Vintage News


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:
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.

Teak panels start being fitted to ECJS No. 189 and The Institute of Railway Research passes No. 189 as fit to run on the NYMR.

Another major step forward with the restoration of No. 189 has been the fitting of the first teak panels to the bodyside. Prior to this, a huge amount of preparation work took place – both to the body framing and to the teak panels themselves.
The body elements comprised the half-pillars, the vertical wooden sections over which the panels are fitted. These were sanded down, especially their sides where the glue blocks would be attached.
Several of the long teak panels had splits which required mending, some as long as 8ft. To repair a split panel, the end of the split is drilled and plugged with a teak ‘bung’ in order to stop the split propagating. Using the superb ‘West’ glue, the crack is carefully widened and the glue applied to within the crack itself. Then, clamps are fitted and tightened with considerable force and left for 24 hours to enable to glue to set. Then the panel is sanded. No sign of the former crack can be seen.
Once the panel has been lifted into place, it is pinned along the bottom using copper pins (to stop corrosion). Clamps hold the panel in place whilst glue blocks, triangular pieces of wood about 3” tall, are fitted on the inside of the panel. One side of the block is glued to the panel itself, whilst the other side of the block is glued to the vertical half-pillar. This is why the faces of the half-pillars must not be painted, but left bare so that the glue is not trying to stick to painted wood – a recipe for failure.
Once the glue has set, the entire inside panel and glue blocks are painted with aluminium primer.
Meanwhile, many man-hours have been spent sanding down hundreds of components for the inside of the carriage in preparation for the many coats of varnish.
Other work progressing has been the fitting of the wooden stringers. These are curved pieces of wood which are screwed to the roof planks. Once in place, the plywood ceiling panels can be fitted, the ceilings being screwed into place by means of the aforementioned stringers.
Underneath the carriage, far from view, are large runs of wires, all carefully secured in place on the underside of the floorboards. Whilst 189 was originally gas lit, one improvement on yesteryear will be LED lights – at least passengers will in future be able to see what they are eating.
All this work being undertaken by every volunteer who ventures into the Atkins shed is all for one thing – to have No. 189 ready for the exhibition ‘From Speed, Steam and Sumptuous Dining to Tracks into the Trenches’, due to be staged at the NYMR’s Wartime Weekend on October 12th-14th. Whilst the carriage will not be fully restored, it is intended to have sections in it representing what it was like in its heyday through to the present rebuild, during which visitors will be able to enjoy an audio visual presentation. The LNERCA’s press release is shown below:

Visitors to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway’s Wartime Weekend on October 12th-14th will be able to enjoy an additional attraction – to look inside a genuine Victorian Restaurant Car and partake in an audio-visual presentation – ‘From Steam, Speed and Sumptuous Dining to Tracks into the Trenches’
The Exhibition will tell the story of the Third Class Dining Car, East Joint Joint Stock No. 189, and give a glimpse of how the restoration will bring it alive in all its Victorian/Edwardian glory. Set in a WWI context (as part of the NYMR Wartime Weekend) it will merge the factual story with the fictional tale of Sam ’Nipper’ Perkins, former pantry boy, steward and latterly WWI soldier, together with true stories from the NER battalion.
Visitors will don headsets containing Sam’s narration of the ECJS 189 story, woven with his own WWI story which will take them on a journey through the coach. The Restaurant Car will be divided into sections containing a mock-up of the carriage designer’s office (David Bain), the Pantry, the actual ’bare bones’ framework undergoing restoration, a WWI scenario and a mock-up of dining tables set for a sumptuous meal. Projected images or large photos will help bring the story to life and create an immersive experience. When fully restored, this vehicle will be the only extant ECJS carriage in which the public will be able to travel.
No. 189 has an incredible, long-lived history, ranging from Victorian and Edwardian opulence to a pig farm and rebirth from what amounted to a forlorn wreck.
No. 189 last carried passengers in 1927 after which the carriage body was sold to a Holme-on-Spalding-Moor pig farmer. There it languished for some 60 years before a preservationist secured it in the 1980s, mounting it on an old underframe recovered from a burnt out carriage. Since 2010, the LNER Coach Association has owned it and has been undergoing an extensive restoration.
It has eight restored carriages ranging from 1909 to 1950, these being in regular use between Pickering and Grosmont. They have appeared in numerous films including, recently, the remake of ‘Dad’s Army’ and ’Downton Abbey’.
For more details of the LNERCA and the Exhibition – contact Nick Stringer on 01423 340331.

Finally, regarding No. 189, the LNERCA heard on September 6 that this historic dining carriage had passed the stringent examination to declare it fit to run on the NYMR. Because a replacement underframe has been used for No. 189 which has necessitated shortening and modifying it for its new purpose, it was necessary to seek external independent expertise to sanction its use.
To satisfy the requirements of the NYMR’s safety management system it is necessary for the design and manufacture of these modifications to be independently reviewed by a ‘competent person’. The LNERCA engaged the Institute of Railway Research (IRR) at the University of Huddersfield to carry out this review. No. 189 has now passed the IRR’s exhaustive review.
CCT E1308
Work has temporarily stopped on renovating the CCT to enable all resources to be directed towards making No. 189 ready for the exhibition to be staged therein on October 12th-14th
Fish Van E 75169
No further progress to report apart from the kind offer of the Pickering Wagon Group to assemble the brake cylinder with new components.

The first teak panel is fitted. Using copper pins, which are less prone to corroding, along the bottom and top, the panel is held in place by the batons using a screw into the waist rail half way up each baton. On the inside of the teak panel, glue blocks are applied, each one of which is glued to the half-pillar and to the rear of the panel – see later picture.
One of the split panels receives attention to a large crack, some 8ft long. The very end of the crack is plugged after drilling a hole at the end of the split and using a round piece of teak. The crack itself is filled with ‘West’ glue and then clamped. Because the panel is slightly bowed, the wooden baton jammed against the framing and the panel itself helps keep the split tightly closed whilst the glue sets.
A piece of teak runs along the entire length of the carriage – this is known as the waist rail. Marcus Woodcock fits the new waist rail in position by means of copper pins. Several sections of waist rail are used, each one butting up to its previous one fitted. The entire waist rail must be level otherwise the finished product would look dreadful.


It has to be done. One of the less glamorous tasks is the sanding of scores of pieces of teak used for the interior fittings. These include the panels and the window frames. Here, David Young prepares some of the smaller pieces preparatory to the varnishing starting.
Inside, work continues to prepare for the ceiling panels to be fitted. These panels have to be secured in place and to do this, wooden stringers – seen in the picture painted grey – are screwed into the roof boards. The plywood ceiling panels can then be screwed into place.


Already, a vast amount of wiring has been installed out of sight by Gordon Wells. Much of this is underneath the floorboards. The internal wiring has to be fitted prior to the ceiling panels being screwed into place. The wiring runs above the ceiling, through holes in the stringers. LED lights are being used in replica gasoliers which will offer a far brighter illumination than the original gas lights.
Once a teak panel has been secured to the framing and the glue blocks have set, the entire inside – panel and glue blocks – can be painted in aluminium primer. This painting helps keep out moisture and possible water damage. This image shows how the glue block adheres to both the half-pillar and the rear of the teak panel. The phantom hand belongs to Gary Lyne.


Take a bow. Some of the many volunteers who have transformed this woebegone relic into what it is today – well on the way to being finished. With one side completely repanelled, No. 189 is beginning to resemble a carriage once again.

The only way is down – 189’s body is finally lowered all the way onto its underframe

It only took just over an hour to roll East Coast Joint Stock No. 189’s body off its underframe of nearly 30 years onto its newly modified one, but it has taken weeks since then to actually lower the body so that it sat evenly on its underframe and bogies.
The final lowering took place on Thursday July 19th. Not only were there delays in supplying the special bolts but it then took several weeks to drill the holes through the bottom rail and the new solebars and rubber pads in order to allow body and underframe to be bolted together. When all the bolts were in situ (but not tightened), the body was jacked up very slightly to allow the removal of the wooden blocks, separating the body from the underframe. The wood packings were removed bit by bit as it was thought that if one end of the carriage was lowered in one go, it might jam the bolts at the other end of the carriage. Once the entire body was flat against the underframe, cushioned by the rubber pads, the bolts were then tightened. Job done at last.
Inside, many of the window frames have been prepared for varnishing. Several poor quality floor boards have been replaced and the partition walls for the pantry have been trial fitted.
The next aspect of 189’s restoration is to fit the external teak panels – this will begin to hide the skeletal frame which has greeted visitors to the Atkins shed for several years. There is now to be a major push so that the planned exhibition which includes an audio visual display can take place at the 1940s Weekend in October.
Covered Carriage Truck No. 1308
It is good to report that much of the west side of this 1950-built CCT now has new panels and new doors. By the end of July, the last panel was receiving attention, the internal framing of this section of the vehiclke being in somewhat poor condition, necessitating various new support members. Once these are finished and painted, the new tongue & groove panels will be installed, primed and top coated in LNER Brown. The new doors are fabricated inside the Atkins shed, this necessitating numerous mortice & tenon joints. All the metalwork from the derelict door is removed and totally refurbished before being bolted onto the brand new sliding door. The plan is once the west side is completed, No. 1308 will be turned so that the restored side is facing the trains – and the public.
We are taking ‘artistic licence’ with No. 1308. Being built in the British Railways era, it would have emerged new in maroon. However, as the type made its debut in 1939 (the second batch from 1950 was identical) we are painting No. 1308 in the colour had it been built in 1939.
Fish Van E 75169
The first application of the top gloss white paint is now being applied to the stanchions.
The scorching heat some days in July did not make for good painting conditions as the paint became tacky almost immediately.
A replacement brake cylinder piston has been procured, thanks to Ian Broadhead of the Pickering Wagon Group. This means the brake cylinder can now be assembled with new components and fitted to the underframe.


No longer can anyone walk the length of the carriage – as was the case when it was built in 1894 – because the pantry walls have been trial fitted. This is the view showing the corridor past the pantry. Photo: Marcus Woodcock.
The pantry was installed in 1909, thus reducing the number of seats. When the carriage is fully restored, this pantry will be an exhibition area and not used as per original function. Photo: Marcus Woodcock.


The stark contrast between the derelict original and the brand new door can be seen in this view. The 68-year old CCT is a most valuable resource in terms of being a storage facility. Photo: Murray Brown.
On the CCT, this is what the restorers are having to repair prior to the external tongue & groove panelling being fitted. Where the framing has reached the end of its days, it is being replaced. Photo: Murray Brown.


The Thompson-designed Third Corridor (TK) No. 1623 has stood up well so far to the NYMR climate in the two years it has been in service. It was felt that if it had a revarnish, this would tide it over for two or three more years and so prevent an enormous amount of time out of traffic being repainted in scumbled teak. C&W painter, Mark Toyne revarnished No. 1623 in July and this is the gleaming result. Mark is renowned for the quality of his hand-painted carriages. Photo: Murray Brown.


It’s not just the Lottery which has Roll Overs!


The LNERCA finally moves the body of No. 189 onto its new underframe.

Photographs by Murray Brown unless stated.
After some two years hard work and considerable planning, the long-awaited ‘roll over’ of the body of East Coast Joint Stock Restaurant Third No. 189 onto its permanent underframe has taken place. It was moved from its ‘wrong’ underframe onto the newly modified one. This took place in the Atkins shed on Thursday May 24, over two days later than planned.
Just to recap, when the derelict body of ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189 was salvaged from the pig farm at Holme on Spalding Moor in the 1980s, it was placed on an underframe recovered from a burnt-out non-corridor Gresley carriage which had been set on fire by vandals at Immingham depot. Because the underframe was too short, large timber baulks were added to the ends behind the buffers. The LNERCA had a spare 61’6” underframe, so decided to have it shortened to the requisite length and to have a new solebar (top beam) welded on to replace the corroded original.
For the body move to take place, an enormous amount of work had to be undertaken. To summarise, this entailed:

  • Clearing the huge amount of stored materials from the floor of the Atkins shed.
  • Unloading the ‘new’ underframe from the lorry at New Bridge (it had arrived from Shildon where modifications had been effected) and moving it to Pickering yard – this was kindly undertaken by Kieran Murray, C&W Manager.
  • Moving the Pickering Wagon Group’s Pipefit wagon out of the way to enable No. 189 to be shunted out – this was then taken by the C&W Manager down the Long Siding out of the way temporarily.
  • The newly modified underframe was shunted onto the turntable, turned and then slowly moved into the Atkins shed at the south end of the shed where the line is straight (the line at the north end of the shed is on a slight curve).
  • No. 189 was retrieved from the Long Siding and shunted into the Atkins shed, buffering up to its intended ‘new’ underframe.
  • Considerable effort was then made to ensure both vehicles were level so that the body could move easily from one underframe to the other. Strips of plywood were fastended to the solebar which would allow the rollers free movement.
  • NELPG had kindly made available discarded boiler tubes from the Q6 which had been cut into 9ft lengths – these had been collected from Grosmont shed and were then placed under the body of 189 which was sitting a few inches off its underframe to allow space to place the boiler tubes at specific intervals.
  • Using a turfer – ratchet mechanism – with added 5-ton strength nylon rope attached, the pulling wire/rope was attached to the rear of the 189 to winch the body forward. Another rope was attached to the rear of No. 189’s body, the other end of which was wrapped round the coupling hook of 189’s old underframe so that when the coach body began to move, it offered a safety device to stop any potential runaway incidents – this was considered highly unlikely. Thus the brakeman, Andy Cox, fed out the rope from the rear as the body moved away, being able to quickly slip it round the coupling to stop any movement should the need arise.
  • The body weighs near enough 5 tons and moved surprisingly easily. Frequent stops were made to ensure the rollers did not snag on obstructions such as protruding bolts.
  • Once a roller became exposed as the body moved forward, it was carried to the front and placed on the new underframe, so helping take the weight as the body slowly moved onto it.
  • Volunteer, Mike Faulkner stood at the south end of the shed assessing how the body was moving towards him in terms of lateral position. Occasionally it was necessary to tilt the rollers away from right angled to the body – this allowed the body to gradually change direction slightly to one side. Once the move had been completed, at the south end, the body was 1/8th inch out. At the north end it was 2” out. To correct this, the body was jacked and rollers placed parallel to the body which allowed 189’s structure to be nudged sideways to the correct alignment.
    The move took one hour, fifteen minutes.

All in all, a magnificent job. Top marks to Marcus Woodcock and all the volunteers who helped. We also thank Eddie Knorn for producing the ’Method Statement’ and C&W Manager, Kieran Murray and his Foreman, Ian Carney for assisting with all the shunting. We must also acknowledge the Severn Valley Railway who paved the way and showed us such a manoeuvre could be done as they successfully had their own ‘roll over’ with a Gresley Brake Guard (BG) body a few years back.
A few days later, with the body correctly aligned with the underframe, holes were drilled in the bottom rail of the body to allow securing bolts to be inserted, thus securing the body with its underframe.
And what of the displaced underframe? This was transported to Shildon on June 11 pending a storage location.
Finally, do have a look at the superb ‘speeded-up’ film of the whole event – this was masterminded by Gary Lyne and can be seen on YouTube by clicking on:

A rare view of No. 189 outside – seen being shunted to the Atkins shed where the body would be slid onto its new underframe.
All ready – the ‘new’ underframe is in position at the south end of the Atkins shed ready to receive the body of No. 189.

