4 Cor/4 Cor(N)/4 Res/4 Buf/4 Gri

The 4-Cor units introduced by R.E.L. Maunsell were the second generation main line electrics and these units eliminated one of the major operating deficiencies of the 6 Pan/6 Pul, which was the lack of gangways between units. From this time onwards until the introduction of the 5 Wes, Southern Railway/Region express units were run in combinations of 4 car units.

There were 29 four-coach Corridor sets (3101-3129) and 19 four-coach Restaurant sets (3054-3072 4 Res) units built for the 1937 Porstmouth electrification. For the Mid-Sussex electrification a further batch of 4 Cor units were built numbered 3130-3155 and 13 four coach units with buffet cars instead of Restuarant cars (3073-3085 classified 4 Buf) were built at Eastleigh. The Restaurant cars were withdrawn during the war and some became war losses which resulted in the coaches from 3058, 3060 & 3063 being reformed as 4 Cor units 3156-3158.The coaches for these units were all built at Eastleigh except for the 1st class Restaurant cars built by Metro-Cammell and the 2nd class Restaurant cars built by Birmingham C&W.

In 1961 three kitchen diners from 4 Res units 3056/65/68 were sent to Eastleigh where they were converted into griddle cars serving hot snacks. This entailed removing the complete interior and much of the exterior which resulted in a hybrid Maunsell/BR vehicle. At the same time the seat arrangement in the diner firsts of these units was altered from 12 chairs at 4 tables to 4 chairs at 2 tables with 8 loose chairs. The three units were classified 4 Gri but kept their original unit numbers until December 1963 when they were renumbered as 3086/87/88.

The route code was mounted in a box that was the other side of the gangway connection from the driver's window, thus giving them a "one-eyed" look, which led to them gaining the nick-name of "Nelsons".

With the introduction of 4 Big/Cig and 4 Vep units, these veterans were moved to stopping services around the Southern.

An unidentifiable 4 Cor has just passed Bedhampton Halt (left background) although the second unit isn't recognisable as to whether it's a 4 Cor or a 4 Buf. The headcode is 8, which shows it was a Waterloo - Portsmouth fast service in this photo dating from 1956.

photograph: Mike Morant collection.

4 Cor
4 Gri One of the 4 Gri units photographed at Wimbledon in 1962 in company with a 4 Cor.

photograph by Chris Knowles-Thomas.

A closer look at the Griddle car in the above unit. Note the BR-style windows in the Maunsell-design coach!

photograph by Chris Knowles-Thomas.

Griddle Car
4-Cors at Raynes Park 4 Cors photographed on the down main at Raynes Park on 31st May 1964.

photograph: Mike Morant collection.

The fast tracks at Wimbledon were an enthusiast's delight. Steam trains passed through every few minutes on their way to and from Southampton, the Dorset coast, Salisbury and the south-west. These were interspersed with the fast and semi-fast electric services to Alton, Guildford and Portsmouth. Here "Nelson" unit 3133 hurries through with an up Portsmouth fast service on the final stage of its journey to Waterloo.

photograph by Keith Harwood.

3073 4 Buf unit 3073 passing Queens Rd, Battersea on 21 September 1965.

photograph by Ray Soper.

All photographs are copyright

First | 2nd | Last | photographs from the last day of the 4 Cors

This page was last updated 19 July 2010

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