'Holy War' at Bala Lake Railway is miniaturised

24 April 2023
Bachmann Narrow Gauge reveals latest addition to its OO9 scale range, expected to please a loyal army of enthusiasts.

The Bachmann Narrow Gauge model of Holy War depicts the locomotive in its preserved state, with enclosed cab in lined blue livery. Featuring a die-cast boiler and running plate, accompanied by a wealth of separately fitted details including handrails, valves, springs, brake shoes and cab controls, the model promises to capture aspects of the prototype. Models are priced at £149.95 and proceeds from each sale will help the Bala Lake Railway.

The 0-4-0ST wheel formation has "authentically-profiled wheels" running in metal bearings, powered by a coreless motor with flywheel, and with a 6-pin DCC decoder socket for those wishing to use the models with a DCC system. NEM coupling pockets feature at both ends, into which standard OO9 scale couplings are fitted.

Bachmann OO9 Holy War narrow gauge locomotive

‘Holy War’ is in stock now and will be available to purchase from Bachmann's launch partner, the Bala Lake Railway during its ‘Welcome Back Alice and Holy War’ event on Saturday 29 and Sunday April 30, 2023. For those not attending the event, the model can be ordered online now from the Bala Lake Railway's website.

As an additional incentive, the Bala Lake Railway will include a voucher for a free return ticket (valid from May 2 to November 4, 2023) with all models ordered before midnight on Monday May 1 (including models purchased in person during the event). Online orders will not be dispatched until after the event.

Watch a video of the launch of this model, below:

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Locomotive history

One of eleven Alice Class Quarry Hunslet locomotives built for the Dinorwic Quarry in North Wales, Holy War was delivered in 1902 and identified simply as No. 3 – the name Holy War was not given until 1908. The locomotive spent much of its working life on the higher levels of Dinorwic Quarry – for a time being housed in the highest engine shed in Britain at 1,860ft above sea level on the quarry’s Lernion Level.

Withdrawn in November 1967, Holy War was the last working steam locomotive in a Welsh slate quarry and so ended 120 years of quarry steam. Purchased from the quarry in 1968, Holy War moved to Quainton Road in 1970 before being sold again in 1975 – the new owner selecting the Bala Lake Railway in North Wales as its new home.

Bachmann OO9 Holy War narrow gauge locomotive

A full restoration followed, during which an enclosed cab was fabricated and fitted in place of the original open-cab design. The Bala Lake Railway secured Holy War’s long term future when it purchased the locomotive in 1989, decorating it in the mid-1990s in the vibrant lined blue livery as seen today. In 2018, it was time for the locomotive to be overhauled and 2023 sees the return to steam of Holy War alongside sister locomotive Alice – a locomotive that has already been modelled by Bachmann Narrow Gauge.

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