Manufacturer catalogue image - please note that pre-release images may be CAD renders or CGI images rather than photographs
Era 4 (1948 to 1956) British Railways Early Crest
EXCLUSIVE TO RAILS
Rapido Trains UK is proud to announce a highly sought-after Great Northern classic in OO Gauge, the beautiful LNER J52/2.
To coincide with our announcement of the wonderful Stirling Single No.1, we couldn’t think of a better time to reveal another much-needed Northern nicety - the LNER J52/2 0-6-0. This neat little shunter was seen the length and breadth of the GNR network, from North London to the Northeast of England.
These started life on the GNR, where they were classified as J13 and based on the Stirling-designed J14 (which featured a domeless boiler). Of course, you can’t trust domeless engines, so Henry Ivatt refined this design with a more efficient and domed boiler variant. They would be fitted with a boiler the same length as the one on the J14, but had an increased diameter. The first J13s rolled off the factory floor in 1897 to work alongside their domeless counterparts on shunting duties.
Between then and 1909, a total of 85 of the class were produced, some at the GNR’s works at Doncaster, and others at a variety of contractors, such as R. Stephenson & Co. The updated design proved effective and as locos moved into LNER ownership many of the J14s were rebuilt as J13s.
Under the LNER the J13s that were domed from the day they were built were reclassified as the J52/2. The class became a common sight in North London, covering the North London Line, Kings Cross, and numerous marshalling yards up and down the country.
Plans were put into motion to scrap the J52s in the mid-1930s, however, this cull ceased when the war broke out in 1939, as any functional locomotive was pressed into service. With the introduction of numerous diesel shunters under the modernisation plan, the withdrawal of the J52s sadly continued.
In 1959 and only a couple of years before the entire class were scrapped, Captain Bill Smith stepped in and saved loco No. 68846 from its inevitable fate. He became the owner of the World’s very first privately owned BR steam locomotive, and the J52/2 earned itself a permanent place in the annals of railway preservation history. The aptly and affectionately named Old Lady would live on. Once in his possession, she was repainted into her beautiful pre-grouping guise and renumbered to the iconic 1247.
With a gorgeous livery, long service history and historical claim to fame, 1247 will always have a fond place in the hearts of travelling enthusiasts and preservation modellers alike. The Captain's decisive action showed that preservation was possible, and sparked a wave of like-minded enthusiasts to follow suit.
The J52/2 model has been designed using works drawings to ensure its accuracy and features a variety of liveries covering the loco's history, such as the bold pre-grouping colours of the GNR, through to various black liveries it sported in its final years. Modellers can look forward to a smooth-running mechanism a factory-installed speaker and a warming firebox glow.
Special commissions are usually only available new from the commissioning organisation, and may well have sold out on pre-order before they even end up listed here! But you may be able to find used items on marketplace or auction websites.
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