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Sunshine, steam trains and a Decoration H Class

Sunshine, steam trains and a Decoration H Class

Hello and welcome back to the Engine Shed! Over the past few weeks the Hornby Development Office has been a hot bed of activity - and we mean hot! Soaring temperatures here at HQ were also felt by those who were lucky enough to attend the Great Central Railway Model event last weekend – Paul’s been telling us all about the goings on from the weekend and we’ll get to his account a little later on.

As always, after our blog goes live, we are somewhat glued to Social Media and forums eager to read your feedback and last time was no exception. We’re so pleased everyone enjoyed the video we managed to obtain from our factory of the livery application process on the upcoming Class 800. We were keen to show you exactly how much work goes into the production of our models and we’re really pleased to read so many positive comments.

Last time, we also tried to clear up another bone of contention that has been doing the rounds recently, namely the battery box on the Class 87. Having read and listened to the feedback we’ve received on this issue, we delved into our research material and took another look at the livery. We are fortunate to have access to photographic references that come from private and commercial collections which are not generally available to the public and we felt, based on these, there was justification for them being painted white, even though they were heavily weathered in service. However rather than continue along this route, we’ve decided to appeal to the majority view and therefore these items will now be portrayed as black. Once again, feedback ascertained directly from The Engine Shed readers has been invaluable. We will have more details on this soon so watch this space. The Class 87 is still available to pre-order from your local retailer and Hornby.com.


An updated artwork render for R3580 - Class 87 87035 'Robert Burns' 


Sunshine and steam trains at Great Central Railway Model Event


Team Hornby at  Model Railway and Engineering Exhibition at the Great Central Railway


We had a fantastic weekend a couple of weeks ago taking in the sights at the Model Railway and Engineering Exhibition at the Great Central Railway. Our Researcher Paul was on the stand all weekend, and here he is to tell you a little more about it:

“Our first attendance at this event for the Hornby brand, and I very much doubt it will be our last, as what a wonderfully friendly and relaxed show it is. I had high expectations for the event, having heard about it from our colleagues at Hornby Magazine and it certainly didn’t disappoint; the siting of the main show tents at the wonderfully atmospheric Quorn & Woodhouse Station, the ‘club’ atmosphere amongst the traders, the diversity of the layouts (in both scale and type) the Type 2 and 8F soundtrack from the railway, the weather and the catering, all adding up to a thoroughly enjoyable show. The organisers looked after us as well; after all, what other Model Railway event puts on an ‘after hours’ steam special for their exhibitors?



Yes, it was hot; in fact it was almost sauna-like on the Saturday and Sunday in particular, but the electric fans helped and we don’t get to enjoy summers in Britain like this very often, do we? With just the three of us manning the stand over the three days, we could have been swamped, but the natural ebb and flow of visitors lent a more relaxed air to proceedings.


The final word must go to all those that visited us on the stand over the three days. A lot of viewpoints were listened to, an incredible amount of information was shared and we are grateful to everyone that took the time to visit us.

Hornby ‘top’ tip: If you decide to visit in 2018, the NAAFI café under the bridge arch is the coolest place at Quorn!"

There was plenty of action happening on the track outside that our team was able to capture on camera as well! Take a look below at their short video clip showing some highlights of the weekend. 



Say ‘Hello’ to the Late ‘H’

Without a doubt, one of the models we’re most excited about this year is the Wainwright H Class and we’ve shown you already how complex and intricate the livery is for the SECR variation of the loco that will be hitting the shelves later this year. But this week we received the Decoration Sample of the Late BR version as well.



Slightly more understated than its SECR counterpart, but nonetheless striking in lined BR Black. Take a look below and as always, be sure to let us know what you think.


Decoration samples of R3539 - Wainwright H Class 0-4-4T Late BR


Whilst our website has sold out of the H Class as a solo item, you are still able to pre-order our Limited Edition train pack, featuring an Early BR version of the loco and 2 British Railways (Southern) ex-Maunsell  pull-push coaches. Alternatively, contact your local retailer.


All aboard the Hornby Junior Express Train




We all remember our first train set, possibly an 0-4-0 mixed freight set, or perhaps a Thomas the Tank Engine™ set? Over the past few years we’ve been conducting extensive and thorough research aimed at giving younger children the chance to experience the excitement of building and running a model railway but with something that is perhaps simpler, and easier to construct than our normal sets. 

Now, we will all have our own opinions on how to attract new blood to the hobby, and much of it is based around what we enjoyed as a child or what we see our own children (or grandchildren for many of us) enjoying. This is why we used research obtained directly from consumers on what would grab young children’s attention and make them turn their heads to this fantastic hobby (are we being biased?) and something that they’ll carry with them into adulthood.



And so began the development of Hornby Junior. Above all we felt it important to keep things simple. Durable, clip together track, colourful and easy to construct buildings and scenery – no need for glue or paint here! Also the ability to simply start and stop the train was important as this could be controlled by the child themselves so that they engage with the hobby first hand rather than need adult intervention.

The purists in us though had to make sure we stuck to our OO roots which is why the Express Train included in the set is compatible with OO gauge track. The idea that we could run our childrens’ toy on our own layouts was too tempting to ignore! And who knows, perhaps seeing it on a full size layout would spark their imagination and want to take their modelling to the next stage? It’s important to point out at this stage that whilst the train included in the set is compatible with OO gauge track, it is not strictly speaking in OO scale, and also, it is not compatible with points. Therefore, before getting it going on the layout that you’ve spent years building and fine tuning, ensure that the train will run in a continuous oval or circle – we wouldn’t want any costly derailments!

Check out our quick video showing the Express Train found in the set, thundering around our layout here at Hornby HQ. 



The Hornby Junior Express Train, thundering around our OO guage layout here at Hornby HQ


We’re very excited for the release of this new entry into the Hornby catalogue and to see how it’s received by families and collectors alike. Take a look on our special Hornby Junior webpage to find out more about what’s included in the box and to place your pre-order – perhaps for an early Christmas present?

Well that about wraps things up for this week, as always be sure to leave your feedback about anything you’ve seen in this week’s blog on Facebook, Twitter and Official Forums

Until next time…


Happy Modelling!


The Engine Shed Team


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