The King class of steam locomotive was the most powerful 4-6-0 type built in the UK. The type were built partly in response to to the Southern Railway’s Lord Nelson class that had previously taken away the GWR Castle class’ title of “most powerful express type”.
King George V was the first of 31 King class locomotive’s built by the GWR and was named after the then (1927) reigning monarch. To help celebrate the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (B&O) Centenary celebration’s; King George V was shipped to the USA. It was there that it was fitted with it’s distinctive bell (see below) and plaque. In it’s international career from 1927 to 1962, the locomotive clocked up an impressive mileage of 1,910,424 miles.
Although it is one of three members of the class to be preserved, it is the only one of the three to have be in original unrestricted condition with no cut-down cab fittings. So it can be said that it maintains the true look of the King class and that it is the biggest King surviving too!
To read about other exhibits to be found in the National Railway Museum during this visit in 2013, please click here.