Marking 80 years of the GWR Grange

THE Betton Grange Society marked the 80th anniversary of the introduction of the Collett Grange 4-6-0, when in 1936, No. 6800 Arlington Grange rolled off the Swindon production line, the first of a class of 80.

Proud owner Brian Jones sees his original nameplate from No. 6802 Bampton Grange, fitted to Grange frames for the first time since it was withdrawn in August 1961. DAVID HUNTBATCH
Proud owner Brian Jones sees his original nameplate from No. 6802 Bampton Grange, fitted to Grange frames for the first time since it was withdrawn in August 1961. DAVID HUNTBATCH

The ticket-only event at the Llangollen Railway on Saturday, September 24 included a full programme of Grange activities, starting with refreshments in the Henry Robertson suite at Llangollen station, where a display charting the history of the class was open to participants, who were also issued with a commemorative booklet as a memento of the occasion.

There then followed a 20 minute film with archive Grange footage before a tour of Llangollen Railway workshops conducted by the group’s engineering director Chris Moore.

This tour included the unveiling of a replica nameplate and number plate for No. 6800 Arlington Grange fitted to the frames of new-build No. 6880 Betton Grange, while on display were no fewer than four working miniature Grange models of different scales and a genuine name and number plate from No. 6802 Bampton Grange, owned by Brian Jones, the nameplate also attached to the frames of No. 6880 for a photographic opportunity.

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