TONYPANDY & A.L. HORNER
I recently commissioned Peter Harvey to etch me a set of brass nameplates for my fictional National Coal Board traction fleet. As my Maudetown Colliery layout is (loosely) set in the South Wales valleys, I opted for a range of names of people and places closely associated with the Welsh mining industry and, especially, the trade union movement.
Illustrated above is a Knightwing 0-4-0, formerly christened Imperial, but now carrying the name A.L. Horner, after the famous union leader of the 1930s and 40s. Meanwhile, the ex-BR Class 08 carries Tonypandy 'plates in honour of the Tonypandy 'riots' of 1910, following a labour dispute at a number of mines in the Rhondda area.
It's a little subversive of me to name a pair of locomotives owned by the NCB (a formerly state-owned entity) after an ardent socialist and a famous strike. But, my layout intends to portray a small colliery still producing coal through the 1990s and early 2000s, so it would have taken a dedicated left-wing government to have avoided the wholesale pit closures of the 1980s. Therefore, Maudetown Colliery exists in a parallel universe where Thatcher never existed.
Well, the layout's named after my cat, so it was never going to be wholly realistic, was it?!
More 'namings' will follow as the traction fleet slowly expands...