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mikesndbs

Sorting out the regions

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Another factor which has not been mentioned is that during WWI the Railway Executive introduced pooling, after which, in theory at least, any wagon might appear anywhere, hauled by a locomotive of the company on whose metals it was travelling.

I think you need to be a bit clearer here, Jim.

Common open and closed wagons, with hand brakes only, were pooled by making the common user, but I have not heard of pooling per se, except on and from 1st September 1939 (a couple of days before we declared war!) and this affected all bar special purpose wagons, including most P.O. wagons.

Despite the common user arrangements, there was a degree of conservatism amongst operating staff, particularly on the GWR when it came to open wagons with a sheet rail, where whenever possible they used a GWR wagon for deliveries on their system, and returned other companies’ stock to whoever - as long as they left their own system, they didn’t mind. The other companies, of course, if they got hold of such a wagon, would keep it in use for their internal traffic!

 

Back to P.O. coal wagons...

 

These could, and would, vary enormously in where they went to, depending on ownership.

 

Collieries had their own wagons, sometimes for specific purposes (e.g. East Midlands coal shipped out of Kings Lynn) but sometimes for hiring out to merchants who couldn’t afford to buy or rent a wagon dedicated to themselves. Thus, a Tredegar wagon was a common sight at New Radnor, but not in a train: it spent most of its time standing on a siding, whilst the merchant slowly sold off its contents about the town. (When it came to demurrage charges, the station staff looked the other way for this guy!)

 

Then there were the big suppliers, for example Stephenson Clarke, who amongst other things supplied coal to the LBSCRand other railways. This means that blocks of wagons, if not complete trains, would arrive from their pits, be transferred to the railway company, and then broken up into shorter sections for distribution about the system. Long trains of Manvers Main coal wagons trundling down the GCR to London were a common sight, but there would be wagons from different batches and makersin that train.

 

On from that, you might find wagons from contractors/factors, who would buy in bulk and ship to several stations within an area, possibly even storing some full wagons in their own yard for onward shipping to local depots as required. In a small way, the Old Radnor Trading Company did this on the lines around that area: nominally, they shipped out lime (and if dried, this was in wagons with a lid, like salt wagons) but they had other opens and would send them to collieries to collect coal orders.

 

Finally, you get the local trader, who may have only a single wagon. This may not always go to the same colliery, though. He would buy coal via perhaps a local coal agent, and buy different types of coal for stockpiling at various times of the year, trying to get the lowest price. So whilst his one and only wagon may have visited Little Snoring once a week, and been tripped in from Great Wastingthyme, how it got to and from that point could vary a lot.

 

And to top it all, some railways might offer lower rates for a slightly longer route, to make sure trains were running at full capacity.

 

Basically, there is no simple answer. You define your location, your era, and you does your reading up. As well as the pre-grouping maps, you need to get hold of a copy of such works as Len Tavender’s work, or those by Bill Hudson, and to look at photos of trains in service for your chosen era and locale.

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Just caught up with this thread, I'm sorry I'm a bit confused, what period/era you talking about Mike ??

 

 

Hi, probably between the wars is my main interest, but also reaching forward after WW2 to discover what wooden bodied coal wagons were still in use for their intended purpose as late as possible.

I am aware that after the war all PO wagons that had been requested were more or less destroyed.

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I am aware that after the war all PO wagons that had been requested were more or less destroyed.

Not immediately after: they had to build the replacements (16t minerals) alongside the scrapping.

 

It is also worth noting that approximately 60% of the (ex-)P.O. wagons inherited by BR in their hundred of thousands were to the 1907 RCH spec, and most of the rest were to the 1923 standards - and it had taken some years for the latter to get to 40%, suggesting most layouts need more of the earlier spec wagons.

Hi, probably between the wars is my main interest, but also reaching forward after WW2

So mostly, but not quite completely, not pre-grouping?

 

Have you tried the prototype questions area of the forum?

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Hi, probably between the wars is my main interest, but also reaching forward after WW2 to discover what wooden bodied coal wagons were still in use for their intended purpose as late as possible.

I am aware that after the war all PO wagons that had been requested were more or less destroyed.

 

Between the wars, with the country so dependant on coal, to feed the home counties it would come from anywhere within the 4 corners of the UK main-land. Coal traffic was just part of the immense traffic in transfer freights winding their way across the London area, and I would presume the yard dealing with your traffic would be Norwood, fed by many starting points around east, north, and west London by various GWR, LMS. LNER and western division of the SR. From Norwood, traffic would be hauled by a selection of Brighton freight locos, B4,C2/3,E1/4/5/ &6, K, and N1 to name but a few. Have fun  :sungum: , but researching into coal ( or any other general merchandise) 'pathing' could be time consuming.

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Just to add to the complexity it shouldn't be forgotten that there were dozens, if not hundreds, of joint railway companies in the UK, apart from the big ones, such as CLC, M&GNR, S&DR and MS&AJR. Some were simple arrangements between two railway companies, that might later be grouped together, ranging to complex ones such as the West London Railway, with multiple investors, with different degrees of involvement, from at least three, if not all four grouping companies, perhaps with a soupçon of independent lines, such as the Metroplitan or District Railways. These joint companies proliferated in the Welsh and Yorkshire coalfields, as railway companies vied for trade, promoting new lines to serve the mines, prompted partly in Yorkshire by the advent of the Hull and Barnsley Railway which upset the comfy status quo. You could almost put the names of the constituents of the LMS and LNE into a hat, and pull three or four out at random, and there would probably be a prototype company out there, complete with a cast iron No Trespassers sign with all the initials in place!

