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Hornby's 2014 Programme
On Monday 16th December 2013 Hornby Hobbies announced their 2014 programme of OO gauge railway models. The big news for Southern Electric modellers is another new ready-to-run EMU, plus new versions of existing models.
Before getting into details, it is necessary briefly to remark about the announcement. A number of items marked as "new" are in fact models announced as "new" in previous years but not yet produced (for instance their 1960s version Brighton Belle R3184/R4582, announced last year as "new" for 2013) and one item, SR liveried 2Bil R3161A, was not only announced as "new" for 2013 but has actually been on sale for several months. Conversely, not all items marked as "new" in previous years appear as "new" in this 2014 announcement.
Now to the details - items genuinely newly announced for 2014 only.
Many people will be pleased that the new EMU is a 2Hal and will be produced as:
- R3260 Southern Railway liveried unit
- R3290 BR green liveried unit
- R3290A alternatively numbered BR green liveried unit
It is good that Hornby are now recognising that many Southern Electric modellers want to model the "multiple" aspect of the three letter abbreviation, particularly for 2 car units, and thus need more than one version, preferably without having to renumber the unit themselves. However, with the 2Hal this welcome development only applies to the BR version.
Hornby are also producing four new versions of their acclaimed 2Bil model:
- R3161B a third version of a Southern Railway liveried unit
- R3257 BR green with small yellow warning panel
- R3258 BR blue with full yellow cab ends
- R3259 BR blue with full yellow cab ends, NRM branded pack "as preserved at Shildon". Well 2090 at Shildon is in BR green so it is assumed this statement means it is unit 2090 in the BR blue with full yellow cab ends it wore in service before becoming a celebrity unit and restored back to green.
Unfortunately only a single version with a small yellow warning panel is proposed.
For the new Hal and 2Bil models unit numbers and precise livery details will be listed when we have definitive information.
Hornby have also announced a new version of their long-in-the-tooth Eurostar R3293 (pack) and R4013D (divisible centre saloons). It will be interesting to see if Hornby have improved this model in any way, but there are no new car types to be able to make up a realistic Eurostar formation. A Eurostar in the new Eurostar livery was announced as "new" for 2013 (R3215 and R4589) but subsequently dropped. The model announced for 2014 appears, from illustrations, not only to be in the Eurostar livery carried since introduction but also comes with the old (i.e. original) Eurostar logo.
The Southern Electric Group has always kept an eye on diesel services working on its patch and thus it is worth mentioning that also announced for 2014 are two new versions of an "honourary" Southern diesel locomotive type - the Class 50, as worked between Waterloo and Exeter for many years. These versions are both in BR blue with large logos, as carried by the locos on this service prior to the foundation of the Network SouthEast business sector:
- R3263 50024 "Vanguard"
- R3264 50046 "Ajax"
Aside from these Southern Electric models, for modelling the "Southern" in general Hornby have also announced the Class 700 "Black Motor" steam locomotive, a fourth version of a Maunsell pull-push set, a second version of the Maunsell second open and four BR Mk1 coaches *with lights* in BR(S) green, incorrectly announced by Hornby as "Ex-SR".
Many internet retailers are already accepting advance orders. Happy shopping!