Latest News – updated July 23rd, 2019

STOP PRESS
 
Four LNERCA coaches to leave NYMR whilst carriage shed is built
 
One of the major planks of Yorkshire’s Magnificent Journey lottery-funded project is the provision of a carriage ‘stable’ to be situated on a field on the west side of the line just north of Trout Farm crossing, a quarter mile north of Pickering station.
 
Preparatory work for the new carriage shed is well under way, to ensure that it is finished by May 2021. One consequence is that it is necessary to clear the Pickering Long Siding for the ground works to commence which includes slewing what is the Long Siding. This means some of our vehicles need to move away from the NYMR temporarily because there is nowhere else on the NYMR to store them. Four of our vehicles (NER Third Open 945, Gresley Tourist Third Open 24109, Gresley Third Corridor 23896 and Thompson Composite Corridor 18477) will be moving to Spennymoor, Co. Durham, where they will be stored under cover for the first time since being rescued for preservation. They have been selected due to being partly restored. The costs of their move there, and in due course back to the railway, are being funded by the railway. The LNERCA has a written Agreement with the NYMR Trust Board, signed by the Trust Chairman, that these vehicles will return to the NYMR once the carriage shed is built.
 
Since all four of these coaches are in a semi-restored condition, this gives the LNERCA a great opportunity to recommence work on them, if funding for such work could be found. Already up there is Thompson Composite Lavatory 88339, waiting a detailed inspection to assess the necessary door repair work. Thus the LNERCA is looking for anyone willing to consider a major act of sponsorship? Getting another of these wonderful carriages working again would be appreciated by so many of the travelling public. If anyone wishes to visit the site at Spennymoor, which is private, please do contact the LNERCA Chairman, Nick Stringer who can make the arrangements. His email is: nickstringer701@btinternet.com



TTO 24109 transfers to LNERCA’s fleet

 

Top news this month is that Colin Sykes has transferred the ownership of Tourist Third Open No. 24109 to the LNERCA.
 
Colin holds a special place in the annals of the LNERCA, for he was the first to respond to an appeal when the LNERCA was formed in 1979 to become part owner or full owner of a LNER carriage. Colin, who lived at the time at Glenrothes, Fife, wanted to buy a Gresley and managed to secure 24109, then numbered departmental TDE 320956. He bought it from scrap processor CF Booth, Rotherham, to whom it had been sold by BR, this carriage being one of the former secret mobile control train carriages – to be used in future wartime to control rail operations.
 
Restoration commenced in earnest and Colin spent hundreds of man-hours painstakingly renovating the carriage – for many years it was domiciled in Pickering yard. Where did the years go? With Colin taking over running 17 Burgate Hotel, Pickering, time disappeared for working on 24109. Then his good lady had to withdraw from her cooking duties – Irene was renowned for her culinary expertise – and the couple retired to Lealholme on the Esk Valley branch. Colin still managed to volunteer in Grosmont café.
 
Meanwhile, 24109 migrated to the Long Siding, Pickering, awaiting completion – and now resurrection.
The north end framing needs completing and almost certainly a new roof canvas will be required. The largest job will be the provision of seating – but times have moved on in 40 years and the advent of CNC technology (computer-aided automation of making wooden components) will bring the cost down.
 
Further news on this carriage – which many of the regular LNERCA volunteers would dearly like to see completed – may appear in the news bulletin in August.
 
CCT looking resplendent
After several months inside the Atkins shed, CCT No. 1308 is now parked outside near the turntable and looking absolutely magnificent in its LNER brown and white roof.
 
Attention has now turned to the headstocks at each end – stripping old paint off, then repainting in anti-corrosive green, grey undercoat and top coat. One of the ‘tailgates’, the metal plank which folds down to allow vehicle access (CCTs were often used to convey cars and vans), has been removed to be similarly treated, with the one at the northern end to be dealt with in similar fashion.
 
Meanwhile the metal supports for the footsteps have all been prepared and painted black. New stepboards have been procured, cut to size and painted – these will be bolted onto the supports imminently.
 
The last main job is the removal of the end doors so that the framing can be renewed as necessary.
 
