4458 is one of those non-desscript workhorses built for the NSWGR which has more than paid its way over the last five decades.
Entering service in February 1961, sadly I don't have a few photograph of it in pristine condition;whenever I or members of my train-hunting family came across 4458 it always looked a bit shabby, or slightly ridiculous.
One of our earliest shots of 4558 was grabbed at South Grafton loco depot in the mid 1980s, after it had received the 'reverse' livery introduced in 1979.
A little later on that decade it was caught hauling a passenger express in northern NSW... The patrons of this service that day were fed from a carriage more at home on the Nullabour.
From the sublime to the ridiculous... as it was just in its declining years in government service, 4458 scored a not-quite-right coat of paint. It was then dispatched to work the yo-yo, possibly still the dirtiest train in NSW. Here it is in the early 1900s at Moss Vale.
I am missing a shot of 4458 in another preceding livery... I have the smallest of partial shots of it following 4405 in Central whilst in a red terror livery. This would have preceded its blue period.
Anyway, back to the near past and back to the drab and ridiculous. This time 4458 in drab, while 4488 does ridiculous as Priscella, combining to blast a trippie through marrickville.
Sublimity has been restored as 4458 heads towards its inevitable demise. A couple of years ago the handsome IRA all-silver livery was no sooner applied than the scourge of most Alcos, oil leaks, sprang amidships.
And then I rediscovered this veteran at perhaps its own Boot Hill... resting out the back of Goulburn loco in the winter sun only a month ago. It looks like it may be going nowhere fast, job done after 52 years of service?