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Model Rail, Kernow Model Rail Centre and Heljan have joined forces to bring you a ready-to-run ‘OO’ gauge Class 97/6, better known as the ‘PWM’.

Five Ruston & Hornsby 0‑6‑0DEs were ordered by the Western Region for use in replacing 60ft track panels with continuously welded rail. They were designed so that they could be hauled from depots to work sites in permanent way trains where the traction motor would be re-engaged to enable them to shunt wagons. The ‘PWMs’ were never part of the capital stock list and were only ever allocated to Departmental duties. EWS withdrew the final two, 97651 and 97654, in 1998.

Our tooling will only cover PWM651-654 (97651-97654), which were delivered in 1959. The pioneer, PWM650 (97650), built in 1953, had smaller wheels and other differences.

The tooling is being split three ways:

Model Rail will offer pristine versions in five liveries, Kernow MRC will offer weathered versions of those same liveries and Heljan will produce versions in industrial‑inspired colour schemes, which are still to be confirmed).

Work has already started – Paul and Peter Martin graciously allowed Model Rail’s Richard Foster and Heljan’s Ben Jones to measure and photograph their PWM651 at the Swindon & Cricklade Railway in mid-August.

Final specifications have yet to be finalised, but it’s hoped that the ‘PWM’ will have a Next18 DCC decoder socket, factory‑fitted speaker, working spot lamps and interior lights (as well as marker lights, where applicable).

Prices have yet to be confirmed and we’ll let you know when the order book opens.

It’s hoped that the ‘PWM’ will hit the shelves in early 2021.

PWM Opening the Box