A close up showing the rollers (ex boiler tubes). The gloves were a visual safety measure. When the coach rolled, they waved!

Displaced rollers are placed in front of the approaching body. At this stage No. 189 was sitting on eight wheelsets. (Photo.Gary Lyne)

Russell Lifton was the designated Turfer – in charge of ratcheting the body forward in between shouts of “stop!”
At the north end of the shed, Andy Cox was the brakeman, letting out the rope slowly as the coach inched forward.


Non Passenger Carrying vehicles in the spotlight
The bi-annual ‘Coach Week’ was held from May 5-13 and, most unusually, all the work centered round non-passenger carrying vehicles. Such vehicles play a vital role and are so often neglected on heritage railways even though they are part and parcel of railway history. This is even more relevant in today’s world when parcels and fish vans no longer ply their once common everyday life.
Our stores vehicle, CCT (Covered Carriage Truck) No. 1308 saw the first of the new doors, assembled, primed and hung, followed by undercoating and, finally, a top coat of LNER brown. This 1950-built CCT is at long last beginning to look rather smart as we work our way gradually round it replacing rotten panelling and fabricating new doors. A start was also made on derusting metalwork at the ends of the vehicle.
The plan is, when finished, E1308 will be parked in the isolated Beck Siding adjacent to the north end of platform 1. With it should go our former Gresley Restaurant Car 42969, now in use as the NYMR’s upholstery carriage workshop.
The other project which is also looking considerably different is our unique LNER Fish Van No. 75169. It has been a godsend that it is parked on its own bit of ‘track’ at the north end of Pickering yard where it is easily accessible with out impinging on C&W space or in the way of shunting.
All the framing is now gleaming black, the first coat, whilst all the vertical stanchions on both sides are now in white undercoat. Thus it has been visually transformed and is being looked at by hundreds of passing passengers.
In this respect, passengers can now see just what this skeletal vehicle is for Christopher Johnston has produced a white metallic notice emblazed with the words: ‘Last surviving LNER Fish Van 75169, Built 1949. LNER Coach Association’. Those with long memories might recall a similar sign on Thompson TK No. 1623 when it was in the open, long before the Atkins shed was built.

One of the new doors for the CCT takes shape on the workbench, prior to being lifted into place on No. 1308.

Russell Whitwam from Farnley, Leeds, wields the paintbrush, applying LNER Brown to the new door on 1308.

The CCT is looking infinitely improved, with several sections of paneling and new doors having been fitted and painted.

David Young from Staines helps apply the first top coat to Fish Van 75169’s underframe.


Passing passengers now know what is this skeletal wagon, thanks to Christopher Johnson who made this sign.

NER Luggage Composite No. 1111
A day was spent in May at Levisham fitting the drawhook to the south end of No. 1111 preparatory to it being towed at walking pace to New Bridge yard at the end of the season from where it will depart for Kirkby Stephen, Stainmore Railway. It is going on long-term loan and restoration is anticipated to start soon after arrival.
Annual General Meeting
The very letters AGM conjure up a scintillating way to spend two hours but it wasn’t too bad! Notable items to report were thanks given to Roger Melton for his work on the Newsletter and to co-founder and Treasurer John Hasler who received a round of applause. Both gentlemen will remain as trustees.
It was agreed unanimously to change the LNERCA into a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO). This means it has a legal identity separate from its members and also offers the benefit of limited liability.
Youths sentenced for trashing our LNER rake:
After causing £27,000-worth of damage to the LNER set on July 23 last year, the eight youths were convicted and have been sentenced. The youths were charged with two offences.
These sentences were reported by the media as follows:
On 26 April 26 at Scarborough Magistrates’ Court Mollie Dawson (18) of Keld Head Orchard in Kirbymoorside was sentenced to a twelve month conditional discharge and ordered to pay fines and costs totalling £635.88 (this includes £530.88 in compensation). On the same day Benjamin Terry (19) of Jute Road in York was sentenced to a twelve month conditional discharge and ordered to pay fines and costs totalling £135.88 (this includes £30.88 in compensation).
On March 13 at Scarborough Magistrates’ Court a seventeen year old from Pickering was ordered to pay compensation of £530.88 and will have to complete a twelve month youth offending panel contract.
On March 27 at Scarborough Magistrates’ Court a 17-year-old girl from Pickering and a 17-year-old boy from Ampleforth, who cannot be named for legal reasons, were both ordered to pay compensation of £535.88 and will have to complete a twelve month youth offending panel contract.
On April 10 at Scarborough Magistrates’ Court a 17-year-old male from Malton was ordered to pay compensation of £535.88 and will have to complete a twelve month youth offending panel contract.
On March 13 at Scarborough Magistrates’ Court two 17-year-old boys from Pickering were sentenced to a youth offending panel contract for six months and will have to pay fines & costs totalling £135.88 each.
Two of the carriages – Buffet Car (RB) No. 641 and Thompson TK No. 1623 – are still not repaired, the former unlikely to be returned to service until 2019. Most of the compartment shoulder lights in No. 1623 were smashed to pieces and are having to be remade specially. This was the hardest and longest aspect of the entire restoration of No. 1623 when first restored.
Some of those responsible were given Referral Orders. This is a process whereby the young offender is referred to a youth offender panel. The young offender is invited to agree with the panel a contract which should include two core elements:

  • reparation/restoration to the victim or wider community; and
  • a programme of interventions/activities to address reoffending risk.

New roof boards go on No. 189 – and the Fish Van underframe changes colour!

Those are the headlines with this news update. On RTO No. 189, the lower clerestory roof has just about been completed with new roof boards. The interesting aspect here is that these boards, which have tongue and groove edges, must fit extremely tightly together. To achieve this, as each board is fitted, it is clamped to the previous one, forcing the tongue into the groove of its predecessor.
However, when the radius sharpens nearer the cantrail and the curvature become more prominent, this has entailed chamfering the tongue to ensure it fits snugly into the groove of the previously fitted board. A wedge is used to hammer home and force the board being fitted into the previous already fitted board. This ensures each board is as tight as can be to the previous one.
On the body, the clerestory sides are now finished in teak.
Meanwhile at DC Engineering’s Shildon premises, the underframe destined to go under No. 189 is having the mounting brackets welded on in exactly pre-determined positions. This underframe is due to be transported back to Pickering in the next two weeks after which plans will be made to swap the body from its existing underframe onto the modified one, complete with overhauled Gresley bogies. Once the body has been rolled onto the underframe, bolts will be inserted through the body and through the mounting brackets to ensure the body is securely fixed.
The underframe on which 189 currently sits now has ply packings along the top of its solebars to give a level surface for the rollers which will be used to roll the body onto its new frame. The buffer and headstock fixings have been freed off to allow a swift removal when we eventually do the body swap.
The major task of clearing out the accumulated rubbish (valuable spares!) from under No. 189 has started. This has highlighted how little storage space we have and the need to progress our Fish Van asap.
CCT No. E1308
Timber for the six new sliding doors is in stock and when time permits will be machined to size. The C&W Manager, Kieran Murray, has kindly moved E1308 back into the yard, so allowing more repanelling to take place.
Gresley RB No. 641
The Buffet Car is due to leave for the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway at Wirksworth, north of Derby. Here maintenance will be undertaken, including lifting the RB to access the rack plates (in need of replacement) as will putting right the vandal damage incurred last July.
Fish Van No. E 75169
Good progress has been made on painting the Fish Van underframe. With all the green anti-oxide green having been completed, this was followed by grey undercoat and a large proportion of the gloss black had been applied by April 22. The vertical stanchions will be painted white, as will the entire body when assembled.
NER Luggage Composite No. 1111
A working party to Levisham will take place over the May ‘coach week’ to replace the missing south end headstock ready for No. 1111’s planned move next winter to the Stainmore Railway at Kirby Stephen.

Marcus Woodcock installs the board on the lower clerestory roof section. At each carline, he clamps a block of wood to the cantrail, leaving a gap for a triangular wedge. By hitting the wedge, this then forces the board tighter into the previous one. The newly painted teak brown clerestory upper section sides can be viewed. Photo: Murray Brown.


It is good to see work underway on the important Fish Van – not because it is a unique vehicle, but its use is urgently needed for storing major components. With the ‘Pullman Siding’ being dug out and new rail installed, this has allowed a view from the east – previously obstructed by the BR blue GUV stores vehicle. Once the painting is completed, the brake cylinder will be fitted, followed by the vacuum pipe. Photo: Murray Brown.


The second of the lower clerestory roof boards is seen being fitted. Also on view is the clamp which ensure this second board is as tight as it can be to the first one. Photo: Malcolm Brown


Christopher Johnson carefully adds the lining to one of the ventilators destined for the roof of RTO No. 189. Photo: Malcom Brown.

Nearly ready to re-roof No. 189

With all the clerestory glass in place, duly beaded and sealed, thoughts are turning to re-board the lower sides of the roof. To date, this work has been deferred to allow ladders access through the spaces between the carlines in order to gain access to fit the clerestory windows.
The roof has quite a sharp slope when it curves down to join the cantrail. This will necessitate narrow tongue and groove boards to allow them to fit the curvature. It may also mean chamfering off slivers of the tongue, again, to allow these boards to fit tightly against each other and not have any gaps which would allow water ingress. Of course, a canvas will cover these roof boards – or, to be more correct, a heavy-duty plastic sheet.
Whilst the roof boards are yet to be fitted, the gaps left between the carlines – the metal/wood supports of the clerestory roof – are being utilized to put ladders through so that the entire glazed clerestory section can be painted in white undercoat – see image.
With more internal panelling cut out, ready to be varnished and lined up all along the interior, this is a real visual indication of how 189 will be transformed this year.
Another indication of how resplendent 189 will finally look is the application of gold leaf to certain panels – to be undertaken by Neil Cawthorne, resident veneer expert.
The refurbished and shortened underframe for 189 was brought into Pickering yard for further work to be undertaken before the body of 189 is rolled onto it. This involved removing two brake cylinders belonging to a lady at the Bolton Abbey Steam Railway (ex Yorkshire Dales Railway).
Fish Van E75169
Whilst at DC Engineering, Shildon, the repaired frame was spray painted but as this was more of a protective coat, it has been decided to repaint the van in our normal fashion – green anti-oxide, grey undercoat and black top coat. This is a long job when you consider all the framing and supports which make up the underframe. The vertical stanchions will be painted glass white – as will all the body when finally assembled.
Positive progress was made on Saturday February 17 when the eight brake hangers were fitted to the underframe – the first components so fitted – again see image.
TTO No. 56856
This Gresley Owners’ Group (GOG) carriage was still in the paintshop at mid February, but well on the way to completion. The roof has received a new coat of white – this time using Sikagard which is the replacement product for the longer available Decadex.
Vandal repair update
RB 641 is soon to be transported to the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway, north of Derby, where it will stay for all of 2018, receiving maintenance and repair to the vandal damage inflicted upon it last July.
Meanwhile, Nick Stringer and Gordon Wells paid a visit to a Sheffield company on Monday February 19 which specialises in 3D printing. Our interest concerns making the lampshades for the shoulder lights in the Thompson TK 1623. Most of these were smashed to pieces by the vandals – each lampshade cost £30 to be specially made by an Essex glass manufacturer.
The Trust Board was advised at its meeting on February 9 that the first court hearing for the alleged perpetrators of the vandal damage last July was due to be heard on March 1.

It’s taking shape at last – now that all the clerestory windows are installed and beaded in, the entire sections, on both sides, have been painstakingly painted in white primer.

Next job is fitting the remaining roof boards to the lower (beneath the clerestory) sections of the roof. Because of the tight curvature towards the cantrail, a trial has been undertaken – as seen here – to ensure the tongue & groove boards fit tightly. The idea is to ensure there are no gaps between the boards. These roof boards will eventually be covered by a heavy duty sheet.

Another sign of progress, but one which will be covered over and not seen, is the wiring. The intention is to fit replica gasoliers, not piped with gas, but with L.E.D lights.

A start has been made on painting the Fish Van – it will receive the normal three coats – green anti-oxide primer, grey undercoat and black top coat. The vertical stanchions will be white.

The first components for the underframe have been installed – the eight brake hangers. These support the brake blocks, eight new ones of which will be required in due course. The first brake hanger is pictured after fitting – it is still be have its split pin inserted through the hole in the bolt thread (to prevent the nut from unscrewing and dropping off).

2018 – the year of the Fish Van

This year should see major progress on rebuilding the sole-surviving LNER-designed Fish Van to Diagram 214 – No. E75169. 2018 is the 70th anniversary of E75169 leaving Faverdale Works, Darlington, brand new.
The vacuum brake cylinder is now in the throes of rebuilding with new components – to be fitted as soon as completed in the workshop.
Brake hanger bolts have been sourced – the hangers, too, will soon be in situ.
As soon as our joiner has completed work on the Beavertail carriage at Burton-on-Trent, the Fish Van frame rebuild is his next job.
On Monday January 22, the Fish Van was inspected by an adjudicator from the Transport Trust to whom the LNERCA has applied for one of the TT’s annual grant awards.
Members and readers are cordially invited to send in a donation towards this unique piece of rolling stock, intrinsically linked with Whitby and the line through Pickering. Please contact Murray Brown if interested in supporting this project – email:
ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189
After years of appearing derelict, this Victorian carriage is now looking more and more like a railway carriage. With virtually all the clerestory glass and associated beading in place, the remaining roof boards are next to be fitted.
Meanwhile, two windows are in place and much of the plywood panels have been cut out and have received the first coats of varnish.
Where one enters the carriage, the vestibule has been painted with Le Tonkinois varnish as recommended by our expert veneering and varnish volunteer, Neil Cawthorne. This varnish far excels anything else on the market. When completed, with gold leaf, visitors and passengers will be truly amazed at the workmanship and finish when they enter the carriage.
Completed CAD drawings have been supplied by David Elliott (A1 Trust Engineer) to his usual superlative standard. (see illustration below). These show the entire underframe with all fittings, including the placing of the two brake cylinders on the same side. The underframe is to be brought into Pickering yard imminently so that various jobs can be undertaken before the body of 189 is rolled onto it. Top hat fixings have been ordered – these bolt onto the underframe and permit the body to be anchored onto the underframe when in place. The ‘big roll’ when 189’s body is rolled from its existing non-standard underframe onto the newly modified one is scheduled for March. This will be a landmark stage in 189’s restoration.
TTO No. 56856
At the end of January, C&W painter, Mark Toyne has completed the varnishing of this TTO to the extent of needing the new transfers applying. Accordingly, from the warm confines of storage, 56856 x 2, LNER x 2 and ‘3’ x 4 (for the four doors) were extracted. More varnish will be applied once these transfers have been slid into place.
Next for attention should be BTO 43567. This carriage has been deputising in the Pullman set whilst Car No. 79 is away for serious roof repairs.
CCT E1308
A good start has been made on repaneling this 1950-built CCT – donated to us from Doncaster Works in July 1996 after the Doncaster Works Horticultural Society – who used the van – was disbanded. It has been decided to paint the van in LNER brown rather than the maroon in which was originally built. Once completed, the van is likely to be placed in what was the beck siding at the north end of platform 1. This is now devoid of rail because of the removal of the points – worn out and replaced by plain rail. It is likely the Upholstery carriage – 42969 – will also be placed next to E1308, also painted in LNER brown in due course. This will allow easy access by both LNERCA volunteers and C&W staff.
E1308 has now been shunted back into the Long Siding to allow the ‘new’ underframe destined for ECJS 189 to be brought into Pickering yard. The plan is for E1308 to return to Pickering yard later this year when space permits to enable further renewal of the body. Meanwhile, work will continue inside the Atkins shed on rebuilding E1308’s doors.
Vandal repair update
The damaged RB 641 is soon to be sent away to a contractor where the serious damage will be put right and various maintenance jobs undertaken. It has taken a long time to decide where the coach should be sent for repairs. It will not return until 2019. This will have repercussions on the catering aspects of the NYMR, one result of which is a reduction in the number of curry trains which will be able to be run in 2018.
Another carriage will is taking months to repair is the unique Thompson TK 1623 wherein most of the compartment shoulder lights were smashed to bits. The seven components in each shoulder light had to be specially made when we restored this carriage – and nothing has changed. Each lampshade cost us £30, let alone all the other components. There are 28 shoulder lights in this carriage, most of which were wrecked.
Shaun Kay at Grosmont shed has produced a toggle switch will be the forerunner of a batch to be made. We are still nowhere near finding manufacturers for the other parts as some have ceased production since 1623 was first restored.
We understand there is to be a court case for the alleged perpetrators of this vandalism.

