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The "Barnum" Open 3rds - in service

Revised, expanded and handbill repaired.

The Barnums served in different ways in GCR, LNER and BR days:

1 - The heaviest GCR excursions
2 - Intermediate size GCR excursions
3 - Excursions for small parties
4 - In express service as a 3rd class dining car
5 - In express service as a through coach
6 - Mid-LNER
7 - Later LNER
8 - BR period
9 - Note for modellers.

It's fitting to look at a sample handbill from the 1910s first:

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I have repaired a battered handbill from 1913 (they were printed on recycled paper which a century later has yellowed badly and begun to disintegrate - the PRO at Kew has a collection of handbills like this and when I last saw them some years ago, they lay on a bed of what looked like confetti as they simply fell apart. This one is in my own collection and despite being protected, handling still causes bits to fall off. The days of items like this are alas numbered).

It advertised twice-weekly half-day excursions in May from Sheffield to Marylebone which were organised by the GCR's travel agents, Dean & Dawson. It is impossible to tell what kind of carriages were provided, nor how many but a couple of things stand out:

- it was sold as a "corridor" train with full catering in both directions.
- outside of meal times,"light refreshments" were offered. This was an early example of restaurant cars being used to provide what would later be called a buffet service.
- departure was at 11.12am, arrival Marylebone at 2.45pm, return at 12.40am. Flexibility was offered by an earlier return on the Down 6.20pm (Bradford express) or on the Sunday, at 5.30pm (Manchester express) but as can be seen, tickets for return by an express were normally more expensive - almost double and treble the half-day rate. It was a device to discourage excursionists from using better-appointed timetabled expresses.

In practice

There were big differences between full and half-day excursions, and the distance covered, which led to widely varying stock being used - from 6w carriages to bogie stock, non-gangwayed and gangwayed. Often in combination.

There is a belief that complete trains of Barnum carriages were operated by the GCR but the evidence points otherwise, to use in small quantities mixed with other carriages. Large formations have so far only been found later in the LNER period c1930, a few years before the LNER started building Buffet Tourist Trains, when the Barnums were dispersed.

Some non-excursion uses have also come to light so I have divided the subject into separate parts.

1 - The heaviest excursions

At first, there wasn't enough open stock to provide for a really heavy excursion and normal practice was to use elderly stock cascaded out of front line line express service, ie.
- pre-matchboard gangwayed carriages (Parker 46'6" and Parker-style 50') and
- pre-matchboard non-gangwayed carriages (50' clerestory and London Suburban)
to which a few Barnums could be added.

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8E No 365 Sir William Pollitt is supported by another Atlantic with a train of at least 12 carriages at an unknown location. The back of the print was captioned "Down Sheffield Special" (an awfully common mischief by photographers seeking to boost the commercial sales of their photographs) and it looks like a heavy excursion made up with a variety of carriages going back to 1899. Leading are:

  T

50'

non-gangwayed clerestory

  T

50'

non-gangwayed London Suburban

  TO

60'

Barnum

  TO

60'

Barnum

BTK?

46'6"

gangwayed Parker

  ?

50'

gangwayed Parker-style

...remainder unclear

Note the absence of a brake end near the tender, as if the leading 4 carriages were an addition. Non-gangwayed stock was normally placed outside the gangwayed carriages anyway. The rest of the train is alas too blurred to resolve. Photo: H. Gordon Tidey sepia postcard, author's collection.

A tricky point is whether or not catering had been provided but was further back in the train and cannot be seen? But it should be borne in mind that when Dean & Dawson advertised excursions, from Sheffield to London and back, for example, they were pointedly described as "Corridor Dining Car Expresses" and it's unlikely that non-gangwayed carriages as seen in the train above would have been allowed. The handbills also stated that "Light Refreshments" could be provided - what was later called a buffet service.

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It would be nice to date this picture by H. Gordon Tidey and to identify the location better than "near Leicester" but the best that I can say is sometime between 1912-1922, probably later rather than earlier. In charge of 11 carriages is 8B (LNER C4) No 362. Photo: H. Gordon Tidey, Real Photos.