Mustn’t forget the lettering. The white lettering – in LNER style and not BR – is being applied by wagon restorer, Michael Faulkner. This CCT will turn heads when fully completed and deservedly so – a credit to all the LNERCA and Wagon Group volunteers who have worked on it.

 



Flashback to 2006 when 24109 was last in Pickering yard. This June 6 picture of that year shows the tarpaulined Thompson TK 1623 to the right and the Mk.3 Sleeper 10591 is to the left. 24109 and 1623 occupy the space now taken by the Atkins shed.


Looking good: After months inside the Atkins shed making the CCT watertight, 1308 is back outside and residing in its former location – alongside the LNERCA’s workshop. Here the headstocks are being painted and the wooden framing at each end will be removed and refettled.



Chipping old paint off the Covered Carriage Truck’s north end headstock on June 30 are regular Sunday volunteers from left to right, Nick Smith, Doreen Williams and Stuart Hiscock.
 
Now that the CCT is outside, a perk of the job is being able to watch the trains pass by. No. 1308 spent many years at this location since being donated from Doncaster Works in July 1996.


 
With new stepboards for the CCT procured, they have been cut and shaped to size – Mick Watson applies the first coat of aluminium wood primer.


Painting patience personified: Chris Johnson continues the painstakingly slow task of signwriting the lettering on East Coast Joint Stock Restaurant Third No. 189.

This view portrays just how magnificent the finished product will be one day as more of the lettering is completed by the LNERCA’s Tyneside volunteer. Once the lettering is complete, some seven more coats of varnish will be added to the three already applied, prior to the start of the lettering.


Our newest ‘recruit’ – Jim Chittock. The LNERCA is most fortunate to acquire Jim’s expertise – in a previous incarnation he worked as a coach builder at York Works and in the preservation era has worked on the restoration of the ‘Brighton Belle’ electric multiple unit carriages, currently at Langwith Junction.
 
Jim’s first job with the LNERCA was to splice in a fillet to replace a rotten section of the cantrail of Brake Third Open No. 43567 – this carriage is in the main C&W workshop.


Previous News


 

CCT’s doors all fitted

 

Both sides of the CCT E1308 (or just 1308 as it will be renumbered without the ‘E’ prefix) are complete, with the fitting of the last sliding door.
It was the intention to wait until the CCT had been moved outside in order to allow the C&W’s all-purpose lifting vehicle to raise the rather heavy doors into position. However, it was found that by using several burly men, each door could be lifted and hung. The CCT is now ready to be moved outside – and so allow the Pickering Wagon Group back inside – the CCT having taken its space. The LNERCA is most grateful to the Wagon Group for allowing their space to be used in order to get the CCT watertight. A third coat of white water-resistant roof covering has been applied. Once outside, the end doors can be lifted off for refettling – because of their weight, this will definitely require the assistance of the C&W’s teleporter.
 
Springs come off Fish Van E75169
Three of the four springs have been removed from E75169. The fourth will shortly join them – all four will eventually be taken to Owen Ltd, Rotherham, for checking as regards tempering or renewal as required. This will not take place until funding is available.
 
DC Engineering has confirmed it still retains at least three components from the brake rigging which were not returned to Pickering when the underframe came back – this is quite a relief.
It now means that assembly of the brake rigging can proceed as soon as these parts are returned.
 
An order has been placed with Armstrong Oilers at Grosmont for four new oil pads – as recommended by the Pickering Wagon Group. Indeed, it is right to thank and acknowledge all the assistance and advice given so far by Ian Broadhead, leader of the Wagon Group.
 
Varnish applied to east side of ECJS No. 189
Neil Cawthorne, after much preparation of the teak panels and beading, has started to apply varnish to the east side of No. 189 – the rail side of the carriage as opposed to the car park (west) side. In a couple of isolated places, there has been an odd reaction to the varnish, resulting in tiny blistering. With his years of experience in varnishing and lacquering, he is confident all will be resolved.
 
Meanwhile, the long intricate job of free-hand painting the lettering EAST COAST DINING SALOON THIRD CLASS on the west side continues – by Chris Johnson. This talented young man sets exceptionally high standards with his painting expertise.