The Transport Trust’s adjudicator, Rob Shoreland-Ball, inspects the LNERCA’s skeletal Fish Van frame on January 22. One of the main criteria for applicants for this annual grant awarding is that the item’s restoration must be in progress and on-going – which the Fish Van definitely is. Mr Shoreland-Ball was formerly the Deputy Curator at the NRM, York.

These are the quality CAD drawings of the underframe destined to be placed under ECJS 189. They were drawn by David Elliott, Chief Designer of the A1 Steam Trust, currently building the new P2 locomotive. An immense amount of work has gone into the design of the underframe – remember, this was originally a standard 61’6”Gresley underframe, duly shortened, with brand new solebars welded onto the top of the frames. Note the Gresley bogies. Whilst the LNERCA finally managed to secure a pair of genuine Fox bogies (on which 189 was originally built), the tyre sizes precludes the Fox bogies’ fitting – until, we are able to re-tyre the wheelsets. So, for the time being, Gresley bogies will be utilised.

Humble CCT to be given TLC

In a most welcome move, the LNERCA’s Covered Carriage Truck E1308 is to be given some attention. Invariably, non-passenger carrying vehicles are always at the bottom of the pile and queue for renovation as resources, both financial and manpower, are directed to more pressing and prioritised carriages.
However, there comes a time when stores vans – which play a vital role in traction and rolling stock groups activities – reach the stage where they have to be promoted, otherwise the spectre of scrapping hoves into view.
E1308 was donated to the LNERCA by Doncaster Works and it came to Pickering in July 1996. Since then it has more than earned its keep as a stores vehicle.
The LNERCA is grateful to Kieran Murray, NYMR C&W Manager, for allowing E1308 into Pickering yard for repairs to start. It will reside in the yard for one month, during which time as much of the bodywork will be renewed. The double doors are to be rebuilt, and whilst they are off the van, the gaps will be filled by temporary plywood. Six-foot sections of the bodywork will be dealt with at a time. This will entail moving stores inside to alternative positions to allow access to the framing and defective woodwork.
If good progress can be made, it may be possible for E1308 to be brought back into the yard next year to be completed. A new roof canvas would be desirable after all these years in the weather and a repaint – likely in LNER Brown – will also eventually be given.
LNER-designed Fish Van E 75169
Concomitant with the news on E1308, is it pleasing to report that another of the LNERCA’s non-passenger-carrying vehicles is also progressing. A set of components to allow the overhaul of the vacuum brake cylinder was ordered at the end of October. This is all part of pushing along the renovation of everything below the frame. A start on the wooden framing is due to start next spring when our contractor has a window of opportunity.
ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189
The big news on No. 189 is that the two partitions have been re-erected in the saloon, breaking up the long saloon into three sections. This has been a noteworthy, visible progress. The two partitions also hold up the clerestory roof and are mounted on the floor, resting on specially laid cross-body beams. Hitherto when we obtained No. 189, these beams were not in place.
Approximately 80% of the new windows and retaining wooden beading surrounds in the raised clerestory roof section have been installed.
Re-varnishing taking place
It is so pleasing to record that Gresley TTO 56856 is now in the C&W paint shop and is being revarnshed. This is long overdue – but this is no reflection on the beleaguered C&W workforce – depleted by staffing numbers and a colossal workload. Because of the time elapsed since last revarnished, much of the varnish has ‘blown’, with patches exposed to bare wood. This has necessitated sanding all the body down to bare wood to start again. It is not known how many coats of varnish are to be applied – when built, Doncaster Works used to apply a large number – in excess of ten!
We have been told that the other TTO, 23956, is also be given the same treatment, which means that by next season, there will be two pristine-looking Gresleys for the public to view and savour, hopefully both also sporting new white roof coatings to boot.
More histories
Another carriage history has been added to the LNERCA website. This is for buffet Car (RB) 641. To see its life and times, after typing in, click on ‘Vehicle Histories’ at the top of the page, and you will then see at the bottom of the ‘Vehicle Histories’ page banners with the various carriages for which histories have been documented. Click on the banner for Restaurant Buffet No. 641.

The first new section of vertical boarding has been fitted to CCT No. 1308. The CCT is likely to be externally painted in LNER brown.

A new section of teak rail is compressed into position by Marcus Woodcock. The door runner will be fitted on top. All six doors are to be rebuilt during the winter months.

Derek Gibson undertakes painting of boards for use on the CCT. The wood is first painted in Aluminium primer, followed by grey undercoat.

First look at a completed armrest for TK 1623 showing the newly fabricated and painted 6-holed bracket. The originals had three holes – which proved insufficient.

The first trial sample of a new toggle switch for use in TK 1623 to replace all those wrecked by the vandals. One of the former originals is seen alongside.

Major visible progress is seen inside No. 189 with the erection of the two partitions, breaking up the interior into three distinct sections. These also support the clerestory.

Surprise revelation with the Fish Van

The opportunity has been taken, at long last, to accurately measure the Fish Van’s tyres.
It had long been thought that they were below scrap size and that the only way E 75169 would be allowed to run would be to obtain replacement wheelsets. Not so. The measuring revealed the complete opposite. On all four wheels, the flange height and thickness were well above the minimum requirements. The wheel profile itself, again on all four wheels, was really excellent, indicating that turning on a lathe was definitely not required.
In fact, the engineer’s findings show that not only would the Fish Van meet all the parameters for use on the NYMR, there was no reason why, when fully restored and all compliance issues had been addressed, that the Fish Van could travel to Whitby on a passenger service.
Should this eventually happen, it would be a really significant event. Not only would it recreate a time-honoured aspect of passenger trains in this area, but would be a notable ‘first’ in the preservation sector as no other heritage four-wheeled non-passenger vehicles run on the national network.
Meanwhile, the eight M20 bolts have been ordered to allow the refitting of the brake gear hangers. It is now the intention to remove the four springs and send them to Owen Springs Ltd., Rotherham, to ascertain condition, i.e. whether they need total replacement or merely re-tempering.
Thompson TK No. 1623
All 28 larger armrest brackets have now been fabricated and painted, ready to have the armrests refitted to the seven compartments of TK 1623.
ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189
The fitting of the clerestory window glass and its associated beading on the outside – and sealant – continues. Most of the carriage has now been completed and thoughts will turn to fitting the remaining roof boards on the lower part of the roof below the clerestory.
Inside on the floor, where the two partitions will be located, two wooden beams/supports have been fitted onto the framing. These will support the partitions which, in turn, will support the clerestory roof. It is thought that the lack of these floor supports might well have contributed to the sagging of the clerestory roof when we took delivery of No. 189.
More histories
Two more histories have been added to the LNERCA website. These are for North Eastern Railway LC No. 1111 (at Levisham) and LNER TTO 43632. This latter vehicle is the odd-one-out because it is the only Gresley carriage on the NYMR which is not under the umbrella of the LNERCA. However, for the sake of completeness, its history has been included. To see these latest life chronicles, click on ‘Vehicle Histories’ on the top of the home page and you will then see all the rolling stock for which known histories have been researched. Click on the relevant one you wish to see.

Using a calibrated gauge, all four Fish Van wheels meet the criteria for running – flange height and thickness, together with the profile. The door opens to the possibility of running this Fish Van to Whitby once rebuilt and all standards set by Network Rail are met. Although we have no definite proof, it is believed E75169 was one of the last such vans to have worked from Whitby in 1964.

The four springs on E75169 are shortly to be removed for assessing for further use. These will be sent to Owens at Rotherham where they will be dismantled and each leaf inspected. On the face of it, the springs appear in good order but only a strip-down will confirm actual condition.

The long and tedious job of sanding down the framing on ECJS 189 continues, come the day panelling can be refitted. When using glue blocks to hold the external teak panels on, it is vital that all remains of paint and other detritus is removed so that there is wood to wood contact. Here, the sanding block is being wielded by Dave Young.

On the floor of No. 189, two lengths of teak have been inserted as pictured here. These will support the two partitions which split the saloon area into three sections. The partitions in turn, help support the roof. It is believed that their non-inclusion previously contributed towards one of the reasons why the roof was sagging when the LNERCA took ownership of this carriage.

Water is the arch enemy of carriage restorers. With the installation of the clerestory lights (glass) and the fitting of the beading, sealant is applied to ensure no water can enter. This is the job Nick Smith is undertaking. The beading itself is to be treated with a modern water-repellent coating before being painted.

LNER set back in traffic

After a herculean effort by staff and volunteers, a six-coach LNER set was returned to traffic on August 12. A vast amount of work was necessary and the LNERCA would like to thank everyone who gave a hand.
There has been a tremendous repose from members, the public, and companies offering help – this is really most appreciated.
£42,000 was donated – a staggering sum. If any money is left over after replacement items have been procured and fitted, any surplus will go towards the renovation of the Buffet Car – No. 641.
With six in service (excluding RB 641 and BTO 43567 – which is in the Pullman rake), Some of the carriages have replacement and temporary fittings, pending acquisition of correct patterns.
In the case of TK 1623, smashed light fittings have been removed and wires taped over – these will take many weeks to procure as previously all these components had to be specially made. It is probable that the lampshades will, this time, be made in white plastic.
The buffet Car 641 is overdue major attention, so the opportunity is being taken to undertake these large jobs and repair the damage at the same time. For this, No. 641 is to be sent away to a nominated contractor and options are being evaluated.
The main work involves the replacement of the rack plates – metal plating above the bogies for which the body needs to be lifted. Some springs need changing and there is a host of other jobs, some vital and others which would be ‘nice to have’.
One item on which the owner is rightly insisting relates to the repair and overhaul of the Stills boiler. This will allow, once again, hot drinks, including real coffee, to be served – not in plastic cups but proper crockery. After all, this is a Historical Railway Trust!
641 will therefore not be in service this year.
Fish Van E75169
The brake cylinder has now been dismantled and new parts are being ordered in the next few days.
DC Engineering, Shildon, is to return to Pickering in the near future to attend to some welding jobs which were left uncompleted when the chassis was at Shildon.
8 x M20 bolts are being ordered which will allow a start to be made on fitting the droppers (which hold the brake blocks in situ).
New pipe, which will form the through vacuum pipe, is also to be ordered.
In essence, completion of all the underframe equipment is being progressed.
No contact has been made by the Transport Trust – the LNERCA has made an application to be considered for one of the TT’s annual awards towards completing vehicles under restoration.
ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189
Most visible is the progress relating to fitting the widened teak panels which are being inserted between the windows. These have all had an extra piece of teak expertly glued onto the original, the object of which was to make them wide enough to be covered at the edges by the beading. Previously, because these teak panels were not wide enough, the beading barely covered the edges.
Also worthy of note, all the wooden framings which hold the clerestory glass have been fettled and painted white. New glass has been procured and installation of these windows will now be taking place. Before these are fitted, a transparent plastic film is applied to prevent splinters in the event of breakages.
NER TO No. 945
The two LNERCA-owned Gresley bogies have been overhauled by DC Engineering at Shildon. These are due to go under the North Eastern Railway Coach Group’s No. 945 in due course.
Thompson TK No. 1623
Investigations are underway as to how best to obtain replacement shoulder light fittings, smashed by the vandals. It is likely the toggle switches will, this time, be manufactured by CNC technology using aluminium.
The long job of making 28 larger (than those previously fitted) brackets which hold the armrests onto the sides of each compartment in 1623 has been started. Each of these brackets has 6 screw holes facing the compartment wall – enough, we hope, to ensure they stay tight and remain tight.
LNERCA workshop
Nearing completion, the workshop sited at the north end of the yard next to High Mill level crossing has lost its grey undercoat and now sports two-tone ‘livery’ of green and an interesting shade of light stone. Anyway, it looks a vast improvement on what masqueraded before. Top marks to the junior volunteers who came in force, wielding paintbrushes. Some finishing touches were made by members during the ‘Coach Week’ at the end of August.

Nick Smith rollers out the air bubbles from the protective transparent film on top of the glass – this will be inserted in the vertical sides of the raised roof section – the clerestory.
This picture illustrates the repainting framing being installed into the clerestory section of No. 189. Then the glass will be fitted. The arm belongs to Gary Lyne.

Sorting out the myriad of screws – a necessary and vital task pending fitting of the internal window framings is Malcolm Brown. This Tyneside gentleman has become the resident tour guide for visitors who venture into the Atkins shed.
A close-up of a widened teak panel which is now adequately covered by the beading on each side – previously, the beading barely covered the panel. This has taken quite a time and has been done so expertly, you can hardly see the join.

With the widened panels now going in, the coach body begins to look less derelict and more like a carriage. It also illustrates just how much work is going into the body – all being undertaken to an exceptionally high standard. Below the panels can be seen the new waist rail which runs alongside the whole length of the carriage.
Here is one of the new brackets being made to fit the armrests into Thompson TK No. 1623. The new bracket features six holes – previously there were three – and it is hoped these will be enough to secure the armrest tightly in position. Six completed, 22 more to finish.