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Not all the carriages are identifiable but the body of the formation comprises 7 gangwayed carriages - old Parker style of 1899 and the slightly longer Robinson version of the early 1900s, and three matchboard carriages, one of which is a Barnum. One might have expected a catering carriage in so long a train but it's impossible to tell. A single identifiable carriage is providing 1st Class seats at the London buffers end. Four non-gangwayed 3rd Class carriages were marshalled at the ends.

  T

3rd

50' London Suburban

------

---------------------

-----------------------------

BCK

1st/3rd brake

60' matchboard

BTK

3rd brake

45'9" Parker-style

(1899)

  TK?

3rd

50' Parker-style

(1900s)

  TK?

3rd

45' Parker-style

(1899)

  TO

3rd open

60' Barnum

  TK?

3rd

Parker-style

  ??

?

matchboard

------

---------------------

-----------------------------

  T?

3rd

50' clerestory

  T?

3rd

50' clerestory

BT?

3rd brake

50' clerestory

The general impression is of a heavy excursion made up with 7 corridor coaches of all kinds, old and new, no catering and a single Barnum underlining how indiscriminately these "excursion" carriages were used. The formation is surrounded by four old non-gangwayed carriages, the use of which in long distance services was a poor practice.

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The LNER version heads north with a "Marylebone-Leicester" 10-carriage excursion behind B3 No 6165 Valour. The date can be estimated by the loco's aquisition of side screens to the cab in 5/1933 and allocation to Neasden 1933-34 and late '35-'38. Not all the carriages can be made out although the leading four are clear:

  TK

61'6"

Gresley

BTK

61'6"

Gresley

  TO

60'

Barnum

  TO

60'

Barnum

... remainder unclear

It is possible that there was a catering carriage further down the train but I cannot be sure. Either way, it's another example of small numbers of Barnums still being deployed with heavy excursions on the GC Section. Photo: Author's collection.

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2 - Intermediate size GCR excursions

These were generally around 7 carriages long and a higher proportion of open carriages could be deployed.

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8B Atlantic No 1086 heads a down excursion made up to 7 carriages and many different types in which 5 opens were included, albeit only three of them "Barnums" - which led the train. Following them were the older carriages, tailed by a non-gangwayed brake end:

BTO

3rd open brake

60'

Barnum

  TO

3rd open

60'

Barnum

  TO

3rd open

60'

Barnum

  TO

3rd open

60' 12w

Parker-style

RT

3rd restaurant

50'

Parker-style

  TO

3rd open

60' 12w

Parker-style

BT

3rd brake

50' non-gangwayed

London Suburban

They've been arranged tidily, but what a variety! Note the trio of Parker-style carriages behind the Barnums which include two 60ft Parker-style TOs. These dated from 1906-07 when six had been built on 6w bogies as 3rd class dining cars - they created quite a stir - but as matchboard catering was built they became increasingly surplus to requirements and could be cascaded for use as general service opens in excursions. In between them is a 3rd Restaurant car of 1903, also relegated after matchboard catering arrived. It's a rare example of the GCR providing catering in an excursion for which the now-relegated RTs would have been a good choice, whether offering cooked meals or a buffet-style service.

The London Suburban BT on the far end would have resulted from a shortage of gangwayed brake ends in high summer. Pity the occupants for they would not have been able to reach the catering.

Note, by the way, how clean these London-based "Barnums" are compared with the ones from further north. Photo: Author's collection.

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Another 7-carriage excursion from Marylebone, this time behind 11E No 432 Sir Edward Frasier, heads north through Charwelton after picking up water on the troughs. On this occasion 5 "Barnum" opens with a single BTO were provided with corridor coaches outside them.

Barnum BTOs were relatively thin on the ground and, on the north end of the train, a Parker BTK was used instead.

