Posts Tagged ‘Golden Arrow’

My good friend, excellent modeller and proprietor of 247 Developments Brian Mosby has advised me that he now has produced in his vast etched range Golden Arrow headboard and Arrows that adorned either Rebuilt Bulleid pacifics or BR Britannia 70004. He has also produced the rectangular style headboard used when Bulleid 1Co-Co1 diesel 10202 was used during 1954 on the prestigious Pullman service.

247 Developments Golden Arrow plates

The famous ‘Golden Arrow’ name was first used in 1929, although the origins of the service dates back as afar as 1882 and the final service ran on 30th September 1972. Unlike the ‘Night Ferry’ service passengers would travel by ferry from Dover or Folkestone to Calais where they boarded a similarly prestigious French train under the French name Flêche d’ Or. Ten all-new Pullmans were built from 1949 and entered service as the “Festival of Britain Golden Arrow” on 11th June 1951.

21c1 hauls the the Press Run for the inauguration of the post war “Golden Arrow” on 13th April 1946. The larger Arrow can be seen on the casing side. (GRM collection)

Before WWII the “Golden Arrow” was usually worked by Lord Nelson class locos, For the resurrected post war service the first locomotive used was 21C1 Channel Packet, although though from 1946 a Bulleid light pacific. When in original form as well as the headboard a large arrow was carried on the side of the casing.

34100 Appledore on the last steam hauled Golden Arrow, picture courtesy of Mike Morant

A smaller arrow was used affixed to the smoke deflectors of rebuilt Bulleid light pacifics. Although between 1956 and 1959 No. 35015 Rotterdam Lloyd was the only rebuilt Merchant Navy to be used and and for a while in the early1950s, BR Britannia 70004 William Shakespeare. Light pacific 34100 Appledore hauled the last steam worked Golden Arrow on 11th June 1961 when electric traction took over with what were to become Class 71 locomotives.

In addition 247 Developments stock other SR named train headboards, numerous BR(S) smokebox door number plates for many ex SR classes, dated smokebox door roundels for the Bulleid pacifics and SR Engine Head Signal route discs. Brian’s products are of excellent quality and I can wholeheartedly recommend them.

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Baggage trucks has been used on South Eastern and Chatham Railway (SECR) and subsequently Southern, Continental boat-train services but these original 6 wheel vehicles ceased being used at the onset of World War 2. When boat-train services resumed in 1946 simple goods stock ‘Conflat D’ wagons were initially used until it was decided by the Southern Region in April 1950 that the Golden Arrow service required two specific baggage trucks once again. Two good wagons (Nos 39582 & 39614)  were duly converted, painted in passenger crimson lake (side rails only), renumbered S4207/8 and could be seen loaded for four SNCF boxes. They were given the British Railways operating code of Carriage Truck – Open (CTO). The livery changed to green in June 1956 and they lasted until February 1961 when they regained their original goods stock running numbers and livery.

Marc Models Golden Arrow Baggage Truck

Marc Models Golden Arrow Baggage Truck – CTO

My friends at Marc Models are in the process of producing an etched kit for these two baggage trucks, including their boxes and although slightly outside own modelling period I have been privileged to have been give one of the test samples to have a look over.  As with all Marc Models  products (see my Talking Stock #5 post about the Cinema Coach and Inspection Saloon models from their stable here) the quality is exceptionally high, and dimensionally accurately matches the drawing available, figure 22, in Mike King’s An Illustrated History of Southern Wagons, Volume 4 (OPC, 2002) and available pictures. The inset floor etch currently slightly too narrow but this is known to Mike Radford of Marc Models (and indeed the issue was advised to me by Mike) and is being corrected, which is of course the purpose of such a test etch and assembly, the brake handle is also currently missing.

A higher view of the Marc Models CTO showing the lifting eye detail on each of the containers

A higher view of the Marc Models CTO showing the lifting eye detail on each of the containers

The details are of a high level and include the various chain anchor points to hold the boxes down along with, as you would expect, all the fine underframe details and brake rigging. The boxes themselves are exceptionally fine including their vents, doors complete with mesh panels, end ladders and handrails giving access to the lifting eye included on the roofs. The lifting eyes has been the subject of some discussion and doubters but Marc Models do have photographic evidence, which I have seen, showing the eyes as they have be reproduced here in miniature.

This kit, once released by Marc Models, will be invaluable to anyone trying the model the correct Golden Arrow formation between mid 1950 and February 1961.

 

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