Another E&H Website extract:
"From 1964, due to deterioration of some original tenders and reservations about their limited coal and water capacity, several of the 35 Class, including 3526, received standard goods turret tenders (the Commonwealth Engineering type dating from 1950), which became available after scrapping of some of the Standard Goods locomotives they were built for. These tenders provided significantly more range, but did nothing for the appearance of the class. Although it did have a turret tender for a brief period in the 1960’s, locomotive 3526 is currently fitted with an original type tender (Tab No. 1309), which came from locomotive 3519 in 1967. Also in this period, part of the valance over the slide bars & crossheads was removed on some locomotives, presumably for easier servicing. Locomotive 3526 was one of the those affected. "
Those points are true, & 26 was fitted with a Turret tender after its last Cardiff overhaul.
The aspect regarding the cover strips on the front valance & removal, that was a basic 2 stage affair, whereby there was an early short cut out with a cover strip over it, by the early 60's the cover was removed & the small access point for oiling was left off. While this helped both maintenance staff & drivers to access the area, it still was a hindrance for them. The decision to complete the cut out to a larger recess was made by the fitting staff at BMD & with the DLE's approval it went ahead.
3526 was always the preferred engine for preservation owing to its link to the Caves Express & one that had been painted in the 3 primary colours black, blue & green. When it was fitted with the Turret tender it caused a bit of stir owing to the preserved engine was to retain the tender which was common to the class.
At the same time some issues arose regarding 26's overall condition including mechanical & boiler condition, which meant a search was carried out to find a replacement, that being 19 that was deemed to be in both a better mechanical condition as well as the boiler also thus the RTM with the NSWGR made the decision to replace 26 with 19 as it represented a better option for the future, & if the report in the Roundhouse news at the time can be found also stated that as 19 had the original type tender it better reflected the class.
Old Roundhouse magazines had articles & reasons why particular engines were chosen against others, also when a change was made the reasons were also published, after the Enfield UP through road accident the decision was reversed the change back to 26 was also reported.