This was almost a picture caption contest. Braving the Long Siding Rain Forest are Messrs Stringer, Cullingworth and Woodcock. Their mission, as they had chosen to accept it, was to fight their way through the jungle to a spare Gresley bogie in order to recover three springs to be used to complete the overhaul of two Gresley bogies at DC Engineering, Shildon, which are destined to go under NER Open Third No. 945.
This is one of two Gresley bogies completed by DC Engineering, Shildon, destined to go under NER TO No. 945. However, they might temporarily go under ECJS No. 189. The second bogie is virtually complete – just awaiting three springs recovered from the dense undergrowth at the Long Siding, Pickering. Picture: Nick Stringer.

Assessment made of vandal damage to the LNER set – 25th July 2017

Following the attack on the stabled LNER set which was parked in the ‘short end neck’ adjacent to High Mill crossing at Pickering on Saturday night/Sunday morning – July 22/23, a more thorough assessment was made today of the damage inflicted by the vandals.
The gratuitous violence inflicted on the carriages could have been worse, but, nevertheless, it is going to take weeks to repair. For some of the carriages, only the light bulbs were smashed but for others, it will inevitably be some time before those carriages can see public service again.
A resume of all seven carriages involved is shown below with relevant comments:
GN saloon No. 43087 –
Net in luggage rack 2 off
Bulb 1 off
Ryedale Restaurant Car No. 43654 –
South west Droplight
Bulbs 8 off
Lamp shades 7 off
Light fittings 4 off
Buffet Car No. 641 –
Main windows 6 off
Ceiling lights 9 off
Tea urn
Bellows (North and South)
Tourist Third Open No. 56856 – this is the TTO with the LNER ‘bucket’ seats.
Ceiling bulbs 6 off
Side bulbs 2 off
Ventilator 1 off
Seat ripped (seats no. 32, 42, 44 and 50)
Door handle
South bellows
Tourist Third Open No. 23956 – the TTO with the later straight-sided seats is owned by the National Railway Museum and officials at the NRM have already been contacted with the news.
Ceiling lights 11 off
Side lamps 7 off
Thompson Third Corridor No. 1623 –
Lamp shades 20 off
Bulbs 21 off
Light fittings 22 off
Mirror 2 off
One seat ripped
Coat hanger
The procuring and fitting of the shoulder lights in the seven compartments was the most time-consuming task of the whole restoration, taking over a whole year to source the parts (7 in total) including the lampshades. We know that one of the suppliers is no longer in business so we can say with some certainty that No. 1623 will take the longest to repair.
Brake Third Corridor No. 3669 –
Shades 4 off
Light fitting 1 off
Bulbs 3 off
Drop light 1 off
1 Paraffin tail lamp
The light fittings were kindly supplied by the Severn Valley Railway.
Full set possible wiring damage
Full set possible fabric and lino damage don’t know until first pass of cleaning the coaches
Finally, all the fire extinguishers were let off along the seven-coach with the resultant spray going on the moquette, all of which will require a deep clean. This latter will also be necessary in view of the ‘bodily fluids’ left by the perpetrators.
The LNER Coach Association will be making a ‘Victim Statement’ to be given to the police in due course – this will include all damaged items, the work needed to put right this damage, the cost, the distress caused to the restorers and the paid staff, and how many man-hours the repairs will take. The NYMR will, itself, be making a similar document available, advising the time its paid staff will have to spend remedying what they can and the resultant loss of business this act of vandalism has caused.


LNER carriages trashed by vandals – 23rd July 2017


We have the very sad duty to report that the set of LNER carriages was severley vandalised during the night of Saturday/Sunday 22/23 July. The set was stabled in what is called the ‘short end neck’ which is the siding with bufferstops right against the Hill Mill crossing at Pickering to the north of the station. Intruders, believed to be local miscreants, gained entry and started a smashing rampage.
The Buffet Car No. 641 was one of the worst affected, with every window broken and the tubular chromed chairs strewn about. Throughout the set, all light fittings were smashed and fire extinguishers let off. The vandals left a trail of damage.
It was the NYMR cleaners who came across the destruction when they entered the set to clean it for the day’s service. They found a number of the culprits asleep in the Thompson Third 1623 which had its light fittings wrecked – these took months to procure and were all specially made.
The cleaners immediately called the General Manager and the police were hurriedly summoned. The police declared it a crime scene and no-one was let in. Needles were found amid the debris. Bodily fluids were encountered and one of the perpetrators had cut himself as blood was seen. Alcohol was everywhere and confectionery, stolen from the Buffet Car, was thrown around the floor.
It was later heard that several of these vandals had been apprehended. Somewhat incredulously, these vandals had even posted images of themselves on social media which will be used as evidence.
There are many thousands of pounds worth of damage and the C&W staff and volunteers now have the heart-breaking job to try and repair the damaged set – this will take many weeks. The General Manager thought the set would not return to service this season.
There have been many messages of condolences and support from all over the country and offers of donations have also been received.
The LNERCA committee would like to thank everyone who has contacted over this appalling destruction and for the offers of help from many individuals – this is most appreciated.
The NYMR has started a Teak Set Appeal on its website –


Application submitted for Fish Van grant

We have submitted an Application to the Transport Trust to be considered for one of its annual awards made towards completing a preservation project.
One of the main criteria is that the project must be on-going, with a reasonable expectation of completion date. The LNERCA ticks all the boxes.
Restoration of the Fish Van E 75169 has always been designated as a secondary activity but, with materials to hand, we can progress it, especially as it stands on its own isolated piece of ‘track’ outside the LNERCA’s workshop at High Mill level crossing. This means it is accessible.
The outstanding welding jobs to be undertaken by DC Engineering, Shildon, are . . . still outstanding. The reason is that this company is concentrating on overhauling the pair of Gresley bogies destined to go under NER No. 945Y.
Frame repairs finished on No. 189
It’s taken many months, but at long last the frame repairs have been completed on No. 189, predominantly by Marcus Woodcock who has been working his way round the carriage starting on the east side (next to the yard) and finishing on the west side (next to the car park). This has been, in the main, replacing split or broken half-pillars. New ones, produced by Andrew Daniel in his Harrogate workshop are made out of Sepele.
The next job is to fit the glass in the raised clerestory section prior to fitting the remaining roof timbers on the lower sides of the carriage. Thoughts are now turning to fitting the panels between the windows. These have been widened as those fitted were clearly of insufficient width as proved by the fact that the beading which covers the edges barely did so.
Thompson Third Corridor (TK) No. 1623
New, deeper, brackets for the armrests have been fabricated. These incorporate six holes rather than three as found in the original brackets. By having more screws holding them to the sides of the compartments, it is anticipated that passengers of a larger disposition (how nicely put eh?) will find they can use the armrests to lever themselves out of the seat without loosening or, indeed, breaking off, the armrest. Once a complete set of brackets has been made and painted teak brown (48 in total are needed), a start on refitting the armrests will ensue.
Condition of LNER set
The LNERCA committee has understandably been increasingly concerned over the external state of the LNER set. Not only are several carriages in dire need of external attention in terms of re-varnishing, but the set is now looking increasingly dirty. The reason is that it never gets the chance to be washed. It is drawn out of the Long Siding at Pickering for its two return trips, then shunted back into the Long Siding.
The LNERCA has asked the NYMR management if special arrangements can be made to have it brought into Pickering station early so that a start can be made to wash it.
In addition, it is good to report that Kieran Murray, C&W Manager, has plans to revarnish TTOs 56856 and 23956 this year.
LNERCA workshop
More progress can be reported in the re-cladding of the building. In fact, with the completion of the north end, thoughts can now turn to painting the structure – in LNER colours, green and cream.
Never a dull moment
Wood finisher and marquetry expert, Neil Cawthorne, has stumbled across a French varnish, Called Le Tonkinois with a 200-year old recipe which appears to have far more enduring properties than what we have been using in the past. He conducted a trial using old-style varnish and Le Tonkinois on two pieces of teak items, leaving them outside for 12 weeks. The result was remarkable – see picture. Looks like we may never have a dull moment again. . . .

The unique LNER-designed Fish Van No. E75169 awaits its body rebuilding, whilst sat on its isolated track at the north end of Pickering yard. Should our grant application to the Transport Trust prove successful, this will hasten the day when it runs again. The fish van traffic was an everyday sight on the Whitby-Pickering-York line in the 1950s/60s. Whilst it is non-revenue earning, what it does is to recreate the past ambience and character of today’s heritage railway.
What a difference! Take two items in teak, varnish them with different varnishes and leave outside for three months. On the left is a droplight with standard acrylic varnish, whilst on the right is some paneling varnished with Le Tonkinois. We are now suggesting to the NYMR’s C&W department that they use this French varnish in future.

New roof goes on No. 189


After two years of what appears to be non progress (in reality, a vast amount of repair work has been undertaken), visible progress was made during the May ‘Coach Week’ when the new roof boards were fitted to the top part of the clerestory roof of East Coast Joint Stock Restaurant Third No. 189. At long last, the carriage now looks as if its rebuild is underway.
Prior to this, the derusted and painted carlines had been fitted, as had four oak trimmers spanning the roof, the latter which had also been expertly repaired with new timber being spliced in. It is preferable to try and use the existing wood as far as is practicable. Virtually all the original roof board had serious cracks in them – hence new ones were fitted.
The work entailed laying a centre plank down first after measuring. Then boards either side was installed, tongue & groove being the type fitted.
It is good practice to clamp the boards as tightly as can be undertaken prior to the stainless steel bolts being fitted which clamp the boards to the carlines. A long clamp is stretched over the roof, exerting horizontal forces to ensure the tongue & grooves fit tightly, but even this is not enough. At the very edge, a ‘G’ clamp is also then brought into play, so ensuring the last of the roof boards is forced down onto the carline before the hole is drilled upwards through the carline and board after which the bolt is then hammered down through the roof board.
Thompson Third Corridor (TK) No. 1623
We have capitulated. Final Score: Obese passengers – 1 LNERCA – 0.
The never-ending saga of the compartment armrests reached, perhaps, its inevitable conclusion on Sunday May 7 when all 28 armrests were taken off. To be truthful, it wasn’t 28 because two had already been ripped off by passengers.
We have spent weeks ever since 1623 was launched into traffic last year trying to tighten up the armrests which were becoming loose on a daily basis. Cause? Overweight passengers, forcing themselves out of the seats using the armrests. They (the armrests, that is) just could not take the strain.
They are held in position by means of three one-inch screws – there is a right-angled bracket underneath the armrest through which the screws fit.
When the carriage was built in 1950, everyone was of slim disposition – it was just after the war and rationing was taking place. Fast forward 70 years and the world of chips has taken over.
To bring some long-overdue light-hearted relief to this dispiriting problem, various door notices were suggested, but, as you can imagine, none were printable, especially in this day of political correctness!
The solution is likely to be dismantling every armrest and fitting a new bracket, one with a deeper vertical section which abuts the compartment wall. This will have six screw holes rather than the existing three. As if we don’t have enough to do.
LNERCA workshop
One of the panned activities during the May ‘Coach Week’ was the removal of the shrunk shiplap boarding from the workshop at High Mill crossing and replacing it with new overlapping boards.
A good turnout saw major progress made, with the entire frontage replaced, together with the south end. This just leaves the north end to do.
The boards had all been pre-primed with grey paint and it was just a matter of measuring each one before they were sawn to length and then nailed into position.
When the north end is completed, the building will have its top coat of green and cream applied.
LNER Fish Van E75169
Regrettably, no more progress can be recorded, apart from one fact, namely, the eight ‘droppers’, the metal bars about one-foot long onto which the brake gear is suspended at each wheel, have been derusted, primed and painted. We are still awaiting DC Engineering, Shildon, to attend to outstanding welding aspects.
Please contribute
If you would like to help with a donation, this will be gratefully received by the LNERCA and can be directed to the vehicle of your choice. Please contact Murray Brown ( if you would like to help. Thank you.

It’s a long carriage when you have to fit new roof board – all 51’ 6”. This was the heartening sight on May 7 when most of the roof, the top section, had been reboarded. Half way along the carriage can be seen the horizontal clamp, used to compress the roof boards as tightly as possible before they are bolted to the carlines underneath.
The bottom, lower, part of the roof will not have new boards fitted until the clerestory windows have been refitted. The apertures for these can be seen to the left of the unboarded roof section. Also on view – which will be covered from sight eventually – are the refurbished black-painted knee-irons which add support to the framing.

What an improvement: It will look even better when painted in green and cream. Attention to the LNERCA workshop was long overdue – the shrunken shiplap was letting in water.
Good weather allowed all the front and the south end to be reclad. Here, two volunteers attack the end of the building which has served us so well over the years, both as a workshop and a store.



One side of 18477’s framing completed

Thompson CK No. 18477
From utter dereliction to a state of definite visible progress. The entire corridor side framing has been chopped out and replaced by new – and doesn’t it look superb, painted in aluminium primer. One of the NYMR drivers commented that he had come into Pickering on a train from Grosmont and looked at the derelict carriage. On his next train, on arrival the carriage had got a new side, the new framing having been lifted into place in his absence! He was astonished.
The final work – completing the ends of the carriage where the new framing is joined to the corner posts was undertaken on Tuesday April 11.
Of interest is how this is effected. Instead of the usual tenon protruding from the rail (horizontal wooden piece), the two tenons are actually separate and are first glued into the holes chiseled out of, at one end, the new framing and second, the corner post. The final rail, about a foot long, has slots cut out to match where the tens go, is then slotted over the tenons and knocked down until the tenons are totally covered – see photographs. The new ‘West’ glue is used in the process and then the whole assembly is then screwed tight.
On Sunday, April 9, three volunteers removed all the external panelling to reveal the compartment side framing. Much of this panelling was plywood, having been installed in the 1970s by the York Area Group.
A thorough survey was then conducted on the following Tuesday by Andrew Daniel to assess the extent of work required, once the next tranche of funding has been secured.
The compartment side of 18477 is certainly in superior condition to that of the corridor side, although there will be extensive parts needing total replacing. Besides sections of the actual framing, some of the internal partitions are in a bad way, as is the roof. Surprisingly, however, parts of the carriage have survived remarkably well, for instance some laminate ceiling panels are intact in places and the vestibule ceiling and toilet panelling is intact. These will be removed carefully in due course to gain access to the framing and roof. The carriage is now sheeted over and will be placed in the Long Siding at Pickering pending the provision of further funds.
LNER Fish Van E75169
All seven carlines have been renovated, this comprising wire-brushing, green anti-oxide paint, grey undercoat and black top coat. The carlines cannot be installed until the wooden framing is in place.
And herein lies the next problem. Our joiner contractor is committed elsewhere for some months, so the decision has been made to concentrate on the underframe equipment – overhauling the brake cylinder and fitting the brake rigging.
ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189
The end is finally in sight as regards fitting replacement half-pillars. Only two more were left to fit on the west side (car park) side of 189. The reason why numerous ones needed renewing was simply one of condition – many were severely cracked and more than one was actually broken.
More carlines have been fully renovated – de-rusted, green anti-oxide paint, grey undercoat and black top coat. These are being screwed into place on the clerestory roof as they are completed.
Meanwhile at Shildon, the best brains in the north-east are trying to work out what is the best solution for the Fox bogies recovered from a crane runner in Essex.
The Coach Week in May is likely to see the new roof boards being installed. Other planned work for the Coach Week is further replacing of the shiplap on the LNERCA’s workshop at High Mill crossing.
GNR saloon 43087
Water ingress at the observation end has caused considerable damage. Mike Illingworth is exercising his considerable joinery skills and has cut out much damaged wood, replacing it with new hardwood. Parts receiving attention are the vertical half pillars below the main window and some of the end beam which sits across the width of the vehicle. With the external teak panels split at the end of the carriage, below the window, new panels will be required unless the existing ones are capable of being glued.
Please contribute
We often find in the restoration business that folk, in many instances, have a favourite vehicle and because of these ‘leanings’ may well consider contributing towards their renovation. May we seek your generosity by sending a donation for the vehicle of your choice to aid its completion? These are the Fish Van E 75169, East Coast Joint Stock No. 189, Thompson CK 18477 or the overhaul of the Fox bogies. All monies received will be guaranteed to go direct towards these respective projects. Please contact Murray Brown ( if you would like to help. Thank you.

