Unique locomotive for sale




Long-standing readers may remember that, back in July of 2014, it was reported that the old locomotive formerly used on the site of the Cham Paper Group site was to go to a museum in northeast Switzerland. Alas, since the winter of 2014, this old locomotive, known as Marie, has been used only as a works locomotive on sidings owned by a company dealing in railroad stock in Frauenfeld in the canton of Thurgovia.
 
The owner of the company, Jürg Stauffer, very much a railway enthusiast, explained how, as a 26-year-old in 1994, it was his job to travel to Cham to install new brakes on the locomotive. He recalled having to do the work at night, too, so it could be used as normal during the day. “I remember we were young and never thought of asking for any extra pay for this night shift,” he recalled. However, it was at this time he did happen to meet his future wife, who worked at the paper factory in Cham. It was in visiting her he was able to see the locomotive periodically, too.
 
Stauffer explained to the owners of the Etzwilen-Singen railway when they took possession of the locomotive three years ago that it had definite potential to be used on their tracks. Unfortunately, the museum did not have the funds to cover essential repairs, and, as it got colder in 2014, Stauffer received a call from Beat Joos, the chairman of the museum railway line, to go and pick up the locomotive as soon as possible as its batteries were at risk of freezing.
 
Now Marie is up for sale, as mentioned, for CHF 85,000 excluding VAT, though it could be available for hire at CHF 6,000 per month. With Stauffer clearly having some affection for the old locomotive, it is only natural he would prefer it to be put to good use, and suggested it would be nice if it returned to Cham, where it plied the same route for 94 years, perhaps being integrated into some industrial history project.
 
Another railway enthusiast, Daniel Widmer, also from the canton of Thurgovia, has been following the fate of the locomotive closely, too. He wondered whether the Zug Museum of Technical History in Neuheim might like to save it. Alas, it declined to do so, as did the Transport Museum in Lucerne.
 
Bearing in mind all those years of service it gave, Widmer thinks the locomotive’s current fate is rather sad. “She deserves better,” he said.
    
 


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