BR 25346 Standard Corridor

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BRBritish Rail or British Railways 25346 Standard Corridor
BR 25346a 20150307.jpg
BRBritish Rail or British Railways Corridor Second 25346
Built By BRBritish Rail or British Railways Wolverton
Status In service
Number M25346
Livery BRBritish Rail or British Railways Maroon
Other numbers E25346
Built 1957
Diagram 146
Lot 30349
Type SK
TOPS code AA21
Seats 48
1982 Entered preservation


M25346 is a BRBritish Rail or British Railways Mark 1 Corridor Second (SK). The Corridor Second was the most prolific of the Mark 1 passenger stock, with more than 2,200 built. Internally it had eight compartments with two end vestibules and a cross vestibule at the centre; two toilets were provided in one of the two end vestibules. Those in the Western and Southern regions seated eight per compartment, while those on Midland and Eastern routes seated six per compartment. Early examples featured veneered walls, while later batches used formica laminates. The SKs were an early candidate for withdrawal, being replaced by Mark 2 Open, HST sets and Networker Turbo units[1][2].

Service and preservation

25346 was built in 1957 at Wolverton to Diagram 146 (AA201), Lot 30349. As built, 25346 was fitted with Mk2 'Madison Modified' bogies with plain bearings, although it has since been fitted with standard bogies. It entered service in the London Midland region in August 1957, transferring to the Eastern region in June 1977.[3]

In 1982 BRBritish Rail or British Railways's York Works were ordered to overhaul 200 Mark 1 vehicles. Having fallen behind with this work, by the time 25346's overhaul had been completed at a cost of more than £2,000, the new faster train services were being introduced and 25346 became one of a number of carriages to be withdrawn immediately after being outshopped. It was acquired from York by the L.M.S. & B.R. Coach Fund for just £1,100,[2] arriving on 21 July 1982.[1] At the time it was noted that despite being ex-works, it was suffering from a suspected burst roof tank, although this proved to be only a split vent pipe which was easily remedied.[4]

25346 entered service on the SVRSevern Valley Railway in the InterCity blue and grey livery in which it was acquired. It was withdrawn from traffic on 3 August for a 12-day repaint at Bridgnorth into its original BRBritish Rail or British Railways Crimson and Cream livery. Experimentally, automotive-type black lining tape was used to apply the lining in conjunction with the usual gold lining paint. This technique, which was similar to that used by BRBritish Rail or British Railways for applying their blue and grey livery, proved a success and was adopted for other repaints.[5]

In spring 1988 the windows were re-bedded at Bridgnorth in anticipation of another repaint later in the year. The "heavy clean and quick repaint" was completed in time for the Autumn Steam Gala despite starting just 3 weeks before.[6]

25346 was one of several coaches "stopped" in 1999. During 2000 most of the body at the lavatory end was rebuilt at Bewdley, several doors were re-skimmed, all the windows resealed, the seats were fully reupholstered in new moquette, and most of the interior revarnished. The moquette was an experimental grey and pink design developed for First Great Western Railway but not subsequently taken up by them, with all sixteen rolls of the cloth being acquired by the SVRSevern Valley Railway for use in the 1960s liveried coaches. The carriage was then repainted into 1960s BRBritish Rail or British Railways Maroon livery at Kidderminster. 25346, which effectively seats 48, was transferred from Set C (BR Crimson and Cream) to Set M (BR Maroon) in order to increase the seating capacity in the Set C by exchanging it with TSO 4545 which seats 64. 25346 was outshopped at the end of February 2001 with 4545 taking its place in the paint shop for its repaint from Maroon into Crimson and Cream.[7][2]

In 2007 the L.M.S. & B.R. Coach Fund's carriages including 25346 were transferred into the ownership of the SVR Charitable Trust. Since that time, it has benefited from a slow-speed charger and new batteries at the Trust's expense.

By winter 2009-10 25346's wheels had become worn and required a wheelset change. The larger wheels in turn required the ride height to be adjusted by re-tensioning the springs on the bogies to ensure that the steps in gangways did not exceed the permitted amount. New bearing pads were also provided and brake rigging repairs carried out to eliminate wear. Repairs were made to the steam-pipe and a new set of overhauled Buckeye couplings were fitted.[8] Later in 2010 the carriage underwent its '10 year' overhaul at Kidderminster, which was completed just in time for that year's Santa duties.[9]

Its appearance was improved in mid-2016 by a "quick repaint".[10] In 2021 it received a new toilet floor.[11] It remains in BRBritish Rail or British Railways Maroon livery as seen in this photograph in March 2015.

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 SVRSevern Valley Railway Stock Book 9th edition
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 SVRSevern Valley Railway Charitable Trust
  3. Longworth (2013) pp.137-8.
  4. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 89
  5. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 73, 75
  6. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 87, 90
  7. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 133, 135
  8. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 168
  9. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 173
  10. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 197
  11. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 216, Winter 2021, p. 28