Carriage 24

From Festipedia, hosted by the FR Heritage Group
This article is about the 2002 NWNGR replica summer coach. The number 24 was also carried by Centenary prototype 104 when new.
Carriage 24
Type Compartment Third
Seating 42 x 3rd
Home Railway WHR
Status In service
Built by Boston Lodge
Built 2002
Length 32 ft[1]
Width 6 ft[2]
Wheels Bogie

Carriage 24 is a modern replica of a NWNGR Summer Carriage.


The original summer coaches were built by the Ashbury Carriage and Iron Company in 1894 for the North Wales Narrow Gauge Railways, they were later used on the Welsh Highland Railway. Two survived into preservation on the FR (23 and 26). When the modern WHR was being built it was decided to restore these carriages to a previous operational condition. Whilst it was possible for 23 to be returned to its post-1923 WHR condition (apart from the glazed doors), it was discovered that no original material survived on 26 so it was decided instead to construct a brand new replica carriage.


In parts at Boston Lodge 2002

Boston Lodge built 24 as a replica of Carriage No. 23, but in its original 1894 condition (apart from the provision of glazed doors) after the donor expressed a specific preference for an "original" version of the NWNGR Ashbury "Summer coaches". The attention to detail extends to original pattern curly-spoked wheels; it was necessary to make a new pattern for the steel castings for these. When new these carriages had doors completely open above the waistː the present doors have drop windows. The picture to the left shows the new underframe and many wooden components for the body and roof at Boston Lodge on February 24th 2002.

The body was complete and in the final stages of paintwork and lettering by late July. The bogies are as close as possible to the type originally fitted to no. 23 (which no longer has its original bogies - having been much modified for "ambulance" duties these were sold to the Bredgar & Wormshill Railway in the 1980s), including rivetted construction and genuine NWNGR axleboxes found in store at Boston Lodge, but with more substantial material used for the frames. The only significant design change is the addition of secondary suspension, for an improved ride.

No. 24 had its first runs on the FR (whose loading gauge is now able to take a full-height NWNGR vehicle), an evening test run to Blaenau Ffestiniog on August 19th 2002, followed by three days of revenue-earning service on the Porthmadog - Tan-y-Bwlch vintage shuttle service. It was moved to WHR (Caernarfon) on August 24th.

No. 24 went straight into service on the following day's Heritage Train service. Despite their modest external size compared with the modern carriages, these vehicles had a deceptively large capacity of 56 passengers each, and are useful members of the fleet in addition to their Heritage value. It is now rated at 42 seats - passengers are wider nowadays - all 3rd class.

Despite being primarily a WHR carriage 24 does see occasional FR use. A notable example is that, in 2020, it was used on the FR to form part of the special heritage service run to comply with Covid-19 social distancing restrictions. For use in these services plywood partitions were fitted between adjacent compartments to enable social distancing. It was repaired and repainted at Boston Lodge between October 2021 and January 2022.

After repair & repaint at Boston Lodge January 2022


It is hoped that once Carriage 2050 has been constructed, 24 can be withdrawn from everyday service and overhauled. After this, it is hoped that it will be only used on heritage trains, reducing wear.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ General Rule Book
  2. ^ General Rule Book