SEmG

LBSCR coaches

7598

photograph by John A Arkell

Southern 7598 is a 48 ft six compartment 36 seater first class coach originally built for the London to Brighton main line and is an excellent example of a Billinton arc-roofed coach.
 
It has been wonderfully restored by the Bluebell Railway having survived between 1931 and 1989 as a domestic dwelling and aviary in West Chiltington. During restoration it was placed on a shortened ex LNWR 50ft underframe. It was re-introduced to service on the Bluebell Railway, whose expertise and talent for restoring coaches cannot be too highly praised, in May 1999.
 
Roof Left: Roof detail of Billinton 36 seater first 7598 and SECR 100 seater 971 at Sheffield Park on the 21st July 2001. Note the difference in roof profiles.

Below: The bogie on Billinton coach SR 7598. The axle box carries the letters LB SC.

photographs by Colin Duff

7598 Bogie
 
Fortunately for the sake of its wonderful livery job, 7598 was stabled in the shade at Horsted Keynes on a hot and sunny 20th June 2003.

photograph by Colin Duff

7598
 
676 This is often how they arrive for preservation! Stroudley 26 ft 4 wheeled brake third number 676 of 1875 or 6 is owned by the Bluebell Railway Trust and was rescued from a farm near Cranleigh. One day it will be mounted on a shortened Southern Railway van underframe to form a part of the oldest standard gauge train in the country when coupled with fellow LBSCR coaches 328, 661 and 949.

photograph by John A Arkell

 
Brighton 6-Wheel First number 661 when it was undergoing restoration in the Bluebell Railway's Horsted Keynes Carriage works, pictured here on 20th June 2003.
Designed by William Stroudley and built in 1880 by Brown Marshall as a six wheeled, four compartment, first class coach, it was rebuilt as a brake second in June 1909 and downgraded to a brake third in 1912. After withdrawal in 1924 it was incorporated into a bungalow at Bracklesham Bay. When this was demolished the remains were acquired by the Bluebell Railway where it is being rebuilt on a modified four wheel SR PLV underframe.

photograph by Colin Duff

661
 
661 This magnificent restoration came to its moment of glory when the coach was released to traffic on 24th July 2004. On that day it was in service for the enjoyment of those who had worked on the restoration and who had previously lived in the vehicle whilst it was used for housing. The coach is seen here in the Carriage & Wagon sidings at Horsted Keynes on 24th July.

photograph by Tony Pearce

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This page was last updated 26 July 2004

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