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GWR & BR Mermaid Ballast Wagons


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I am currently researching the above wagons and looking for information.


 


Does anyone know of a good source of information on these as I am not finding much at the moment?


 


Ideally how long did the first batch in the 1930's last into BR, were any converted to vacuum brakes?


 


Were the GWR set and the first batch of BR wagons the same?


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In reply to your questions.

 

'British railway Wagons' by Don Rowland says that the first BR purchase of wagons of this type were not ordered until 1952 and follows the design of those purchased by the GWR from Metropolitan Cammell.

 

239 wagons were made to the original design and then 400 were built as vacuum braked and improved buffers, again by Met Camm.

 

The original batch would have lasted into BR(W) service alongside the BR purchases and some probably lasted until the end of use of this type of wagon as ballast trains were not always vacuum braked as many engineering department wagon types were not vacuum braked during the early BR period.

 

Hope this helps

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In reply to your questions.

 

'British railway Wagons' by Don Rowland says that the first BR purchase of wagons of this type were not ordered until 1952 and follows the design of those purchased by the GWR from Metropolitan Cammell.

 

239 wagons were made to the original design and then 400 were built as vacuum braked and improved buffers, again by Met Camm.

 

The original batch would have lasted into BR(W) service alongside the BR purchases and some probably lasted until the end of use of this type of wagon as ballast trains were not always vacuum braked as many engineering department wagon types were not vacuum braked during the early BR period.

 

Hope this helps

Certainly, some of the BR-built unfitted ones were fitted with vacuum brakes in later years:-

http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/brmermaid/h1ce7881c#h23a687f5

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So the the first 2 batches were the same thank you, do you know when the unfitted would have been phased out?

The latest photo of an unfitted one in PB's collection in unfitted form is dated 1978; any photos of these early wagons later than that shows them either in wagon works or retro-fitted with vacuum kit.

If I might make a suggestion; from about 1975 for a year or two (perhaps longer), the WR had a programme of upgrading lines in preparation for the introduction of HST services. The most significant was the Badminton line upgrade, where the whole route was taken down to bare earth, 'blanketed' with sand or stone dust, which was covered with geo-textile and ballast. This was done one line at a time, with material being brought in on the other track, mainly in block trains of Mermaids. This would have probably used all serviceable wagons. Once this programme had been completed, then the oldest wagons would have gone for scrap, and the unfitted ones released for vac-fitting.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thank you Brian, how late do the fitted ones last?

 

Am I right in remembering one is at Didcot museum? does anyone know where any others are?

I think the fitted nes lasted well into the 1980s. A quick look at the Vintage Carriage Trust survey suggests some 20+ wagons are 'preserved', all seemingly BR examples:-

http://www.ws.vintagecarriagestrust.org/ws/wresults.asp

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  • RMweb Gold

Thank you Brian, how late do the fitted ones last?

 

Am I right in remembering one is at Didcot museum? does anyone know where any others are?

There was one on the Dartmouth Steam railway in 2008

Photo taken March 2008

post-6925-0-62343600-1418980116_thumb.jpg

 

Neil

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  • 2 weeks later...

If you are looking for photos of a gwr mermaid have a look at this

https://www.flickr.com/photos/bristol_passion/15884229210/sizes/o/in/photostream/

 

End on sadly but you can see the sides of wagons further down the train

(Sadly not well enough to make out lettering, so still no idea how to finish my model...

There is a photo in 'Freight Wagons of the GWR and BR (WR); Their Loads and Loading' which might be useful

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  • 5 months later...

Hi All I am now getting this project ready to launch on Kickstarter in September as an RTR vehicle working with Dapol.

 

I have been in contact with Llangollen to arrange to go and photograph and measure their 2 but does anyone have pictures in there collections of the GWR liveries that they would be willing to share with me to use for livery design and promotion of the project. 

 

Please PM me if you can offer any assistance.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I am still in desperate need of details of the GWR livery carried on these wagons as none of the pictures found to date are at all clear. Even bought a W.D. & H.O. Wills Cigarette card of railway equipment showing some in action, but no use, nice card and image though.

 

Any help will be much appreciated.

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I am still in desperate need of details of the GWR livery carried on these wagons as none of the pictures found to date are at all clear. Even bought a W.D. & H.O. Wills Cigarette card of railway equipment showing some in action, but no use, nice card and image though.

 

Any help will be much appreciated.

 

The standard reference for GWR wagons is usually "GWR goods wagons" by Atkins, Beard and Tourret.  Page 329 of the most recent edition has 3 pictures in GWR livery. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

The standard reference for GWR wagons is usually "GWR goods wagons" by Atkins, Beard and Tourret.  Page 329 of the most recent edition has 3 pictures in GWR livery. 

 

Yes I have this book but I can not read the text on the side of the wagons, some is clear but the majority is not, hence why I am asking for help.

 

I am also looking for pictures that I can actually use on my website to show the livery options available.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Thank you all for the assistance I have another query, I have found two pictures on Paul Bartletts site showing them in "Dutch" livery does anyone have details on any others that made it into this livery? I do not want to pick a number at random in case it is wrong.

 

I will be launching the Kickstarter fund raising in late September for the RTR N Gauge Mermaid.

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Thank you all for the assistance I have another query, I have found two pictures on Paul Bartletts site showing them in "Dutch" livery does anyone have details on any others that made it into this livery? I do not want to pick a number at random in case it is wrong.

 

I will be launching the Kickstarter fund raising in late September for the RTR N Gauge Mermaid.

i noted,

989000 at doncaster 30-5-94, 989001,989584,989630 at nuneaton 1-7-90, 989026 at bury st edmunds 30-4-90,

989044 at bescot 9-10-88

989055,989079,989130,989150,989292,989585 at chesterton junction 15-3-98, 989440 at toton, 989480 at lincoln 11-3-88,

989533 at toton, 

There were many others, also a version lettered SAND which had a painted line of yellow on the top and bottom edge of the body,

also scottish wagons had the white triangle on the lower body, noted on brown and dutch liveried wagons in 1994

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i noted,

989000 at doncaster 30-5-94, 989001,989584,989630 at nuneaton 1-7-90, 989026 at bury st edmunds 30-4-90,

989044 at bescot 9-10-88

989055,989079,989130,989150,989292,989585 at chesterton junction 15-3-98, 989440 at toton, 989480 at lincoln 11-3-88,

989533 at toton, 

There were many others, also a version lettered SAND which had a painted line of yellow on the top and bottom edge of the body,

also scottish wagons had the white triangle on the lower body, noted on brown and dutch liveried wagons in 1994

Thank you very much for this information, it is very help to explain the white triangle I have seen on some.

 

I have seen pictures of some in preservation with no lettering with the 2 yellow lines along the outer edges of the body but was not sure what that was for. Do you have a picture of the sand version by any chance?

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First time i have done photos, so see how it goes

we have 989202 at Bury St Edmunds on 30-4-90, brown livery with Sand in white in a white edged box.

Also 989292 at Chesterton Junction 3-5-99 in faded Dutch livery with Sand on a Black Patch with white edgepost-17284-0-82176800-1440964803_thumb.jpgpost-17284-0-36518300-1440964824_thumb.jpg

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  • 3 weeks later...

I am interested in supporting this project but I am not especially familiar with these vehicles (although I get that they were used for carrying ballast ;)).

 

Did they only run in rakes or could I have 1 or 2 as part of a permanent way train? I have seen plenty of photos of the wagons but not very many of them in trains. Can anyone suggest or show photos of short trains with mermaids in please?

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