This time, no catering was provided. At the far end of the train, a conventional matchboard carriage was added but it looks like a TK or a CK (excursions were known to provide a few 1st class seats). A possible explanation may be that a composite had its 1st class seats placed at the station buffers end for the boarding convenience of the upper class travellers; it became a common practice at terminal stations but in this case it is hard to be sure. The upshot is that this was another mixed formation with 5 Barnums and 2 other types. Photo: LGRP.

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New addition.

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I've included this picture to show what did not happen! This is a colour postcard of a watercolour painting produced and sold commercially by LPC (it is not a GCR Official) and the fiction is on the front and the back. Some of these watercolour pictures were based on an actual photograph and were quite realistic; others, however, were fictional, and this is an example. Different captions were offered between the print runs:

"GCR 12.15pm Bradford leaving Marylebone station"

"LNER (GC Section) Sheffield Express"

Both are bogus, plenty being known about these services and their composition to show how fanciful these captions were. One might conclude that the picture might actually show an excursion but there is no record of GCR Barnums being deployed like this. Note that the whole train is not shown - it's as if the artist knew that there was no such thing and offered this painting to deliberately give a false impression. The upshot is that the whole thing, from the painting to the captions, is not true to life. And that commercial postcard can tell porkies!

It does, however, give a good impression of the heyday of freshly varnished teak. LPC postcard, Chris Golder collection.

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3 - Excursions for small parties

For modestly sized, privately booked excursion parties, by a club or society, for example, where only 1-2 carriages were required, they were attached to normally timetabled expresses, either travelling the whole route of the express or only part of it. It was a common practice and it is evident that Barnums were distributed around the GCR's principal stations with such traffic in mind. These carriages were normally placed behind the tender where they could look like strengtheners. There had been a period c1900-1905 when the GCR was short of carriages and when pressed, had used non-gangwayed carriages as strengtheners but this died out after more Parker-style carriages were built and then, of course, the matchboard versions.

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An old LGRP print whose caption may be suspect but states that 11F No 509 Prince Albert is passing Ashby Magna "on an Up Bradford Express". It's not clear enough for me to analyse the formation beyond a non-gangwayed 50' clerestory 3rd and, ahead of it, two Barnum TOs which, I suspect, were serving a chartered excursion party from Bradford. The non-gangwayed clerestory would have separated them from the main body of the train and its catering and it's not clear if it had been added as a strengthener to the main train or the excursion. Indeed, it may have been added deliberately to prevent 3rd class excursionists on cheap fares from availing themselves of the restaurant car. Photo: LGRP.

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An unusually heavy express which is being double-headed, this time by 8B No 263 and 11D No 1020 near Leicester in September 1921. The back of the card is captioned "Down Manchester" and this may be plausible, after a Bank Holiday, for example. It is evident that six carriages, the body of the train, are carrying nameboards and included a restaurant car.

On the rear is an unidentified and unboarded carriage and, behind the loco, two similarly unboarded Barnum TOs. Whether they had been added for an excursion party or as strengtheners is impossible to tell, nor if they would have travelled the whole way or been detached en route, at Sheffield, for example.

It's only fair to add that nine heavily loaded carriages were too much for a GCR Atlantic on the difficult route that was the London Extension. Photo: anonymous, author's collection.

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Class 1 (LNER B2) No 424 City of Lincoln sweeps down from Woodhead through Guide Bridge with a heavy 9-coach express for Manchester.

I am unable to identify the service and can only say that six of the carriages are carrying roof destination boards - two on the rear are not, and neither is the Barnum which has been placed inside the leading brake (roof racks were not fitted on the Barnums until LNER days - at this time they were just above the windows and are empty). The Barnum could have been for an excursion party travelling the whole route of the timetabled express and been deliberately placed inside the leading brake. Photo: W.H. Whitworth, LNER Press Section TO/72, author's collection.

