Steam Exhibits 2018

We hope these engines will be at the rally this year. More details as they are confirmed.

Road Locomotives

These large and powerful traction engines were designed for hauling loads of up to 100 tons on long journeys. They had faster gearing and were better sprung to cope with the increased road speed.  Another feature was the water tank under the boiler to allow greater distances to be travelled between water stops.

  1. McLaren Compound  Road Locomotive “The Emerald”Built 1911.  8nhp. This engine was exported new to Tasmania and spent its working life there until 2003 when it was brought back to the UK and extensively restored.  It has  been extensively refurbished. 
    Owned by Eamon & Mary  McAleenan, Co Louth.
  1. McLaren Compound Road Locomotive “Fred”Built 1917. Works No 1497. Exported new to Patagonia in South America  where it was used for haulage until returning to England in 2002.  Purchased by Glynn Bros in 2004 who have completely restored the engine.  The work has included a new firebox, boiler, tender and a new set of gears.
    Owned by Glynn Bros., Carlow.
  1. McLaren Compound Road Locomotive “Jim”Works No 701. Imported from Australia.
    Owned by David Glynn

Showmans Engines

These were Road Locomotives or Steam Tractors adapted for the use of travelling Showmen.  A large Dynamo can be seen located on a bracket at the front of each engine and this is driven using a belt from the flywheel of the engine to provide the power to run and light the fairground.  They were also used to tow the rides between fairs and were traditionally finished with ornate paint work and twisted brass fittings.  

  1. Fowler R3 Showmans Road Locomotive ‘Headway’Built 1920. 8nhp. 3 Speed. Works No. 15117. Weight 18 tons. Owned since 1996 by Paddy McKendry & Son Kilrea 
  1. Garrett Showmans Tractor “Sampson”Built 1919.  Reg. No. TC 64. This engine was fully restored including a new boiler and firebox with all gears and motion work being overhauled. This work was carried out by its current owner Paddy Denby, Co Wexford.
  1. Garrett Showmans Tractor “Maeve”Built 1918. This engine spent 4 years in France during the First World war. It then operated fairgrounds in England for the rest of its working life. Purchased in 1995 by its current owner Finn Lynch, Co. Louth. Maeve has just undergone a major refurbishment.

The Agricultural Engine

The most common type of engine to be seen in the countryside, they were designed to provide the means of driving machinery to carry out tasks such as threshing corn, stone crushing, timber sawing  and also general haulage of agricultural and other goods. The development of the internal combustion engine and the rapid advance in the design of the agricultural tractor meant that these engines were largely made redundant well before the end of their useful working life. The outbreak of war in 1935 saw engines in some parts of the country brought back into service for the war effort and saved many from the cutting torch of the scrap man.

