Dining Car number 76, London & North Western Railway
Railway carriage, London & North Western Railway, No.76, first class dining car, sometimes used in the Royal Train.
This vehicle was built by the London & North Western Railway at Wolverton Works in 1900.
This particular vehicle was originally listed in the West Coast Joint Stock, jointly owned by the Caledonian Railway and the L&NWR. It was however, almost immediately sent on exhibition to Paris where it won a gold medal for craftsmanship and finish, and on its return was permanently allocated to the Royal Train. The carriage made its first journey with King Edward VII’s new train in 1904, from which time it was in regular use as the principal Royal Train dining car for the next 52 years.
Originally the interior arrangement followed the standard L&NWR end-kitchen pattern with accommodation for 20 first class passengers, all in single seats. In 1938/39 the car body was still in first class order so it was given a new chassis to enable it to run at higher speeds; while in 1942 the fixed seats were removed from one compartment and replaced by the present centre table and armchairs.
Withdrawn in 1956 it was exhibited for many years in the post-war Royal Train livery, a plain dark red colour, firstly in the Museum of British Transport at Clapham and later at York. In 1977 it was taken back to Wolverton for a complete overhaul and repaint, when opportunity was taken to reinstate the L&NWR carmine lake and white colour scheme which it carried from 1900 to 1940. As displayed it now carries the insignia of the London, Midland & Scottish Railway into whose ownership it passed at Grouping in 1923. The L&NWR colours were retained after 1923 by royal request.
Although ‘royal’ by association and use, Dining Saloon No. 76 is an entirely typical turn of the century vehicle and was one of many similar carriages used by all classes of passenger.