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Marooned In Suburban Paradise - Mark 1 Subs In Maroon Unveiled

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As our first production run of our stunning new Mark 1 Suburban coaches nears completion, and due to intensive popular demand, we have decided to follow up quickly for the missing link when it comes to liveries for these essential suburban coaches.

So, it gives us great pleasure to present the maroon livery on our BR Mark 1 Subs!

Prototype History

British Railways’ second livery epoch heralded a number of significant milestones in the story of the United Kingdom’s ‘modern’ era; changes that extended beyond a mere change in coaching stock livery.

Coaching stock in the initial period of railway nationalisation still reflected a strong regional livery bias and British Railways’ own ‘Crimson and Cream’ livery added to the mix, particularly where corridor stock was concerned. The desire for a unified ‘national’ livery by the British Railways Board coincided with the difficulties experienced in keeping the upper cream panels of passenger stock clean and despite the continued regional autonomy within British Railways, in 1956, Mk.1 corridor stock began to appear in an LMS inspired lined Maroon livery on the Midland, Scottish and Eastern regions.


The change in appearance for the 57’ Mk.1 non-gangway stock was less marked, as the existing plain all-over Carmine Red weathered down to a shade not dissimilar to BR Maroon, but by 1959 the majority of the fleet was painted in the new livery. Regional preferences did still have an influence on the appearance of the stock, with the Eastern Region opting for a plain maroon livery, whereas Midland and Western Region stock appeared with the same lining as the gangway stock, The Scottish Region, which served both Eastern and Midland Regions, had a mixture of plain and unlined stock.

Again though, a difference existed within the lining specifications, with the Midland Region opting for a high waist lining, to match existing Stanier non-gangway stock, whereas the Western Region used a lower waist lining, applied to the BR specification by the Swindon drawing offices. In time, as stock cascaded, the boundaries blurred and eventually all three styles could be observed on the Midland and Eastern Regions.


Unlike the Eastern Region’s inner and outer suburban diagrams, which were formed into purely 57’ Mk.1 non-gangway sets by this period, suburban diagrams in the Midland and Scottish Regions were formed from a combination of pre-nationalisation and Mk.1 types, with Stanier, Thompson and even Reid non-gangway stock being marshalled into diagrams with the 57’ stock. The Mk.1 57’ Brake Thirds were especially useful, particularly in mixed freight trains, and some wonderful images were captured of Gresley V2 60813 on the Waverley Line, with a Brake Third being used to get railway employee’s children from Riccarton Junction to school in Hawick.

The ‘Maroon’ period also coincided with the abolition of Third Class, which led to the vehicle designation legends being changed on the exteriors of all 57’ non-gangway stock, as well as the removal of the ‘3’ from the former Third Class compartments, however like the application of the maroon livery, this change was not instantaneous, with some stock still being in Carmine Red and designated as Third into 1964.


The adoption of broad coloured cantrail bands to denote First Class and Dining accommodation began to be adopted on BR coaching stock from 1960 and while there was no provision of dining areas, and thus no need for the red dining bands, on non-gangway stock, the yellow First Class bands had been broadly adopted on non-gangway stock by 1963. During 1964 and 1965, livery application also changed, initiated by Eastleigh Works, with vehicle painting being undertaken by airless brushing, allowing the bodyside colour to be carried round onto the ends of the carriages.


The final change to the appearance of the 57’ non-gangway stock applied to the Brake Seconds, as in August 1963 the requirement for Guard’s to observe signals was withdrawn and thus the periscopes could be removed from the roofs, especially useful for vehicles operating in and around London.

The Model


Initially launched in the summer of 2022 after a long development period behind the scenes, our tooling suite of Mark 1 suburban coaches allow modellers to recreate an authentic rake of these workhorses for the first time in ready-to-run format and offered a 21st century rendition of these essential vehicles. Featuring an exquisite level of detail and an unbeatable specification including full interior lighting, fully detailed interior and a museum quality finish, they were offered in BR all-over carmine and BR all-over rail blue.

Only one thing was missing from our launch range; maroon!

Thankfully, with the first batch of carmine and blue coaches nearing completion at the factory and are due in stock with us in Q2 of this year, we can turn our attention to the maroon coaches almost straight away. 

First up, we have the Midland Region BS, C, S and SO in Maroon, without and without lining. The lined Midland vehicles typically carried their lining lower than the BR spec, to match against the lined Stanier stock.


We will also be covering the Scottish Region, with a BS, C and S in Maroon, all lined, but in BR and Stanier positions. Being based on circa 1962 photos, the First Class yellow stripe has now appeared.


Production of these coaches begins shortly, with the decorated samples above provided when we first received samples from the blue and carmine production run (explaining the wobbly foot boards, which will be corrected on production models to be arrow straight!) and delivery will be in Q1 2025. Price will be the same as the first production run at £64.95 each.

Pre-order via your local stockist, or direct via the Accurascale website below, where you can get 10% off when you order two or more coaches!


Pre-Order Your Maroon Mark 1 Suburban Coaches Here!

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