Facts sought on a Suburban coach towed by 3car DMU

Discussion in 'Wagons & Rolling Stock' started by Tallpaul70, Jul 29, 2019.

  1. Tallpaul70

    Tallpaul70 Full Member

    Likes Received:
    Mar 2, 2019
    Hi All,
    In a book called "Memories of the Railway between Didcot and Banbury" there is a photo dated as Thursday 4th September 1962 of a 3 car DMU forming the 11.29am train from Banbury to Oxford. The DMU is towing a suburban coach which would normally be steam hauled.

    Does anyone know why this was done? Did this happen often?
    If the train needed strengthening then a coach on the rear is a bit of a desperate measure as when the train reached Oxford it would need the DMU to "run round it" if it was to be used on the return journey!
    Anyone any ideas or evidence of similar practice elsewhere?

    Many thanks
  2. York Paul

    York Paul Staff Member Moderator

    Likes Received:
    Aug 20, 2017
    The practice of DMUs pulling a fitted van was not uncommon in the days when parcels traffic were more widespread, on certain diagrams at particular times when traffic flows were heavy a DMU set could be strengthened with a spare coach or a DMU would be employed as tow to return a coach back to a particular point on the network if the coach had become "out of circuit" for some reason and had to be reformed to a
    coaching set. I doubt very much if a DMU would have ever run round a trailer coach though, that work if needed would have been performed by a station pilot shunt engine but this type of work would have virtually disappeared by the 1970's. Certainly a DMU would not have anything more than one bogie trailer vehicle attached because of the drawbar restriction pulling weight on the DMU and automatic braking capability of the unit. We must remember that a DMU was quite a lightweight train and only powered by Leyland Atlantean bus engines abate in horizontal form.
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2019
    Andy_Sollis and Tallpaul70 like this.
  3. Andy_Sollis

    Andy_Sollis Full Member

    Likes Received:
    Aug 4, 2018

    Whilst it was resident on the CVR, Kev Dowd did one or two demonstrations with the class 104 DMU pulling a box van.

    They are now based on the ELR and NNR
    Tallpaul70 and York Paul like this.

Share This Page