The Swanage Railway Trust owns, and is custodian to, one of the country's most important collections of former Southern Railway coaches. This collection has been carefully assembled to represent the types of coaches that served the area and includes a number of vehicles that regularly visited the Swanage branch. The Heritage Coach Plan is divided into three key sections: a four coach Bulleid set, a two coach Maunsell push-pull set and a five coach Ironclad/Maunsell set. Full project details can be found via the link below which will open a PDF file.
Restoration of Bulleid Semi-Open Brake Third coach no. 4365 and Bulleid Corridor Composite coach no. 5761 have now been completed by our team of volunteers and it is hoped that both of these historic coaches from the 1940s will remain in traffic for many years. This marks an important 50% achievement point in this section of the Project which will hopefully serve as a springboard for the restoration of the other two Bulleid coaches – Bulleid Open Third no. 1457 and Brake Third coach no. 4366.
Preliminary design work on the unique Maunsell push-pull set has already taken place and the Trust will be applying for grant aid to help launch this project. Restoration work on Maunsell Open Third coach no. 1346 (built in 1933) has started and the coach has been despatched to specialist off-site contractors.
Travelling in a restored heritage coach is a far more enjoyable experience compared to a more functional BR Mk 1 coach but, as you will appreciate, restoration of one of these coaches from a dilapidated condition is an extremely expensive undertaking. We urgently need additional funds and would be very grateful for any support – no matter how small - that you can provide us to help save these important historic vehicles for future generations.
The Heritage Coach Fund has been set up to receive both lump sum and regular payments. Even a couple of pounds a month can make a big difference. Please make a one off payment or contact us if you wish to make a regular payment.