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Southern Railway - Maunsell TK No. 2356

This vehicle is no longer on the Bluebell Railway

2356 as C&W mess and stores coach - Richard Salmon - August 1998

2356, serving as the C&W Department mess and stores coach (Richard Salmon, August 1998)

Built to the narrower 8'6" width for the Eastern Section of the SR, as part of an eight-coach set, 2356 was initially used on London–Ramsgate services. The set was later reduced to seven coaches but, supplemented by a Pullman car, was used on the best Kent Coast services throughout the Southern Railway's existence.

In 1950 the set was increased to nine vehicles, but by 1953 it was maintained only for special traffic. The set was reduced to four coaches on the electrification of most of Kent's main lines in 1959, and 2356 became a "loose" vehicle until withdrawal two years later. It then found use as a mobile office at Streatham Common, losing its interior at this time.

Arriving on the Bluebell in 1973 it remained, until 2001, in departmental service as our Carriage & Wagon Department mess coach. Although it dod not intially come to the Bluebell for long term preservation, it was retained until 2022, being the only loco-hauled Southern Railway Corridor Third to have survived.

Sadly there was not enough space in the new OP4 storage shed for this vehicle, and a re-assessment of the very low likelihood for restoration in the very long term led to its offer for sale at the begining of 2022, a new owner was found who removed the carriage from the Bluebell in December 2022.

Type: Corridor Third
Built: 1931 at Eastleigh (E464)
Original No: 2356
Other Nos: S2356S, 081315
Seating: 64 3rd class
Length: 59'
Restriction: 1
Weight: 33 tons
Withdrawn: 1961
Preserved: 1973
To Bluebell: 13/10/1973
Left Bluebell: 12 or 13 December 2022
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