|R40||70th Anniversary of the Mallard Record Speed Run||£30.00||Limited Availability|
|R40A||70th Anniversary of the Mallard Record Speed Run with 'The Quest for Speed' alternative postmark||£20.00||Sold Out|
Issue Date: 03/07/2008
Issue Name: 70th Anniversary of the Mallard Record Speed Run
Producer: Buckingham Covers
Mallard's Record of 126mph Still Stands. This amazing railway cover celebrates the 70th Anniversary of the Mallard's World Record Run. Her record was achieved on 3rd July 1938, and the highest speed of 126mph was recorded at milepost 90 1/4, between Little Bytham and Essendine. And that record still stands today. The stamp on this beautiful cover is from our Big Four stamp sheet. The artwork is by perhaps the greatest railway artist of all time, Terence Cuneo. Cuneo was commissioned to paint the Mallard to commemorate its 50th anniversary.
Number 4468 Mallard is a London and North Eastern Railway Class A4 4-6-2 Pacific steam locomotive built at Doncaster, England in 1938. It is historically significant as the holder of the world speed record for steam locomotives.
The A4 class was designed by Sir Nigel Gresley to power high-speed streamlined trains. The wind-tunnel-tested, aerodynamic body and high power allowed the class to reach speeds of over 100 miles per hour (160 km/h), although in everyday service it rarely attained this speed. No regular steam-hauled rail service in the UK reached even 90 mph, much less 100. Mallard covered almost one and a half million miles (2.4 million km) before it was retired in 1963.
It was restored to working order in the 1980s, but has not operated since, apart from hauling some specials between York and Scarborough in July 1986 and a couple of runs between York and Harrogate/Leeds around Easter 1987. Mallard is now part of the National Collection at the United Kingdom's National Railway Museum in York. On the weekend of 5 July 2008, Mallard was taken outside for the first time in years and displayed beside the three other A4s that are resident in the UK, thus reuniting them for the first time since preservation. It departed the museum for Locomotion, the NRM's outbase at Shildon on 23 June 2010, where it was a static exhibit, until it was hauled back to York on 19 July 2011 and put back on display in its original location in the Great Hall.
The locomotive is 70 ft (21 m) long and weighs 165 tons, including the tender. It is painted LNER garter blue with red wheels and steel rims.
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