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Press release arrived today:

Class 108 DMU released for Warley

Bachmann Europe PLC has today released its new British Railways Class 108 diesel multiple unit at The Warley Model Railway Club's Annual Exhibition at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham.

Built by British Railways at its Derby Works, 147 two car, 5 three car and 6 four car units were built between 1958 and 1961. Totalling 333 vehicles (210 powered and 123 trailer cars) and were generically known as 'Derby Lightweight's', although they differed considerably from the earlier batch built from 1954. They were allocated to the Eastern, North Eastern and London Midland Regions and saw service on a large number of routes around Bletchley, Carlisle, Chester, Crewe, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Preston and Sheffield. Each two car set could accommodate 117 passengers and they were ideal for use on local services and branch lines. They later became more widespread in their travels, some seeing service on the Southern and Western Regions.

Vehicle No. 51562 was the 1,000th diesel multiple unit to be built at Derby Works. This vehicle has been preserved by the National Railway Museum at York.

The first vehicle was withdrawn in 1964 as a result of accident damage. Most survived until the early 1990s when major withdrawal took place with the arrival of second generation units for Regional Railways. A number carried Network SouthEast colours and were used latterly on the Chiltern Lines (prior to the arrival of the Network Turbo units) and the Bletchley - Bedford line. The last unit was withdrawn in October 1963. Over 50 vehicles have passed into preservation for use on heritage railways.

Three two car versions have been produced in British Railways green (32-900), British Rail blue / grey (32-902) and Network SouthEast livery (32-901). The unit is DCC ready, has directional lighting, illuminated roof boxes, a fully detailed interior and has full underfloor detailing. Both types of cab roof have been produced to allow the option of either type of headcode / destination boxes to be produced. The model incorporates a heavy internal weight which negates the need for traction tyres. Each unit has a Recommended Retail Price of £78.50.
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