BR 80300 Post Office Sorting Van

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BRBritish Rail or British Railways 80300 Post Office Sorting Van
BR 80300 Post Office Sorting Van.jpg
BRBritish Rail or British Railways 80300 Post Office Sorting Van
Built By BRBritish Rail or British Railways Wolverton
Status Static display
Number W80300
Livery BRBritish Rail or British Railways Maroon
Other numbers M80300
History
Built 1959
Diagram 720
Lot 30486
Type POS
TOPS code NSV
Seats None
1997 Arrived on SVRSevern Valley RailwaySVRA:Severn Valley Railway AssociationSVRS:Severn Valley Railway Society

Carriages

80300 was the first of 96 Post Office sorting vans built between 1959 and 1977 for use in travelling post offices ("TPOs").[1]

Service

80300 was the prototype BRBritish Rail or British Railways Mark 1 Post Office Sorting carriage.[2] It was built by BRBritish Rail or British Railways at Wolverton in 1959 to Diagram 720 (NS501), Lot 30486. It entered service in the Western region in October 1959, transferring to the London Midland region in October 1977.[3] In the latter region it was used on the nightly ‘postal special’ which left Euston for Glasgow at 8.30pm. Stops were made at Crewe and Carlisle to transfer mail to and from other TPOs serving different parts of the country. At one time the coach was fitted with a net and apparatus to allow the high speed collection and dropping of mailbags at 34 locations along the route[4].

Preservation

80300 in use as the visitor centre

80300 arrived on the SVRSevern Valley RailwaySVRA:Severn Valley Railway AssociationSVRS:Severn Valley Railway Society in March 1997 from Barton Hill near Bristol, already restored in late 1960s maroon livery, having been donated to the railway by EWSEnglish, Welsh & Scottish Railway, a rail freight company Railways.[2] It was presented to the railway on indefinite loan in a ceremony at Kidderminster on 21 March 1997 by Richard Dykes, Managing Director of Royal Mail, and Ed Burkhardt, Chairman of EWSEnglish, Welsh & Scottish Railway, a rail freight company.[5]

Before the opening of the Engine House in 2008, 80300 was used as the visitor centre at Highley. This visitor centre was officially opened on 2 June 2001.[6]

As of 2019, 80300 is on long term display at The Engine House with the interior accessible to the public. The ‘postal special’ featured in the 1936 GPOGeneral Post Office film ‘Night Mail’, noted for the poem written by WH Auden and music by Benjamin Britten. Part of this film can be seen in the TPOTravelling Post Office at Highley.

See also

References

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Post_Office_Sorting_Van
  2. 2.02.1 SVRSevern Valley RailwaySVRA:Severn Valley Railway AssociationSVRS:Severn Valley Railway Society Stock Book 9th Edition
  3. Longworth (2013) p.182.
  4. Information displayed in the coach
  5. SVRSevern Valley RailwaySVRA:Severn Valley Railway AssociationSVRS:Severn Valley Railway Society News 122
  6. SVRSevern Valley RailwaySVRA:Severn Valley Railway AssociationSVRS:Severn Valley Railway Society News 137

Links