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London, Midland & Scottish Railway
12 Ton Plywood Ventilated Goods Van No.524178 (SNSO No.813)

813 at Sheffield Park - Tony Sullivan - 1976

LMS 12 Ton goods van No.524178 seen at Sheffield Park shortly after arrival in 1976, Tony Sullivan

This wagon is one of 2,094 12 Ton Ventilated Goods Vans built to LMSR diagram D2103 during 1945/'46. The design utilised plywood to replace both the conventional bodyside planking and the contemporary pressed steel section corrugated end used on earlier LMS vans. The steel framework of the body was also of a lighter design. This diagram included both wagons built with automatic vacuum brake (having "clasp" brakegear and 8 brake blocks) and those with handbrake only (having "Morton" brakegear with 4 blocks). Vehicles were built both at Derby Carriage Works and Wolverton.

524178 at Sheffield Park - Martin Skrzetuszewski - May 2006 524178 was built with automatic vacuum brake at Wolverton in 1945 as part of Lot 1383, which comprised 1594 vehicles. Some fitted vans of this type were allocated to fish traffic and marked "FISH". Roof ventilators were originally fitted but these were removed by BR. Our van continued in main line service until it was sold to the MoD. The vacuum brake cylinder and pipework were removed and it was renumbered SNSO No.813 (It is believed that the prefix stands for "Superintendent Naval Stores Officer"). Its new tare (empty) weight without vacuum brake was 6 Tons 16 cwt.

Right: LMS 12 Ton goods van 524178 seen at Sheffield Park in May 2006, Martin Skrzetuszewski

It was purchased for use as a store for components for 80100 and 92240, arriving on the Bluebell Railway in July 1976. Later, vacuum braking was reinstated and the van repainted. The plywood bodywork on this wagon is now in poor condition although the underframe is good. Hopefully, after it can be released from stores duties at Sheffield Park, it will ultimately be restored as part of our heritage wagon fleet.

Recommended reading:

British Railway Vans Volume 2 (Railways in Profile Series No.11), by G.Gamble. Published by Cheona Publications, 2000. ISBN 1 900298 14 7

This book may be available from the Bluebell Railway's shop.

An Illustrated History of LMS Wagons - Volume 1, by R.J.Essery. Published by OPC, 1981. ISBN 86093 127 7
An Illustrated History of LMS Wagons - Volume 2, by R.J.Essery. Published by OPC, 1983. ISBN 86093 255 9
The LMS Wagon, by Essery & Morgan. Published by David & Charles, 1977. ISBN 0 71537 357 9

These last 3 books are not available new. Try the Carriage Shop at Horsted Keynes for a used copy on your next visit.

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Text© Martin Skrzetuszewski.
Page created by Nick Beck, 31 May 2006, updated by 15 January 2014.
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