 



Brian Ford (top) and Ken Richardson fit the last door to the CCT. Everything you see on this door, apart from the metal fixings, is brand new – as is all the bodywork along both sides of 1308. The roof is also now finished. The CCT is destined for the great outdoors shortly. Photo: Philip Brunsdon.

First varnish on the east side of ECJS No. 189, clearly showing the immediate transformation from bare teak to that of the first coat of varnish.
 
Only ten more coats to apply. . . . .
 
Photo: Neil Cawthorne.


Impressive eh? Chris Johnson’s handiwork is shown to good effect as the long job of painting all the lettering progresses. And there is the other side of the carriage to sign write as well!

Photo: Murray Brown.


Besides a total strip of all varnish on Brake Third Open No. 43567, repairs to loose panels have also taken place. In this view, it can be seen how the panels are held in place against the internal teak framing whilst the triangular glue blocks which hold the panels onto the framing harden and set. Photo: Murray Brown.


Inside the main C&W shed, BTO No. 43567 is now devoid of all varnish – and roof canvas – a complete strip to bare wood. This has been such a dispiriting task for volunteers. Water ingress on the failed roof covering and on the bodyside has meant hours of remedial work. The roof is planned to receive the new polyester material as trialled on the CCT No.1308. Photo: Murray Brown.

White roof for CCT 1308!

 

For the first time in its existence, Covered Carriage Truck (CCT) No. E1308 has a white roof. This has come about because the valiant, trusty stores van, so vital to the work of the LNERCA, is receiving a substantial body overhaul and, because it is being put back into LNER livery, this explains why the bodyside panels and doors are now in LNER brown, whilst the roof is white.
 
Of course, there is a little artistic licence here in that as No. 1308 was part of the second batch of CCTs built in 1950, it would have emerged from Doncaster Works in maroon. The first batch of CCTs built by the LNER in 1939 was, of course, in LNER Brown. The latter batch was identical to the first and the LNERCA committee thought that we would ring the changes, especially as the CCT will be on show to a large number of visitors to the NYMR as they make their way past the station to the car park. No. 1308 is destined to be placed in what is known as the Beck Siding – highly visible from the road past the station and to passengers on Platform 1 at the north end of Pickering station.
 
Work has nearly finished on the extensive body overhaul as regards the sides of the CCT. The ends have yet to be tackled and these will be done once the van is extracted from the Atkins shed to allow the C&W’s ‘all-purpose’ vehicle to lift off the heavy doors to enable frame repairs.
 
The LNERCA committee would like to place on record its thanks to the Pickering Wagon Group whose members have given of their time in large amounts to help with the bodywork repairs on No. 1308.
 
Worthy of mention is the repair of one of the door pillars – this was practically non-existent, with just a stump hanging down from the cant rail. An entirely new pillar has been fabricated and spliced into the remaining piece. This necessitated using an Acrow Prop to support the ceiling whilst the work was in hand. New vertical boards have been fitted along the entire west side (car park side) and painted. A superb job has been done by many LNERCA volunteers and the CCT will look outstanding when finished.
 
Work resumes on Fish Van E75169
Fingers crossed, we are expecting our joiner to be able to start work in the foreseeable future once he has finished his contract work on the LNER ‘Beavertail’ carriage at Burton on Trent.
 
The brake rigging, much of it already derusted and fully painted, has been resurrected. In addition, two axlebox covers have been dropped to examine the ends of the axles (journals) and to order four new oil pads (one for each axle) from Armstrong Oilers at Grosmont. The two journals examined so far were found to be in excellent condition, with no evidence of scoring.
 
Meanwhile the newly overhauled brake cylinder is being prepared for fitting. We have also been promised some 2” pipe which can form the vacuum pipe which, of course, runs from one end of the vehicle to the other and is connected to the vacuum cylinder.
 
