Railways Illustrated

Coaching Stock News


Universal barriers debut

Two of the universal barrier coaches converted from former Motorail vans by Meridian Generic Rail finally made their debut on the network on February 3. In preparatio­n for some two years, former Great Western vehicles 96603 and 96605 were transferre­d from Burton Wetmore to Old Dalby by 37510 to undergo coupling trials with a Class 730.

The key aspect of the conversion is the fitting of a height-adjustable Dellner coupling at one end of each coach to give computabil­ity with a range of multiple unit types.

The company aims to use the vehicles along with similarly modified 96602 and 96607 both in the UK and in Europe, such as to transfer units to and from the Velim test centre in the Czech Republic. With the trial completed, the duo were returned to Burton seven days later between 37510 and 37884.

DATS fleet rounded up

With the majority of the Mk.3 fleet in use with Data Acquisitio­n & Testing Services (DATS) now based at Brush Traction’s vacated Falcon Works, February 5 saw the handful of vehicles still located at Leicester transferre­d to Loughborou­gh to join them. The 125 Group’s HST power cars 43048 and 43089 duly arrived light from Swanwick Junction to collect TSOS 12032/64/97 and DVT 82136 for the short journey, the latter looking somewhat incongruou­s sandwiched towards the centre of the formation.

LNER adds extra Mk.4 set

First announced last summer, the additional Mk.4 set for LNER finally returned to service at the beginning of February, having been extracted from store at Worksop back in August. Since then, the coaches making up NL16 have undergone attention at both Wabtec, Doncaster, and Neville Hill, and give the East Coast operator an eighth set to increase the resilience of the fleet.

First noted in traffic on February 5 with 91105, it is formed of 12213, 12428, 12433, 12467, 12312, 10315, 11418, 11318, 11416 and ‘Flying Scotswoman’-liveried DVT 82205. Meanwhile, off-lease 12305, 12480, and 12486 are now in use as spares donors at Doncaster, the trio having moved from Worksop in October last year but initially remained unidentifi­ed.

LSL developmen­ts

As expected, TF 41183 made its debut in the Blue Pullman HST on January 22, having become the first vehicle in the set to be fitted with retention tanks at Eastleigh Works. Meanwhile, Mk.2e FO 3231 was returned to the company’s Crewe depot by road at the beginning of February after almost two years at Burton Wetmore.

Previously used in the Statesman set, it still retains Pullman colours.

Riviera offers Mk.1s

Two more Mk.1 coaches have been put up for sale by Riviera Trains. These are chocolate and cream TSO 4959, which is operationa­l but described as tired internally, and BR maroon BCK 21245, this having not worked for several years and most recently used for spares. Both are currently at Eastleigh Works, which the company is in the process of vacating in favour of Burton.

SRPS stock modified

Four more of the Scottish Railway Preservati­on Society’s Mk.1s were despatched to Carnforth on February 14 for the fitting of retention tanks. Collected from Bo’ness by 37676, the modificati­ons to 1859, 3096, 3150 and 5028 are due to be completed by mid-march.

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