A COACH which ran over the Somerset & Dorset Joint Railway main line in its last week in service has returned.
The Somerset & Dorset Railway Heritage Trust, which has restored Midsomer Norton station, have taken delivery of BR Mk.1 BSO brake No. E9267.
The coach arrived in Somerset on Monday, May 8, having made the journey from the North Yorkshire Moors Railway on an initial three-year loan.
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No. E9267 is the sole remaining coach from the Stephenson Locomotive Society Special which traversed the line on the last weekend of operation in March 1966.
It was built in 1956 in Doncaster and entered preservation at the NYMR in 1973. Used by the NYMR on its services to Whitby until recently, a loan was organised by the trust’s chief mechanical engineer Barrie Papworth and Eddie Knorn, head of traction and rolling stock at the NYMR.
While the coach certainly breaks new ground as being the first blue and grey-liveried Mk.1 coach to be seen at Midsomer Norton, it will be painted in BR maroon in due course to match the other Mk.1s at the venue. It was in service soon after arrival, providing bar space for the first real ale train to run at Midsomer Norton.
The trust will welcome anyone who can produce a ticket from the last weekend of service on the S&D to Midsomer Norton on any of their operating days, and offer them a free ride over the rebuilt section of the line in No. E9267.
The trust additionally welcomed its own BSK, M34527 from Cranmore Traincare & Maintenance Services on the East Somerset Railway where it had undergone reconstruction work to its end gangways. The trust can now boast a three-coach service train, which was typical of the local services which graced the S&D.
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