This 1905 built locomotive, number 2818 of the Great Western Railway, is an early example of GJ Churchward's 2800 (or 28XX) class heavy freight steam locomotives, with a 2-8-0 wheel configuration. The first, originally numbered 97 and soon renumbered 2800 (hence the class name), was built in 1903 and underwent two years of trials before the first batch of locomotives was built. They were an extremely successful freight locomotive and during the First World War were used on the 'Jellicoe Specials', hauling heavy, lengthy coal trains to the north east coast of Scotland from where they were put on ships to power the Royal Navy Grand Fleet based at Scapa Flow.
The 2800 class were built up until 1919, and a modified version was built from 1938 until 1942. During the life of the 2800 class, most had the frames changed to a curved front, however 2818 retained the 'straight' frames, with a visible step between the main footplate and the footplate above the 'pony' two wheeled truck at the front of the locomotive, which is why it was chosen for preservation as part of the National Collection. It is seen here on display at the National Railway Museum's Shildon outstation known as 'Locomotion'