On 5 April 2016 a statue to Sir Nigel Gresley was unveiled on the new concourse of King’s Cross Station. Nigel Gresley (1876-1941) was born in Derbyshire. He became Chief Mechanical Engineer for the Great Northern Railway from 1911 to 1923 and then Chief Mechanical Engineer for the London and North Eastern Railway from 1923 until his death in 1941.
Based in an office at King’s Cross Station, he designed powerful, elegant and fast locomotives including the world famous ‘Flying Scotsman’ and the ‘Mallard’. His engines set new standards of comfort, speed and safety and were the first truly high speed trains.
In its earliest design, the bronze of Gresley was to have included a duck called the mallard, standing beside him, to remind onlookers that he designed the elegant steam engine that was the fastest locomotive the world has ever seen. Reaching a speed of 126 miles per hour it set a record that still stands today.
The detailed sculpture was made by Hazel Reeves and stands under the new lattice canopy in the semi-circular concourse at King’s Cross Station.