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4 - In express service as a 3rd class dining car

This was rare and could happen if a normal dining car with 2:1 seating wasn't available and only a Barnum with excursion-style seating of 2:2 could be found. This was known to happen on other parts of the LNER with a Gresley 2:2 TO and it was abnormal because the tables were smaller and more cramped. As soon as a carriage with the right arrangement was available it would be put back into the formation. It's a good example of the practical reality of any human endeavor, really, with operating rules not set in stone as some modellers like to believe.

The two examples I have are from late GCR and early LNER days when Marylebone's express sets were dominated by matchboard carriages. As the years passed and more full-length dining cars became available, the need to use a Barnum as a stand-in would have disappeared.

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9P No 1169 Lord Faringdon departs Marylebone with a Down express which, remarkably for the period, has been strengthened behind the tender by two non-gangwayed carriages - a 50' London Suburban 3rd (T) and a 56' matchboard composite (C). As usual, neither was carrying destination boards. The London Suburban carriage dated from c1905 but the composite was recently built in 1920, which gives a date for the picture of the last years of the GCR. It is hard not to view the company's continued provision of non-gangwayed and suburban carriages for long-distance catering expresses with dismay.

  T

3rd

50'

London Suburban

  C

1st/3rd

56'

matchboard

BTK

3rd brake

60'

matchboard

  TO

3rd open (dining)

60'

matchboard

  TO

3rd open

60'

Barnum

RC?

1st/3rd restaurant    

60'

matchboard

... rem. not visible

In the middle of the main part of the train the catering has also been strengthened. Leading is a TO(dining) [to GCR 5C6 or 5C7 with 2:1 seating], behind which a second dining car was inserted by using a Barnum TO [with 2:2 seating]. At least it looks like it had been shopped recently and was looking quite fresh. It wasn't granted destination boards. The restaurant car beyond is hard to identify but may be an RC to GCR 5M2. Photo: F. Moore's Railway Photographs, author's collection.

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The second example was captured a few miles further north near Harrow where the gradient of the route built by the Metroplitan Railway steepened to 1:90 and shows the 3.20pm express to Manchester behind B3 Earl Beatty after it was renumbered No 6164 c.11-7-25. This mid-afternoon express left Marylebone as a medium size formation of 5 GCR carriages and, on the rear, alas out of sight,1-2 LMS coaches for Halifax, to be detached at Penistone. At Sheffield a GCR Locker composite (to be described separately) was attached, travelling between Bournemouth-Bradford, also for detachment at Penistone.

On this occasion the dining car in the catering pair (RF,TO), normally a 48-seat type with 2:1 seating, was replaced by a Barnum and the substitute is not carrying destination boards. Photo: Author's collection.

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It's hard not to view these two pictures with dismay for not only was an excursion carriage deployed for the catering in these two long-distance expresses, so was a pair of suburban carriages with no lavatories nor access to the catering. This practice seemed to have been knocked on the head in the late 1900s yet it was being revisited some 15 years later. Not until the LNER was established were the London expresses on the former GCR operated entirely with gangwayed carriages and no suburban or excursion stand-ins.

5 - In express service as a through coach

Using an all-3rd class Barnum for this purpose was extremely unusual, hard to explain, and only one example has been found, in LNER days, in the "North Country Continental" which was a complex service running between Harwich-Manchester-Liverpool and a core of 50' GER/ex-GER vehicles, including the catering. Gresleys modernised part of the non-catering.

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Ex-GER B12 No 8557 in the late 1920s has the "North Country Continental". The caption on the back of the print states that it's the Up train but it looks to me like the Down train at Torside, between Sheffield and Manchester. The GE Section provided the loco as far as Manchester and the carriages, too. In this case they comprise two Gresley 61'6" (BTK,CK) followed by ex-GER 50' catering (RF,TO), tailed by another ex-GER carriage (BTK).

At the front was a through carriage between Lincoln and Liverpool for which a 64-seat 60' 3rd Open "Barnum" was rostered. It's condition was close to as-built plus the addition of destination board racks. Boards were probably not carried because the service was unique (and the train was frequently revised). By contrast, the main body of the train was carrying triple destination boards. The Barnum was shown in the roster for 1929 but had gone by 1937.

