22 November 2019
The retailer teams up with manufacturers Heljan and Peco to offer a limited number of starter sets to entice modellers into the larger scale.
Named 'The Didcot Survivor', Gaugemaster is offering a Premium Starter Set (GM7000102) containing a Heljan 61XX locomotive, a Gaugemaster Combi Controller, five Peco ST‐700 Setrack Straights, an ST‐725 Setrack Curve, an ST‐U751 Setrack Left Hand Turnout and Power Feed Wires. Instructions for getting started are also included.
Designed by Charles Collett, the GWR 6100 Class was introduced in 1931 as a development of the 5101 Class, the main difference being an increased boiler pressure and subsequent improvement of tractive effort.
There were 70 in the class built between 1931 and 1935 specifically for commuter services from Paddington to various home counties destinations such as Aylesbury, Oxford, Windsor and Reading. Most were looked after by the depots of Old Oak Common, Southall, Slough, Reading and Aylesbury where they stayed until the end of steam on the Western Region in 1965, rarely straying from their home turf.
Following their replacement on passenger duties by first generation diesel multiple units, they ended up on more general duties before they were ultimately scrapped. It was, however, a more happy ending for No. 6106 which ended up as the sole survivor from this class. Having been withdrawn from service in 1967 from Oxford depot, it was bought by a private individual who housed it in the old Taplow goods shed where it was steamed when possible until it was able to move to the Didcot Railway Centre in 1967.
Upon moving to Didcot, No. 6106 was frequently used and occasionally guested at other preserved railways too. It has also featured in several films, most notably "The Bliss of Miss Blossom" where it was painted in psychedelic colours and powered through a faux snowstorm at Taplow much to the surprise of other drivers! Gaugemaster commented "As appealing as modelling 6106 in the previously mentioned psychedelic colour scheme, we’re offering it in GWR unlined green as part of this starter set, which really lends itself to modelling a small shed, goods yard or maybe even your own preserved railway."
For current pricing and availability, visit the Gaugemaster website.