMU's with some steam rail tours and the Port of Par industrials. Detailed captions explaining the history of these fascinating lines branching off the Cornish main line. Available in the on-line store.


Full details in the on-line store and a baseball cap to follow in the Spring.
The WLA 2020 Calendar has now  sold out. We'd like to thank everyone who has bought one (or two)  & made it the most successful Calendar, sales wise, we have produced since we started doing them in 2011. Many thanks for all your support. We still have copies of the DEPG Calendar for sale should anyone want one (or two).

The Calendar features photo's of all of the DEPG Locomtives on the WSR. The Calendar costs £8 plus £3.00 p&p with 25% of each sale coming to the WLA. Please go to the Online Store for more details.

Latest Edition - Release date 26th September 2019

New to the Online Shop -
Replica Number & Nameplates in Miniature

Ideal for bookmarks and fridge-magnets, or why not collect the full set!

Meet the WLA Sales Team

The Sales Team fielded no less than six members over the Autumn Diesel Gala - who says you can't have too much of a good thing?.

Please let us have any ideas or requests for sales items for next season - no such thing as a daft idea!


From the online shop, or by e-mail request to [email protected]

40 Years on The SVR with D1013 and D1062
Get your copies of these fantastic celebratory booklets size A4, in full colour, and compiled by Mark Townsend from material supplied by our wonderful contributors.

The 40th Anniversary of D1013 and D1062 on the SVR booklets are still available following their publication at the 2018 Severn Valley Diesel Gala . Still hot off the press, these collectable booklets are priced at £7.50 each, or only £12 the pair
Please note that postage for a single or for two booklets is £2.00 UK, and £2.50 for three or four. Postage price on asking for sending overseas. 

IT'S RENEWAL SEASON! Forget the glorious twelfth.... that's gone! NOW it's that time to dig deep and ensure your renewal is safely with us...... BEWARE..... Winter is coming!


NOTE : We can now take payment by credit/debit  card on sales items at the Sales Stand at events! 

Just a quick note about Gift-Aid!

We're in the process of recovering the Gift-Aid monies from HMRC at present, and the exercise has served to remind us of the importance of ensuring your Gift Aid declarations are completed fully on the Membership/Donation Forms whether online or paper copies. Incomplete forms may prevent us recovering hundreds of pounds ....... precious funds when our running costs are only going one way. Please remember to fully complete your form, and send it through where Gift Aid can be claimed. It matters! Many thanks for your support.


Don't forget renewals run from 1st January to 31st December and you can now renew your membership online here! So why not join the growing number of members taking advantage of this simple online facility... you know it makes sense!

Of course, you can always renew using mail or e-mail, and your next edition of WESTERN COURIER magazine will have your membership application form enclosed should you prefer.

For joining information, click here.

For Membership and Renewal, click here.


D1054 - Courtesy of Chris Nuthall "down under" - lovely shot!

Sorry to say that Driver Footplate Experiences on Class 52's for 2019 are sold out. 2020 dates will be published in the Spring. SVR website gives  full details and there are still places for other locos available for this year: 


For details of membership benefits and options, please click on the following link

Why we're here........

The “Westerns” were always a little special, ever since their inception in 1961, and were the final development of the Western Region diesels using hydraulic transmission. Other regions based their designs on electric transmissions utilising large medium-speed diesel engines. The “Westerns” married superb bodywork styling and German-designed high-speed Maybach engines and Voith transmissions to produce a locomotive that was extremely powerful and considerably lighter than an equivalent diesel-electric.

A decision to rationalise the diesel locomotive types on British Rail marked the beginning of the end for the diesel-hydraulics. The “Westerns” were the last survivors and struggled on magnificently despite their neglected state until the final locomotives were withdrawn in February 1977.

With their impressive design, awesome engine sound and fabricated aluminium and steel name and number plates, the “Westerns” had many marks of distinction. All 74 “Westerns” were named, proud names such as “Western Glory”, “Western Thunderer” and “Western Crusader”, and these endeared them to enthusiasts who saw them as the last sign of the spirit and traditions of the Great Western Railway.

The demise of the mighty “Westerns” evoked a fanatical following, the like of which had not been seen since the end of steam traction, and this led to the early efforts of the W.L.A. to preserve an example of the class. The results of these efforts, “Western Courier” and “Western Ranger”, can be seen on the Severn Valley Railway today.

ABOVE: D1009 WESTERN INVADER takes a breather at Reading with the Burngullow-Sittinbourne china clay slurries (the "Clay-freighter" air-braked stock) bound for the Bowater paper plant on 23rd August 1976.

At Reading again is D1054 WESTERN GOVERNOR believed to be returning to Laira for attention on one engine only 23rd October 1976. If anyone has any information on D1054's workings around this date then please contact the Editor at [email protected]