The SVRSevern Valley Railway has five Wickham Trolleys in various states of repair. Originally built by D. Wickham & Co Ltd of Ware in Hertfordshire, these trolleys were used in service as railway engineering personnel carriers, transporting PWPermanent Way working parties and materials to sites along the line.
The trolleys were designated 2w-2 PMR under the Whyte notation, denoting that they were 4-wheeled, petrol-engined, mechanically driven and reversible. They were lightweight, cheap to operate and very flexible, so they were popular with operators of railways of all kinds. The SVRSevern Valley Railway includes one Pre-War example; post-War more than 600 were built for BRBritish Rail or British Railways before the Wickham factory closed in 1991.
The Wickham trolleys feature an unusual stepless variable speed and reversible transmission.
Power is transmitted via a steel flywheel attached to the engine to a wheel with a friction lining on its surface which is able to slide along a splined shaft set at 90° to the crankshaft. Sliding the driven wheel towards the outer edge of the flywheel increases the gearing. Sliding it across to the opposite side of the flywheel reverses the drive.
Although the trolleys could travel in reverse when required, they were mainly used in the 'forward' direction, being manually lifted off the track and turned by hand when required. Some later type 27s were fitted with a built in turntable while others were provided with a simple portable turntable which could be carried on the trolley.
SVRSevern Valley Railway Wickham Trolleys
A number of different Wickham Trolleys have been at the SVRSevern Valley Railway in preservation, although the precise details are a little unclear. The following references to Wickham Trolleys have been noted:
|Number(s)||Works no||Type||Engine as built||Arrived||Still present?||Links||Status / Notes|
|748||1580/1934||Type 17||JAP 1100||Not recorded||Yes||Operational|
|PWM 3189||5019/1949||Type 17A||JAP 1323||Ex Northampton 28 Nov 1968||Yes||Unpowered trailer|
|DB965054||7577/1957||Type 17A||JAP 1323 Twin sv||Not recorded but post-1998?||Yes||Unpowered trailer|
|TP49P (PT1P)||7690/1957||Type 17A||JAP 1323 Twin 4sv||Ex Northampton 28 Nov 1968||Yes||Awaiting restoration|
|9021||8085/1958||Type 27 Mk III||Ford 10hp||Ex Longtown (Army) 1977||Yes||Operational|
|B198W (P2P)||?/1949||Not recorded||2 cylinder||Ex Northampton 28 Nov 1968||No||RCTS Photo|
|Not recorded||?/?||Not recorded||2 cylinder||Ex Northampton 28 Nov 1968||No||Cannibalised for spares|
|PWM2827 (B190W)||5005/1949||Type 27A||Ford 10hp Industrial||Ex Worcester 3 Apr 1971||No|
|PWM3774 (B13W)||6653/1953||Type 27A Mk III||Ford 10hp||Ex Worcester 3 Apr 1971||TBC||Listed as unpowered trailer in 2006. Whereabouts now unknown.|
|PWM2830 (B193M)||5008/1949||Type 27A||Ford 10hp Industrial||Ex Bilston 10 July 1971||No||Now at Royal Deeside Railway.|
|9032||8200/1958||Type 27 Mk III||Ford 10hp||Ex Longtown (Army) 1977||No||Flickr photo||Still present in 1998.|
In the original numbers above, a PWM number referred to Permanent Way Machinery while a B prefix was used by the GWRGreat Western Railway to denote a Gang Trolley. DB indicated DepartmentalRolling stock used for the railway’s own functions (engineering etc.) rather than for general passenger or goods traffic. BRBritish Rail or British Railways-era built plant. Type and original Engine are from Gunner and Kennard (2004) except where noted.