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British Toy Companies : Gaiety Toys – Castle Art Products Ltd.

March 27th, 2013 Leave a comment Go to comments

GAIETY TOYS – CASTLE ART PRODUCTS LTD.

Gaiety Toys was the trading name used on a relatively small range of toys produced by Castle Art Products Ltd., a die-casting company incorporated in March of 1946 with its trading address given as Prospect House, Tyseley Industrial Estate, Seeleys Road, Birmingham, England. As far as I am aware the range of road vehicles simply consisted of three racing cars, a Morgan 3-wheel sports car and a fire engine although at the time of this post I have yet to come across the fire engine model.

The racing car models were a well detailed, one piece casting, with holes drilled through the body to accept the metal axles onto which were fitted the all metal wheels. The racers had no baseplate and had ‘Gaiety Toy – Castle Art Products’ cast into the underside of the body along with a castle image.

The Morgan sports car was produced at 4.75″/12cm in length, no driver within the model and it came in various colourway finishes, red, blue and green as well as an all chrome version. 

The racing cars were produced in 3 different sizes :

  • model 1 – Produced at 5″ / 12.7cm length, head and shoulders single driver cast in.
  • model 2 – Produced at 4″ / 10 cm length, head and shoulders driver and co-driver cast in.
  • model 3 – Produced at 3.25″ / 8.25cm length, head and shoulders single driver cast in.

All racing car models came painted in various single colourway finishes, red, blue and green as well as all chrome finish.

The racing cars, along with the Morgan 3 wheelers, were all produced in either free running or clockwork modes and came in a simple thick cardboard box with a single coloured line drawing lable.

Also produced under the Gaiety banner by Castle Art Products was a range of electric ’OO’ gauge railway locomotive models which came in a plain card box with a simple printed black and white lable. Alternatively one could purchase the loco body shell only, either painted or unpainted, which could be fitted with your own chassis. These body shells had ‘British Railways’ cast into the side tanks and came in a plain, thick cardboard box.

The following pictures of the Gaiety Toys fire engine were kindly sent in by Don Stephens – much appreciated Don !

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  1. Mrs Phyllis Short
    July 22nd, 2013 at 17:05 | #1

    Amongst my husband things I came across an engine in a white box with Gaiety models,electric scale model locos “00″ gauge. on one end side it says: Electric 0-6-2,pannier tank loco,british railways 46917. He did have other train sets but this one seems tobe alone. Could you please let me know if it’s a collectable engine and when was it made . Thank you very much.

  2. dave
    July 23rd, 2013 at 14:23 | #2

    Hello Phyllis, your Gaiety loco certainly is collectable. As far as I am aware the 0-6-2 pannier tank loco British Rail running no. 46917 was produced as either a 2 or 3 rail operational model although originally also a static scale model for your layout. Motorised they sold for around the £3.00 mark, nowadays with the box (depending on condition of box/model, working or not etc) I would have thought around £30 + level. As for when it was produced ? best guess would be in the early 1950′s say around 1952/3 time but not 100% on that.
    Best I can do I’m afraid, David.

  3. Mrs Phyllis Short
    August 22nd, 2013 at 14:25 | #3

    Sorry for the delay in replying , David. I have been away. Thank you for the information it is most useful. Regards

  4. dave
    August 25th, 2013 at 20:52 | #4

    No problem Phyllis, glad to be of help.
    David.

  5. don stephens
    January 27th, 2014 at 05:58 | #5

    hi David. I have 2 of the gaiety fire engines both slightly different. One has the post for the fire hose one not. In the photos I have seen there is a ladder with wheels, a hose and a fireman hope this info might be useful . Regards don

  6. dave
    January 27th, 2014 at 15:43 | #6

    Hi Don,
    Thanks for the info. appreciated. Any chance of a pic or two for the site ?
    Cheers for now, David.

  7. Derek Rigby
    May 30th, 2014 at 09:22 | #7

    Hi
    I have a chrome Morgan car which is marked under the body as Gaiety Reg No 850429 A Castle Art product. Can you advise me if it has any value
    Derek

  8. dave
    June 10th, 2014 at 16:00 | #8

    Hi Derek, Morgan chromed three wheelers usually sell at auction for around the £35-£40 mark in good condition – so not a fortune but they are pretty common.
    Cheers, David.

  9. Graham Shaw
    March 17th, 2015 at 12:28 | #9

    Hi, I have a 3-wheeled Morgan Gaiety by Castle art models – do you know what size key I need for the clockwork motor or is there any other toy’s key I could use?
    thanks
    Reagards

  10. dave
    March 25th, 2015 at 17:08 | #10

    Hi there Graham, unlike most mechanical toys of the the 1940′s / 50′s produced by the likes of Chad Valley or Triang to name but two, Gaiety toys did not produce a key stamped with their name. Or I might be safer saying that I have never come across one ! One reason for this was that quite often the clockwork motors were a ‘bought -in’ item. Consequently you will find that one key will fit many different models from several different manufacturers. I think you will find that any ‘standard’ clockwork key will operate your model. I usually carry around a triang Minic key for this purpose and consider myself unlucky if it doesn’t fit ! However a friend of mine .. yes I do have one .. bought from a watch/clock repairers a multi-purpose key having four different size apertures coming off a central boss. (No doubt there is a technical name for this type of key but I don’t know it !).
    Hope that is an adequate answer to your question, cheers David.

  11. John
    February 16th, 2016 at 21:25 | #11

    Hi I have got a clock work race car looks like a gaiety toy it’s red with metal wheels and a driver and a passenger in it but I can’t find no stamps or anything on the bottom I was wondering if anyone can help me out I would like to no the make and year if this is possible if anyone as any information please message me and I can get you a picture many thanks

  12. dave
    February 20th, 2016 at 11:38 | #12

    John, if you can send a picture through I’m happy to post it and if I am unable to help I’m sure there will be someone out there who can.
    David.

  13. John Lindop
    August 10th, 2016 at 16:51 | #13

    Hi,
    Seeking steering wheel for Gaiety Morgan Threewheeler..
    Any clues ?
    TTFN

  14. dave
    August 25th, 2016 at 20:50 | #14

    John, I personally can’t help you out John as I’ve no Gaiety models for parts but if anyone out there can help please drop me a line.
    David.

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