April 1st 2012
Arthur tells the engines the story of his name and an insight into the Royal Scots past.
Spring was coming back and winter's cold grasp on the railway was disappearing. Babs had just returned after delivering an oil train. She was young and had endless amounts of energy. Fred wishes that he was young again since he loved to have so much energy. Babs complimented that at least he was young at heart and he looked good for his age. So Fred blushed while the other engines laughed. But subject soon changed and Babs noticed and empty space in the shed. She thought about Arthur as he had been gone for a while. Jimmy explained that he pulls the expresses to Crewe and back again. Babs was excited to see him again since he was such a kind and friendly engine. Ivatt added that she never heard any of his stories as he is a natural story teller. Babs got even more excited and hopes that he would tell them one tonight. Terry told them to calm down as he has arrived. Arthur appeared among the most proud but most joyful and insistent faces. Arthur was pleased to be with his friends again and could instantly recognize what they wanted. Babs noticed his nameplate on the side of his boiler and thought of it as an unusually long name and wondered how did he become Arthur if he was already named. Arthur explained that when he was first built, he used to be known as Ostrich. That made the engines laughed and began to make jokes. Arthur chuckled too and told that his driver thought it a joke too but he did not mind as always got a laugh either way. Ivatt asked if he would tell them a story on how he became Arthur. Arthur grinned and asked the engines to sit comfortably and the engines sizzled happily. Arthur begun and this was the story he told them.
Not so long ago he had a new Stanier Type 2 A4 leg given to him in June 1945. This was the design of William Stanier that improved his performance greatly. 3 months later the war was officially over and he was expected the return of his old driver. He was allocated to Euston for a short while and he remembered the shed master and just been put in charge of the shed. And if his memory serves him well he distinctly remembered seeing Fred on a few occasions. The shed master told Ostrich that he and Arthur (his old driver) will be back to work tomorrow. Ostrich hoped so. Arthur always kept his word and when he arrived home he came to see Ostrich he used to be a young cleaner and worked his way up to be one of the finest drivers the LMS has ever seen. But when war broke out in 1939, he signed himself up and was sent to fight. Ostrich was glad when he heard that Arthur survived and was thrilled when he came to see him. Arthur was still unpleased with the name Ostrich and said that the railway must give him a proper name and he added that they would be back on the line again. 3 years later Ostrich was given a general overhaul. The railways were nationalized and the newely formed British Railways wanted to give their engines a different appearance from the old big four. he was to only Royal Scot to be painted in Experimental Apple Green. There had been two Patriots given the same coat as him and since no other colour was available in the works he was painted exactly the same. The other engines who were still in their original liveries would tease him even more. Saying that he looked like a baby Scot or an LNER engine. But on the bright side his name Ostrich was replaced with a more dignifying name. The one he wears today in honor of a regiment that fought in the war, the Honourable Artillery Company. Arthur was pleased with the name change but not with the name change but not with the railway. The war had taken its toll on an already run down railway and he was beginning to miss the military. He complimented that his engine's name was an improvement but he grumbled that why they painted him like an LNER engine and became furious at the railway. Ostrich did not complain but he understood what Arthur meant. The rails were desperate needed to prepare and the coal was terrible. He and Arthur discovered this one day.
In early summer,r British Railways began the famous exchange trials. Foreign engines from different regions would carry out trial runs. One day an A4 liked into Euston station, all had not gone well. Due to the poor coal it would not burn properly and the driver knew that the A4 could not take the train home again. Arthur turned to Ostrich; he said that they would show the LNER folks how a real engine hauls a train. Ostrich felt sorry for the A4 after all it had been trying to create a good impression. And then there he was getting ready to take its train. The passengers were important and they must come first. Ostrich had a good head of steam and Arthur gave him full support as they snorted out of the station. They made good time too and the inspectors on board were very impressed.
Little did Ostrich know that Arthur had lost his patience on British Railways and decided to hang in his notice and head back to the military? When he explained his reasons to Ostrich and the shed master they were both disappointed but Ostrich was determined that Arthur went out on a high note.
During the 1948 Exchange Trials, London was also paying host to the Olympic Games. Ostrich was very busy and trains were constantly arriving into Euston. Everything had to run like clockwork and the railways could not afford for anything to go wrong.
While some trials a new Peppercorn A1 had arrived with a passenger train. He was waiting to take the spectators home again when Ostrich pulled up next to him. The A1 said that he can see he was on trial to. He cut short and realized Ostrich was actually an LMS engine. The A1 then said that he thought he was one of his class or actually an LNER engine and then he began stuttering. He then apologizes that he did not want to stutter out like they were rivals. Ostrich then said that it was okay since it must be quite intimidating to be surrounded by once competitors. The A1 agreed and was glad that Ostrich understood. In his opinion the Green looked better on an LNER engine while the LMS engines looked much better in Maroon. Ostrich agreed, they certainly do though it is nice to have a change.
Ostrich soon became good friends with the A1 and he came to visit Euston on trial runs many times. What they did not realize is that how much they had been an example to the other engines, who in time learned to accept the fact that they were all together as one whole railway and that they could accept the LNER folks as their companions not their competitors. The A1 proved his worth when Ostrich suffered from poor coal and he took over for Ostrich trains. They had a splendid time together and even Arthur had to admit that he enjoyed the friendly rivalry between Ostrich and the A1. But all too soon it came to an end and so did Arthur's time on the railway. Ostrich came to see him on the platform when it was time for him to leave. He had been assigned to the Duke of Wellington's regiment. Arthur promised Ostrich that he will be fine and he will try and come and see him again as often as he could. Ostrich pleaded if he will promise and Arthur did and said that maybe next time he sees him the railway would give him a better colour. Ostrich smiled cheerfully at him. He sat at the platform and waited until Arthur safely departed.
At the end of the story Babs said that it was a good story but told Arthur that he had not told them how he became known as Arthur. Arthur said that good things come to those who wait and the next story will have to wait until next time.
- Arthur (driver)
- Tornado (unnamed)
- Merlin (unnamed)
- Australia (unnamed)
- Other Jubilies
- This episode is the first part of the "Arthur the Royal Scot Trilogy".