Liveries

These pages provide basic information and illustrations on GWR livery details from the turn of the 20th century to nationalisation in 1948, together with some notes on the post-nationalisation 1948-64 era. Note that some periods and styles are currently unaccounted for, pending the availability of good quality illustrations.

If you are interested in the pre-grouping liveries of some of the constitutent companies, have a look at the features section.

 

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Colours and Insignia
Details and illustrations of basic stock, building and uniform colours, as well as the main insignia used by the GWR. GWR Garter Crest
GWR Coat of Arms
GWR Roundel
GWR Loco Colours
GWR Coach Colours
GWR Building and Structure Colours
GWR Uniform Colours

Loco Liveries
Details and illustrations of the main GWR loco liveries from 1900-1947, together with some details of post-nationalisation BR(W) Steam Loco Livery from 1948-64.

1900-1906: Locos
1906-1934: Locos
1934-1942: Locos
1942-1947: Locos
BR(W) Steam Loco Livery 1948-64

  Two good online references for loco liveries:

Ian Rathbone's comprehensive guide to loco painting, covering 1923 to 1947

Malcolm Mitchell's Painting Guide for Great Western Locomotives

Coach Liveries
Details and illustrations of the main GWR coach liveries from c 1880-1947, plus some notes on the BR(W) livery for loco-hauled stock. Note that the all-brown livery of 1908-1912 remains to be described here, pending a good model photo. 1880-1908 coach livery
1912-1922 coach livery
1922-1927 coach livery
1927-1934 coach livery
1934-1942 coach livery
1942-1947 coach livery
BR(W) Coach Livery 1948-1964

Note on coach livery repainting intervals:  In general, a coach livery pre-WWI was expected to last approximately 10-12 years before repainting was necessary. From 1922 onward, with the re-introduction of the brown and cream body colours, it seems less varnishing was applied, and the repainting interval dropped to approximately 7 years, and the pace of repainting seems to have accelerated during the mid- to late-1920s. Assessing what livery a coach should be in a particular era, especially in times when the official livery was changing quite rapidly (throughout the 1920s, and post-1948) is therefore difficult, and some intelligent guessing needs to be applied to the build date of a coach. As always, good pictures of the time help considerably.

Goods and Non-Passenger Coaching Stock ('brown' vehicles) Liveries
Illustrates the standard goods stock grey and 'brown' liveries. Early Red Wagon livery
Standard Goods Stock
Non-Passenger Coaching Stock ('Brown' vehicles')


Name & Number Plates
Details and illustrations of name and number plates for locos and wagons. GWR Loco Nameplates
GWR Loco Numberplates
GWR Wagon Plates