GNR Liveries

19th Century liveries are often open to conjecture. It is also notoriously difficult to reproduce accurate colours on a computer screen, so this has not been attempted. Accurate matches should be taken from preserved vehicles, museums, or historical societies.


Initially the GNR locomotive livery was dark green with brown frames. The switch to better known 'grass green' occurred sometime between 1876 and 1881. The frames were also darkened to a deep red-brown which was often refered to as 'claret' or 'lake'. Lining was black with white edges. Tender and tank sides were painted with a 'grass' green panel and a darker green border. The two shades of green were separated with a black line with white edging. This livery continued with few changes until Grouping (1923).

An unlined dark grey livery for goods locomotives was introduced in 1912. As an economy measure, this livery was also used for some passenger locomotives during World War 1. A few of these passenger locomotives survived in their grey livery until Grouping (1923).

Coaching Stock

Carriages were finished in varnished teak. Solebars and the wooden centres of Mansell wheels were painted teak. Ironwork below the solebar were painted black. Lining was yellow with a very fine blue edge. Roofs were painted buff, but later Gresley designs had white roofs.

Non-passenger carrying vehicles were painted teak with yellow sharacters shaded blue and white.


Type Colour
General Oxide brown
Refigerator vans White, some with brown solebars
Gunpowder vans White with red letters