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Southern Railway
4 wheel Passenger Luggage Van No. 1788

SR PLV No.1788

Southern Railway 4 wheel PLV, built in 1942, at Kingscote in August 2010.

SR PLV No.1788 Type: SR Passenger Luggage Van (PLV)
BR Classification: PMV
Built: Aug.-Dec. 1942, SR Lancing Works
SR Diagram No.: 3103
Original No: 1788
Other Nos: S1788(S)
Length: 32'
Weight: 13 Tons
Withdrawn: August 1981
Preserved: 1982
To Bluebell Railway: 1982

Right: Note the constructional differences in this end view of the van, at Kingscote in August 2007.

The general purpose PLVs were used for the carriage of parcels, newspapers, and many other forms of general merchandise. The SECR design became the standard for the Southern Railway, and 979 such vans were built to essentially the same design, the last in the early days of British Railways in 1951, by then known as PMVs or Parcels and Miscellaneous Vans. They were rated to run in passenger trains, and were frequently used as extra luggage vans on longer distance trains.

Of very simple design, with the metal framing exposed, and planked on the inside, they are easy to maintain. This particular van was one of a batch of 120 built at Lancing, unusually having U-section steelwork, with an extra piece of wood bolted to it. The variation in design may have been due to wartime constraints on available materials. 1788 was withdrawn from BR revenue service in August 1981.

This vehicle was purchased by the Bluebell Railway's Civil Engineering department in memory of John Payne, a member who died in a car accident. It has seen use as the Bluebell's outpost prior to the arrival of trackwork during various stages of the construction of the extension. Previously located at West Hoathly and East Grinstead, it has been berthed in the goods yard at Kingscote for some years.


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