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My Top Five Liveries

Matt Lovell

MATT LOVELL takes us through his top five liveries.

Being twenty-eight years old I have not had the joy of seeing at steam locomotives in their heyday, however being a railway enthusiast there are certain liveries which have stuck in my mind for different reasons. Here are just a few of them - my Top Five Liveries.

5: Chocolate and Cream

Livery Operated by: Great Western Railway.

Livery Details: Bodies painted in brown with cream banding.

Flying Banana

Chocolate and Cream GWR Railcoach at the Swindon Museum. Photo by the author.

The first of my top five liveries has to be the Chocolate and Cream of Great Western coaches. This colour scheme has always stuck with me since I was bought one of my first trainsets for my birthday (last year? -Ed). I think the set was called Mixed Freight, and it consisted of a 0-6-0 Pannier Tank Locomotive, a couple of freight wagons, a GWR (Toad) Brake Van, and a four-wheel GWR coach in Chocolate and Cream. This set lead to my fascination of the GWR and model railways in> general.

4: Black with Yellow Wasp Strips

Livery Operated by: British Railways and NCB.

Livery Details: Black body with yellow and black warning strips.

Class 03

Bachmann Class 03 in National Coal Board livery. (Photo: Bachmann).

From previous articles you may know that I am an industrial railway fan, this being said one of my favourite locomotives is the Class 03 diesel locomotive. These were painted in all sorts of liveries from BR Green to National Coal Board Yellow, but one of the liveries that really sticks out for me is the BR Black with Yellow Wasp Stripes.

The Class 03 was built over a period of three years between 1957 and 1961, with two-hundred and thirty locomotives produced. These locomotives were used all over the UK in many different settings, mainly used for shunting at depots and working at ports.

3: NSE Red, White, and Blue.

Livery Operated by: Network South East.

Livery Details: White body with blue stripe along windows, with red surround.

Class 47

Network South East Class 47 from Bachmann (Photo: Bachmann).

The reason behind this one is quite a cliché but still.. One of the earliest memories I have as a young boy was standing on Littlehampton station with my grandfather waiting for a train for a day out. I remember it for the sole reason of the different colours used on the locomotive. Red, White and Blue, this was unlike anything I had seen before and instantly became one of my favourites, even twenty odd years on.

The NSE services were one of the three passenger sectors created by British Rail in the early 1980s and these services ran anywhere from London to the southeast of England, although some services stretched out as far as Exeter. With the privatisation of BR the NSE was broken down slowly through the mid 1990s.

2: Santa Fe Warbonnet

Livery Operated by: Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway.

Livery details: Silver Locomotive with red cab end, with Native American motif on nose.

Santa Fe Locomotive

Santa Fe Locomotive in Warbonnet Livery (Photo: Public Domain).

Travelling across the pond, another one of my favourite liveries is from America, to be specific the Santa Fe Railway. This railway had many different liveries, but the one that I like most is the Red and Silver design which was adopted in the early 1940s. This livery was nicknamed the Warbonnet Livery, as the red covered the whole of the front of the locomotive and was fronted with a Native American stylised cross.

This livery is one of my favourites because of the bright red bonnets and the way the silver can be carried through the coaches to the other end of the train.

1: SECR Green

Livery Operated by: South Eastern and Chatham Railway.

Livery details: Dark green with light green lining, with red running boards.

SECR Locomotive

H Class SECR Locomotive at the Bluebell Railway, photo by the author.

Last but not least on my list of favourite liveries is SECR (South-East & Chatham Railway) Green. This has recently become one of my favourite liveries after a trip to the Bluebell Railway. While at the railway I saw the H Class travelling to and from Sheffield Park to East Grinstead. I personally think that this is a nice interesting livery. The railway was formed in the late 1890s, and became part of Southern Railways in 1923 during grouping. There were lots of locomotives painted in this livery but I think it is best suited to the H Class and the C Class locomotives.

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