1957 Numbering and Classification
In the early period of British Railways, steam locomotion had continued to be of prime importance. Apart from a growing selection of diesel shunters, there had been almost no development of mainline diesel or electric traction beyond the few locomotives ordered by the 'Big Four' companies.
The 1955 Modernisation Plan heralded big changes in this situation, and from 1957 a new numbering system was used for diesel and electric locomotives ordered by British Railways, including those shunters ordered before 1957, which were renumbered into the new system. All steam and gas-turbine locomotives, and diesel and electric locomotives built to pre-nationalisation orders retained their existing numbers under the 1948 arrangements, though some had a 'D' or 'E' prefix added to their number in error.
Read more about this topic: British Rail Locomotive And Multiple Unit Numbering And Classification
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