  1. Aveling & Porter Traction Engine “Lady Ann”Built in 1908 Works No. 6573. Reg. No. CA 6333
    Owned by Billy Carter.
  1. Burrell Single 5hp Single Crank Compound Traction Engine. Built 1904. IY36. Owned by the Glynn Brothers, Co Carlow.
  1. Burrell Compound Traction Engine “Patricia”Built 1917. 6nhp.
    Owned by Ivan Glynn, Rathoe Co. Carlow.
  1. Foster Single Cylinder Traction Engine. “Pioneer”Built 1914 Works No 13111 8nhp. Supplied new to J.W. Desborough & Sons, Wiggenhill ,Kings Lynn. Purchased in 1994 by the present owner who carried out and extensive overhaul over a period of six years, including a new firebox, boiler barrel and backhead and tubes. Owned by William Carlisle, Ballynahinch.
  1. Foster Traction Engine, Works No. 14636, 7nhp “Border Queen 2”Built in 1936. This was one of the last traction engine built in the UK and was supplied new to W.E Patterson, Co Tyrone.  It had a very short working life of only 5 to 6 years threshing.  
    Purchased in 1990 by present owner Declan Lordan from Co. Cork  
  1. Fowler Single Cylinder Traction Engine “Tamneymore”Built 1923. Type A9. This engine bought new by WJL Gray, Bangor in 1940. Bought by Patrick Bradley Ltd, Kilrea for use in their quarry business. It was sold to W. Smith, Scotland in 1973 who restored it.
    Purchased in 2008 and brought back from Scotland by the present owners Joe Bradley & family, Kilrea.
  1. Fowler Compound Traction Engine “Kilmolin Princess”Built 1926.  Works No 15659. 7nhp. Originally  purchased by Tipperary Co Council. It has been in the family since 1977.  Totally rebuilt over the past two years. Owned by Brian and Ross Keegan, Naul, Co. Dublin.
  1. Marshall Single Cylinder Traction Engine “The Farmers Friend”Built 1889.  Works No 17287.  Acquired by the late John Rochford in 1967.  Rallied until 2005, then fully restored over the next 5 years by John Joe, Ray and Willie Rochford and returned to the rally scene in 2010. Owned by John Joe, Ray and William Rochford, Co. Wexford.
  1. Marshall Single Cylinder Traction Engine “Ryan”Built 1914. Works No 66134. 6nhp. This engine was supplied new to a customer in Cork and spent all its working life in Southern Ireland. It was purchased and overhauled by the late Hector Connelly and his son Terry in the early 1970’s who rallied it for many years. Owned by Ryan Watterson, Dromara, Co Down.
  1. Marshall Single Cylinder Traction Engine “Maid of the Mist”Built 1907. This engine was purchased in Cork in 1978 and extensively restored by Paddy McKendry. It has been rallied for many  years and  is now 110 years old. Owned by Rodney McKendry, Kilrea.  
  1. Marshall Single Cylinder Traction Engine “Colleen Bawn”Built 1900.  Sold new to the Keating family of Spink, Co. Laois.  Sold on to the Fleming family of The Swan, Co. Laois.  It was one of the first steam engines at the Stradbally Rally, and continued to be rallied there for many years.  It was then put on display in the Stradbally Museum for a number of years until changing hands again and went to N. Ireland where it was fully restored. Purchased in 2012 by the Kelly family of Gorey, Co. Wexford.
  1. Marshall Single Cylinder Traction Engine “Uncle George”Built 1912. 7nhp. This engine spent all its working life in Sussex, Kent in the ownership of Hobdens and Sons Threshing Contractors. An extensive restoration programme has just been completed with the engine being completed at the beginning of April 2016. Owned by Ben Tomkins, Co. Carlow.
  1. Marshall Single Cylinder Traction Engine “Charlie”Built in 1919. 6nhp. Works No,72446. This engine spent all its working life in Carlow where it still resides. It was restored to its present condition by the late Norman Sixsmith. Now owned by his grandson Charlie Glynn.
  1. Ransomes, Simms & Jefferies Single Cylinder Traction Engine“Lily”Built 1897.  Works No 11412.  7nhp. This is believed to be the oldest working Ransomes in preservation.
    Owned by Stuart Glynn, Templepeter, Rathoe, Co Carlow.
  1. Ransomes, Simms & Jefferies Compound Traction EngineBuilt 1932.  Works No. 42035. Used for threshing in Lincoln area of England and retired from service 50 years ago. Came to Ireland October 2009. Owned by Finn Lynch, Co Louth.

Steam Tractors

These engines were a smaller

  1. Burrell Compound Tractor “Lorna Doone" Built 1927. Reg. No. YB 9360.  Works No 4062. This engine spent its working life with WJ King Somerset. Purchased by the late Tom Bermingham in1996.  Now in the care of the Bermingham family, Rathcoole, Dublin.
  1. Ransomes, Simms & Jefferies Compound Traction Engine. Built 1927.  Works No. 39070. 4nhp. Reg. No. IJ 5347. Built in 1927 and exhibited at the1928 Royal Dublin Spring Show and was for sale at £300.  Nothing is known about the engine from then until it was purchased in the 1940’s by William Manley of Baltingglass, Co. Wicklow, who was the last working owner. It was purchased in 1998 for major restoration by the present owners, the Huey family of Browndod, Larne. 
  1. Wallis & Stevens 3 Ton Tractor “Patience” built 1905 New to Thomas Moy & Sons, Colchester, England where it was initially used to haul coal before being purchased by a company in Guilford, Surrey who used it in market garden produce haulage. In the mid 1920’s Greggs of Larne shipped the engine to Northern Ireland where it went into use in a quarry near Newtownards. Hallidays of Poyntzpass were using the tractor for sawing timber in the early 1950’s which is where it was last used commercially before being purchased  by the late Jack Wallace in 1969 for preservation. Work did not commence until 1997 with completion in 1999 when it first appeared at Ballymena Steam Rally. In 2003 it was shipped to the Great Dorset Steam fair to appear with the 3 other 3 ton Wallis & Steevens Steam Tractors for the 100th Birthday of Doc Ramones Engine, ‘Goliath’.  The engine is now owned by Ivor Wallace, Ballymoney.