Moves afoot with Thompson CL 88339
At long last, there is some positive news we can report on the sad saga of the Thompson CL No. 88339. With the commendable decision taken by the members of the consortium which owned it to place it in the care of the LNERCA, the unique and highly relevant to the NYMR carriage left on a transporter to be moved to DC Engineering, Spennymoor. There an inspection will be undertaken to assess what repairs are necessary. It is likely the doors will be brought back to Pickering for rebuilding.
 
It is good to report that the NYMR will be contributing towards its repair and has guaranteed that No. 88339 will be used on the north end of the LNER set in which it resided perfectly well for several years – and was highly popular with the general public.

 




Being tried out for the first time is a polyester material because it has become apparent that cotton-based roof sheets used in past years are deteriorating, becoming rotten, and then letting in water.
 
The material is bedded in with a water-repellent paint rather like whitewash. The first roll of this material is pictured being applied.
 
Photo: Kieran Murray.


This was the state of a door pillar on the west side of the CCT – the two-foot remnant can be seen hanging from the cantrail. Until this pillar was repaired, the adjoining vertical-panelled side could not be completed. Whilst repairs were effected, an Acrow Prop was utilised to support the cantrail. Photo. Murray Brown.

Job done! The new pillar which comprised various sections of specially cut wood including what was left of the original pillar is pictured waiting for the glue to set. This was by far the largest and time-consuming job undertaken on the CCT, so full marks go to Marcus Woodcock. It was also satisfying to remove the green Acrow Prop. Photo. Murray Brown.


A new chapter in the 72-year old Thompson CL No. 88339 beckons. It is pictured passing New Bridge signalbox on April 18 destined to DC Engineering’s facility at Spennymoor for storage under cover and assessment for remedial repairs. The good news is that it is coming back to the NYMR and will definitely be used. Photo. Peter Wilson.


Meanwhile, in the main C&W shed, the soul-destroying job of stripping BTO No. 43567’s varnish off down to bare wood has been underway.
 
In addition, the roof canvas has also been stripped. In this picture, some of the yet to be stripped residual varnish on the carriage end can be seen – in dreadful condition. It is anticipated that the entire job will take three months.
 
Photo. Murray Brown.


Gresley Corridor Brake Third No. 3669 goes under cover

 
The owners of BTK No. 3669 breathed a sigh of relief on February 26 when their pride and joy, No. 3669, was placed inside the new shed at Kirkby Stephen, Stainmore Railway, where it joins Luggage Composite No. 1111, also recently departed from the NYMR.
 
The owners were exercising an option in the agreement whereby if covered accommodation could not be provided by the NYMR within a stated timescale, then the carriage could be moved elsewhere to fulfil that ambition.
 
An immediate undertaking at Kirkby Stephen will be to give No. 3669 a coat of varnish.
 
It has been publicly stated that once shed space can be found, then No. 3669 is likely to return to the NYMR. Provision of a carriage ‘stable’ is one of the four main planks in the submission by the NYMR for Heritage Lottery Funding, titled ‘Yorkshire’s Magnificent Journey’. The Railway is expecting an announcement from HLF in late March or April.
No. 3669’s place in the LNER set will be taken by Gresley Brake Third Open No. 43567 which has entered the C&W workshop at Pickering to be revarnished. Unfortunately, rather than just a clean and a rub-down, the state of the bodysides will necessitate a complete strip down to bare wood – see below.
 
Water damage found
We now have three LNER carriages which have been found to have suffered from serious damage from water ingress.
The first to be found was Restaurant Buffet No. 641, undergoing extensive repair and renovation at Wirksworth, Ecclesbourne Valley Railway. Water had got in, not only from a non-watertight roof, but also down windows and gathered behind the vinyl alongside the plywood panels. All of this has had to be stripped out. 
Now we have found TTO No. 23956 and BTO No. 43567 have also been the victims to the No. 1 enemy of carriage restorers – H2O.
The BTO No. 43567 has now entered the C&W shed for long overdue varnishing. As with TTO No. 23956, the roof has started to leak, so it is no surprise that it is suffering the same problems. We have not yet been able to access the roof but it is likely a rotted canvas is the culprit, necessitating a full replacement of the canvas and roof mouldings etc. Inside, the east side is showing early signs of deterioration of the ply side cladding but no major rot yet. The west side has major rot and will need complete replacement. Water has leaked through the roof boards into the van area and there may be rotted roof boards. The teak outer panels are badly water marked and we doubt the stains will sand out but they look to have remained attached to the pillars (unlike in 23956) so we are hoping that the glue blocks are OK. Our Thursday team is stripping out tables, seats and cladding to allow things to dry out, further news will follow.
All this highlights, yet again we are at the mercy of the elements, standing outside in all seasons. Rigorous attention to the varnishing and roof painting periodicities is another key factor and we are optimistic that the NYMR management will be able to provide the resources.
 