Further complication is the concept of running powers, whereby "foreign" companies were allowed to run trains on others lines through to their destination. These powers were often far reaching, for example the North Staffordshire ran excursions to north Wales, supplying the motive power throughout, but the LNWR exercised reciprocal powers into Stoke in return. Taking the LBSC, the LNWR and the GER had running powers to East Croydon, which could mean that an East Croydon based wagon, e.g. Hall and Co., might be pulled only by an LNWR, if the coal source was similarly accessed.

With regard to companies like Pugh & Co, there were a large number of similar Coal Traders who were based in the City and/or the Coal Exchange and had a number of depots around the London Area, often with no regard for the railway company they were served by, and their wagons never got anywhere near their registered base. I would think that many would also, if necessary, send their wagons to a goods yard near a customer, and make arrangements with a local trader to unload and deliver the order. Certainly I am not aware of Harrods actually having designated depots, although they did have wagons running in their livery.

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Hi guys, how fascinating this all has been.

I have now formed up four trains one per post 1923 company.

Mostly I am happy with the area of operation of the wagons and hoppers but one has me puzzled.

 

Sheepbridge Coal & iron co Mansfield Nottinghamshire, both my research and that of another here on RMweb has this as MR then LNER, but one of the hoppers I have has LMS marked on it.

Looking on the excellent http://www.railmaponline.com/UKIEMap.php It appears to be dominated by the Midland, that became LMS and the Great Central and Great Northern which became LNER.

Mansfield was the location of the colliery and works.

 

This looks like another 'joint' listing in my database, just like the Gloucester Gas Light company, which one would think was GWR without a doubt yet in fact the company allied itself to the Midland.

 

Your thoughts would be very helpful

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Hi guys, how fascinating this all has been.

I have now formed up four trains one per post 1923 company.

Mostly I am happy with the area of operation of the wagons and hoppers but one has me puzzled.

 

Sheepbridge Coal & iron co Mansfield Nottinghamshire, both my research and that of another here on RMweb has this as MR then LNER, but one of the hoppers I have has LMS marked on it.

Looking on the excellent http://www.railmaponline.com/UKIEMap.php It appears to be dominated by the Midland, that became LMS and the Great Central and Great Northern which became LNER.

Mansfield was the location of the colliery and works.

 

This looks like another 'joint' listing in my database, just like the Gloucester Gas Light company, which one would think was GWR without a doubt yet in fact the company allied itself to the Midland.

 

Your thoughts would be very helpful

The Sheepbridge company was based in Chesterfield, but had coal mines slightly further afield. See  https://www.gracesguide.co.uk/Sheepbridge_Coal_and_Iron_Co for example.

Edited by Orion

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Back to P.O. coal wagons...

 

These could, and would, vary enormously in where they went to, depending on ownership.

 

Collieries had their own wagons, sometimes for specific purposes (e.g. East Midlands coal shipped out of Kings Lynn) but sometimes for hiring out to merchants who couldn’t afford to buy or rent a wagon dedicated to themselves. Thus, a Tredegar wagon was a common sight at New Radnor, but not in a train: it spent most of its time standing on a siding, whilst the merchant slowly sold off its contents about the town. (When it came to demurrage charges, the station staff looked the other way for this guy!)

 

Then there were the big suppliers, for example Stephenson Clarke, who amongst other things supplied coal to the LBSCRand other railways. This means that blocks of wagons, if not complete trains, would arrive from their pits, be transferred to the railway company, and then broken up into shorter sections for distribution about the system. Long trains of Manvers Main coal wagons trundling down the GCR to London were a common sight, but there would be wagons from different batches and makersin that train.

 

On from that, you might find wagons from contractors/factors, who would buy in bulk and ship to several stations within an area, possibly even storing some full wagons in their own yard for onward shipping to local depots as required. In a small way, the Old Radnor Trading Company did this on the lines around that area: nominally, they shipped out lime (and if dried, this was in wagons with a lid, like salt wagons) but they had other opens and would send them to collieries to collect coal orders.

 

Finally, you get the local trader, who may have only a single wagon. This may not always go to the same colliery, though. He would buy coal via perhaps a local coal agent, and buy different types of coal for stockpiling at various times of the year, trying to get the lowest price. So whilst his one and only wagon may have visited Little Snoring once a week, and been tripped in from Great Wastingthyme, how it got to and from that point could vary a lot.

 

And to top it all, some railways might offer lower rates for a slightly longer route, to make sure trains were running at full capacity.

 

Basically, there is no simple answer. You define your location, your era, and you does your reading up. As well as the pre-grouping maps, you need to get hold of a copy of such works as Len Tavender’s work, or those by Bill Hudson, and to look at photos of trains in service for your chosen era and locale.

Like inside valve gear on the GWR, the near absence of PO wagons on the North Eastern Railway is a  very good reason for modelling the NER. Or was until Coopercraft bought the moulds for the Slaters kit of the NER 20t hopper wagon. I'll get my coat...

Edited by CKPR

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First up can I wish you all a very happy Easter.

 

Thanks also for the guidance regarding the wagons.

 

I have tried to add everything I have learned into this video.

 

 

I am sure there will be some errors but by and large it seems to answer fairly the question 'which region was my wagon from'

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