Somewhat of a rare locomotive "Joy" is a Tom Cooper (of Steamlines) Merlin Locomotive Works 0-6-0 "Midas MK3" class locomotive from a 1983 build.

Its unknown how many of the MK3 version were made, infact to date no one has reported seeing another locomotive from Merlin that looks like "Joy" does, although it is believed that the bodyshell used on the Midas class was used on several different types of loco's sold by Tom Cooper although each was different!

Its believed that Tom used some Beck parts to make Joy, and if you look at some of the late Beck locomotives you can see some of the similarities, Beck was of course acquired by Roundhouse Engineering who produced "Anna" before leaving Beck to rest for ever more, it is believed that several hundred Beck parts are still stored safely with Roundhouse.

We have digressed somewhat, but Merlin Locomotives were not standard in anyway!

Tom went on from the Midas to produce the more popular and more common Mayflower and Meteor models, so to own a usable Midas is something of a rarity.

"Joy" was made with the [one fits all scenario's] revised cab backsheets, which has a hole in it for the regulator control knob to pass through for maunally controlled locomotives, "Joy" is radio controlled as were the majority of Merlin loco's. She uses 27mhz two channel radio control, one servo operating the reverser, the other the regulator. She is also fitted with a whistle, something that Merlin did list as an optional extra, but very few left the workshop without one!


"Joy" had just one owner from new before she joined the Elmtree Line, she had been well cared for and came in her own custom built wooden carrying case, padded on the inside. When her last owner became unwell she was carefully stored away in a loft, where she sat [according to his widow] for 8 years before being discovered.

She spent a short time in the Elmtree Works having some wiring replaced that had perished over time, and through being slowly burnt through! She was then slowly steamed to low pressure to check for leaks, and clear through the pipework. After a satisfactory checkover she was brought to full operating pressure and came back to life for the first time in nearly a decade.

As with most Merlin locomotives she has a noisy boiler and does not have immense haulage power, but runs nicely and the whistle works a treat,

With the change of direction that the Elmtree Line is going through it was decided to part with "Joy" in late 2010, she now has a new railway to run on.


She is one of a kind and hopefully one day in the future her whereabouts will be known again, one thing is for sure she is a piece of history from the early eighties, and if Tom Cooper were still with us i'm sure he would be proud to see her chuff along once more.