The CCT – looking good
As each week progresses, our faithful stores vehicle, 1950-built Covered Carriage Truck (CCT) No. E1308, looks better. The first coat of LNER brown has appeared on the first of the newly re-panelled sections on the west side of the vehicle (car park side). This side has the worst woodwork defects to repair. The Association is pleased to recognise and thank members of the Pickering Wagon Group for helping on this project. In effect, the CCT has taken the PWG’s space in the shed, so the sooner it can be moved outside – when a new roof covering has been fitted – then the Wagon Group can resume normal duties.

 



After enjoying 37 years on the NYMR – all of which was spent at Levisham, Luggage Composite No. 1111 is about to leave New Bridge yard on February 5 for its new home at Kirkby Stephen, Stainmore Railway, where its volunteers will endeavour to return it to original condition. The LNERCA took the view that this was the best course of action for its future as No. 1111 would be way down the queue for rebuild by LNERCA volunteers. Photo: Dave Cullingworth.


Dateline: February 26. Gresley BTK No. 3669 is lowered down the ramp at Kirkby Stephen on February 26. The shed in the background will be its new home. Should the NYMR be successful in its bid for Heritage Lottery Funding and a carriage stabling shed be provided, then No. 3669 will once again be gracing the metals of the Moors Railway. Photo: Rob Murray.



A dream of all carriage restorers – to see their beautiful vehicles under cover. No. 3669 resides in its new home in the new shed at Kirkby Stephen – and not a drop of rain to be seen! Photo: David Rayner.



One side finished on the CCT

 
The east side (rail side on the Atkins shed) of Covered Carriage Truck (CCT) No. 1308 is now finished, apart from the numbering and lettering. The complete side has been renewed – vertical planking and the three doors – all decked out in LNER Brown.
However, walk round to the east side and what a stark difference. Apart from the first section of planking now in place, the entire bodyside is devoid of its old derelict doors and planking. The remaining crumbling and splintered planking was removed on Saturday February 9, exposing the framing.
There are numerous parts which are loose or will require renewing before the planking can be fitted.
One door corner pillar was completely rotten and only the top three feet remains. This will necessitate a new pillar machining and fitting. Meanwhile, an Acro prop has been fitted to help support the roof.
The three doors for the east side (car park side) of the CCT have already been made. All metalwork is removed from the derelict doors and fully refurbished. Once painted in top coat LNER Brown, they are all bolted to the new doors.
It is planned to fit these three doors using the C&W’s huge fork lift truck once the CCT can be shunted outside.
This will not happen until the roof is finished. To effect this, a new roofing material is to be trialled. The C&W Manager, Kieran Murray, has kindly allowed the CCT to be in the Atkins shed for up to three months – perfect and somewhat necessary when applying new roofing materials. The LNERCA is also grateful to the Pickering Wagon Group for taking their usual space.
 



All work is now concentrated on the east side of the CCT, the side adjacent to the public car park. With all the exterior bodyside panelling removed, an assessment can be made of the framing onto which the vertical boards are screwed.



This is the worst section of the bodyside panelling. The corner pillar has all but disintegrated, leaving just about three-feet hanging down. Either a new piece of Oak will be machined and fitted or extensive splicing will be put in hand.
 
The green Acro prop has been used to ensure the roof does not sag whilst this work is undertaken. Oak was used in quantities after the second world war (No. 1308 was built in 1950 to the earlier LNER design) due to difficulties in obtaining teak from the east.



