Carriage 39

From Festipedia, hosted by the FR Heritage Group
Carriage 39
Type Tourist Open Third
Seating 24 x 3rd
Home Railway FR
Status In service
Built by Winson Engineering, Penrhyndeudraeth
based on a design by Robert Hudson Ltd
Built 1992
Length 22 ft
Frames Gloster C.& W. underframe

Carriage 39 is an open-sided tourist coach (also known as a "toastrack") operating on the Ffestiniog Railway. The Ffestiniog Railway currently has three open carriages. These are added to service trains in good weather, to offer passengers an alternative to travelling in a closed carriage. The open carriages are usually placed immediately behind the locomotive. WHHR also has an example, Carriage 42.


In 1923 the Festiniog Railway purchased six open "Toastrack" carriages from Robert Hudson Ltd of Leeds. They were numbered 37 to 42. Although brand new, they were identical in design to coaches supplied by Hudson to the War Department, for use on the military railways. Bought by and for the FR, they were also used on the WHR. They were not successful and most were converted to flat wagons, mainly on the WHR, by the end of the 1920s.

Construction and early changes[edit]

Originally authorised in 1972, Carriage 39 is a replica of one of the original Hudson carriages and was built by Winson Engineering at Penrhyndeudraeth in 1992. It uses some original parts, including the frame and running gear from Wagon 73 (ex FR EAG 1970, originally supplied to Leighton Buzzard Lt Rly in 1923 by Gloster C.& W. Co.). Originally standard FR Red and Cream, in 2003 it was re-painted in the "Colonel Stephens" livery of green with red ends. Wire mesh doors were also added for safety reasons, in place of the original chains. It has now been downgraded from 32 to 24 seats - passengers have increased in girth of late years.

2021 rebuild[edit]

After nearly 30 years of use the carriage was brought into the carriage works for some attention. Much the woodwork was replaced as it was life expired - the end boarding was made wider to better replicate the original carriages. New metal side panels were also made as the old ones had suffered from corrosion. The new panels were made from stainless steel to try and stop this problem recurring. The doors were also replaced to a slightly modified design that improved their safety and made use of standard components for the locks and handles.


See also[edit]