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An undated view, probably from the 1930s before this loco was modified with Caprotti valve gear (in 1938) and the carriage roster was changed (by 1937), shows B3 No 6167, formerly Lloyd George, passing through Woodhead station on the ascent to the summit with the Up "North Country Continental" and the Barnum TO at the head as a through carriage between Liverpool-Lincoln. Destination boards were not provided but gangway adaptors would have been fitted to allow passenger to reach the rest of the train and its catering.

The Barnum's carriage windows are as originally built but roof racks for destination boards have been added. It's not possible to tell whether or not a curved rainstrip had also been fitted. Photo: R.S. Carpenter.

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This section expanded with more info and an enlargement.

6 - Mid-LNER

The GCR had introduced the Barnum Opens for its excursion traffic but I have found no evidence from GCR days of complete trains of Barnums, nor with the addition of catering. The LNER is known to have provided substantial catering with its excursions on the GNML, which until the mid-1930s were made up in the classic old style with elderly carriages. There was a transition period in the late 1920s and early '30s when Gresley moved towards the use of dedicated 64-seat 3rd Opens (with a similar capacity to the Barnums) in 1927-28 by building an all steel design (D.28) of which 12 were for the GC Section and 9, the GN Section. Here is an example:

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D11 No 5503 Somme is seen in the late 1920s/early 1930s near Wadsley Bridge with a Marylebone-Manchester express. Behind the loco where there might previously have been a pair of Barnums for an excursion party are two Gresley all-steel TOs to D.28. Note that, once again, a non-gangwayed 50' London Suburban carriage was placed between the Open 3rds and the main train, presumably to keep the excursionists out of the main train and its top-drawer catering. Photo: Author's collection.

  TO

61'6"'

Gresley all-steel D28

  TO

61'6"'

Gresley all-steel D28

  CL

50''

ex-GCR London Suburban

BTK

61'6"'

Gresley

.... and so on,

M'bone express, remainder not visible.

This was basically a modernisation of the Barnums in formations described in (3) above, which the LNER decided to concentrate in excursions sets plus catering, which are described next. This was a precursor to two developments by the LNER:

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Conversion of carriages into buffet cars and kitchen cars - for running with excursions as the LNER wised up about providing dedicated catering in excursions. On the GN and NE, conversion began to Buffet Cars and on the GC, of RCs into RKs.

Construction of Buffet Tourist Trains - which are described separately,

The transition period in the late 1920s/early 1930s - saw newly formed excursion sets dominated by Barnums plus catering.

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The first view was captured behind B7 5470 in the Pennines (from Manchester at Torside)? The train gets hard to decipher towards the far end and scrutiny of the original suggests that this was a Barnum formation with a matchboard restaurant car 4th from the far end. It would have been one of the 56' or 60' RCs of 1911-13, such as GCR 4M2, deliberately deployed from the reserve catering pool, which grew in size after Gresley RFs started being provided for expresses on the London Extension.

Hence the 9-carriage train was made up:

BTO    3rd open brake
  TO    3rd open
  TO    3rd open
  TO    3rd open
  TO    3rd open
RC     1st/3rd restaurant car
  TO    3rd open
  TO    3rd open
BTO    3rd open brake

Note the contrast between the two styles of end vestibule grab handles. An underlying question is, was the RC being used to provide a restaurant service, or something lighter, buffet-style? It helps to bear in mind that the GCR had been unique in dabbling (and failing) with buffet cars in 1899 in expresses. This would have been a new venture. Photo: Real Photographs.

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Two more pictures show excursion trains based on Barnums on the GNML, again with a restaurant car added:

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There is much to say about this picture, beginning with the date, which is unknown. The best that I can offer is between 1927-34, based on the loco livery and the catering. Photo: Author's collection.

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The back of the print states "Langley Troughs", which I believe is correct, but also "Up Sheffield Excursion" - which I am not sure about. C1 No 4421 was a Doncaster loco from 1927-47 and may have been borrowed, and the destination of King's Cross seen as more enticing than Marylebone. It would have been routed via Retford. At a time before the Buffet Tourist Trains were built (and the GN Section took quite a large number but the GC took none. Thereafter the GC Section would borrow TTS from the GN Section).

