The P2 Steam Locomotive Company (charitable status pending) announced today at The A1 Steam Locomotive Trust's 2013 convention the £100,000 pre-launch phase of the project to build Britain's most powerful steam locomotive.
The mission of The P2 Steam Locomotive Company (P2SLC) is to develop, build and operate an improved Gresley class P2 Mikado steam locomotive for main line and preserved railway use. These 2-8-2 locomotives were the most powerful express passenger locomotives to operate in the UK, designed by Sir Nigel Gresley to haul 600 ton trains on the arduous Edinburgh to Aberdeen route. Sadly the design was never fully developed and they were rebuilt by his successor Edward Thompson into ungainly 4-6-2s in 1943/4. The P2SLC will build the 7th member of this class and demonstrate how the design can be fully realised through use of modern computer design and modelling techniques, enabling it to deliver its full potential hauling passenger trains at high speed across the national network.
The Founders Club will consist of at least 100 members, whose objective is to raise the funds for the acquisition and cutting of the frames for the Gresley P2 class No. 2007.
Members of The Founders Club each donate £1,000 (in up to four payments of £250 by standing order) allowing the purchase of the steel and subsequent cutting to take place in May 2014. In return for this commitment and as well as being the first contributors to this exciting project, members receive these exclusive benefits:
- Reserved seat on No. 2007's first main line train
- Reasonable access to No. 2007 at all times
- Exclusive Founders Club tie
- Opportunity to join one of the teams building No. 2007
- First choice of components to sponsor
- Special limited edition version (signed/numbered) of the launch painting of No. 2007
- Special Founders Club day with Tornado
Mark Allatt, Chairman, The P2 Steam Locomotive Company, commented, "Having carried out our feasibility study, we are very excited to now be in a position to launch The Founders Club. Successfully raising the funds for the cutting of the frames will truly bring this project to life and, being engaged at the very beginning through this club, is a unique opportunity to be involved in making Britain's most powerful steam locomotive a reality". He added, "We will launch our main fundraising campaign in Spring 2014 when members of The Founders Club will be able to become the first P2 covenantors".