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Overhauled 16T Wagon for Gala

The Society's latest overhaul, that of our reclaimed 16 ton mineral wagon will be making a debut appearance in the goods train over the gala weekend after the wagon was signed off for traffic following testing.

The wagon has taken just over eighteen months to complete. After several generous members donated to the appeal for the Society to purchase it, the wagon was transported from it's former home in the private sidings of Hardingham station on the MNR. The wagon was originally based at King's Lynn, where research concluded that it was originally used as a makeshift bufferstops. After the harbour branch closed, the wagon remained, slowly decaying until purchase and transportation to Hardingham. Here it stood for several more years awaiting restoration.

On arrival at Weybourne, repairs began immediately - the effect of this being the gradual stripping of the wagon into several minor components. Much wasted metalwork was replaced, along with a new bufferbeam section. All four axleboxes were repaired and renewed and gradually the wagon was rebuilt.

After many volunteer hours, many put in by volunteer welder John Collier and Society trustee Nigel Scarlett, the mineral wagon regained it's shape and appearance. A new steel deck was constructed along with a false roof, enabling the wagon to be used as dry storage for lightweight and light sensitive materials. An ingenious drainage system was also designed, ensuring that water flowed off the wagon, rather than standing and slowly corroding the metalwork. To finish it off, a false load of ballast, much like the false top of a model railway wagon was added to give the appearance of a loaded wagon. Ballast, rather than coal was used as coal can produce sulphuric acid when combined with rainwater which would be of detriment to the wagons.

Following testing in the run up to the Spring Steam gala, the wagon was declared fit for traffic, marking the end of a year and a half overhaul. The overhaul would not be possible without the efforts of our volunteers and to the generous supporters who made the purchase of the wagon possible when the appeal was launched.

If you would like to further support Society Carriage and Wagon projects, please join theJoint Heritage Coach Fund, which leads the overhaul of projects such as the 16T mineral and other heritage rolling stock overhauls. If you would like to get involved volunteering with the Carriage and Wagon team, please email for further details.

Following a late refusal from Network Rail to allow transit of 60007 on the Sheringham Branch, GWR Panner 1638 from the Kent & East Sussex will now deputise, joining visiting N2 1744, B12 8572, 'Black 5' 5MT 44767, Standard 4MT 2-6-0 76084 and GWR 'Taff Tank' 5619.

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