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SECR Passenger Luggage Van 153

South Eastern & Chatham Railway - 153 Passenger Luggage Van (1922)
Martin Oakley

Type: Passenger Luggage Van (PLV) - BR classification: PMV
Built: (by Bristol Carriage & Wagon Co.) 1922
Original No: 153
Other Nos: SR: 1994 (Aug.1930), BR: S1994S, DS 70031 (1959)
Length: 32'
Weight: 13 Tons
Withdrawn: 1973
Preserved: 1973
To Bluebell: 17/11/1973

The general purpose Luggage Vans were used for the carriage of parcels, newspapers, and many other forms of general merchandise. The SECR design of 1919 became the standard for the Southern Railway, and such vans were still being built to essentially the same design in the early days of British Railways in 1951. They were rated to run in passenger trains, and were frequently used as extra luggage vans on longer distance trains.

This van was the very last to be repainted from SECR brown, to SR green, in August 1930. Of very simple design, with the metal framing exposed, and planked on the inside, they are easy to maintain. Most of the 45 SECR-built vehicles continued in departmental use on BR right into the 1970s and a couple until 1989.

It was brought to the Bluebell by our famous "Alf Brown Gang Tea Fund", its purchase being paid for out of the surplus in the fund, and indicative of the level of tea consumption within the group.

In 1998 the Alf Brown Group re-covered the roof with a new canvas, and it was then repainted so that it could play its part in the 1999 celebrations of the centenary of the South Eastern & Chatham Railway.

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