Now you don’t see it, now you do. After the views of the dereliction and the whole corridor side ripped out, here is the heartening sight of the new framing in place. Assembled in the Atkins shed, each of the three sections was carried out into the yard and then lifted into place after preparatory work by the LNERCA’s joiner, Andrew Daniel. The C&W staff are readily acknowledged for their kind assistance in lifting the sections out of the shed and to Kieran Murray for operating the Teleporter which hoisted the sections into place.

Andrew Daniel illustrates the fascinating technique for adding the final rails into the gaps at each end of the carriage – between the brand new framing and the original corner post. First of all the separate tenons are glued and knocked into the prepared holes.
Secondly, the piece of rail (hardwood) is then placed over protruding tenons and gently pushed down over the tenons until they are fully covered, They have been glued beforehand.

Once the rail is fully in its correct place, four stainless steel screws are then inserted through both ends of the rail and through the now encased tenons.
There are three such rails to be inserted at each end of the coach. The joiner has inserted two, leaving the third which is at the top of the coach. As it sits just below the cant rail, once the tenons are glued into place, this third rail is knocked upwards to encase the tenons, unlike the two rails lower down.

On the other side of 18477, three volunteers set to on April 9 to remove all the outside cladding – or what was left of it. Much of this was plywood, having been fitted in the 1970s by the York Area Group. Andy Pollard takes a break to look at what’s underneath the removed plywood. Whilst parts of the framing and partitions are somewhat grim, generally, the west side of the carriage is in far better condition than the east side. The cladding was removed in order for a thorough survey to be undertaken.
Repairs to the GNR saloon have been taking place. Water ingress has caused considerable rot and a considerable quantity of wood has been removed. Mike Illingworth has been effecting repairs. In this view, the extent of the new wood can ben seen, especially on the floor. Of interest are the two vertical grey half-pillars. As Eric Morecambe would have said – you can’t see the join. The bottom half of each half-pillar has been replaced by new, being fitted by means of a barely discernable scarf joint.

Removal and replacement of wood invariably necessitates dismantling of other components. Mike Illingworth cleans out the recess in the bottom end beam with a chisel in which sits the strangely shaped knee-iron (which adds strength to the framing). The knee-iron can be seen next to the brush. The LNERCA is kindly helping out the NYMR paid staff in repairing the GNR saloon because of the workload of the C&W department with the backlog of Mk.1 carriage repairs.



Found! Long ‘lost’ Fox bogies

We have managed to find a pair of 100-year-old Fox bogies and, even better, the owner has agreed to allow us to swap them for a pair of our Gresley-designed bogies. The Fox bogies will go under ECJS No. 189 – it was built with them in 1894.
It was the LNERCA’s Archivist, John Sutcliffe, who spotted them in a photograph. They were sitting under a crane runner on the Colne Valley Railway in Essex.
A visit to this Essex outpost duly confirmed the remarkable ‘find’ – buried in brambles and weeds. The crane and its runner (on which the jib rests) had not moved for over ten to fifteen years.
The owner, Martin Nixon, was known to Murray Brown, so inquiries were made. He willingly said “yes”.
However, the sheer logistics of getting these bogies warrants a book being written.
The first problem was to how to raise the jib off the runner. The NYMR’s C&W fitter, now C&W Manager, Kieran Murray also paid a visit and soon came to the conclusion that using jacks was not practicable or safe because once the jib was raised, the area sitting on the jack top decreased as the jib moved upwards in an arc.
It was looking grim. Then a chance meeting with the Jeremy Dunn, leader of the 45163 restoration group, in an adjoining building revealed he knew a lot about the crane’s history and, better still, offered to try and raise the jib using compressed air from his workshop. So, after Christmas, a trial was undertaken – it worked, and the job was locked in the raised poisitio0n. This meant that the runner could be uncoupled from the crane.
We now needed the Colne Valley Railway to move the vehicles away from the runner so it could be extracted and placed on the departure road ready for collection by road transporter.
The CVR’s General Manager, Paul Lemon kindly undertook this large shunt and runner DE 320878 was ready for collection. DE 320878 was originally a GNR non-corridor carriage.
The plan was for DC Engineering to collect the runner, transport it to their Shildon workshop, replace the bogies with those of Gresley type. This took place on March 14 and an assessment is being made on the vintage Fox bogies prior to renovation. The runner will be returned to Castle Hedingham, CVR in due course.
The LNERCA is indebted to Martin Nixon, Jeremy Dunn and Paul Lemon without whom this extraordinary saga could not have reached fruition.
LNER Fish Van E75169
The first carlines which span the sides and onto which are screwed the roof boards have been refurbished. They are being wire-brushed, primed, undercoated and top coated. These carlines are in excellent condition, bearing in mind their age (69 years old) one reason for which is that they were previously painted in a bitumastic black paint which has clearly protected the metalwork.
ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189
It is great to know that we can now restore No. 189 to as-built condition with the acquisition of a pair of Fox bogies.
We now need another pair to put under NER FO 2118, but we may not be as fortunate.
The other news is that David Elliott has supplied us with new computer drawings of the shortened underframe – these are required to show the exact location of the brake cylinders and whether such positioning would impinge on frame members.
Gordon Wells has been making new battery cases – these will fit inside a battery box on the underframe, or do we hide them inside a replica gas tank?
Meanwhile, in the Atkins shed, work has progressed on refurbishing the carlines – derusting and repainting. In addition, where they are screwed to the top of the cant rail, rotten wood found underneath where they sit has been chopped out and sound wood inserted.
Neil Cawthorne has made good progress on sanding down many of the doors and paneling, making good defective joints where found.
More half pillars have been inserted into the framing and volunteers have been gradually moving along all the original half pillars, sanding off the gunge and glue down to bare wood. This is a prerequisite for fitting the teak panels using new glue blocks. The glue blocks are stuck to the internal face of the teak panel and another side of the glue block is stuck to the frame – hence bare wood is needed as there is no point trying to stick the glue blocks to paint or old glue.
We have found enough brass components on the body to make the saloon (uplight?) windows work, however we are missing the brass catches which hold the window shut against the springs which lift the windows. We think these may be an American Pullman fitting but have never seen any examples, they will have been a proprietary off the shelf fitting if any reader has one or knows of a modern supplier please contact us.
Thompson CK No. 18477
The remainder of the corridor-side new framing has been machined in Harrogate, transported to Pickering and assembled in the Atkins shed. Once the C&W can find space for 18477 to be moved into Pickering yard, the framing can then be lifted into place by the LNERCA’s joiner, Andrew Daniel.
Worth a mention
Two carriages have been receiving the attention of Mike Illingworth – another craftsman with a penchant for woodwork. BTK No. 3669 is having attention to a door pillar where the lock fits. This had become damaged, we think due to incorrect use of the door mechanism which duly split the wood.
Mike has also started dismantling the end of Jim Kay’s GNR (LNER) saloon 43087. Water has been getting in over the collision pillars and a strip down is required to assess what repairs are necessary.
Several volunteers have been making inroads into painting boards with aluminium primer – these are destined to be fitted to the LNERCA’s workshop at High Mill at the end of Pickering yard. Later this year, the old shiplap will be ripped off and the new boards fitted. When finally complete, the building will be painted in the LNER’s green and cream.
The LNERCA welcomes any assistance readers can make, either financially or physically. Donations are welcome towards any of the vehicles under restoration or the special appeal to renovate the LNERCA-owned Gresley bogies which will go under NER 945Y. Please contact ( or Murray Brown ( if you can contribute or, better still, lend a hand.

An amazing find – a pair of Fox bogies. They were covered in dense undergrowth in a siding at Castle Hedingham, Colne Valley Railway. This picture was only possible once much gardening had been undertaken.
With the runner detached and shunted out of the siding, it stands in the departure line awaiting collection by the road transporter to take it to Shildon where the bogies will be swapped. Photo. Jeremy Dunn.

To whet the appetite as to things to come – he is an internal view of NER 945Y. The LNERCA is now helping the North Eastern Railway Coach Group to speed up its completion by providing two overhauled Gresley bogies. Other work will include provision of gangways, bellows and recanvassing the roof. Photo. Peter Brumby
A time-consuming task – Andy Cox sands down the half-pillars of No. 189 in order that when the triangular glue blocks are fitted, the face which glues to the framing is literally wood to wood rather than trying to glue the block to old glue and residual gunge.

Gordon Wells has been busy making new battery boxes for No. 189. They will sit on one side of the underframe. The brake cylinders will sit opposite the battery boxes on the other side.
Impressive! This is the remainder of the new corridor-side framing destined for fitting to CK No. 18477. It was machined in Andrew Daniel’s Harrogate workshop, then moved to Pickering for assembling.

Mike Illingworth has been repairing the door pillar on one of the compartments of Gresley BTK No. 3669. Mis-use of the door mechanism resulted in the wood being split. The damaged teak is shown in the first picture having been cut away, whilst the second image shows the new piece of teak ready to be glued in.


An appealing appeal

With the most welcome news that the LNERCA is taking the North Eastern Railway Coach Group’s unique Open Third 945Y under its wing as an affiliated carriage, this opens the door to aiding its completion – and that’s exactly the plan. To this end, the LNERCA is providing an overhauled pair of Gresley bogies to be placed under 945Y when the carriage enters the Atkins restoration shed, Pickering, once ECJS 189 is watertight and can be placed outside.
The bogies will remain the property of the LNERCA but will make a huge difference to the completion date of this beautiful NER carriage.
With funds in short supply as virtually all monies raised are going towards 189, the LNERCA is seeking donations from members and readers who have an interest in carriages, and, in particular, unique NER carriages.
If you feel you would like to help push this carriage forward towards the day it makes its inaugural run, do please send a cheque however, small, however large, to the LNERCA’s Treasurer, John Hasler, 103 Bramley Garth, Appletree Village, York. YO31 0PQ
LNER Fish Van E75169
Having received quotations for the new wood for the framing, an order is expected to be placed shortly.
Work is to start imminently on refurbishing the carlines (hoopsticks) which space from side to side and onto which are bolted the roof boards.
It is clearly evident that the van has been extensively rebuilt during its previous life as the hoopsticks have somewhat rudimentary pieces of wood bolted to their sides in short lengths, these forming a crude arc across the van. All of these are being removed and will be replaced by something more professional.
ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189
All of the east side framing has been completed and work continues on the west side (car park side).
Attention is now turning to the teak paneling between the windows above the waist rail. In many cases, this, simply, is not wide enough, the two-inch flat beading which runs down each side is barely covering the teak panel, i.e. holding it in place. It is blatantly obvious that the teak panels are not wide enough because the tell-tale recess into which they fit can still be seen. Strange they were refitted like this in the first place?
Thompson CK No. 18477
More brand new framing has been produced by Andrew Daniel and fitted along the corridor side. The plan is to complete the whole of the corridor side pending raising of more funds to tackle the next stage of restoration.
Do help
If you are getting under your good lady’s feet, then why not escape and have an enjoyable time with the carriage volunteers in the heated Atkins shed where good banter and fulfilment are the order of the day. However, for those ladies jumping up and down at that politically incorrect remark, our invitation also extends to ladies who are getting under husbands’ feet or are fed up of talk of football and golf. Please contact ( or Murray Brown ( if you can come along.

These are the two LNERCA-owned Gresley bogies under overhaul at DC Engineering, Shildon, which are destined to go under Open Third No. 945Y. Your donation to help finish them will be much welcomed.



We smile in the face of adversity!

Following the euphoria of finishing Thompson TK 1623, it is business as usual, with work continuing on three fronts. All three projects on which volunteers are working are in a dismantled state. All three are unique and are in a bit of a state to put it politely. It is at this stage that we hear the question, especially from disbelievers, will they ever run again? Oh they of little faith!
LNER Fish Van E75169
The outstanding welding jobs on the underframe are still not completed, though they are planned imminently. The measurements of new Sepele for the framing have been worked out and this wood is shortly to be sourced. Whilst this is a ‘fill-in’ job, nevertheless, the Fish Van is expected to see major progress in its renovation during 2017.
ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189
Carriages don’t come more skeletal than 189 is looking at present – no roof and just the framing on the sides. The defective wood on the cantrail onto which is bolted the hoopsticks (carlines) is gradually being replaced by new. The opportunity is being taken to derust the hoopsticks and fully paint them pending re-installation.
More vertical half-pillars have been inserted, replacing those considered past their sell-by-date.
Thompson CK No. 18477
18477 is parked on the concrete hard-standing outside the C&W shed and is moved into position as and when the C&W workload permits. This now derelict carriage looks a sorry sight, with most of the corridor side having been removed, exposing the compartments. Most of this side is being replaced by new hardwood. However, already, a new section of framing has been lifted into place and the transformation has begun. This section of Sepele framing had been assembled in the Atkins shed after being machined in Andrew Daniel’s Harrogate workshop. After being treated with fungicide and then by aluminium wood primer, the section was lifted out of the shed by four willing helpers after which it was raised into place using the teleporter machine. It was a doddle.
The framing, of course, sits on the top of the solebar and this had to be derusted prior to the framing being placed on top of it. Much grinding in the marsh could be heard one December weekend as this was carried out.
Beginning of a new era
In the last report, we bade farewell to Jerry Hawley, the NYMR C&W Manager without whom we would not be where we are with the LNER train. Promoted in his place has been Kieran Murray who has been with the NYMR for 15 years and, like Jerry, started as an apprentice. He is one of the really helpful paid staff members and we are really pleased he has been offered the post.
Fed up?
Fed up of household chores? Then why not have a day at Pickering in the warm ambience of the Atkins shed where you will be welcome and you will leave having helped in a meaningful way with restoring one of our carriages. Tea and cake are in abundance. Please contact Marcus Woodcock ( or Murray Brown ( if you can come along.

