What kind of train is Gordon?

Answered by John Hunt

Gordon, a prominent character in The Railway Series, is a fictional locomotive based on a real historical engine. In terms of design, Gordon is believed to be based on a Gresley pacific prototype. Although this specific prototype was never built, plans for it do exist. Gordon’s physical characteristics resemble those of the LNER A3 class locomotives, particularly the famous Flying Scotsman.

Gordon is classified as a 4-6-2 locomotive, meaning it has four leading wheels, six driving wheels, and two trailing wheels. This wheel arrangement is commonly known as a “Pacific” type, and it was widely used by various railway companies during the steam era. The Pacific design was known for its excellent speed and power, making it ideal for long-distance express trains.

The inspiration for Gordon’s character and design can be traced back to the heyday of steam locomotion in the United Kingdom. During this time, the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER), under the leadership of renowned engineer Sir Nigel Gresley, developed the A3 class of locomotives. Among them, the Flying Scotsman became the most famous and iconic.

The Flying Scotsman, with its sleek design and distinctive green livery, was renowned for its speed and reliability. It held the honor of being the first steam locomotive to officially reach a speed of 100 miles per hour. The A3 class locomotives, including the Flying Scotsman, were often used to pull the prestigious “Flying Scotsman” express train between London and Edinburgh.

Gordon, as a fictional character, embodies the qualities associated with these legendary locomotives. He is depicted as a proud and powerful engine, boasting about his speed and strength. Gordon’s blue color scheme and streamlined shape further reflect the influence of the A3 class locomotives, including the Flying Scotsman.

It is worth noting that while Gordon is based on real historical locomotives, his character and personality are entirely fictional. The author of The Railway Series, Wilbert Awdry, created Gordon as a central character in his stories, giving the locomotive a distinct persona and role within the fictional world of the books.

Gordon, the beloved character from The Railway Series, is a 4-6-2 locomotive based on a Gresley pacific prototype that was never built. He shares similarities with the iconic LNER A3 class locomotives, including the famous Flying Scotsman. Gordon’s design and characteristics pay homage to the golden age of steam, capturing the essence of powerful and prestigious express trains of that era.