BR 4-6-2 75th Anniversary "Commonwealth Of Australia" Limited Edition
Product Code: R3095
1930s Britain was a place in which luxury, glamour and boundary pushing were all revered and admired, and the railway companies of this era were just as enamoured with these ideas as any industry. Stiff competition existed between them and none more so than that between LNER and LMS, operating main lines on different sides of the country and both wanting to corner the lucrative London to Scotland traffic.
LNER’s Chief Mechanical Engineer, Nigel Gresley, adapted the A3 design knowing that the new locomotives would need to be capable of hauling eight or nine carriages at high speed.
The LNER’s Class A4 Express Pacific locomotive epitomised the fascination of the time with its streamlined, aerodynamic casing designed to optimise the locomotive’s power and speed.
During this decade the world speed record for steam locomotion was being continually broken and in June 1937 the British record was held by LMS at 114mph. LNER, determined to regain its earlier record, pulled together a crew with a reputation for running trains hard. The crew were to run the first A4 to be fitted with the Kylchap double-exhaust pipe but the record attempt was not mentioned until they were on-board. On 3rd July 1938 an LNER locomotive, “Mallard”, reached speeds of 126mph, breaking not only the British record but also the world record. The record remains unbroken to this day.
The Coronation service, which was operated by LNER between London and Edinburgh, began in 1937 to mark King George VI’s Coronation. Their earlier streamlined trains had received much publicity in their silver livery and so a great deal of consideration was given to achieve an appropriately regal feel to their service’s livery. The decision, following numerous trials, was Garter Blue with wheels or Coronation Red.
No.4491, ‘Commonwealth of Australia’ entered service on 22nd June 1937 and was named as part of the Coronation celebrations. One of five ‘Imperial’ engines, locomotive No.4491 had a coat of arms plaque fitted beneath the cab side running number. This particular locomotive’s nameplate was the longest fitted and needed to be made in two pieces. The locomotive was re-numbered as 60012 in 1948 and was withdrawn from service in 1964. Sadly ‘Commonwealth of Australia’ was cut up in 1965 by Motherwell Machinery & Scrap, Wishaw.
- Class: A4
- Designer: Sir Nigel Gresley
- Entered Service: 1935
- Number Built: 35
- Purpose: Express Passenger
- Wheel Configuration: 4-6-2
- Dimensions: 291mm
Detailed Scale model. Not suitable for children under 14 years. Please refer to Safety Notes in enclosed instruction leaflet. Colours and Contents may differ from those illustrated. Please retain these details, and the address , for future reference.