Pullman cars

The four Pullman Cars depicted on this page were all photographed whilst working in the "Bournemouth Belle" formation. The first photograph, of car 303, was taken at Bournemouth West with the remaining three taken at Bouremouth Central. Although car 303 has been referred to as a "Golden Arrow" car within a number of books and articles written to date, the car as far as can be ascertained never ran within the "Golden Arrow" formation. You may also note it has LNER Gresley bogies.
All the 1951 and 1952 new build cars had Gresley bogies with the exception of PHOENIX which was built on the underframe of car RAINBOW (II) that burnt out on 15 August 1936 at Micheldever whilst working a Channel Island Boat Train from Southampton to Waterloo. The other 1951/2 cars were built on Gresley bogies as the construction of these cars had commenced in 1939 but the war put everything on hold. Originally the cars were to form a new Pullman train to operate on the East Coast Main Line.
Car 303 Car 303 was a Pullman Kitchen Car built at the Preston Park, Brighton works in 1952. At 63' long and 8' 5½" wide, it was 1½" narrower than the others on this page. When new, this car was allocated to the "Devon Belle Pullman" train. It spent June 1959 to June 1960 on the Eastern Region, after which it returned to the Southern Region. Photographed here whilst part of the "Bournemouth Belle", it was withdrawn in 1967 and scrapped in 1968.

photograph by Michael Blackbourn

LUCILLE is an all-steel Pullman Parlour Car built by Metro-Cammell in 1929 and originally used on the LNER. It was transferred from the Eastern to the Southern Region in March 1961, where it spent the remainder of its BR days, being noted as part of the formation of the final "Bournemouth Belle" on 9 July 1967. Restored by Thomas Hill of Rotherham and the VSOE workshops at Stewarts Lane, this car is now part of the VSOE Pullman fleet.

photograph by Michael Blackbourn

Car 32 Car 32 was a matchboard bodied Pullman Kitchen Car built by BRCW in 1926 and was unlucky enough to be damaged by enemy action in September 1940. Originally consisting of 46 seats, this number was reduced to 36 in 1945. In 1950 it was in the "Devon Belle" formation and is shown here whilst a part of the "Bournemouth Belle". It was withdrawn in September 1963 and sold for scrap the following January.

photograph by Michael Blackbourn

Car 63 was originally a matchboard bodied Pullman Kitchen Car built by Metro-Cammell in 1928. In 1950 it was rebuilt as a Brake Parlour Car at Preston Park, with the seating reduced from 42 to 36. It worked on the Southern Railway, the LNER, the Eastern and Southern Regions before being withdrawn in 1966.

photograph by Michael Blackbourn

Car 63

We are indebted to Terry Bye for the above information.

Topaz This photograph shows the old Pullman car Topaz as preserved in the National Railway Museum, York, in a rather an awkward position for photography. Topaz was built in 1914 as a Pullman Parlour First seating 24 passengers. As exhibited at the NRM it is in the lined dark red livery of the SECR. Pullmans ran in this colour on the SECR and, for a time, on the Southern Railway before being repainted in brown and cream.

photograph by John Lewis


photograph by Colin Duff

Definitely not on Southern territory (nor did Pullmans run here until preservation!) two Pullman cars in service on the Colne Valley Railway on the 1st April 1991. However these two cars served on the Southern. Hermione is a guise for 3rd class Parlour Car No.36 (built in 1926 for the SR central section, was running in the short lived Plymouth portion of the Devon Belle just before nationalisation and was refurbished in 1951 for service on the Festival of Britain Golden Arrow) the other is former Brighton Belle EMU 1st class car Gwen (latterly in service on the VSOE).

Doris, at one time in use as a Director's dining room at Finsbury Park, London, is a former Brighton Belle first class kitchen car. This car has now been moved to the Bluebell Railway for renovation and eventual use in their Golden Arrow Dining Train.

photograph by Michael Taylor

928 This May 1969 photograph shows Agatha (a 1928 1st class car formerly in non-Southern "Queen of Scots" service, more recently in service on the VSOE), Fingall (a 1924 Kitchen First car) and Car 35 (a 1926 3rd class car built originally for the SR central section which went on to serve on the Devon Belle and following refurbishment in 1951 on the Golden Arrow. Then in the 1960s she was part of scratch hauled sets used to cover for Blue Pullman MU maintenance) on display at the Montagu Museum Beaulieu with Schools class 928.

photograph by Mike Watts

After Beaulieu Fingall had a spell on the Isle of Wight at Haven Street before being repatriated to the mainland and the Bluebell Railway where she is seen here out of service at Horsted Keynes in the early 1980s.

photograph by Colin Duff


All photographs are copyright

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Archive copies of Coupe News and Pullman & CIWL News, newsletters on Pullman and CIWL topics

Photos from inside the derelict Pullman Works at Brighton

This page was created 25 June 2006

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