6 Cit/6 Cor/6 Pan/6 Pul

6 Pul at Clapham Junc

6 Pul unit leaves Clapham Junction en route for Ore via Eastbourne.

photograph from John Bradshaw collection
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The 6 Pul units were built in 1932 for the Brighton Line electrification and were used originally on the London - Brighton and London - West Worthing services. (The electrification of the Eastbourne line through to Ore in 1935 and the Worthing - Littlehampton line in 1938 saw their use extended to these destinations as well.) Given the up-market clientele on those lines these were to be no ordinary units as the 6 Puls included a Pullman car as part of their formation. The units were vestibuled within themselves but had no external connection so that a twelve car train would be two separate units of six. Twenty 6 Puls were built and numbered from 2001 to 2020, subsequently being re-numbered 3001 to 3020 during 1937.

The 6 Pan units were built in 1935 for the Eastbourne and Hastings Line electrification and as with the 6 Puls had vestibules within each unit, but not at the ends. Instead of including a Pullman car, these units had a Pantry (or Buffet) car, each unit comprising two motor saloon thirds, two trailer corridor thirds, a trailer corridor first and the Pantry car. Seventeen 6 Pans were built and numbered from 2021 to 2037, subsequently being re-numbered 3021 to 3037 during 1937.

The 6 Pul units would frequently run attached to a 6 Pan unit, a train using this combination was referred to as a 6 Pul/6 Pan.

Two prototype 'Main Line' motorcoaches were ordered by the Southern Railway and delivered in October 1931 to run as part of a 'Five Coach Experimental Unit' numbered 2001. The three trailer coaches were eventually provided by converting some LSWR loco-hauled coaches, though the underframes for two of these trailers were actually ordered (HO590) and, as usual with the Southern Railway's 'waste nothing' policies, these were later used under the last two Pantry cars in the 6 Pan units, explaining why these two cars only (12516/7) had equalising beam bogies rather than the leaf sprung bogies of all the others.

The two prototype motorcoaches were numbered 11001 & 11002, the first being built by BRCW and the second by MCW. Both were 65' 11" long, weighed 57 tons and were fitted with four BTH163 225hp motors. These coaches were unusual in having box girder underframes without any lower trussing. 11001 had flat sides, whilst 11002 had a lower tumblehome as the shape of the main line stock was then still to be determined. That of 11002 was preferred so all later construction had a tumblehome. These motorcoaches, which differed from all the later 'production' ones by having seven seating bays (56 seats), were given Diagram Number 2107 and were later used as one of the motorcoaches in 6 CIT units 2041 & 2042.


6 Pul unit 3009 at Haywards Heath with a Victoria to Ore via Eastbourne service

photograph by Keith Harwood

Construction of the 6 Pul and 6 Pan Motor cars was split between BRCW and MCW, with a 225hp BTH traction motor on each axle of the power bogie, whilst the trailers were built by the Southern Railway, underframes at Lancing and bodies at Eastleigh.

An additional three units, designated as 6 Cit, were also built in 1932 especially to work the 5pm London Bridge to Brighton "City Limited". This train was taken off during WWII and, not being re-instated after the war, the units (originally numbered 2041 to 2043 but later 3041 to 3043) were re-formed during 1947 and 1948 into 6 Puls.

The contractor-built coaches were of all steel construction, however the other trailer coaches were built by the Southern Railway at Eastleigh and were more conventional with steel covered hardwood framing and timber/canvas roofs. Trailer triples (in numbered sequences) were allocated to units in the order they entered traffic, so the first was 2013 (MCW) then 2002 (BRCW) etc. The production motorcoaches were altered to have 6½ bays only (with a larger brakevan area) seating 52 third class passengers and were given Diagram Number 2112.

All coaches were mounted on equalising beam bogies. The three 6 Cit units had three Trailer Firsts (TFK) each seating 42 first class passengers. Pul units had in their place two Trailer Composites (TCK) which seated 30 first class and 24 third class passengers and a Trailer Third (TTK) which seated 68 third class passengers. Overall unit capacities/statistics then were:-
6 PUL 72 first, 236 third, 399' 0" long and 268 tons
6 CIT (2041/2) 138 first, 124 third, 399' 0" and 262½ tons
6 CIT (2043) 138 first, 120 third, 399' 0" and 264½ tons.

The ten Pullman cars, provided by the Pullman company, were constructed by MCW and measured 68' 8¾" long over buffers, weighed 43 tons and seated 12 first and 16 third. These Pullman cars were, naturally, in Pullman chocolate and cream livery, otherwise the unit was the prevailing Southern green.

2024 6 Pan Nº2024 in 1935 at Star Lane, Hooley.

photograph: Mike Morant collection

An unidentified 6 Pul passing Purley Oaks on 3rd October 1959. Headcode 54 denotes it as travelling from Ore to Victoria via the Quarry line taking the direct line from Stone Cross Junction to Polegate and not via Eastbourne.

photograph: Mike Morant collection

6 Pul
3018 6 Pul Nº3018 photographed on the Ouse Valley viaduct, date unknown but the BR logo is the later one so post-1957. Headcode 4 denotes the non-stop Victoria to Brighton service.

photograph: Mike Morant collection

An unidentified 6 Pul in a not unknown but fairly unsual pairing with a 5 Bel on the Victoria to Brighton non-stop service during 1963.

photograph by Chris Knowles-Thomas

6 Pul + 5 Bel
3024 6 Pan Nº3024 at Purley on 18th July 1964 with another non-stop Victoria to Brighton service. This is the same unit as 2024 above, having been renumbered during 1937.

photograph: Mike Morant collection

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This page was last updated 27 July 2010

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