The E.F.Howlden Charitable Trust
Owners of Great Northern Railway Directors' Saloon No.1283
Registered Charity No. 1096851
Chairman: Graham Ward, Treasurer: Richard Salmon Hon.F.B.K.S., Secretary: Anthony Hayllar
Trustees: Mike Brown, Deborah Carver, Frank Cheevers F.I.R.O., Helen Collen-Jones,
Gordon Dudman, Alan Pragnell, Roger Price, Trevor Summerfield
The Web Page for the Directors' Saloon includes a feed from the Saloon's Facebook Page.
Having been in the ownership of four individuals from 1969, it was decided that the best way to secure the future of this historic saloon was to form a charitable trust to take on the ownership and responsibility for it. For many years the "Howlden Group" have looked after, crewed and maintained the saloon. The Trust Deed was granted on 4th April 2003, and the Howlden Trust came into being on 26th April 2003 on holding its first meeting. All four of the original owners, along with five other members of the group, and a representative of the Bluebell Railway plc, became the Trustees, with the GNR Directors' Saloon itself, together with the group's collection of GNR/ECJS/LNER/BR(E) artefacts and the group's stores van No.653, being gifted into the ownership of the Trust at that first meeting. The stores van was subsequently sold on to a group on the Mid Hants Railway interested in restoring it, and in July 2012 the Trust brought a replacement van, BR CCT No.94181 which it had refurbished off-site, to the Bluebell.
The original Trustees (left to right): Graham Ward, Ron Collen-Jones, Frank Cheevers FIRO, Fred Pragnall, Ian Osborne, Sarah Vigar, Helen Collen-Jones, Richard Salmon, Tim Baker and Roger Price, having just held the inaugural meeting, assuming responsibility for the carriage, 26th April 2003.
Further details of the saloon, and how to hire it, are on the web page for the carriage itself.
The designer of the saloon, E.F. (Frankie) Howlden, joined the GNR as a pupil in 1853 under Archibald Sturrock (Loco Supt) and John Coffin (presumably Carriage Engineer) and retired at the end of 1904. During his time he saw the coaching stock world change from one of four wheelers to trains composed of steam heated, electrically lit, bogie stock where sleeping cars and dining cars were quite familiar. His successor as Carriage and Wagon Superintendent of the Great Northern Railway was none other than Mr H.N. Gresley.
This O-gauge model of the saloon was presented to Graham Ward in 2012 to mark the 40th anniversary both of the saloon's arrival on the Bluebell and of his chairmanship of the Group and subsequently of the Trust.
Howlden Trust - the Web Page for the GNR Directors' Saloon and CCT No.94181
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Photos courtesy Hiroshi Naito, Fred Pragnell and Joanne Gurr
Last update 10 December 2019 by Richard Salmon.
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