The first section of new tongue and groove boarding has been screwed into place at the northern end of No. 1308. Not all the metalwork fittings have been bolted on. This section awaits undercoat, followed by top coat of LNER Brown.

 
Under cover
NER Luggage Composite No. 1111 left the NYMR on Friday February 7 and, after spending the night at Scotch Corner, arrived at Kirkby Stephen on the Saturday and immediately was put into the new shed. This was the first time this carriage has been under cover at least since 1924 when it was withdrawn from service and passed into Departmental service at Bishop Auckland, i.e. over 95 years! Indeed, it may well have not seen a shed for over a century.
BTK No. 3669 is set to follow the same route later in February.



In a shed at last for the first time in nearly a century. Luggage Composite carriage No. 1111 resides in the new building at Kirkby Stephen where restoration will start. The middle wheelset will be put back in due course.
 
Ah, yes, the face. This was applied by the Levisham station volunteers in order to appeal to children. Let us hope the smile will soon be wiped off it – not befitting for North Eastern Railway heritage!
 
Photograph by Mike Thompson.


Archivist John Sutcliffe
The committee and volunteers are mourning the passing of John Sutcliffe, the LNERCA’s Archivist, who passed away a week before Christmas. He was 75 and had been in poor health. John joined the LNERCA committee in 2008 as an ordinary member and a year later took on the mantle of Archivist. He set to and soon began to assemble an impressive library of documents and photographs of all things LNER rolling stock.
 
His love of railways manifested itself particularly in historical matters and live steam. He was a member of the York Model Engineering Society, based at Dringhouses and was a friend of Bob Polley who had a layout at Barton, just off the A64 to Malton. Because of his friendship with Bob, John was instrumental in arranging for the LNERCA’s NER First Open No. 2118 to be stored on Bob’s land and John became in effect its custodian. He was looking after several of the components from this unique carriage.
 
Another of John’s favourite vehicles was the LNERCA’s Fish Van and he was so looking forward to seeing it take shape this year.
ECJS No. 189 was also on his ‘top list’ and he gained much pleasure from seeing it progress.
One of the quieter members of the committee – that’s no bad thing – but nevertheless, John had a great sense of humour and had the LNERCA’s interest very much at heart.
He leaves behind his wife Margaret to whom he was devoted and three step children who he called his own. A really nice man and the committee extends its condolences to his family.


Top of the pile – the humble CCT

 
Winston Churchill once said “a nation which forgets its past has no future”. The LNERCA certainly subscribes to this view and, being a diminishing breed of preservationists, subscribes to these wise words in that we are trying not only not to forget our past, but actually preserve it as well. Every heritage railway in the country has something in common – derelict vehicles, eyesores and wrecks. The good aspect about them is that they have escaped the breaker’s yard and await their turn for restoration. The downside is their appearance. Welcome, therefore, to this episode of the ‘wreck restorers’.
 
For some months, in between the huge effort expended on East Coast Joint Stock Restaurant Third No. 189 in preparing it for its successful exhibition at the 1940s Weekend, we have been working hard on renovating our trusty, decidedly tatty and forlorn stores van, alias Covered Carriage Truck (CCT) No. E1308. Although work continues on No. 189, we have the opportunity to have the CCT in the Atkins shed for up to three months. Here, thanks go to not only Kieran Murray, C&W Engineer for allowing us the space, but also the Pickering Wagon Group which has just completed its outstanding restoration of the Pipefit wagon. With some of its Group’s volunteers sampling NHS hospitality, the suggestion was made to have the CCT under cover using the allocated wagon space which will aid its renovation enormously.
 
One side has been completely rebuilt, new vertical boarding and new doors. The roof has been stripped down to the roof boards only to reveal it is in far better condition than was expected. Only two roof boards were in need of replacing at one side where they join the cantrail (top of the van side).
 
Several roof boards had ‘lifted’ i.e. the screws holding them to the metal carlines (hoopsticks which span from one side to the other) had lost their ‘bite’ so we began the painstaking task of removing all the rusty screws, derusting the carlines, painting them in green anti-oxide paint, then undercoat and using bolts to secure the roof boards to the carlines. When all 16 carlines have been treated, then a new roof covering will be fitted – type to be determined.
 
