The forthcoming Hornby Visitor Centre Open Weekend, Princess Royal, Class 156 and much more!
Welcome to the latest edition of The Engine Shed – Hornby’s monthly blog covering all the latest news.
This month we are highlighting several key preproduction and engineering items that have recently been received here in Margate.
Regular Engine Shed readers will be aware that there are still a couple of outstanding projects to cover which we will do once we have samples to show.
We are aware that many of you are keen to see the new items including the exciting Princess Royal, as well as the ‘New Vans’ we covered last month not to mention the Mk3 SD coaches.
In respect of these projects and last month’s edition, we have a similar situation this month as we can show you one of the first samples of the Princess Royal. There is still much more to follow but this sample will give you a first look at this important project.
Alongside the Princess Royal, we have the Decoration Samples for the popular R3772 Northern Rail Class 156 ‘Spirit of the Royal Air Force’ and the long awaited R3656 Virgin Trains Class 87. There is also another International model highlighted this month from Arnold as well as some scene setting accessories.
With so much to cover we best make a start but just before we commence, we would like to bring your attention to our YouTube series Signal Box. Last week episode three was released and if you wanted to learn more about Hornby models and the people behind them, you will want to watch this latest episode.
Hornby Hobbies Visitor Centre Open Weekend
Firstly we wish to bring to your attention a unique event which will take place during August. On Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th August the Hornby Visitor Centre, in partnership with the One:One Collection, will open their doors to the public and welcome hundreds of Hornby enthusiasts.
This special August weekend will be the first public viewing of the incredible locomotives and rolling stock stored here by Locomotive Storage. We are aware many of you will be keen to get a close up view of these engines and although we have been doing our best to show you the main arrivals to the Margate warehouse there really is no substitute for seeing these magnificent machines close up.
Alongside the One:One Collection there will be a whole range of activities and stands spread across the site. The Hornby Visitor Centre has invited a range of traders and layouts to create a celebration of railway modelling alongside the impressive collection of full-size engines. Currently over 20 traders have confirmed their attendance as well as a variety of layouts that will be on show. Finalists from the Great Model Railway Challenge will be on display alongside a selection of international layouts covering numerous gauges.
The Hornby Visitor Centre which has recently been refurbished will also have numerous exhibits charting the history of not only Hornby but many of the other brands that are included under the Hornby Hobbies’ umbrella.
Two of the locomotives in the One:One Collection will be reproduced in 00 gauge and are featured in the 2019 range. Both ‘Bittern’ (R3771) and ‘Black 5’ (R3805) are planned and modelled as they appear in the Margate Locomotive Storage facility. These limited edition models will be produced in bespoke packaging and restricted to just 1,000 pieces of each. We plan to have samples to show you soon here in the Engine Shed.
At the time of writing, the Open Weekend currently still has tickets available for the Saturday afternoon session and on Sunday. Be sure to book your tickets now if you are interested in attending what will be a very special and memorable weekend here in Margate. All the details can be found on our website.
Featured on the front of the Hornby catalogue, it is safe to say that the Princess Royal is a central part of the 2019 range. As the model is expected later in the year there has not been a great deal to show you until now.
The images below provide the first look at what is simply a starting model. Needless to say the image shows the Princess Royal at the very earliest stage of development and there is much more work to do and we will be returning to the development of the 'Princess' as further samples are received.
R3772 Class 156 'Spirit of the Royal Air Force'
While announced at the beginning of the year in our Range Launch, the story of this particular model actually begins back in June 2018. On Saturday 23rd June in Newcastle Central Station, this commemorative RAF livery was revealed for the full size prototype of the Northern Rail Class 156. Having produced a bespoke model for the event, many modellers suspected that Hornby would add the 156 to the 2019 range and they were not disappointed.
Since that one-off model was created, the team have produced this special liveried unit in 00 gauge with the Decoration Sample being recently received. Please be aware that the model shown is still a sample and does not necessarily depict the final production version. The R3772 Class 156 'Spirit of the Royal Air Force' is currently due for release in late August with the production limited to just 1,000 pieces.
R3656 Virgin Trains Class 87
With the release of the Virgin Trains Class 87 ‘Sir Winston Churchill’ just around the corner, we wanted to include this sample for those who have been patiently waiting for its arrival.
With production now in full swing and the release date pencilled in for later next month (August), the images here provide you with the first look of this long awaited model.
A firm favourite here in the Engine Shed, the Huntley & Palmers Peckett W4 was included in a new collection train pack announced in 2018 and sees it placed alongside three wagons in some truly stunning packaging.
A definite favourite with many modellers and now presented in a collection train pack with three accompanying wagons we are sure these packs will not remain on the retailers' shelves for very long. The R3686 Huntley & Palmers Peckett W4 Works Freight Pack is currently due for release in late September.
In the last two editions of the Engine Shed we have been shining a light on our International brands. Beginning with the Rivarossi HR2753 ‘Big Boy’, we have since covered the Arnold N Gauge ‘Brighton Belle’ (HN3006 and HN3502) and as both features appear to have been well received both here in the UK and beyond we thought we would continue highlighting some of the international models.
Firstly, in this month’s feature, we would like to highlight this HN6434 Arnold DB 2-unit pack containing 2-axle flatwagons and supplied with four Land Rovers. This unique piece of rolling stock was used during the Cold War in Germany, transporting vehicles for the British Army of the Rhine (BAOR). With die-cast metal Land Rovers included, the stake wagons also include a metal chassis, which are supplied with close couplers and NEM pockets.
What is also particularly interesting is that this pack is the start of a new, smaller series of Arnold N gauge models which cover the British Army of the Rhine. Perhaps offering a different idea for a layout, we will look to include more details about the BAOR models in future editions of the Engine Shed.
Lastly, we have received another set of International models. Similar to our Skaledale range of accessories, our European colleagues have created an imaginative set of street food trailers which really do add some character to a layout. Different cuisine types are on offer, available both in N gauge and H0, and whether you would use them for historical accuracy or for some fun on your layout, we felt these colourful accessories were certainly worthy of inclusion in this month’s blog.
These last models will conclude this edition of the Engine Shed. As we are now in the second half of the year you can look forward to seeing more samples from across the entire Hornby range. There are other models we will be focusing on before the year ends with both the R6925TTS TTS Vent Van and R3762 ‘Azuma’ Train Pack being just two of what we have planned.
As always, we hope you have enjoyed this month in the Engine Shed and we hope to hear from you either on Facebook, Twitter or our Official Forum. Please do not forget to watch our YouTube series Signal Box.
For those of you attending the Hornby Visitor Centre Open Weekend, we hope to see you there and for all Engine Shed readers we will be back towards the end of September.
Until next time,
The Engine Shed team
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