The first picture features the first, LMS 'Princess Coronation' class 4-6-2 locomotive, No.6220 (BR 46220) Coronation, hauling the prestigious express, the 'Coronation Scot', of 1937. The latter Euston - Glasgow express established a new world record of 114mph during an early test run, headed by No.6220. The engine and coaches were streamlined and liveried in 'Caledonian' blue with matching silver lines, along each side. Malcolm Root's painting is titled Coronation Scot and the jigsaw of the same title is a 500-piece example from King International. It hurts a little for me to say this as a 100% GWR enthusiast, but this class of locomotives represents, for me, the best of British locomotive designs - immensely powerful and very fast. The class of 38, designed by Sir William Stanier (aided by his chief draughtsman) was built between 1937 and 1948 at Crewe Works. Only three members of the class are preserved.
The 'A4' class of 4-6-2 locomotives was designed by Sir Nigel Gresley to head the LNER’s crack expresses from 1935. No.4498 (BR 60007) Sir Nigel Gresley was the engineer's 100th 'Pacific' (4-6-2) locomotive built, and it was fitting that the loco was named after him. The class of 35 was built at Doncaster Works between 1935-38. They were designed specifically for the high-speed, streamlined expresses running from Kings Cross to Newcastle, Glasgow and Edinburgh; the 'Silver Jubilee' train was the first. Class member No.4468 (BR 60022) Mallard, still holds the world record of almost 126mph for a steam locomotive, achieved in 1938 on the downward section of Stoke Bank near Grantham. The jigsaw in the picture is a 300-piece example from Hope featuring No.4468 Sir Nigel Gresley, the title of the puzzle. Six members of the class are preserved, but two are overseas (USA and Canada). The jigsaw photograph shows the locomotive in preservation days.
I don't normally endorse any products in my posts but in this case I am making an exception. In my opinion steam railways and wildlife produce an irresistible combination and a current artist who is not represented in the jigsaw trade, to the best of my knowledge, has taken this combination to heart. Alan Ward paints steam railways and four such paintings of Gresley ‘A4’ class locomotives, shown on his website, include associated examples of wildlife - a golden eagle at nest, a pair of kingfishers, a fox with pheasant kill and flying mallards. The painting titles are Golden eagle in the Glens, Kingfisher Country, Quicksilver Fox and Mallard in flight, respectively and the specific locomotives featured are Golden Eagle, Kingfisher, Quicksilver and Mallard. The association between locomotive and painting is obvious in three examples but Quicksilver Fox is an example of artistic licence – the amalgamation of the locomotive name, Quicksilver and the fox. The four paintings would make a superb set of jigsaw puzzles, of great appeal to a wider public. To see these four paintings and other steam railway examples of Alan's go to www.alanwardcollection.co.uk