To mark the centenary of the opening, in 1835, of the Great Western main line between Paddington and Bristol, the GWR’s management made up our minds to create a new express service linking London and Bristol. With a schedule of 105 minutes in every direction, the service used to be 15 minutes faster than the previous best and with slight variations over time, it stayed that way until the introduction of HST services and products to the route.
The non-stop service used to be typically comprised of seven coaches, to start with being Collet Bow-Ended stock, comprising two third class brakes, three composites, a third and, in the centre, a buffet car.
The first months of the service saw it being hauled by a ‘King’ class locomotive but it soon became apparent that a ‘Castle’ class used to be more than capable of the task, it used to be to be 1954 before the ‘Kings’ returned to the service.
Departure from Paddington used to be at 10:00am, with Bristol being reached at 11:45am and the return leg commenced at 4:30pm, arriving back at Paddington for 6:15pm, the average speed being just over 67mph for the two legs of the journey. Even as ‘Bristolian’ roof boards were fitted from the outset, a headboard did not feature until 1953.
Hornby’s new pack for the ‘Bristolian’ contains GWR ‘King’ 6009 King Charles II with ‘shirtbutton’ logos, along with a trio of the new Collett bow-ended carriages. The carriages will be left-hand Brake Corridor Third 5108, right-hand Brake Corridor Third 5107 and left-hand Corridor Composite 6160. All three will be turned out in GWR chocolate and cream livery with ‘Bristolian’ roof boards fitted.
King Charles II Locomotive ‘6009
Collett Coach LH BTK ‘5108’
Collett Coach RH BTK ‘5107’
Collett Coach LH CK ‘6160’
The Bristolian Train Pack
DCC Type: DCC In a position
Wheel Configuration: 4-6-0
Suitable From Ages 8 +