LNERCAThe bare minimum: This is all that is left of the roof of ECJS 189 domiciled in the Atkins shed. All the roof boards have been removed because of cracking. Only then did we find that the cantrail, on top of which the metal hoopsticks are screwed, was in need of renewal. The nearest hoopstick in the picture can be seen screwed onto a new section of wood where it joins the cantrail. (Murray Brown)
image_nov16_2It will be finished, one day, honest. Only the bravest would still be optimistic that this carriage will be restored in the fullness of time. 18477 had had a large section of its rotten framing removed, prior to brand new framing being installed. Once this has been undertaken, the next section will be similarly treated. (Murray Brown)

LNERCATransformation begins: Within hours, the new framing has been lifted into place and 18477 starts the long road to completion. (Andrew Daniel)
LNERCAThe top of the solebar had to be derusted prior to the new framing being installed. Christopher Johnson and Marcus Woodcock attack the surface rust. Close by Christopher’s left hand can be seen a tenon from a cross beam – this slots into the new bottom rail when it and the new framing is lifted into place. (Murray Brown)



Another historical carriage joins the LNERCA fleet


It is really good to report that after an invitation and subsequent negotiation, the North Eastern Railway Coach Group which owns and is restoring the NER Open Third No. 945Y at Levisham, is to join the LNERCA as an affiliated member.
This opens the door to LNERCA volunteers helping with the renovation of this unique carriage which is being restored by a small band to a high standard. It was bought out of departmental service – DE 320716 – and came to the NYMR in July 1973. After some years stabled at Goathland, it was moved to Levisham where restoration has been on-going since the late 1990s.
The plan is to try and help the restorers as soon as is practicable. Once ECJS 189 is watertight, we plan to bring 945Y to Pickering where it can be put into the Atkins shed. First job will be to re-canvas the roof. We also intend to facilitate overhaul of the bogies – a major step forward with a view to returning this 1924 York-built carriage to working order.
All NERCG members (25 in total) will become members of the LNERCA.
This really is a significant step forward for both the NERCG and the LNERCA.
1623 – damage by passengers!
With the entry into service of Thompson TK 1623, a lull in proceedings might have been expected. Not so – ‘keep calm and carry on’ has been the order of the day. However, one surprise with No. 1623 – much admired whenever it journeys to Grosmont and back – has been the damage inflicted on the small armrests in the compartments. When 1623 was built in 1950, folk were of slim-line design, hardly surprising following war rationing. Nowadays, society has changed, especially physically, and we now have, how can this be put politely, obese passengers who cannot get out of their seats without exerting immense pressure on said armrests. The three one-inch screws which hold them to the compartment sides are clearly no longer adequate and they rapidly become loose and, in some cases the armrests have been pulled off altogether.
We have also witnessed dogs on seats – another appalling selfish act by passengers – who do not know that the moquette cost the LNERCA £9,000.
LNER Fish Van E75169
An inspection was undertaken of the Fish Van on Wednesday October 19 by the LNERCA and NYMR management – this was to ascertain just what was considered necessary in terms of finishing off welds to make the vehicle acceptable for eventual running. The contractor who had returned the van had missed several welds ands rather than have them return it was decided, thanks to the NYMR C&W manager, to employ Dave Jakeman, the C&W coded welder, to complete the job – at the expense of the LNERCA.
Also on hand was LNERCA joiner Andrew Daniel who has started measuring for the wooden framing required. This will be of Sepele.
Many photographs have been taken on E75169 when it was being stripped down, as it was known they would come in useful in the re-assembly.
A large number of removed timbers were stored in the Atkins shed so that they could be used as patterns.
We have a colleague in the timber supply business and it is anticipated that the Sepele can be obtained at advantageous rates.
ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189
Still living up to its name – ‘the coach which goes backwards’, the latest setback is the finding of some more wood rot, this time underneath where the carlines (hoopstick) bolt onto the cantrail at the top of the body. At some stage, 189 cannot go any further backwards.
Thompson CK No. 18477
Now in Pickering yard and up on jacks. This is to enable the specialist contract to attend to asbestos removal for which the LNERCA is paying the estimated £5,000 invoice. It is up on jacks to allow the main steam pipe to be dropped and removed.
Once this work has been effected, Andrew Daniel can start to prepare for the installation the new hardwood framing (already machined and stored) for the corridor side of 18477.
End of an era
Sad to report, we have bade farewell to Jerry Hawley, C&W Manager at Pickering who has left the NYMR after 32 years of service. He is joining Network Rail engineering staff at York. Jerry joined as an apprentice and worked his way up. He has always been of considerable help to the LNERCA – and the Wagon Group – and could so easily have regarded both groups as a nuisance, extraneous to the core product of overhauling and maintaining the ‘bread and butter’ Mk.1s. Instead, he not only allowed both groups to use the NYMR’s Atkins shed, but was always willing to allow his staff to help out on safety critical and other works. It is a pleasure to acknowledge his support to us over many years.
Fancy that?
If you fancy lending a hand for a day to see if you enjoy it, then please contact Marcus Woodcock ( or Murray Brown (

image_nov16_1The LNERCA welcomes North Eastern Railway Third Open 945Y and its members, the NER Coach Group, to the fold. The exciting prospect of advancing 945Y’s restoration to the point of it entering traffic has taken a step nearer as the LNERCA volunteers will be able to help re-canvas the roof, overhaul the bogies and replace the gangway bellows. It initially was built in varnished teak but was soon adorned in NER crimson. This view was taken at Levisham nearly 20 years ago – since then this unique survivor has been hidden away under a tarpaulin. (David Idle)

image_nov16_2 Jerry Hawley (left) C&W manager at Pickering, is departing for pastures new. Undoubtedly, his encouragement to help at all times and for the facility of the Atkins shed has allowed the LNERCA to make substantial progress, especially with Thompson TK 1623 which was moved into the Atkins shed on the building’s official opening. He is pictured with the LNERCA’s joiner, Andrew Daniel. (David Young)
image_nov16_3 New to Pickering yard is the derelict 1950-built Thompson Composite Corridor (CK) No. 18477. It has not carried passengers since 1972 and was one of the earliest carriages to come to the nascent NYMR in 1969. Its presence in the yard is to allow a specialist contractor to remove any remaining asbestos insulation prior to woodwork repairs starting. This view of the compartment side shows the damaged plywood paneling – this was applied in the 1970s by the York Area Group when the carriage was taken out of traffic. (David Young)

image_nov16_4The corridor side of 18477 – enough to daunt any budding LNER carriage restorer. However, it does not daunt the LNERCA’s joiner who has prepared the replacement hardwood framing for this side of the carriage. After this side has been renewed, the carriage will be tarpaulined over and stored pending raising of funds for the next stage of restoration. 18477 was one of the last Thompson-designed passenger carrying carriages to be condemned, this taking place at York on September 21, 1968. It arrived on the NYMR in June the following year. (David Young)


Edward Thompson’s descendant declares 1623 ‘open for passengers’

September 24 – the culmination of over 20 years’ restoration. Two return trips using the LNER set including TK 1623 was made – the first time an eight-coach LNERCA set had run on the NYMR. The event was a ‘thank-you’ for all the restorers, and their families to see and enjoy a ride with the unique completed Third Corridor.
We had to agree that the first run, the 11.00 service from Pickering, would be the normal service train because had we taken the empty 10.00 path, the NYMR, apparently, would have had to cancel the 11.00 service because there were insufficient carriages.
The 12.30 from Grosmont and 14.00 ex Pickering, however, were special to LNERCA members and also the Thompson B1 Locomotive Society members. They had provided their B1 61264 – such an appropriate locomotive for the occasion. It carried the headboard ‘The Thompson Renaissance’. On arrival at Pickering, LNERCA Chairman Nick Stringer welcomed everyone to the event, whilst Vice Chairman Murray Brown thanked everyone for their support in so many ways. He singled out Jerry Hawley and two of his paid staff, Keiran Murray and Gordon Neale for all their assistance, the PRISM Fund which got the restoration off to a good start with the first installment of £2,000 (in total £20K), Master painter Dave Simpson from the SRPS, Bo’ness’, who undertook the much admired scumbling, The Thompson B1 Locomotive Society for supplying the locomotive and LNERCA joiner, Andrew Daniel for undertaking such a complex job as renewing the complete bottom rail whilst the roof was still in position – believed to be a ‘first’ in preservation circles. Andrew had also replaced a missing compartment partition in addition to helping throughout its restoration. Murray Brown then handed over to the special guest who announced just who he was – Edward Thompson’s great nephew, Tom Walters.
Mr Walters was delighted to be asked to attend and recalled his Great Uncle when Tom Walters was a young boy, calling him ‘Uncle Ned’. Mr Walters was then invited to cut a ribbon on one of the doors of 1623 to officially declare it ‘open’. Mark O’Brien, NYMR boiler Inspector and Engineer of the TB1LS, had arranged a cab ride for Mr Walters – the first time he had ever had one.
A sumptuous buffet had been provided for £10 per head but some folk chose not to know the price and expected it for free. It had been widely publicised that a £10 donation would be appropriate. The buffet had been prepared by Maureen Skelton and her friends, Jim Kay and Edwin Craggs – it was much appreciated by everyone, whilst Andy Furness manned the bar.
A particular fitting and nice touch was the provision of specially made destination boards ‘King’s Cross – Whitby’. Few people were ‘in the know’ about this, the idea being it would be a pleasant surprise – it was. Thompson carriages were often used as the through carriage on King’s Cross services, coming down to York on ‘The Scarborough Flyer’ then being shunted onto a Whitby-bound service. LNERCA Archivist, John Sutcliffe, deserves commendation for this initiative on the day.
It was a superb occasion and a fitting and rightful culmination to so many years’ hard slog. The Trust Chairman attended, as did Tom Bright from ‘Steam Railway’ magazine.
The local media in general showed no interest – a considerable disappointment.
LNER Fish Van E75169
The Fish Van is home! It arrived on a transporter at New Bridge on Tuesday September 27th and was unloaded the same morning. In the afternoon, the C&W Class 08 shunter came to collect it and took it to Pickering yard. The following day, it was craned onto its temporary isolated piece of track alongside the LNERCA’s workshop where it will now be rebuilt.
Andrew Daniel will be in charge of the woodwork necessary. An inspection of the NRM’s ‘Blue Spot’ fish van took place place on October 7. For this we are grateful to Curator Bob Gwynne. The inspection revealed that there are considerable differences between the later roller-bearing variation (diagram 800) and the earlier LNER design (ours) – diagram 214.
Much of the old woodwork from 75169 was retained as patterns.
Work will now progress at the same time as work on ECJS 189
East Coast Joint Stock Restaurant Third No. 189
Marcus Woodcock has continued replacing defective half pillars along the bodyside. The old ones are sawn out and the new ones carefully cut to size, then glued and screwed into position.
Meanwhile, along both sides of the clerestory roof, all the maroon paint and sealant is being removed, together with prising out the scores of tacks which held the clerestory roof canvas in position.
Yet another setback has taken place, further justifying the epithet of ‘the coach which goes backwards’. A patch of rot has been found under most of the steel carline ends on the clerestory roof and all the steel screws holding the carline down are badly corroded. (The carline is sometimes called a hoopstick, which spans from one side pf the coach body to the other, and onto which the roof boards are bolted). The easiest way to remedy this will be to remove the carline, splice in a new timber pad under the ends and re-screw down. This of course means removal of the roof boards, this is not too much of a disaster as because we have already taken the decision to replace the centre roof board to help support the light fittings, so most of the boards will have to be removed anyway.
LNER Composite Corridor (CK) No. 18477.
We await 18477 being shunted into Pickering yard where contractors will remove residual asbestos insulation. When this is complete, Andrew Daniel will then fit the new framing to the corridor side. 18477 will then be shunted back into the Long Siding pending raising of funds for the next stage of its restoration.
Appealing appeal
Do come along for a few hours to lend a hand and to see if you enjoy it – it really is most rewarding to help restore a carriage – something to see at the end of it.
Any inquiries – please contact Marcus Woodcock ( or Murray Brown (

tom-walters-with-1623-lnerca-mediumMeet Tom Walters – Edward Thompson’s great nephew. He was most pleased to be invited to the launch event and during the speeches recalled meeting his great Uncle who gave him half a crown – a large amount of money in the early 1950s.
cutting-ribbon-mediumTom Walters cuts the ribbon on, the door of 1623 to declare the carriage ‘open for passengers’. Mr Walters was then given a cab ride on No. 61264 thanks to the Engineer of the Thompson B1 Locomotive Society, Mark O’Brien (Image: Malcolm Brown).

destination-board-mediumA close-up of the destination board, with one on each side. 1623 is the only carriage in the LNER set to carry destination boards and it has been suggested that all our carriages are so fitted, either with ‘LNER Coach Association’ or ‘Pickering – Grosmont’. In the 1950s, there was a through coach working from London which was transferred from ‘The Scarborough Flyer’ at York onto a Whitby-bound service. Often, this was a Thompson-designed carriage (Image: Malcolm Brown).
b1-grosmont-lnerca-mediumTo mark the entry into service of TK 1623 and also the return to service of Thompson B1 61264 after 18 months under repair, the special train carried the highly appropriate headboard ‘The Thompson Renaissance’. It is pictured at Grosmont prior to the departure of the 12.30 special. The headboard is now on display inside the Atkins shed at Pickering. It will come out again when CK 18477 is restored – a few years hence!
fish-van-e75169-mediumAfter its shotblasting, welding and painting at DC Engineering, Shildon, the unique Fish Van arrives back on the NYMR, seen here on the transporter at New Bridge yard, about to be unloaded.

fish-van-lift-into-place-mediumThe van, E75169, was then shunted into Pickering yard by the Class 08 shunter, 08850, and then the crane took over. The van is hoisted off the turntable onto its isolated piece of track. (Image: Malcolm Brown)
fish-van-landed-mediumThe van has landed. Its new home for quite a time – outside the LNERCA’s workshop at High Mill, Pickering. The body will now be rebuilt. (Image: Malcolm Brown)


