Hornby R3454 GWR 4-6-0 'Drysllwyn Castle' 4073 Castle Class226 R3454
By 1922 the need for ever more powerful locomotives was apparent. Charles Collett, Chief Mechanical Engineer of the Great Western Railway based his 'Castle' Class largely on the 'Star' Class which was designed by his predecessor G. J. Churchward. Between 1923 and 1950 171 Castle Class locomotives were built at the Swindon Works, 16 of which were rebuilds of the Star Class. Hailed as the most powerful locomotive of their time, the Castle Class locomotives had the ability to sustain high speeds and remain economical and they soon earned a reputation for excellence and reliability. In 1932 'Tregenna Castle' set a record for the 77 mile journey between Swindon and Paddington for a passenger train attaining an average speed of 81.68mph. At the time, this represented the World Record for steam traction. Withdrawal began in the early 1950s, ending in 1965 with eight being set aside for preservation.