Background

Through a large part of the 20th Century, most coal was transported throughout the majority of the United Kingdom in open wagons with a capacity of up to 16T. In the North East of England though, a 21t hopper was a more common sight. The North Eastern Railway (and then LNER) served many locations where the bottom doors were more practical than the side or end doors of traditional open wagons. British Railways continued with the building of this design of wagon, with the very first design to Diagram 1/141, as represented in this pack, being almost identical to the last LNER examples.

There were a total of 1,200 wagons built to this diagram, with the distinctive long LNER type brake lever and LNER clasp brakes that were only fitted to one side of the vehicle, these vehicles were built with hand brakes only. The hoppers were all built during 1949 in 3 lots. Lots 2052 and 2053 were of 500 wagons each, built by Cravens in Sheffield and Head Wrightsons at Thornaby respectively. The final 200 wagons of Lot 2054 were produced by Teeside Bridge & Engineering Ltd of Middlesbrough.

Some of these wagons had their bodies replaced in the late 1960s with the later, heavier type of body bracing. Further examples were included within the large body replacement program that took place in the 1970s, but they kept the LNER style brakes until withdrawn from service.

These alterations are not included within this pack, but are mentioned to illuminate the changes that happened across the life of these wagons.

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