Locomotive G616 is one of a class of seven shunting locomotives
constructed between 1961/62 by Motorenfabrik Deutz at Köln,
Germany. The locomotives were specifically designed for shunting
and light branch line work. Locomotive G616 entered traffic with
CIE on 4th June 1962, and lasted in service until 2nd May 1977.
The locomotive was officially withdrawn on 29th July 1977.
Following withdrawal by CIE, this locomotive, along with sister
locomotives G611, G613, G615 and G617, were sold to Comhlucht
Siuicre Éireann (Irish Sugar Company). G616 was then used for
shunting at the sugar factory at Carlow. Locomotive G616 was
subsequently moved to the Thurles factory when rail-borne
operations at the Carlow factory ceased. G616 was to remain at
the Thurles factory until it was preserved, along with G617, by
the now defunct Great Southern Railway Preservation Society (GSRPS)
in the mid-1980s. Both G616 and G617 were then moved down to the
GSRPS’s base at Mallow, where as start was made on their
However, this project eventually floundered in 1990, and both
locomotives were then sold to the Deutz Operators Group (DOG) in
November 1990. The DOG was made up of four of the then Committee
members of the ITG, who stepped in to purchase the locomotives
to prevent them from being sold for scrap. At the time, the ITG
were unable to take the two locomotives as the Group had not yet
secured an operating base. Whilst they were at Mallow some
restoration work was carried out on G616, however, as both
locomotives were stored outside, and off their wheels, the scope
of work that could be carried out was extremely limited.
Once the ITG had secured its base at Carrick-On-Suir, ownership
of both G616 and G617 was transferred to the ITG in August 1993.
Both locomotives were re-united with their wheels, and were then
moved by low-loader to Carrick-On-Suir. Once at Carrick-On-Suir,
work commenced on stripping down G616. Over the next three years
good progress was made on its restoration, with most of the
frame and cab fittings being cleaned up and repainted. However,
a lack of volunteers, coupled with other various commitments,
meant that work on G616 eventually ground to a halt.
In January 2012 work recommenced on the restoration of this
locomotive. The cab interior was repainted and the cab refitted
back onto the frames. Most of the equipment removed from the cab
is gradually being replaced. The inside of the driver’s desk has
also been repainted in grey gloss. Many components removed from
the inside of the desk have been repainted and replacement of
some of these components has commenced. The lower section of the
desk containing the control levers and part of the vacuum system
has been fully repainted inside and outside and is being fitted
out with equipment. The top section of the desk, containing the
gauges, switches and most of the electrical system, has been
rewired and replaced on top of the desk.
Following the replacement of manifolds, and some other minor
repairs, the engine was successfully restarted on 29th September
2012 for the first time in 26 years. Work continues elsewhere on
the locomotive with the replacement of various missing
G617 stored at Mallow whilst under the ownership of the
G616 under restoration at Carrick on Suir.
Bob Twigg starts the engine
of Deutz locomotive No. G616 for the first time on 29th
September 2012, watched over by Aidan Brosnan. Photo: Aidan
The interior of the control
desk of locomotive No. G616 is shown during the rewiring process
on 29th September 2012. The desk has now been re-fitted back
inside the cab. Photo: Aidan Brosnan.
The re-assembled control
desk was positioned back inside the cab of locomotive No. G616
on 3rd November 2012. Photo: Aidan Kehoe.