A surreal launch into traffic

Thompson Third Corridor (TK) 1623
Dateline: Thursday September 8, 11.00 hrs.
After C&W fitter, Kieran Murray shunted TK 1623 into the LNER set, the long restoration was over and this Thompson-designed carriage set sail with its first fare-paying passengers since September 1968. It was surreal. Many of the regular volunteers were on board to savour this occasion – a just reward for their years of toil.
Even up to the entry into service, TK 1623 was trying to scupper its own launch. Indeed, it had been suggested in the latter months of restoration that we had already embarked on its overhaul even before it had entered service. The north end toilet cistern plagued all attempts to make it leak-free. One day it would work fine, then the next, the handle would not rise automatically once depressed and thus continue to let water drain through. Every time, this meant dismantling the cistern to investigate and remedy possible defects. Every time it was removed and taken to bits, this ruined the primrose paintwork on the huge locking nuts and drop pipe to the bowl and had to be done again once the cistern was back in place.
The purpose of it entering service was to give it time to sort out any possible gremlins prior to the official launch, scheduled on Saturday September 24. On this day, the LNER set will make two return trips to Grosmont at 11.00 and 14.00, returning at 12.30 and 15.40. Everyone associated with 1623’s restoration is invited to attend – tickets are free – but must be obtained in advance – please contact Murray Brown (
After arrival at Pickering at 13.40, a special ‘celebrity’ will officially cut the ribbon to declare 1623 ‘open for business’.
East Coast Joint Stock Restaurant Third No. 189
“Will this carriage ever stop going backwards?” was the riposte of a volunteer – perhaps with some reason when you look at the skeletal remains. We think we have found all there is to find in the way of defects and suspect repairs – and the only way is up.
During the ‘Coach Week’ a huge amount of energy was expended on removing – and trying to remove – as many of the screws from the hoopsticks, the metal ‘arches’ which span from one side of the body to the other, onto which the roof boards are screwed. The ones being removed are screwed in upwards in the channel hoopsticks. Some screws come out without any effort, others are seized solid and require hammers, chisels, gas flame and other impliments of destruction.
Once the screws are removed, a hole is drilled from the hoopstick hole, through the wooden roof board and then a stainless steel bolt is fitted and nutted up from underneath. This is our standard practice for securing roof boards and provides far more rigidity.
As part of the process, much of the old sealant was sanded off the roof to give a smooth surface for the canvas when finally fitted. This produced, as can be imagined, vast amounts of yellow dust.
LNER Fish Van E75169
We were all set to welcome the Fish Van back from Shildon on Tuesday September 6 when, due to an inability to secure a transporter with steerable wheels, the move was cancelled.
The plan is now to drop the Fish Van off a standard transporter at New Bridge yard and shunt it up to Pickering. It will be parked outside the LNERCA workshop at High Mill crossing.
LNER Composite Corridor (CK) No. 18477.
This is our next major restoration project following ECJS 189. Already a large amount of new framing has been machined ready for fitting to the corridor side of this 1950-built CK – a sister carriage to TK 1623.
Prior to this work taking place, all the seats were removed and placed in Thompson BG E110, our stores carriage, and another product of Edward Thompson.
This is to allow access to the ‘heritage insulation’ (asbestos to you and me) for which a quote has been obtained for its removal by a professional removal company. This includes the insulation beneath the steam heaters, behind radiators, and the main steam pipe underneath. The LNERCA is footing the bill for this work for which funding is to hand.
A veritable treasure trove of historical junk was found when the seats were removed, these including sweet packets dating from pre-decimal days (LSD), a First Class hand-written ticket from King’s Cross (so at last we have proof 18477 did work into the ‘Cross’ but it was almost inevitable it did on hundreds of occasions) and, would you believe, a Family Planning leaflet. These are temporarily on show in the display cabinet in the Atkins building.
Please help
We welcome anyone who would like to get involved. All types of disciplines are there to be enjoyed – woodworking, metalworking, electrical, painting. Only requirement is a sense of humour and a mug. Please contact Marcus Woodcock ( or Murray Brown ( if you fancy helping.

1623-maiden run

September 8, 11.00. TK No. 1623 waits to leave with its first run in passenger service, carrying fare-paying passengers for the first time since 1968. Many of the restorers thought this day would never come. The opportunity to take part in a little part of the LNERCA’s history could not be missed and here a group of volunteers, who spend their life in the Atkins shed, take a break and pose for posterity before enjoying 1623’s first run. (Sonia Brown).

spliced-new-waist-rail-mediumFrame repairs continue on No. 189. An example of the outstanding quality of repair can be seen here with a new piece of teak spliced into the waist rail half-way up the bodyside. Once the defective wood is cut out, the new piece is glued and screwed into place.

sanding-partition-mediumA recent volunteer who has joined us is Neil Cawthorne. He is an expert in picture framing and the application of gold leaf. He is pictured meticulously sanding away residual varnish from the pantry door of ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189.

paintstripping-mediumLong-standing volunteer stalwart, Doreen Williams, removes paint and filler from the wooden strip which holds the edge of the canvas in place at the top of the bodyside. One perk of this job is that it can be accomplished outside where Doreen can wave to passing trains.
yellow-stripes-medium After some 20 years of restoring TK 1623 to original as-built condition and spending some £100,000 in the process, you can imagine the Association’s despair when the NYMR applied the hideous flourescent yellow stripes on the insides of the doors. This practice was instigated so that platform staff could see easily if doors were not correctly shut. The platform staff should really be looking at the door handles. Of interest is that a former ORR Inspector told volunteers at another heritage railway that the practice of applying yellow stripes on doors at the NYMR was “over the top”. The LNERCA has raised the topic with the General Manager in the hope that a derogation might be given in view of the historicial nature of the carriage and the fact it does not work over Network Rail metals to Whitby.

n-e-r-doors-mediumWe have been donated doors and compartment sides from what was a North Eastern Railway coach body from Tollerton, north of York – stored in a field. This view shows them laid out outside our High Mill workshop at Pickering – and gives some insight into what the coach looked like. We do not know any more details – type of carriage, nor number. Whilst we may not have a direct need for all these items, it is likely that the Tanfield Railway might well be interested, as that heritage railway possesses various NER carriages

light-fittings-mediumRoger Melton has procured replica brass gasolier fittings, the idea being to use these, but with L.E.D lights as we suspect the Health & Safety police would preclude us from using gas as originally lit the carriage! There is one slight problem – they weigh a surprising amount, resulting in considerable debate as to how they could be suspended from the roof and whether the roof needs supporting. Pictured laid out on a table is one set of fittings.

derelict-compartment-of-18477-mediumThoughts are now turning to another project, with the completion of Thompson TK 1623. Whilst ECJS Restaurant Third No. 189 (in the Atkins shed) is now the main focus of attention, some work will soon start on replacing the corridor side framing on Thompson CK (Composite Corridor) No. 18477. This carriage has not turned a wheel since 1972 and is, bluntly, in a bit of a state understandably. A start was made during the recent ‘Coach Week’ to remove all the seat cushions and backs – this is to allow access by contractors to remove any residual asbestos insulation. In this picture, the somewhat derelict compartment can be seen – a few hours work needed here! The seats were removed for storage in Thompson BG No. 110 which is to be used as a central store for all parts removed from 18477 – this will make the job of finding them, when needed, so much easier than was the case with No. 1623. (Malcolm Brown)
framing-of-18477-medium This view shows the parlous state of the corridor side framing on 18477. The green on show is the tarpaulin sheet which is covering the whole vehicle, the side panelling having long since been removed. All this framing is to be renewed and brand new teak sections have been machined by Andrew Daniel and are awaiting fitting as soon as No. 18477 can be moved into Pickering yard for access. Once this work has been completed, the carriage will be sheeted over pending the raising of further funding to undertake the next stage in its restoration. (Malcolm Brown)


Ready for service – unbelievable!

Thompson Third Corridor (TK) 1623
The long wait is over. After nearly twenty years of restoration, TK 1623 awaits entry to service.
A test run to Levisham, in the company of Pullman Car No. 79, revealed no obvious defects apart from a niggling flat wheel – the C&W Manager, Jerry Hawley, thought this was in the root of the tyre – it was noticeable going round a left land corner – and proffered the view that the ‘flat’ would probably wear itself out in time.
The final jobs carried out in early August included completion of the buckeye couplings and their chains, checking the ride height, painting the south end toilet cistern and drop pipe, adjusting the brakes and fitting a dynamo belt.
This brake adjusting was accomplished by shunting 1623 to New Bridge where it was put over the locomotive pit to allow easy access.
Jerry Hawley felt the best date for 1623 to enter public service would be to wait until the start of the red timetable on September 5. This would still give enough time to find any problems prior to the carriage’s official launch on September 24 and would reduce the time it was getting dirty and letting the public loose in its pristine condition!
September 24 will see the first eight-carriage LNER set to run on the NYMR. The set will form the 11.00 service from Pickering. At Grosmont, it will form a special 12.30 to Pickering and 14.00 return for LNERCA members and guests, together with the Thompson B1 Locomotive Society members. This group is supplying, appropriately for the occasion, No. 61264. The train will carry a headboard ‘The Thompson Renaissance’.
On arrival at Pickering at 13.40 a rather special railway guest will perform the honours of declaring No. 1623 ‘open’ and cut the ribbon. The final run of the day of the set will be the 15.40 service train from Grosmont to Pickering.
All LNERCA and TB1LS members are invited to ride on the special – tickets are free and are available from Nick Stringer and Murray Brown
Please help
We offer a warm welcome to anyone who would like to come along and lend a hand. There is interesting work for all tastes and skills. The Atkins shed next to Pickering station car park is open most days – do email Marcus Woodcock ( or Murray Brown ( if you fancy helping.

08850, Car 79 and Thompson coach 1623 at Levisham 27Jul16_1On July 27, 1623 made a test run from Pickering to Levisham to ‘bounce the springs’ and see if all was well. It was, apart from an annoying wheelflat. Here the Thompson has escaped from Pickering after many years domiciled at Pickering – it was in the company of Car No. 79 which was also being tested following wheelset replacement. Picture: Simon Barraclough.
1623-compartment shoulder lights All the compartment shoulder lights have now been fitted – and look tremendous. A trial fitting of a L.E.D. lamp was a revelation in terms of brightness and the go-ahead has been given for all the bulbs to be L.E.D. type. Of interest is that this will reduce the power consumption from 25 Amps to 4 Amps.

1623-buckeye coupling_1 C&W fitter, Keiran Murray has been one of the helpful full time staff who has assisted in the final completion of 1623. Here he is fitting the safety chain to the recently installed buckeye coupling. The buckeyes are sent away to a Leeds firm for machining and incorporating the lower shelf bracket at the rear of the coupling. These help stop over-riding in the event of a collision.

TK1623_1a Probably for the first time in its 66-year life, 1623 enjoys top and tailed Class 08 traction. This took place on August 11 when it was tripped to New Bridge p.way yard for access to the loco pit where brake adjustments were finalised. Picture: Marcus Woodcock.

TK1623_2a Whilst Gresley Brake Third Corridor 3669 has been parked in Pickering yard, the opportunity has been taken to make some finishing touches – these being the fitting of blinds to the compartment windows. A firm at Starbeck, Harrogate, specially made these blinds.


1623 – it’s looking good!

Thompson Third Corridor (TK) 1623
The long restoration – over two decades, but not continuously – is tottering towards completion. The final few outstanding jobs are in hand, with a view to allowing the 66-year old carriage into service.
A small leak on the south end toilet cistern is receiving attention.
All the seats are now in place with armrests duly fitted.
Our ‘Master Scumbler’ Dave Simpson from the SRPS returned to Pickering to rescumble the damaged vertical panel. For this Jerry Hawley agreed 1623 could go under cover to allow the various coats to dry. It is planned to apply two more coats of varnish.
Furniture for both toilets is now in place – the grab handle and the towel rack.
Internal transfers for the doors (don’t lean out etc) and above the communication chain (pull it at your peril – £5 etc) are in the process of being applied.
One compartment is fully fitted out with shoulder lights and, when switched on, look tremendous. We could write a book on how we could never see a light at the end of this particular tunnel. It may well be that a shoulder light might be the very last item to be ceremonially fitted and switched on to declare the carriage finished.
In preparation for its entry into service a thorough spring clean has started.
On July 15 C&W fitter, Keiran Murray began fitting the Buckeye couplings. A test run to New Bridge and back is planned in the next few days to bounce the springs and allow another check of the ride height.
East Coast Joint Stock RTO No. 189
Following the decision to renew the clerestory roof boards, a start has been made on removing the scores of screws which hold the boards onto the carlines (hoopsticks) and wooden formers. This is a long job, most rusty screws refusing to budge and only coming out after a battle, accompanied by quantities of dust and rust.
When the new boards are in place, instead of screws, nut and bolts will be inserted, this being our normal procedure for securing roof boards in place.
Further varnish stripping and replacing of lower half pillars also continues in between work to finish 1623.
LNER Fish Van E75169
Arrangements are now in hand to return E75169 to Pickering. On its arrival, a detailed inspection and plan will be formulated to procure and then make the necessary framing. Many of the original components were retained so that they can be used as patterns.
It is highly unlikely that insulation will be fitted in view that E75169 must have carried its last fish – unless we mark its completion by conveying a ceremonial box of kippers.
A request has been made to the National Railway Museum to allow access to their Fish Van so that measurements can be taken. The NRM’s vehicle is a later BR build (‘Blue Spot’) which to all intents was the identical vehicle to ours, except the NRM van has roller bearings.
Do help us
We welcome your support. If you are interested in what we do and wish to see more LNER vehicles return to service, we welcome offers of assistance. This can be by attending where plenty of jobs to suit all tastes can be found. Alternatively, a handsome cheque always helps – it costs a fortune to restore these beautiful carriages, so every penny helps.
If you would like to lend a hand, do please contact Marcus Woodcock – These are the remaining dates in July when he will be present to offer a welcome, cup of tea and cake and a rewarding job for you.
Sat 16th – Working weekend
Sun 17th – Working weekend
Thurs 21st – Working weekend
Sun 24th – Working weekend
Thurs 28th – Working weekend
Sun 31st – Working weekend

Once 1623 is completed, work can concentrate on East Coast Joint Stock No. 189 and if the weather is good a few days on the rapidly disintegrating workshop.

1623 notice heads out windows
1623 no smoking sign
The signs are looking optimistic that TK No. 1623 will be well and truly finished after over two decades of work. One of the signs of the impending completion is the fitting and application of the internal signs. The ‘No-Smoking’ was specially applied by a signwriter from York. (Pictures: Adrian Scales)

1623 finished compartment
The first compartment has been fitted out with all four shoulder lights, the culmination of months of efforts, with no less than 5 manufacturers specially producing the components, with a sixth providing the pygmy bulbs.

