JM Steam Engineering Ltd, established in 2019, aims to provide high quality,
reliable steam engineering for all gauges within the wider heritage steam industry.

With over 40 years joint experience...

in the repair and maintenance of steam locomotives including those operating on the main line JM Steam Engineering Ltd provide consulting on all aspects of Locomotive Repairs and all types of locomotive maintenance as well as other services.

Jonathan Muirhead, Director

Jonathan has over 11 years’ experience within the heritage railway industry. At the tender age of 14 he began volunteering at a local heritage railway and became involved in running the locomotives as well as their maintenance, overhaul and restoration.  During this period, Jonathan was also involved with all aspects of the restoration of “Gervase”, a Manning-Wardle Sentinel conversion.  Successful completion of this project led to its return to use in 2013, initially at a gala at Great Central Railway and then Kent and East Sussex Railway where it had begun its service.  Jonthan is currently involved with the restoration of “Hastings”, a Hunslett locomotive, for the same owner as Gervase.

At 19 years old he began an Apprenticeship in Locomotive Fitting and Repair at The Mid-Hants Railway covering all aspects of locomotive repair, maintenance, overhaul and fabrication. Jonathan was mentored by fellow director Frank Boait through his apprenticeship while working at MHR. During his time at the MHR Jonathan also was an active volunteer on the footplate which he is still enjoys to this day. In 2016 Jonathan was asked to work for Locomotive Services Ltd based in Southall, where he undertook the role of Locomotive Fitter, part of a team maintaining and repairing the LSL mainline fleet. In 2019 after seeing an opening in the market for quality and reliable locomotive repair Jonathan and Frank decided to set up JM Steam Engineering Ltd to provide high quality services to the heritage railway industry.

Frank Boait, Director

Frank has had over 35 years employment as a professional locomotive fitter and engineer.

He was a volunteer at the Quainton Railway centre from its very beginning Learning the basic skills of locomotive maintenance and operation from the handful of skilled enthusiasts who had worked for BR. In 1973 he was offered the opportunity to work full time for the steam railway which had recently opened at Whipsnade Zoo. This position involved both running trains and doing all the necessary servicing and repairs. He assisted in the construction and operation of a 15inch gauge steam railway in the grounds of Blenheim Palace run by the same company.

Following redundancy, he started as a fitter/machinist with a family run engineering business in Leighton Buzzard. It was whilst in this post that he gained the range of experience in many different facets of engineering that have stood him in good stead ever since. Eleven years in this position was ended by an offer to join the Mid Hants Railway as a fitter. Within three years he was promoted to Mechanical Foreman and continued for 25 years.

During this time the MHR ran their own mainline railtours and several of the Mid Hant’s locomotives were passed for operation on the national network. The scope of work during these years covered every aspect of locomotive repairs, including the restoration to main line running condition of the Gresley A4 locomotive “Bittern” – the repairs to which involved the renewal of the front fifteen feet of main frame, and refitting of all three cylinders. The measure of the quality of this overhaul is that Bittern remained the only loco in service to run its full term of ten years without being stopped for serious intermediate repairs and one of the only preserved locomotives passed to run at 90 mph.  In 2016 Frank was asked to work at Southall for Locomotive services Ltd., maintaining locomotives operating on the national network. In 2019 he helped Jonathan set up JM Steam Engineering Ltd.