Thursday, April 11, 2024

Model Railway at King's Cross station 'Family Lounge'

'Mallard' model in the family lounge
A model of the 'Mallard' steam locomotive.

Recently I have been using King's Cross station a lot more, as I have been travelling to Peterborough to see friends. Or, waiting there for friends to arrive. Either way I have been visiting around King's Cross station more than usual. 

Of course, there is the architecture of the station, but I have found the family room to be a quiet place to relax, while waiting for trains to arrive or depart.

Detailed model buildings
Some of the detailed model buildings.

The family lounge has seating, a soft play area for the little ones, comfy seats, table top games and screens, showing what it is like to drive the LNER Azuma train, and display cabinets with models of the 'Flying Scotsman' steam locomotive.

But its main attraction has to be the giant Hornby model railway, that takes centre stage of the lounge. With its intricate detailing, different models of the LNER fleet, plus models of the 'Mallard' and 'Flying Scotsman'.
Even if you are just passing through the station, visiting the Harry Potter Shop at Platform 9 ¾ or meeting family or friends, you should definitely pop in to so see this magnificent model, especially if you are a rail enthusiast.

Brief History

Following a survey, by Mumsnet, 93% of people who planned to make a trip by train were more concerned with "making travel easy", especially those with young children.

And so, in October 2022, London North Eastern Railway (LNER) unveiled the UK rail networks first 'family lounge', where families could relax while waiting for their train.

Located on the main concourse, it is completely free for anyone to use and has a capacity of just under 50 people, depending on luggage, pushchairs, etc. so works on a 'first come, first served' basis.

Flying Scotsman and LNER Azuma model
An LNER Azuma locomotive with the 'Flying Scotsman' steam locomotive model.

A statue of Sir Nigel Gresley (1876-1941), who was the Chief Mechanical Engineer for the Great Northern Railway (1911-1923) and London & North Eastern Railway (1923-1941), stands outside the entrance to the family lounge. It was sculpted by Hazel Reeves FRSA.

Sir Nigel Gresley statue
Statue of Sir Nigel Gresley.

His office was at King's Cross and it was here he designed the world famous 'Flying Scotsman' and the fastest steam locomotive in the world... the 'Mallard', models of which can be seen on the model railway in the family lounge.

LNER Azuma locomotive model
LNER Azuma locomotive model.

Check out a short video by clicking the link below.