No. 1308 will be permanently stabled in Pickering, so will look pristine to visitors. We are using some artistic license in that although it was built in 1950 (to an earlier 1939 LNER design) and would have emerged from York Works in maroon, we are painting it in the 1939-style LNER Brown with LNER-style lettering.
 
The CCT ran for 27 years on BR, all over the country. It was withdrawn on January 12, 1977 at Doncaster. The CCT was then given an Internal User number for use within Doncaster Works and, finally, was used by the Works’ Horticultural Society. When this was disbanded in 1996, the Works’ staff most kindly donated it to us and it arrived in July of that year. For those interested, its full history is on the LNERCA website – see: http://www.lnerca.org/home/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/E1308-F.pdf
 
It is hoped that NYMR members and readers will appreciate that the LNERCA is not only restoring passenger-carrying carriages, but non-passenger types as well, for it is the latter which can no longer be seen on the national system, eg, parcels vans, full Brakes and Fish Vans. It is these vehicles which add the atmosphere and ambience to a heritage railway as we try to recreate and recall by-gone railway times.
 
Pastures new
Two of our vehicles have left for a new home at Kirkby Stephen. North Eastern Railway Luggage Composite No. 1111, the van which has resided at Levisham for a staggering 45 years. Is to be restored by a group based at the Stainmore Railway. It would be many years before the LNERCA could return it to operational standard, so in its long-term interest, this was considered the best option, the LNERCA retaining ownership.
 
Also heading to this thriving railway is Gresley Brake Third Corridor No. 3669 where covered accommodation has been offered. This is so important for the well-being of the varnished carriages. It will return, come the day it can be put under cover on the NYMR. No. 3669 has been the Brake carriage for the LNER set during 2018 whilst Brake Third Open No. 43567 has been used in the Pullman set, deputising for Car No. 79.




There has been a hive of activity in the Atkins shed at Pickering where the LNERCA’s stores van, CCT No. E1308, has been receiving major attention. This amounts to a complete renewal of all external woodwork.
 
Not only that, but inside, all the rusty screws which hold the roof boards onto the carlines are being removed and replaced by bolts, inserted from outside and nutted from inside.
 
The carlines have been derusted and painted with anti-oxide paint, whilst all internal roofboards are being painted white. Here, Nick Smith tightens one of the hundreds of new bolts which will ensure the roof boards will not ‘lift’ off the carlines. Photo: Murray Brown.

Newly restored Class 04 Drewry shunter No. D2207 hauled NER Luggage Composite No. 1111 from Levisham to New Bridge on November 20 for onward road movement to the Stainmore Railway where restoration will be put in hand. No. 1111 has resided at Levisham for 45 years and this was only its second journey, the first being when it was moved from New Bridge To Levisham in 1973. Photo: Kieran Murray.

 

A large shunt was required at Levisham to extract No. 1111 from the dead-end siding. This entailed removing all the stock in front of it, which included the North Eastern Railway Coach Groups’ Third Open No. 945 built in 1924 to a NER design. This carriage, too, will be moving to Pickering in 2019 so that the LNERCA can swap its bogies for overhauled ones and replace the roof canvas. For many years, the end of No. 1111 was adorned by a ‘face’ in order to appeal to children – but not appreciated by connoisseurs of NER heritage rolling stock. Photo: Kieran Murray.

Unique Thompson carriage passes to LNERCA

 
In recent years, the saga of 1947-built Thompson-designed Composite Lavatory (CL) No. 88339 has not been a happy one. This consortium-owned carriage ran highly successfully for several years at the north end of the LNER set (so allowing access to the compartments at all station platforms). However, in 2012 it was withdrawn from service due to faults with its doors, and since then it has been stored in a siding at Levisham. Although under an agreement with the consortium, the NYMR was responsible for its maintenance, it was always low down the list of priorities, so nothing was done and it looked like continuing that way for the foreseeable future. As a result, No. 88339 has deteriorated further, and the owners had to provide a tarpaulin to try and stem further damage.
 
