I have a photo of 'SIR JOHN GRICE' in use at the gasworks, sent to me by John Buckland many years ago. While the plate is not all that clear, it can be clearly seen that it is nothing like the plate presently on the loco.
The present plate is cast, with raised letters and edge. The name is in capitals but the letters 'IR' of 'SIR' are about half the height of the other letters.
The original plate appears to be different in these respects:
* Much thinner and probably made from thick sheet of brass.
* Name written in capitals thus' SIRJOHN GRICE'... the letters S, J and G being about half an inch taller than the remainder. Bottom of all letters on same level. The letters are simple, non-serrif, quite thin lines and not as compressed as on the present plate.
* The letters are darker than the plate, so presumably etched or cut into the brass and painted black (or similar) (as was the name 'JOHN BENN' in the well-known photo of that loco (Hainault 861/1886).
* There is no raised edge to the plate (obviously, as it was a flat sheet). Rather there is an etched perimeter line, dark coloured, set about half an inch in from the edge of the plate.
* The four fixing bolts (dome headed) are at the extreme corners of the plate.I trust that this is of some help.
From: Frank Stamford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Monday, 12 January, 2009 3:08:23
Subject: [LRRSA] Peckett locomotive "Sir John Grice" - West Melbourne Gasworks
"Light Railways" No.90 had a photograph of Peckett 0-4-0ST loco "Sir
John Grice" (B/No.1711 of 1926) in service at the West Melbourne
Gasworks. That photo is not very distinct in the area where the
nameplate should be, but it appears the nameplate was either very
flat, or it has dropped off!
I am wondering if anyone knows of any other photos of the loco in
service at the gasworks, showing the nameplate.
The loco is now owned by the Puffing Billy Railway and is in need of a
repaint. It is proposed to paint it as it was when delivered from the
Peckett Company, and the question has been raised as to whether the
nameplate currently fitted is similar to that originally fitted.