06 October 2022
Exciting news for Gauge 1 modellers, a pair of ready-to-run live steam models, to be available in four liveries.
The Great Northern Railway C1 Atlantic 4-4-2s were developed from the smaller boilers C2 Atlantics, the ‘Klondykes’, and built at Doncaster between 1902 and 1908. The class was immediately successful, hauling heavy East Coast express trains but was subjected to various experiments by both its designer, H.A.Ivatt and his successor, Nigel Gresley, including the replacement of slide valves with piston valves, four cylinder simple and compound types and even the trial-fitting of a booster.
The class was equipped or retro-fitted with super-heated boilers, many by the LNER after the grouping, and lasted a long time in both front line and secondary service, seventeen of the class making it onto British Railways’ books at the Nationalisation. One example, No. 251, the doyen of the class, was preserved and is now part of the National Collection.
The story of the London, Brighton & South Coast Atlantics is intertwined with that of the GNR C1s. The Brighton’s CME was Douglas Marsh who had worked under Henry Ivatt at the Great Northern. A motive power shortage on the LB&SCR led Marsh to ask Ivatt for a set of C1 drawings, a request that was readily granted, from which he developed the H1 Class Atlantics.
Marsh’s successor, Lawson Billinton, went on to build a further six Atlantics, classified H2, to a slightly revised design and it was these locomotives that survived long enough to last into BR ownership, No. 32424 Beachy Head becoming something of a celebrity on railtours until its withdrawal in 1958. The loss of all the Brighton Atlantics was mourned by Southern enthusiasts and the survival of a pair of GNR C1 boilers proved to be the spur to get a replica built at the Bluebell Railway, a locomotive now nearing completion.
Full specifications for the model will be available from the Accucraft website, as well as estimated retail prices and delivery dates.