There's no foliage on the trees so it wasn't a summer excursion and a solar calculator gives an approximate time of 4.30pm and arrival at King's Cross of getting on for 5.30pm, which is unusual and I cannot explain.

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The 8-carriage train was formed with:

BTO    3rd open brake
  TO    3rd open
  TO    3rd open
RC     1st/3rd restaurant car
  TO    3rd open
  TO    3rd open
  TO    3rd open
BTO    3rd open brake

A few points about the Barnums and aspects described in the main body of this topic:

- There were two types of handrail at the end vestibule and both versions stand out clearly in the two pictures above.

- The Barnums were modified by the LNER by fitting toplights in the matchboarding above some of the large picture windows. The main point here is that in this picture, none of the Barnums had been modified and this endorses an earlier rather than a later date for the picture.

- Roof destination boards had already been fitted and they show quite well. No boards were being carried, which was normal with excursions.

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New addition.

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C1 No 4434 (SHE) leaves Wood Green tunnel with an excursion whose target reads No 114, which would be quite early in the year, during the winter, which is supported by the leafless trees in the background. The loco was at Neepsend from 6/23 to 3/37 and its livery plus the carriages suggest a date of c1930 and another excursion from Sheffield, like one behind C1 4421 above. Photo: author's collection

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The 9-coach formation is similar to the one behind C1 No 4421 shown above:

BTO   3rd open brake
  TO    3rd open
  TO    3rd open
  TO    3rd open
  TO    3rd open
RC     1st/3rd restaurant car
  TO    3rd open
BTO    3rd open brake
   ?       unknown

The RC is hard to identify but has the feel of a design like 5M2 with individual compartments and external doors. The carriage on the far end is impossible to identify and could be a lone composite.

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7 - Later LNER

Construction of new trains and carriages for excursions led to a gradual dispersal of Barnums into the secondary fleet of pre-Grouping carriages.

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This picture is the most curious that I have come across on this subject. Taken on the GNML at Sandy at an unknown date in the early '30s, it shows a secondary GN Section Ordinary Passenger heading towards King's Cross with a 4-set made up with ex-GNR carriages:

BCL

1st/3rd brake

58'1 1/2"

BT-CL (ex-6w twin)

1st/3rd brake

B (6w)

brake van

Unfortunately the camera was jarred at the moment of exposure which has given rise to a doubling of horizontal lines and made analysis of details difficult. For example, the two goods wagons behind the loco: they would have been fitted with AVB or through pipe but I cannot tell if they are flat or bolster wagons. They would have been detached somewhere en route by the train engine. Secondary services on the GNML were much used for conveying all sorts and that includes the two carriages on the rear.

On the far end there appears to be a Howlden 45' bogie van. Inside it is the remarkable sight of a fresh-looking ex-GCR TO "Barnum" and I can only suggest that it was being ferried south for transfer to Cambridge where Barnums were known in LNER days. Photo: anonymous, author's collection.

A thought crosses my mind for modellers of the GN Section that such a movement could easily be modelled, with almost any kind of recently refurbished carriage.

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This view reached me as a small contact print and it's a relatively rare service view of a Barnum BTO. The date was c1938 and the location is just south of Woodford & Hinton, by the SMJ over-bridge on the approach to Culworth Junction. In the distance the signals are off for the Banbury Branch.

In charge is Sheffield's C1 No 3287 with what looks like a summer Saturday extra for Bournemouth and the sunny south. The formation is a classic "made up" one with a miscellany of carriages including LNER Gresleys and pre-Grouping carriages with what looks like an ex-ECJS TK and, behind the tender, a brake end for which a Barnum BTO was found. Photo: J. Suter Collection.

Condition of the carriage is the later version with toplights and sliding ventilators added, plus destination boards on the roof and a curved rain strip. The lavatory window, originally with an etched GCR coat of arms, would now have been plain.