Road Rollers

These are probably the best known type of steam engine. They were manufactured in large numbers in a range of weights from 4 tons upwards and could be found still working on road making and repairs up until the early 1970’s when all other forms of steam traction had mostly been abandoned. Manufacturers includes names such as Fowler, Aveling & Porter and Wallis & Stevens.

  1. Aveling & Porter R10 RollerBuilt in 1913, this has just been restored by the Shivers Brothers, Castledawson. This will be its first show and no photos of the full engine have been released yet.
  1. Fowler Compound Road Roller T3B. Built 1934.  Weight 8 ton. Owned by Cathal Brady, Co. Kilkenny.
  1. Fowler Compound Road Roller. Built 1926 Works no 16783. Worked for Aberdeen Council in Peterhead from new. In 2000 the roller had a new boiler barrel and firebox fitted then in 2014 further work was completed including new lagging, canopy, differential gears and bearings boiler tubes and back plate. The original tar spraying belly tanks have been re fitted and the roller painted in original Fowler colours by Heritage Painting. Owned by Tom Tynan, Co. Carlow.
  1. Wallis & Stevens Advance Roller. Built 1928. Works No 7991.  Weight 10 Tons.  Supplied new to George Wimpey and Co. Hammersmith,London in 1929.  Purchased by the present owner in 1992 and extensively restored over a three year period.  Owned by Gilbert Armour, Carnearny Road, Ladyhill, Antrim.
  1. Wallis & Stevens Advance Roller “Pride of Glenelly”Built in 1934. Works No. 8088 Weight 8 tons. Purchased new by road contractors Mitchell, Nutt & Colgan, Derry. Restored originally by Paddy McKendry, Kilrea who sold it to the late John Hurrell in 1979 whose grandson sold it to the late Eric Wilson in 2000 and whose family sold it to Alfie McGarvey in 2016 who has recently refurbished the roller. Owned by Alfie McGarvey, Plumbridge 

Portable Engines

Portable engines were steam engines that were not self propelled and needed to be towed from job to job behind a team of horses. To a man such as Thomas Aveling the spectacle of portable engines being dragged around by teams of horses when the engines had more than sufficient power to move themselves seemed nonsensical and "an insult to mechanical science”. In 1858 he adapted Clayton, Shuttleworth & Co portables by attaching a chain from the flywheel to a cog on a rear wheel and in 1859 the first was built.

  1. Ransomes Simms and Jefferies Portable Engine “Fred”Built 1898. 
    Owned by Alfie McGarvey, Omagh.

Steam Wagons

Between 1898 and 1091 the ‘War Office’ and the ‘Liverpool Self Propelled Traffic Association’ organised Commercial Vehicle Trials. From that emerged the Overtype Wagon with the engine located over the boiler. This particularly British design, which dominated the market for the next 25 years, was initially produced by Mann & Foden. A number of other manufacturers developed overtypes but Foden remained the leading producer.

  1. Foden 5 Ton Steam Wagon. Built in 1916. Reg. No. M8681. Works No. 6350 This wagon was sold new to the Lytham Ship Building Company and worked in the Liverpool area. It then spent some time in Dorset and was named ‘The Dorset Rambler’.
    Since 1977 it has been owned by Bernard O’Gorman, Co. Kildare


At rallies people often ask what job the miniature engines did in the days of steam. The fact is that all the miniature engines are in fact scale models of full sized engines. Many of these have been built within the last 30 years. They are built by enthusiasts to learn or display their skills. They are referred to as 9 inch, 6 inch, 4 inch etc. This refers to the inches to the foot ratio so a 6 inch is 1:2 ratio or half scale and a 4 inch is a 1:3 ratio or third scale.

