On the day that HM The Queen celebrates her 96th birthday, the leading British model company Hornby has announced that it is releasing a limited edition model of Southern Region West Country Class 34027 Taw Valley.
Produced in partnership with the Severn Valley Railway (SVR), Hornby will release a limited edition collector’s model of the locomotive that now has a very special royal connection. Taw Valley will soon appear on the SVR in a unique purple and silver livery in honour of The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, and be renamed Elizabeth II.
The locomotive will be officially renamed Elizabeth II on Thursday, 2nd June, at the start of the SVR’s Platinum Jubilee weekend event. It will run in its purple livery, carrying its new name and number for a limited time, after which the SVR will return it to its original name, number, and livery.
In February this year, the SVR sparked worldwide excitement when it revealed its plans for the repaint, whilst the name Elizabeth II was chosen after a public vote; the name has received royal approval via the Cabinet Office. The loco will be renumbered as ‘70’ to reflect the seven decades of Her Majesty’s reign.
The Hornby model will be 00 gauge and will be issued in a strictly limited edition of 1,500. It is available to pre-order from The Severn Valley Railway, Hornby and Hornby stockists.
A proportion of the profits from the sale of Elizabeth II will be donated by the SVR and Hornby to The Patron’s Fund, which supports the charitable organisations across the UK and the Commonwealth for which Her Majesty acts as a Patron.
SVR’s head of visitor experience, Michael Dunn, said “We knew we’d cause a stir by painting this wonderful heritage locomotive in such a striking colour.”
“It’s a huge seal of approval that Hornby now want to reflect this bold move and we’re delighted to be working with such a prestigious partner. There’s already a huge amount of interest from visitors who want to see the ‘purple loco’ for themselves and we can’t wait to welcome them to the railway so they can travel behind it.”
Hornby’s marketing and product development director, Simon Kohler, added “Hornby have had a strong relationship with the Severn Valley Railway for a number of years, and the opportunity to produce this model is the absolute pinnacle of our association. We’re thrilled to be doing this, and are certain this will be a hit with model railway enthusiasts and collectors and also those who simply want to celebrate such a momentous event in royal history. On a personal level, I’m thrilled to be producing a model that’s not green or black, just for a change!”