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8 - The BR period

The Barnums remained in excursion trains and pictures show them in the North of England as single vehicles mixed with all sorts of carriages, which was common practice for many years. They were, after all, better than many elderly or even not so old, non-gangwayed carriages with suburban-style compartments.

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Here is an example at Hull Paragon in July 1949. Ex-NER Class A6 No 69796 is moving a train of empty stock which has the air of a summer excursion "made-up" set with a variety of ex-LNER and pre-Grouping carriages. The rear of the train is concealed but the leading six coaches can be made out:

  TO

60'

ex-GCR Barnum

  TK

52'6"'

Gresley

BTK

61'6"'

Gresley

BT

50'

ex-GCR London Suburban

BTK-TK

52' (twin)

Gresley (SP)

.... remainder not visible.

The steel-panelled twin had been built in 1935 for the GN Section's "steel quintuple sets". The oldest carriage in the train that's visible was the ex-GCR non-gangwayed one from around 1905. The "Barnum" was 38 years old and would have lasted for a further half-dozen years until displaced by slightly less old stock. Note how much of the loco and train was still of pre-Grouping origin. Sights like this were common in Summer and continued well into BR days, in this case for excursions to York or the coastal resorts. Photo: Real Photographs.

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The second example dates from June 1950 and shows an 8-coach excursion behind Thompson K1 No 62030 at Croft Spa. Another wonderful miscellany of old carriages has been deployed. Leading is an ex-GNR brake end with an ex-GCR Barnum TO behind it. Photo: Photomatic.

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In this undated view from the early 1950s at Basford North, a few miles north of Nottingham Victoria, B1 No 61188 (Colwick) appears to have called with an excursion made up of Gresley 61'6" carriages in b&c livery and, as the leading brake end, an ex-GCR Barnum BTO (which appears to be still carrying varnished teak livery). Author's collection.

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At an unknown location in the early 1950s, York's B16 No 61468 has an 8-coach excursion with a wonderful mixture of ex-LNER and pre-Grouping carriages going back to before the Great War. The leading trio is ex-NER, ex-GNR and ex-GCR. Clearly visible further back is an ex-GCR TO "Barnum".

BR lettering can be seen but the body colours would still have been ex-LNER, either varnished wood or painted brown. The second (ex-GNR) carriage has the freshest roof but the lettering is LNER-style, perhaps with an "E" prefix. Right at the back is a single carriage in BR carmine & cream. It's clearly gangwayed and it looks like a Gresley on steel-angle trussing. The main points are two-fold: that this is another example of old carriages being kept on for excursions and yet another period of transitional liveries. BR-period modellers recognise the existence of carmine & cream rubbing shoulders with maroon, but the slightly earlier transition tends not to be seen. Photo: Author's colelction.

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9 - A note for modellers

GCR - There is no evidence of all-Barnum trains during GCR days and of five different options, the easiest way to use Barnums would be as a pair (TO,TO) outside a main line express, possibly separated by an older, non-gangwayed carriage.

Mid-LNER - for a few years complete sets with catering by an ex-GCR matchboard RC (Dia 4M2) can be modelled although it calls for a lot of kitbuilding, but what a sight!

Late LNER and BR - It gets easier as the Barnums aged and the odd one can be added to a relief or an excursion, in both cases where a jumble of older carriages was deployed. One aspect that modellers may struggle with is the livery because in early BR days when the b&c livery came in, pre-grouping carriages like this retained their varnished teak livery or were painted brown: it's hard to tell from a b&w print, colour slides from this era are more help albeit indirectly. This is touched on above.

GCR Barnums - design: is here.

GCR carriages - 60ft matchboard: are here.

GCR London Extension - express passenger workings: is here.

GCR carriages - Barnums: are here.

GCR carriages - 50ft London Suburban: are here.

Modelling GCR clerestories: is here.

GCR horse boxes: are here

GCR milk vans: are here.

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