Sezela No. 4

0-4-0 Side Tank Locomotive

Sezela No. 4 was built by Avonside Locomotive Company in Bristol in 1915, Works Number 1738. It is an 0-4-0 Side Tank locomotive. It was originally supplied to Sezela Sugar Estates, Illovo, Natal, South Africa.

One of six similar locomotives, Sezela worked in South Africa until 1971. Then it was brought to England by Pleasure Rail and kept at the Knebworth house and Wintergreen Railway. Most of its sister locomotives have also been brought back to the UK.

Sezela was restored at Knebworth, appearing in steam at a Leighton Buzzard Railway Gala in the mid 1980s where it distinguished itself by getting stuck on Vandyke Road Crossing!

Circa 1990, Sezela was sold to the Bygone Heritage Village museum, Great Yarmouth. Unfortunately the purchaser had not checked its width - it proved too wide to fit through their platform. Although it was in steam, it was confined to the loco shed.

Sezela was purchased by a WHR member in 1993, although it was not finally delivered to Porthmadog until September 1994. It arrived with a valid boiler certificate. Being a relatively small engine, it should be economical to use, whilst being able to cope with present traffic on the railway. For a while, it was provisionally named 'Ivor', not least because of its similarity to 'Ivor the Engine' popular in children's fiction. However, the engine never actually ran carrying that name.

In December '95, work started on rebuilding this locomotive. This proved to be a more extensive task than had been anticipated. By May '97, it was once again in steam. However, it has since left the Railway.


BuilderAvonside, Bristol 
Works number1738 
TypeSide tank 
Wheel arrangement0-4-0 
Driving wheel diameter24"610mm 
Tank capacityApproximately 200 gallons 
Heating surface- 
Boiler pressure150 psi1.03MPa 
CylindersTwo off, 8¼" x 12"210mm x 305mm 
Tractive effort- 
Weight9½ tonsin working order
Maximum axle load- 
Arrived W.H.R.1994 
OwnersW.H.R. Member 

green steam locomotive in shed
Sezela No. 4 on-shed at Gelert's Farm Works bearing its original nameplates. 1995.