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R30155TXS Hornby Railfreight Class 56 56060 The Cardiff Rod Mill

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R30155TXS Hornby Class 56 Co-Co Diesel Loco number 56 060 "The Cardiff Rod Mill" in Railfreight Triple Grey with metals sector branding - Era 8 (Sound Fitted)

New release - pre-orders invited - expected during Autumn 2024. preauthkernow

The British Rail Class 56 Type 5 Co-Co diesel locomotive was first introduced in 1976 to cope with the increased requirement for heavy freight. British Rail awarded the contract to design and build these new engines to Brush Traction in Loughborough, who subsequently sub-contracted the construction to Electroputere in Romania, due to the lack of capacity in their own works. 

The initial 30 locomotives to be delivered from Romania suffered from transit damage and construction deficiencies and had to be extensively rebuilt before entering service. With this in mind the decision was made to build the remaining 105 locomotives in England, British Rail Engineering Ltd manufacturing them at their Doncaster Works (nos. 56031 to 56115) and Crewe Works (nos. 56116 to 56135).

The design specification was based upon the Class 47 bodyshell, with the omission of redundant features such as the head code panel. Power came from a Ruston-Paxman unit that was similar to that fitted in the Class 50 locomotives, which provided the capability for heavy haul freight. Air brakes were fitted for the first time in a British Rail engine and the electrics were improved in a number of areas, resulting in a more robust power unit. 

Nicknamed as Gridirons or "Grids", the Class 56 displaced the Class 20 and Class 47 locomotives and commonly undertook the transportation of iron ore, coal, aggregate and steel across the Eastern and London Midland Regions and on the Western Region for aggregate duties.

Strong and reliable performers, the locomotives were popular, but needed heavy maintenance, particularly when compared against the Class 66 locomotives that came to displace them in service. The introduction of the Class 60 locomotives saw a gradual reduction in the use of the Class 56 locomotives and with the arrival of the Class 66 locomotives, with their greater availability and lower maintenance, the Class 56 fleet were placed into storage between 1998 and 2004.

56060 'The Cardiff Rod Mill' entered service in June 1979, then un-named as the 60th member of the 135 strong class to be built. It was not one of the first 30 to be built, those built in Romania and therefore the locomotive was able to enter service without the need for a rebuild. 

All of the class would be in service with BR, until privatisation when all of the class would enter the ownership of EWS. Following EWS service, the locomotives would pass to various private owners. 56060 is currently owned by GBRf, awaiting conversion into the rebuilt Class 69.

R30155TXS Hornby Railfreight Class 56 56060 The Cardiff Rod Mill
DCC Status:
DCC Sound Fitted
OO Gauge
£ 237.99 Saving £26.00 (9.85%) on RRP (£263.99)
Product Code:
Non-Stock Item (Special Order).
Stock Level:
None Deliverable