Great Western Society Saint Project • Didcot Railway Centre, Oxfordshire OX11 7NJ • Registered Charity No 272616
Naming the new 'Saint'
In choosing a name and number for the new 'Saint' the Great Western Society faced something of a dilemma: What identity should a new locomotive carry to set it apart from its historical forebears, yet at the same time remain appropriate and in keeping with GWR naming policy for the class?
The number was a relatively easy decision. Some people suggested 2956 as the lowest previously unused Saint number, but this would have placed it in the 'Court' series. As the decision had already been taken that the new Saint would be of the early straight-frame type the next logical numbers available were 2991 or 2999 the latter was chosen as being more distinctive.
As regards the name it was considered that the only fair thing to do was stage a competition, which was operated in conjunction with Steam Railway magazine.
This produced many fascinating suggestions but the judges favoured names in the spirit of those originally carried by the straight-frame Saints including the 'Lady' series, characters from Walter Scott's Waverley novels and eminent figures associated with the GWR.
The winning entry, submitted by Peter Bird of Weston-super-Mare, was Lady of Legend. In the judges' opinion this encapsulted the enterprising nature and legendary spirit of the project. Peter's prize was a full-size nameplate bearing his winning suggestion.
Once in service it is likely that No. 2999 will carry a variety of different identities, not least when it is running as a 4-4-2 'Atlantic'. Click HERE to see some of the other names submitted in the competition.
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE NAMING COMPETITION IS CLOSED AND THE NAME AND NUMBER CHOSEN ARE FINAL