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Severn Valley Railway Carriage Restorers win Heritage Railway Association Award


By Neil Watts

A RAILWAY carriage rescued from a pub car park has earned a team of Severn Valley Railway volunteers a top award.

Members of the London and North East Railyway (Severn Valley Railway) Coach Fund won the Heritage Railway Association’s top award for excellence in railway vehicle restoration in 2009 at the National Railway Museum in York.

They restored the 1922 Great Northern Railway passenger coach No. 2701 to its former glory over nine years at a cost of £186,000.

LNER (SVR) Coach Fund president, David Williams, said: “The authenticity, accuracy and attention to small detail in the restoration of GNR coach No.2701 is breathtaking and the standard of workmanship over countless thousands of man-hours is of the very highest order.”

The wooden-bodied carriage is now in regular use and can be enjoyed by Severn Valley Railway visitors.

Mr Williams added: “GNR No. 2701 now carries regular fare-paying passengers on SVR timetabled trains but the Queen wouldn’t feel out of place with a seat in this carriage. It’s a sumptuously-restored work of art.”

After a varied history the carriage was purchased by the fund in 1994, having most recently been used as a breakfast room at a Derbyshire pub.

The award will be displayed in the Severn Valley Railway’s Engine House visitor centre in Highley and a commemorative plaque will be carried inside the coach.

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