Commemorate 100 years of the Merchant Navy with Steam on Merchant Navy Day 3rd September @GWSR

To commemorate 100 years of the Merchant Navy, and in remembrance of all those from various countries throughout the world that served in the Merchant Navy and who lost their lives during wars, conflicts and campaigns, Merchant Navy  Locomotive 35006 ‘Peninsular & Oriental SN Co’ will be running on the Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Steam Railway on Merchant Navy Day – Tuesday 3rd September 2019.
35006 in the sunshine at Toddington

Locomotove No.6,  which was built in 1941 for the Southern Railway and formally named after the shipping company P&O in 1942 – with the unveiling of a grand nameplate on the side of the locomotive,  is based at Toddington station on the Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Steam Railway which runs between Cheltenham Race Course and Broadway in the Cotswolds.

35006 has the signal off at Cheltenham Racecourse (ready to run around rather than head further south)

No.6  will be suitably decorated for the day with a specially commissioned ‘Merchant Navy’ headboard and flying the Red Ensign flags for the occasion. It is intended to have a brief remembrance service at 9.30 am for members of the Merchant Navy Association, at Toddington station, before pulling the 10am departure for Cheltenham.

Following many years of lobbying to bring about official recognition of the sacrifices made by merchant seafarers in the two world wars and since, Merchant Navy Day became an official day of remembrance on 3 September 2000.

Since 2000, Merchant Navy Day on 3rd September has honoured the brave men and women who kept our ‘island nation’ afloat during both World Wars, and celebrated our dependence on modern day merchant seafarers who are responsible for 95% of the UK’s imports.

The Merchancy Navy Asscociation aims to ensure the recognition of the Merchant Navy Veterans and the critical and strategic role of the Merchant Navy in times of war and conflict.
Why 3rd September? –  This date marks the sinking of the Merchant Navy ship – S.S. Athenia in WWII – the very first casualty of the war – torpedoed by a German U-Boat, with the loss of 128 lives, within 10 hours of the declaration of war on 3 September 1939, by Neville Chamberlain and the outbreak of  World War II.
Anyone who wants to come along and see and photograph the train is welcome to turn up at Toddington – entry is free. Anyone wanting to travel, this is a normal service train,  just buy a ticket and jump on board, all are welcome

4 thoughts on “Commemorate 100 years of the Merchant Navy with Steam on Merchant Navy Day 3rd September @GWSR

  1. Thanks for this Graham, a great idea to remember the many thousands of Merchant seaman that gave their lives in WW2 (and WW1 for that matter). As you probably know, if their ship was sunk and hopefully they survived and were eventually picked up it must have warmed their hearts to know that their pay stopped as soon as the ship went down.

    Looked out for you at Railwells today on SWC stand but I learnt you were otherwise engaged.

    Kind regards,

    Richard B

  2. Hi Graham, I hope you are well. I am not! Yesterday a Lord Nelson arrived, a white metal kit, purchased on eBay. Tonight, when the boys were round, we tried running it. It wasn’t too bad but was placed on the front line of the fiddle yard pending a bit of tlc. You can see what happened next! My walking stick fell over caught the loco which plummeted to the floor, which stone tiled! It landed on its cab roof, bending it back and totalling both cab sides. With best will in the world, I doubt it can be bent back, certainly the paintwork would need redoing, it’s already cracking. I thought a schools cab would be a good replacement, either dapol or Hornby. What do you suggest? Thanks, see you around the circuit soon

    Kind regards

    From the pen of

    Charles Stevens


    1. Hi Charles, sorry to hear of your gravity issue, I had a similar thing happen a few months ago with my T14 but able to bend it back into shape. A Schools can would not be correct due to it being designed to suit the Hastings loading gauge (interestingly the cab side window frame although the same as that used for the LN is is mounted the other way) I would suggest looking for a secondhand Bachmann LN body as I am sure the cost of these will reduce now the Hornby one the market?

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