The International Steam Pages

Regional Guide to Italian Heritage Steam Part 3

Stefan Paolini continues with information as of August 2008. See also Part 1, Part 2 and his introduction on Italian Railway Heritage and Preservation

The domain was 'not found' by November 2020, as such all the links to it below will be broken.

This is Stefano's gallery for FS Steam:

This is Stefano's gallery for steam on private lines: 

This is some Stefano's b/w pictures: 



The recently formed Associazione Roma Treno Vapore Team have no site of their own and operate based in Roma Smistamento depot with only one loco, FS 2-6-0 625.017.


The oldest railfan club in Italy owns some historic items, but no steam loco. A separate group of volunteers went to form ARTV above..


FS 0-3-0 835.051 is in the transportation museum in Piana delle Orme (Latina). It is raised above the track and the wheels can be turned for teaching purposes.



Only one steam locomotive is assigned to the whole region, FS 2-8-2 940.022. It has been parked inside Sulmona depot since it broke down on a special train in 2001. There is little prospect of it being repaired as this region is hostile to steam.

FAS Sangritana

This private society once operated a network of freight and passenger lines, partly closed in 2004. In 1998 it bought a T.3 type built in 1914 and numbered FAV.6 from the previous owner. This was kept in Tirano shed (Lombardia, site of ALe.883 club) together with the last 4 wheel balcony wooden coach, both were in service along the Sondrio-Tirano line in the 1950s, before the line became part of FS. On arrival in Abruzzo, the duo were first kept under cover in Castel di Sangro terminal depot, but when Sangritana decided to close almost all the line, they moved the loco (not in steam of course) and coach to the actual depot at Lanciano. They were last used for some movie scenes and for a theatre show as backdrop, but their future is uncertain.



A hostile region, with nothing of real historic interest. They do run some tourist charters, with old coaches nicely restored, but hauled by modern diesels.... Suffice to say they have equipped 1930 coaches with air conditioning necessitating ugly external boxes for the AC motors.



In this region we have two historical locations, but there is no steam service. In Taranto depot, volunteers of ATSP take care of some items, this is their website: They host a FS 835 class 0-6-0 835 in poor condition which they recovered from a plinthed site inside a military installation. In Lecce another group, called AISAF is dedicated mainly to other non FS relics.


They operate a museum situated inside an old shed in part of the Lecce depot, which is now being rebuit. Among very rare FS and private line (FSE) items here, there are these steam locos: FS 2-6-0 905.043, FS 0-6-0 835.244. FSE 0-8-0 n°? belongs here but is actually stored in the Lucato Termica boiler repair facility in Piemonte. None of these is working.



The only club is "Vaporiera Calabria Express", based in Reggio Calabria depot. It has charge of just two locomotives, one is FS 2-8-0 740.244. However, the club barely exists and is almost totally inactive Even then the region is hostile to steam and DTR totally ignorant about historic trains. No website is available. No less than 4 981 class 0-6-0 rack locos are in Cosenza depot awaiting their fate. 981.005 was used in 1992 in an abortive attempt to bring back part of the closed rack line to life. After that, nothing...


In the mid-1980s the Ferrovie delle Calabria 950mm gauge network started a program of steam trains with 2 locomotives restored to life with EU funds. Since when things have steadily deteriorated. In Cosenza depot there are 0-8-0 Borsig 353 (boiler certificate expired in 2007) 2-6-0 Breda 403 (boiler certificate expired in 1996). 403's boiler was overhauled by Lucato Termica and returned in 2003, but the loco is still a kit of parts waiting to be assembled 5 years laters. In Catanzaro - but most of time in Cosenza - the sole working steam available is 2-6-2 Breda rack locomotive 504. Built for use on the Catanzaro Lido-Catanzaro Cittą rack line, it cannot be used on its home line because there are no suitably experienced staff left. So it has been diverted to Cosenza - Sila line, where there are no rack sections. In Gioia Tauro, terminal of the other FC system, the only steam surviving is 2-6-0 188, which has not worked since the 1960s.



This region is totally devoid of the concept of tourism on wheels and overall of steam trains. The only sad representation of history is the national railway museum (click for James Waite's report) which is discussed in the introduction to these summaries. No official website is provided for the museum, and this page on my site: There also are these nice pages of a friend of mine : and Locomotives here preserved are all from FS but one: with separate tender: 2-6-0 625.030, 2-6-0 640.088, 2-6-2 680.037 last existing and prototype to 685 class, 2-6-2 685.068, 2-8-0 735.128 and 2-8-0 736.114 both former USATC, 2-8-0 740.115 reconverted from a Franco Crosti 741 just for the museum, 2-8-0 Franco Crosti 741.137, 0-10-0 477.011 former KKstB, 2-10-0 480.017 the last existing, little 0-6-0 290.319 the last example of Bourbonnaise dating back to the end of the 19th century and Bayard replica 2-2-2 of 1939; tank locos are: little 0-6-0T 899.006 of 1898 former KKstB, 0-6-0T 835.001, 0-6-0T 851.110, 2-6-0T 875.039, last 0-8-0T 896.030, 2-8-2T 940.033, last and incredible 2-6-2 910.001, 2-2-0T FS 850.022 formerly of MMO private line around Monza and "the cube" 0-4-0T 800.008 with vertical boiler. There are two rack locomotives, 0-6-0T R.370.023 (950mm gauge) and  0-6-0T 980.002, very rare and prototype to class 981  and one last 950mm gauge loco, 2-6-0 R.302.019.



The recently formed (and only) club in Palermo (Trenodoc) has no steam loco assigned.


Apart some 740s in various towns and in very various kinds of condition, the only really interesting locos are 950mm gauge 2-6-0 R.301.027 in Marsala, in dreadful condition, 950mm rack 0-6-0 R.370.012 plinthed in Catania station, also two 0-6-0T preserved by FCE: one is plinthed near Catania shed, the other one and bigger one (built in England) is the "Mascali", preserved inside the shed at Bronte, near Etna volcano. None is likely to run again!



The new club SARDEGNAVAPORE ( ) has returned 2-8-0 740. 423 to steam and in 2007 they started 
some trains. Next they hope to bring the big 2-8-0 744.003 back to life, right now it is plinthed inside Cagliari station.

FDS Ferrovie della Sardegna

Thanks to some EU funds given in mid-1980s, FDS repaired some small locomotives to start a tourist program since 1986. After some 20 years many changes have come these trains are still crowded, but only on some lines.Other lines - less known but maybe more beautiful - are all but closed or don't see any kind of tourist charter as in the past. The Cagliari system in its best years had 3 steam locos working. Of Reggiane 2-6-2 400 and 403, with Caprotti valve gear and the oldest SLM Winthertur "Goito" 2-6-0 43, only 400 is still working. Other interesting locomotives (like a Mallet or an articulated loco using the Klien-Linder system) are still waiting better times in Monserrato depot, but as ever there is no money. The central system of Macomer has its lonely Breda 2-6-0 n°5, restored in 1989, expired in 1997 and never repaired. Finally the north network of Sassari is almost closed. Of the entire 150km line from Sassari to Tempio and Palau only the Sassari-Nulvi 25km is open and on this remaining part tourist trains are a rarity. Overall they are not with steam, because the two locos restored in 1987 are now both dumped in the open air at the depot. They are 2-6-0 nn° 3, stored in 2002, and 5, stored in 1997. Another 2/3 locos of the same type have been left to rust away at Tempio and Olmedo stations.

Click here for Part 1.

Click here for Part 2.

Rob Dickinson