  1. Burrell 9” ScaleCompleted April 2017. This will be its first rally.
    Owned by Mickey Brannigan, Castlewellan. 
  1. McLaren  6” Scale Road Locomotive “Star of the County Down”Built over a period of 8 months in 2010 and took part in a road run from Dublin to Cork in July 2010.
    Owned by Michael Brannigan, Castlewellan. 
  1. Garrett 6" Steam Waggon Built 1990
    Owned by Vincent Fennelly, Burton Hall, Carlow
  1. McLaren 5” Replica Road LocomotiveBuilt 2011 by Eamon McAleenan for his grandson Adam. This is a scale model of McLaren Road Locomotive “Emerald”
    Owned by Adam Hollaway, Hillsborough, Co. Down.
  1. Garrett 4” Traction Engine - ’Wee Aver’This model is based on a single cylinder 7nhp Garrett Traction Engine.  It was built in 1998 by the late John Cunningham aka ‘Wee Aver’. Owned Chris and David Heatley, Antrim.
  1. Garrett 4” Traction Engine. Owned by Joe Gwynne, Hamiltonsbawn.
  1. Fowler 4” DCC Road Locomotive “Wee Doot”Works No. FB180.  Built by Tom Herron over this past number of years and completed in 2014. Now owned by his grandson, Gary Watterson, Dromara.
  1. Burrell 4” Scale Scenic Showmans Engine. Almost completed the model is modelled off the Burrell Scenic Showman “Ex Mayor”. Built over 3 years by owner Mark Hanna, Lisburn.
  1. Fowler 4” Scale Showmans Engine. “Lady Grace”Previously owned by the late Ivan McMurray the engine is now owned by Alan and Linda McKibbin, Ballynahinch
  1. Burrell 4” Single Cylinder Traction EngineOwned by Mick Kruschel, Co. Cork.
  1. Burrell 4” Single Crank Compound Road LocoOwned by Jim McKillop, Co. Louth.
  1. Case 3” Steam Tractor Driving a 3” Scale Model of a 1920’s Ransome’s Threshing Mill.
    Owned by Seamus Banville, Co. Wexford
  1. Burrell 1.1/2” Traction Engine driving a ThresherOwned by David McConkey, Co. Monaghan.

Fairground Organs

The following Three Exhibits, 44,45 & 46 will be found together:

  1. The Showmans Marenghi Fair OrganThe early history of this Fair Organ is unknown.  It was built by the famous firm of organ builders C.H. Marenghi & Cie at their Paris factory around 1910.  Having a German 89 Key VB Scale, it is reasonable to assume that it was delivered and used by Showmen in Germany. Certainly it was damaged by shrapnel during World War II whilst on a permanent showground in Holland. In the 1960’s it was bought by the Dutch Showman R&W de Boer who have winter quarters in Ulvenhout.  They had it fully restored before travelling the fairgrounds of Holland.  In 1980 it was purchased by the present owner through Arthur Prinsen who converted the ‘Keyless’ system of operation to the more popular ‘Keyed’ system including the cutting of new music books. Owned by The Lord O’Neill, Shanes Castle, Antrim.
  1. Scammell Highwayman “The Banshee”Built 1964. 150hp.  Supplied new to Hamblins Supplies Ltd, Leicester.  It had several subsequent owners and was then purchased in 1986 by the present owner and restored over the years. Used to move the Fairground Organ and Showmans Living Van to site and to provide electrical power to operate the organ. Owned by The Lord O’Neill, Shanes Castle, Antrim.
  1. Southern Showmans Living WagonBuilt 1950.  Purchased from the Cadona family in Glasgow in the early 1970’s and restored over the years. Owned by The Lord O’Neill, Shanes Castle, Antrim.   
  1. Showmans Living WagonLittle is known about the history of this caravan. Believed to have been built around the 1930’s. Owned by William Carlisle, Ballynahinch.

Living Vans

Living Vans were mainly used by Road Rolling Contractors and hauled from site to site behind the Steam Roller. The Roller Driver would live in the van for the duration of the contract, sometimes with his wife and family. Several examples can be seen around the Rally site today.

  1. Workman’s Living Van, built in 1910Owned by McKendry family
  1. Workman’s Living VanOwned by the Herron family
  1. Workman’s Living Van, built in 1948Owned by the Bradley family
  1. Workman’s Living Van.This has been totally built from scratch in 2016 by Colin Dawson, Carrickfergus

Created by David Heatley: