NWR Phoenix Class 4-6-0: No. 40 'Scarlet Phoenix' Picture

If you remember from this journal a couple of weeks ago, marzipanhomestar66.deviantart.…, you'll remember I created not only a new OC, but "reincarnated" a scrapped LMS Jubilee from 1952, and rebuilt it with GWR Hall components in 2013/2014.

HISTORY
5637 Windward Islands was built at Crewe Works in December 1934, one of 191 London, Midland and Scottish 4-6-0 Jubilees built by William Stanier. The details of her life between 1935 and 1951 are vague, but on October 8, 1952, she and 46202 Princess Anne (an LMS Princess Royal Class 4-6-2, rebuilt from the experimental steam turbine Turbomotive) were hauling the 8:00 morning express Euston to Liverpool and Manchester until they had a derailment, both engines getting horribly wrecked in the process for passing a red signal. This events became infamously known as the Harrow and Wealdstone rail crash; at least 112 people were killed in the accident, 340 injured.

This would've been the end of 45637's life, but fate stepped in with the form of Sir Topham Hatt I, the original Fat Controller of the North Western Railway. He purchased the Jubilee's remains in hopes of restoring her to former glory. However, due to the Queen's visit to Sodor and the acquisition of No. 23 Molly (a Great Eastern Claud Hamilton), plans were shunted aside (so to speak) for the time being. The Fat Controller and his son Charles attempted in vain to get the project going, but with many events throughout the 1950s and 1960s, restoring 45637 went lower and lower on the priority list and eventually forgotten about.

It wasn't until autumn 1996, some time after Ivo Hugh's entry to service on the Skarloey Railway, that Den and Dart, the diesel shunters for Crovan's Gate Steamworks, discovered the remains of 45637, and it brought attention to Sir Stephen Topham Hatt, the third Fat Controller. Hoping to accomplish his father's and grandfather's dreams, Stephen set about to restoring the engine not as a Jubilee, but a modern-day North Western steam engine. Taking inspiration from the construction of 60163 Tornado (soon to be the 50th Peppercorn A1 Class Pacific, the first British steam engine built since Evening Star in 1960) and the mythological GWR Cathedral pacific (the original name for the Kings), Stephen utilized parts of a GWR Hall onto the Jubilee, dubbing it the North Western Railway Phoenix Class 4-6-0.

The engine took many years to build, delayed several times by the munitions train explosion outside of Wellsworth in 1997, Victoria's restoration, and the extension of the Ffarquhar branchline to Ulfstead, among other events, but Stephen would not give up on the Phoenix, no matter what. Eventually, by 2013, the North Western Phoenix had taken about seventeen years to construct, but the efforts of Stephen, with some support from his children Richard, Charles II, and Emily, had been worth it in the end. The Phoenix was unveiled at Crovan's Gate as North Western Railway No. 40, dubbed Scarlet Phoenix for her red color and the fact she was a reincarnation of 45637 Windward Islands, rising from the ashes of her crash 61 years before.

But her first few weeks in service were far from uneventful; Scarlet (as she was nicknamed by the engines for short) had memories from the original Windward Islands, especially the morning of the horrific crash at Harrow and Wealdstone, and as such refused outright to pull passenger trains, afraid of having a repeat. Even when the workmen and the Fat Controller attempted to put her on goods trains and shunting, Scarlet would refuse to work still. It took a certain Green Five by the name of Henry to comfort her and tell her that not every accident can be averted and that we should move on from our past, no matter how painful. It was when Gordon failed before his train was due to leave that Scarlet had new-found confidence, and pulled his train effortlessly, receiving praise for her actions, and she now does mixed-traffic duties alongside her big cousin Henry.

PERSONA
Scarlet is a kindly, sensitive engine, and because of her accident in 1952, she tries to avoid the topic as much as possible due to how many people died in the wreck. Of the engines, she's the closest to Henry, who understands her emotional pain, and who she calls her big cousin, both being Stanier designs. (Technically, Henry was rebuilt into a Stanier Black 5, and Scarlet was originally a Stanier Jubilee, but you get the idea.)

Thomas and Friends (C) Hit Entertainment and Mattel
The Railway Series (C) The Awdry Family
Sprite and OC (C) myself
Continue Reading: Phoenix