Saturday, January 07, 2006


LONE STAR: Its diversity and achievements

Lone Star's ranges of die-cast metal (Mazak) and plastic models and toys included cap-firing pistols, rifles and other Western Cowboy accessories. They also produced robust metal cars, trucks, cranes, passenger aircraft, farm tractors and associated farming machinery. 'OOO'-Gauge model Trains ("Treble-O-Lectric" and non-motorised, so-called 'Push along'). 'Harvey' Series polythene figures in 'OO' scale, i.e. Soldiers both modern and historical, Cowboys, Red Indians [Native Americans], a variety of Tribesmen, i.e. Afghans, Zulus, etc., Medieval Knights both mounted and pedestrian, Medieval foot soldiers and Siege name but a few.

"The Bumper Book of 'Lone Star' Diecast Models and Toys 1948-88" also contains anecdotes and reported accounts by a number of former employees and management personalities describing their time while employed by Lone Star which, until the early 1980s, boasted three factories in the region immediately north of central London and also southern Hertfordshire, U.K.

These written accounts include the fascinating story of Roy Green, a formerly unemployed actor (ex-Army) who was engaged by the firm, following Roy's initial approach to them, for the purpose of portraying the role of a fictional, heroic, Cowboy character named "Steve Larrabee", described in the company's monthly comic as "The Lone Star Rider". Roy, suitably costumed in Western 'rig', was assigned to visit the major department stores throughout the U.K. where he promoted sales of the company's Western-themed toy ranges. During the summer months between 1952-57, "Steve" (or Roy) also ran, and participated in, a Wild West/Circus Show which travelled to various venues, both in theatres, arenas and under the 'Big Top' in outdoor locations, throughout Britain. He became an accomplished horse rider after undergoing several sessions of training at a riding school near Enfield, arranged and funded by Lone Star, as a condition of his employment. Roy also did broadcasts via 'Radio Luxembourg', during that period, portraying the adventures of "Steve Larrabee" in the style of the Western stories featured on the pages of Lone Star comic books and Annuals. There is a segment devoted to Roy Green, with photos, on the Lone Star website - (...and scroll down).

Check out the unsolicited recommendations received via the Internet, in respect of the 'Lone Star' website (as mentioned above) and also "The Bumper Book of 'Lone Star' Diecast Models and Toys 1948-88" (ISBN: 0-9539058-0-2) Click on the link below:-

LONE STAR - "Review" contemporaneous newspaper articles on the company's closure

Compiler (G. S. Ambridge)


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