GWR 58725 Improvised Gunpowder Van

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GWRGreat Western Railway 58725 Improvised Gunpowder Van
GWR 58725 20160504.jpg
GWRGreat Western Railway 58725 Improvised Gunpowder Van
Built By GWRGreat Western Railway Swindon
Status Operational
Number 58725
Other Numbers W 204988
Built 1896
Diagram V6
Lot 117
Type 4-wheel ventilated van
Capacity 10 tons
Telegraphic code CONE
1977 Arrived on SVRSevern Valley Railway
1985 GWRGreat Western Railway 150 main line appearance

Goods Wagons

58725 was originally built at Swindon as an ‘Iron MinkGWR telegraphic code signifying a covered goods van’ general merchandise van in 1896 to Diagram V6, Lot 117.[1] It was converted to an Improvised Gunpowder Van (telegraph code CONE) and loaned to the Southern Railway in 1938. Modifications included the blocking of the vents at each end. It was reconverted back to a standard goods van upon its return to the GWRGreat Western Railway in 1945. The wagon also saw service with the Longmoor Military Railway and post-war with BRBritish Rail or British Railways(W).[2]


58725 arrived on the SVRSevern Valley Railway on 29 April 1977 from Cashmores at Great Bridge, carrying the BRBritish Rail or British Railways(W) number W 204988.[3] Evidence of its SRSouthern Railway livery was discovered during restoration in 1980,[2] which mainly involved the replacement of a quantity of defective steelwork and the return of the van to a CONE in black livery with a red cross.[4]

In 1985, 58725 appeared on the main line when it was used in the GW 150 demonstration freight train which ran to Newport behind GWR freight loco 2857.[5]

58725 received further repaints as a CONE in 1997[6] and 2011 (roof only).[7] It was most recently overhauled and repainted as a gunpowder van during 2015, the work mainly involving new door lintels and replacement of the steel panels on two doors.[8] The main picture shows the van at Highley shortly after that overhaul.

In 2022 Rapido Trains produced a commercial OO gauge model[9].

58725 is owned by The GWR 813 Preservation Fund.

See also


  1. Atkins, Beard & Tourret (2013) pp. 32-33
  2. 2.0 2.1 SVRSevern Valley Railway Stock Book 9th Edition
  3. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 46
  4. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 59
  5. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 78
  6. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 123
  7. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 175
  8. SVRSevern Valley Railway News 191
  9. (Retrieved 25 March 2022)