Another carriage for LNERCA fleet- May 24, 2016

NER Luggage Composite No. 1111 joins the collection
In a surprise development, the NER Coach Group has donated its North Eastern Railway No. 1111 to the LNER Coach Association. The carriage has been based at Levisham since its purchase from BR in 1973 and is used by the Levisham Station Group. This practice will continue. When built, it was a 6-wheeled carriage, however, the middle wheelset was removed when in departmental service and was in this condition when bought by the NERCG.
Built at York, the coach dates from 1890 and so becomes the oldest in our collection. It was withdrawn in 1924 to become a Tool Van for which it was placed in the departmental series as DE 900192.
Thompson Third Corridor (TK) 1623
The main steam pipe has been lagged whilst the carriage was on jacks outside the C&W workshop – it was lowered back onto its bogies on Tuesday April 24. Some re-bushing of the brake rods were undertaken first by Gordon Neale of the C&W staff.
In another development, a semi-circle piece of scumbled paintwork has lifted from one of the vertical panels between the windows. This is thought to be the location where a metal plate had been welded over a vent (put in in departmental days). This had then been filled to quite a depth before scumbling was applied. Dave Simpson from SRPS, Bo’ness’ who undertook the original scumbling, has paid a visit to inspect and advise on its repair. He is likely to be visiting again to apply new scumbling once the repair has been effected. For this, 1623 will need to be under cover.
The revarnished end doors which were damaged by water ingress due to the carriage not being fitted with protecting gangway ends have been lifted back into the carriage for refitting. This was another of those annoying jobs which had to be undertaken twice – inviting the wags to comment that we were already overhauling the carriage before it even entered service.
The final piece of the interminable ‘jigsaw’ of the compartment shoulder lights is now in hand – the manufacture of a spacer ring. This is being done using 3D Print technology. Mr Edward Thompson would be amazed if he was still around – manufacture of components using computer technology. These will then be painted ‘Bakelite’ brown as per the cover switches. Matching paint has already been sourced. This will then allow the final assembly of all 28 shoulder lights. This really has been a never-ending round of procurement problems as the whole assembly has had to be made – ‘Bakelite’ cover, the toggle switch, brass retaining ring, LNER-design lampshade and, finally, this spacer washer. Oh, yes, don’t forget the pygmy bulbs as the ordinary 24v bulbs would not fit!
Finally, for the first time since October 1967, 1623 has two working toilets. The north end toilet plumbing has been completed and the loo was ceremonially flushed to mark the occasion. This took place on Sunday May 22.
East Coast Joint Stock RTO No. 189

Varnish stripping has continued – in affect, the entire varnish on the whole carriage is slowly being stripped to bare wood in order to start afresh. In many cases, it had ‘blown’ or flaked off.
All the knee-irons (right-angled brackets) bolted to the framing have been removed. These have been de-rusted, painted with green anti-oxide paint, undercoated and top coated in black. A start has been made in refitting them to the framing using zinc-coated coach bolts.
LNER Fish Van E75169
With work now completed at Shildon, just the final signing off needs effecting before the unique van can be returned to Pickering where thoughts will turn to making new Sapele framing and repairs to the roof..

3669 NRM 17-05-16After a cosseted sojourn in the National Railway Museum after partaking the Flying Scotsman exhibition, BTK 3669 is coming back to the NYMR to enter public service again. Perhaps the one disappointment was the lack of publicity for the LNERCA for loaning the carriage. (Photo: Terry Bye, Pullman Car Services)
Adjusting brake roddingWhilst TK 1623 was up on the jacks having its main steam pipe fitted, its bogies were prepared for the carriage to be lowered. Some rebushing of the brake rodding was needed, seen here being undertaken by C&W fitter, Gordon Neale.

New lagged steam pipeWith the main steam pipe fabricated in sections and fitted, it was then lagged, this time with modern heritage insulation!
Solebar letteringMore tell-tale evidence of 1623’s impending completion is the addition of lettering on the solebar and inside the carriage. For this a specialist was brought in. ‘V’ denotes the varnishing date and the other date refers to the lift.

3D Printed spacerHere is the finished spacer washer, made by 3D Printing. These are for use on each of the compartment shoulder lights, so 30 have been made (28 plus 2 spares). They have been since painted ‘Bakelite’ Brown to match the cover. The 3D Printing entails building up fine layers of a polymer which is instantly dried and sealed by a light source. The machine lays down the polymer layer in accordance with the specialist computer drawing which is the first part of the process.
Split pillar on 189This graphic illustration shows just why so many half-pillars (the vertical struts from the waist rail to the bottom rail need replacing with new. This example is by far the worst of the lot! (Photo: Malcolm Brown)
Varnish strippingA ‘Forth Bridge’ job on the East Coast Joint Stock Restaurant Car No. 189 is the removal of varnish down to bare wood. Weilding the hot-air gun is Andy Furness.
Working on 189's roofWith the removal of the canvas from the clerestory section, more woodwork was revealed to be in need of renewal. Three LNERCA volunteers are removing various sections and replacing the clerestory formers (the supports which hold it up). (Photo: Malcolm Brown)
1623For the first time, it has been possible to photograph TK 1623 in the sunshine devoid of all obstructions.
As can be seen, the much maligned Edward Thompson certainly designed a good looking carriage.

Filling damaged panelBecause a semi-circle section of scumbling has ‘lifted’ away from the bodyside, probably due to sitting in scorching heat, it was necessary to go back to bare metal and fill the void. The bodyside panelling was slightly distored originally because BR had inserted a vent which was subsequently plated over – in the process, this resulted in an uneven surface, necessitating filler to even out the panelling. Our expert ‘Scumbler’, Dave Simpson from the Scottish Railway Preservation Society, Bo’ness, has been advising in the repair and will be revisiting Pickering to provide the new layer of scumble paint. In this view, Marcus Woodcock is applying the new filler.
189 roof boardsWith the roof boards having numerous splits, it has been decided to replace them all, rather than change the odd one. This latter course of action would only have resulted in having to give remedial attention to the roof in a few years time, whereas replacing the lot in one go will ensure the roof lasts half a century provided there is no water ingress. Another factor in the decision is that all the steel screws holding the roof boards to the carlines are rusted and many have lost their ‘bite’.
New hood and oven in 641Whilst all the work has been in progress on TK 1623 and RTO 189, the C&W staff have been busy inside Gresley Buffet 641. A new oven and vent hood has been fitted – these are all part of conforming to gas regulations. In addition, the internal saloon has been given a spruce-up. Its first use was on the inaugural, highly successful, Curry Train which ran on May 6th. The whole LNER set is likely to see more use on these evening dining trips.


Fish Van re-assembly underway – April 15th 2016

LNER Fish Van E75169
DC Engineering, Shildon, has begun re-assembling the structural metalwork on the Fish Van frame. This follows considerable attention to the frame, headstocks and side members.
Erection of the vertical stanchions is also in hand and the plan is to complete this metalwork to the stage where it is stable and complete – enough to be transported to Pickering, once space is available outside the LNERCA’s workshop.
Once returned to Pickering, all the woodwork will be re-instated – this comprising the new roof boards, the framing for the ends, followed by the fitting of the block board all round. The latter is already in stock.
Whilst the restoration of this van may be dismissed as irrelevant, its return to pristine condition is of considerable importance – it is the sole, surviving complete LNER Fish Van – and is highly relevant and historically important to the NYMR in that this type of van regularly worked over what is now the Moors Railway. Indeed, with its withdrawal date, there is a high degree of certainty that our van was one of the last to leave the East Coast resort of Whitby, their final use being in the early 1960s.
It is also of little known fact that E75169 is the second of the LNERCA’s fleet to be shown as being broken up after withdrawal, in this case in Doncaster Works in 1972. Whereas it obviously survived. It became an Internal User vehicle at the Works until being bought by a member of the Nene Valley Railway from whom the LNERCA bought it in 2008.


Thompson Third Corridor (TK) 1623

After the first successful steam test on March 30, the remaining leaks have been eliminated. There is further work to begin on fitting the insulation to the main steam pipe. This will entail the carriage being lifted once again – it was temporarily re-united with its bogies as another vehicle was required to be stabled on the concrete apron outside the C&W shed.


East Coast Joint Stock RTO No. 189

Current work is seeing continuing replacement of the small bottom bodyside pillars and, on the roof, refitting of the metal carlines onto which will be fastened the new roof boards in due course.
Fish Van 08042016

The reborn Fish Van begins to take shape at Shildon on April 8. The van will be completed at Shildon structurally, leaving all the woodwork to be fitted at Pickering. (Photo. Nick Stringer)


New brass retaining ring

This is the specially made brass retaining ring, manufactured by S Lilley Ltd, Birmingham, which holds the compartment lampshade onto the toggle switch. The standard fitting would not suffice, hence a special order. British Rail, by throwing out all the compartment shoulder lights when it converted the carriage for departmental use, has caused us a vast amount of effort and money – we have had to have specially made the toggle switch itself, the ‘bakelite’ cover, the lampshade and the retaining ring – all times 30. On top of that has come the bill for 30 Pygmy bulbs. Is there a moral to this story?



N2 & 7960

Whilst not LNERCA News, the appearance of a LNER Gresley in King’s Cross is – and our colleagues on the Severn Valley achieved that accolade on April 5th when their Kitchen Composite No. 7960 was on show, together with the Gresley Society’s N2. It was part of the event marking the unveiling of Sir Nigel Gresley’s statue in the adjoining concourse. We hasten to point out that we, too, have had a Gresley carriage on Network Rail this year – No. 3669 passed through York station whilst en route to the NRM to take part in the Service with Style exhibition!




An important milestone was reached with the restoration of Thompson Third Corridor (TK) 1623 at 16.00 on Wednesday March 30 when steam was piped through the carriage for the first time since this carriage was withdrawn from passenger-carrying service in 1968. It was a trial to test the newly fabricated main steam pipe which had been connected to all the compartments. ‘Black Five’ 45428 officiated, thanks to driver Matt Fisher who came into the carriage shed to witness history being made. The C&W has several lengths of steam pipe which can be joined and run out of the shed and coupled to a parked locomotive beside the water column. The other end, of course, is connected to the carriage – 1623. Amid a smell of hot paint, the trial was a success, with only two small steam leaks to eradicate at a later date.


East Coast Joint Stock Restaurant Third No. 189

What is hoped will be the last major woodwork repair has been completed – the machining and installation of a 15ft section of lower clerestory cant rail. With this now in place, work has started in refitting the refurbished formers which link the bodyside with the clerestory section and on top of which are fitted the roof boards.
Further down the body, refurbished brackets – knee irons – are being bolted into place using stainless steel bolts.

Thompson Third Corridor (TK) 1623
This carriage has been moved into the C&W workshop to enable the gangway ends to be lifted into place (now effected) and the installation of the main steam pipe underneath. This has to be fabricated in sections because it does not follow a straight line underneath the carriage but weaves around to avoid obstacles. Hence a section at a time is cut, threaded and then lifted up to be fitted to the retaining brackets. T-sections are used to fit the steam ‘dropper’ pipes which descend from the compartments and which are fitted to the main steam pipe.
One of the gangway ends needs further attention to straighten it – much work had already been undertaken to achieve a flat edge – this buts up against the adjacent carriage to which it is coupled.
S Lilley & Son Ltd, Birmingham, has agreed to make the special brass retaining rings which hold the new lampshades onto the toggle switch in the compartments.
The end is now really in sight to complete the restoration of this unique carriage. A possible official launch date in September is being considered, although 1623 should enter public service before then without ceremony.

LNER Fish Van E75169

Re-assembly of the body frame is now underway at DC Engineering, Shildon. There is no immediacy for the Fish Van to be returned to Pickering.


LNER BTK No. 3669

Now on show at the National Railway Museum with the Flying Scotsman exhibition. One final component is being made – blinds for the windows. The prototype, like the rest of the carriage, is exemplary.


Illustrating the quality of the restoration in ECJS 189 is this view of the long section of lower clerestory rail. With this now in place, refitting of the roof formers is now taking place.


The pantry has been dismantled in order to repair defective wood. The new lower clerestory rail is above the camera and the roof formers, (two can be seen on the right hand side) will now be refitted, allowing the new roof boards to be screwed into place.

At the lower end of the body, right-angled brackets which have been derusted, primed, undercoated and top coated are being fitted using stainless steel bolts. Work is continuing on replacing the vertical small pillars if condition necessitates this.

Looking like a carriage again for the first time since 1967 is this view showing the gangway end in place. BR used to remove the gangway ends when carriages were converted for departmental use, i.e. for instance with the Civil Engineer as a Mess Coach, as befell 1623. It was renumbered DE 321133 for its new role.

It’s unusual to see both roads in the Pickering C&W occupied by LNER carriages. On the left is Thompson TK 1623 whilst on the right is Gresley Buffet 641 having its kitchen equipment upgraded, as well as an internal spruce-up.

Now starring at a Museum near you! BTK 3669 takes pride of place in the Great Hall of the National Railway Museum as part of the Flying Scotsman exhibition. The invitation to partake in this event is a fitting testimony to the superb quality of its restoration. The view through a Channel Tunnel segment shows 3669 in the middle of three carriages. Nearest the camera is 1898-built ECJS Third Corridor No. 12, whilst nearest the turntable is 1948-built Thompson Lounge Buffet 1706. (Photo: Nick Stringer)

East Coast Joint Stock Restaurant Third No. 189

Replacing defective and split lower pillars continues. The hardwood replacements were machined in advance at Andrew Daniels’ workshop.
Meanwhile, higher up, part of the defective cant rail has been chiseled out and new sections spliced in.
Further areas of varnish have been removed down to bare wood – these include the bottom rail, on both sides, and some end panels. Once the initial varnish has been removed, further work is required to eradicate the varnish which has become ingrained – this is effected by paint stripper and wire wool.


Thompson Third Corridor (TK) 1623
The seat moquette which had been damaged by ingress of water through a defective window seal has now had new material fitted in place of that which was damaged and the bench seat now awaits taking to 1623 and lifting into place.
On February 22, 30 specially made white lampshades, manufactured to the original LNER design, were collected from Suffolk Glass, Sudbury. The cost has come to over £2,000, but that is the price we pay when we strive to restore a carriage to as-built condition. Each lampshade was hand-made after which all were annealed, i.e. oven heated and then allowed to cool naturally. This process removes any stressing left in the glass.
30 pygmy bulbs – 24 volt – are being procured. All we need now to complete the compartment shoulder lights are the brass retaining rings and a spacer washer for each light.


LNER Fish Van E75169
At DC Engineering, Shildon, little remains of the Fish Van – its entire body has been removed and the residual frame rests on stands. The new headstock, fitted two years ago, has been removed to permit straightening – application of heat to cut out the hole through which the drawbar passes distorted the metal.
After shotblasting, remaining welding repairs will be undertaken and then the underframe will be spray painted. When finished, will be brought back to Pickering where the body will then be refitted. The roof is to be rebuilt with new timbers, as will the ends of the van.


LNER BTK No. 3669
The ultimate accolade – display at the National Railway Museum – now awaits this 1930-built carriage. A working party attended on February 17 to help prepare the vehicle for public display with the Flying Scotsman exhibition – this work included white painting the tyres.



It’s hard to believe that this is/was a Fish Van! Totally dismantled to the bare frame, all metalwork needing attention will now be undertaken, as well as refitting both headstocks. These are new, replacing the severely corroded original ones. Photo. Nick Stringer


The main bodywork repairs on 189’s lower roof section continues. The LNERCA’s joiner, Andrew Daniel, replaces some defective cant rail.
Another vital – and long job – on 189 entails removing all varnish. Much of it is in poor condition and ‘blown’ in many areas. By removing it all ensures a complete re-varnish can be undertaken, starting with gold size and then many coats of varnish. Regular stalwart, Doreen Williams, removes old varnish from the bottom rail. Both sides of bottom rail have now been stripped.
26.2.16_4 26.2.16_3 26.2.16_5 26.2.16_6

Shortening the 61’6” underframe for ECJS No. 189’s body was a far from a simple project – not just a matter of removing a chunk from the middle. Besides the trussing to consider, there was the matter of ensuring that cross members would be in the correct position. Anther consideration to determine was where the brake cylinders could be refitted. It was decided to have both of these on the same side, opposite the one battery box. To give some idea of the immense amount of planning involved, a selection of Computer Aided Drawings (CAD) are shown. These were drawn by A1 Trust Engineer, David Elliott, to whom thanks are given and for allowing them to be reproduced here.

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