I remember as a child seeing the Great Bear model at Truro museum. It was certainly there c1955-60. Of course the real engine had no link with Cornwall (it was not allowed west of Bristol) and the museum would certainly be more discriminating today about displaying such a thing of no local interest, so no surprise that it is stored. I would guess that the model was made in Cornwall and then donated to the museum. It is a pity, though, that the thing is not on display somewhere. STEAM at Swindon would be the best place, I suppose. There are endless problems connected with transferring objects between museums, though.
The nearest link between The Great Bear and Cornwall is that the 1924 rebuild was shedded at Laira between 1945 and 1952 (its withdrawal date) and was often seen in Cornwall. 'Rebuilding' was invariably a euphemism for getting a new engine past the Board of Directors: especially when the engine is named after the Chairman of the Board (Viscount Churchill). Mr Christison, former Loco superintendent of the Newton Abbot division, once told me that the only bits of the ' Bear' in the rebuild were the numberplates and the handrail knobs!
Roy Thank you for that Roy, now the facts are now laid bare!!
If you publish any of these photographs, I would I appreciate it if the Owner of Station Garage is acknowledged for his kindness in allowing me on his property (as well as the cup of tea!) - thank you.
Thank you for the pictures Ken. N.B. Purton is on the Swindon - Gloucester route and therefore within the limits of the Freedom of the South West Rover - which sets our bounds.