Committee members of the LNERCA, worried that this historical, unique carriage and so representative of the type which worked the Whitby services prior to BR closing the line, was ‘getting nowhere’ came up with the idea that if ownership could be transferred to the LNERCA, this would open the door to a better future. It is pleasing to report that all the shareholders have agreed that this is, indeed, the best course of action – and ownership of No. 88339 has now been transferred to LNERCA.
 
The present thinking is that if its repair is regarded as a joint venture, with the LNERCA providing labour and the NYMR providing materials, the cost of repairs can be significantly reduced.
 
No. 88339 will have to wait its turn – the LNERCA is committed to finishing No. 189 and NER No. 945. In the meantime, thoughts are being given to safeguarding the carriage and preventing further deterioration. Several options are being explored but it would be premature to name them.
 
If the carriage does leave the NYMR (a possible option) for storage and repair, the Trust Board is keen for it to return. The new contract between LNERCA and the NYMR would transfer maintenance responsibility to LNERCA, and the NYMR would pay a hire charge per mile, with a minimum mileage per annum. In this way the coach can be guaranteed to be used, and the impasse that has occurred over the last eight years about its maintenance would not be repeated. A win-win for both parties.


The clock is turned back to happier days for CL No. 88339 – October 26, 2004 when it had just been ‘scumbled’. The possibility is now on the cards that this condition will one day be recreated. Photo: David Idle.

 


No. 88339 has also carried maroon livery during its near half century on the NYMR.
 
It was withdrawn in June 1967 in Scotland prior to arriving on the NYMR in March 1970.
 
Photo: Murray Brown.

ECJS No. 189 transformed for Wartime exhibition
A herculean effort by volunteers saw East Coast Joint Stock Restaurant Car No. 189 totally transformed to take part in the Steam, Speed and Sumptuous Dining’ exhibition which took place during the NYMR’s Wartime Weekend. To get to this stage, an enormous amount of work was put in, led by Marcus Woodcock and his merry men.
 
From what was still very much a skeleton shell, parts of the 1894-built carriage were dramatically changed – with ceilings and panelling in place.
 
Visitors first saw the pantry. Not long ago, this didn’t exist but partition and cupboard was now in place and furniture was varnished, installed and displayed ECJS silverware. There was a mock-up of the carriage designer’s drawing office (David Bain) with drawings and pens depicting the carriage design being finalised. The next stage depicted the First World War through which the carriage survived – a dug-out with sandbags, very much in keeping with this year’s 100-year anniversary of the ending of WW1. The final section was the eye-opener – two tables set for diners. These even has ECJS plates, a bottle of ECJS Claret and Port. There was even a carpet down the middle of the carriage – a foretaste of things to come.
 
There were some 1,600 visitors who enjoyed the exhibition, the participants wearing a headset and listening to the fictional tale of ’Nipper’ who was a pantry lad relating his life through the years.
 
What was particularly rewarding was the fact that the Heritage Lottery Fund was most pleased to see this exhibition as part of the HLF-funded project.
 
Special mention and thanks to must be made of Helena Fox, the NYMR’s Education Officer, and Wendy Taylor, our Education consultant, for all their skill and effort in putting the show together. The accompanying graphics – posters and prints and attention to details – were outstanding. Because the exhibition was so successful we’ll try and repeat it at some point in the future.


Nick Smith fits a supporting panel between the half-pillars.
 
Photo: Murray Brown.

With new ceilings in place, Mick Watson polishes the clerestory windows. Photo. Murray Brown.
The first coat of varnish goes on No. 189. Russ Whitwam wields the roller. Photo: Murray Brown.


Looking good – the first coat of varnish transforms the west side of No. 189.
 
Photo: Murray Brown.


View of the exhibition – with the pantry behind the camera, this view shows the recreation of David Bain’s drawing office (the designer of No. 189) with, beyond, the WW1 scenario and, at the far end, the dining area. Photo: Rodney Towers.

 

Table for two sir? The extraordinary transformation of what was only two weeks earlier a skeletal bodyshell, No. 189 provides an insight into what it was like over 100 years ago – and a taste of things to come. A glass of ECJS Claret, madam? Photo: Mags Woodcock.


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