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Report - British Rail MK2 Coaches, Dalton, April 2020


Surprisingly Unsurprising
Regular User
These coaches had sat on the to-do list for quite some time now, mainly as I have never had the excuse to go so far north. Eventually a reason to visit eventually came to fruition on this occasion as they were on the way between two other spots.



The coaches here are all part of the British Rail Mark 2 Coach family which first introduced in 1964, constructed by British Rail Engineering Limited known best as BREL, up until production finished in 1975. The coaches were introduced to replace the Mark 1 Coaching stock providing better body structures, overall top speed, lowered chance of corrosion and lower maintenance costs as well as improving passenger comforts.

Several variants of the coaches were introduced from the MK2a to the MK2f with varying features such as Air Conditioning, Lowered ceilings, Removal of center doors so on an so forth. Above all this there were further variants for example: Open Brake Second (BSO), Corridor Brake First (BFK), Driving Brake Open Standard (DBSO) and variants such as Class 488 sets for use on the Gatwick Express.
Most of the coaches here are MK2C, D, E or F variants as BFK or TSO types.

The coaches saw a lot of operation until the 90's and early 2000's in which afterwards they were replaced by newer multiple unit rolling stock or displaced by cascades of rolling stock moved from other operators, with some still in use today.

A large portion of these coaches went off to scrap or preservation once their time was up with a rather varied collection of these coaches ending up at the former RAF Dalton Airfield.
After arriving on lorries, they sat here for a fair amount of time not doing much.
In this time the coaches became the backdrop of a horror-comedy film known as "Inbred" which did terribly in terms of ratings but focused on the trains as part of the filming.

The airfield was then slowly emptied of the coaches with the severe damage caused to them by vandalism leaving only seven of them remaining today. All of those remaining still in their former British Rail era Liveries.
Unfortunately those that do remain are not in the greatest of condition with seats removed, rusted floors and parts of the body cut away, their likely future is being in the scrap heap.

The visit
As said, these were a visit en-route to another location and with very little of interest remaining this was a short visit. Parking up outside and getting past the fence the first of the coaches came into view.
After jumping and crawling across the coaches there was only one worth photographing.​

I'll start off with the internals of the best condition coach, numbered E17033 a BFK coach.

Looking down the corridor

In one of the seating booths

The guard's compartment

After bit of hiding from an approaching person/animal, I jumped between the rest of the coaches getting a few snaps from two of the TSO coaches onsite (one of which numbered 6414 or 6415).

Although full of seats this was in good condition.

A bit more chaotic in here.

Unfortunately, I didn't venture into coach 72641 which was part of the former class 844 Gatwick Express set as time was pushing on.
Anyway, that'll be all.



28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Very nice indeed i love old railway carriages you captured them very well i thought these had long gone good to see there still in situ.


Surprisingly Unsurprising
Regular User
Nice, when you had space to relax on a train and the seat you were in wasn't the thickness of an ironing board.
Oh yes to trains. Lovely images. When trains were good to ride on. :thumb
Thanks. They Indeed make a good comparison within the change of train travel, especially comfort, with opening windows and soft seats a thing of the past.


subterranean explorer
Regular User
unfortunatley there are a lot of redundant mark 3 coaches about,
the class 43 (hst) was the best passenger train ever built now replaced by awful 800, 801 azumas.

bring back british railways & nationalise the railways


Surprisingly Unsurprising
Regular User
unfortunatley there are a lot of redundant mark 3 coaches about,
the class 43 (hst) was the best passenger train ever built now replaced by awful 800, 801 azumas.

bring back british railways & nationalise the railways
Indeed there are plenty of redundant MK3s, due to thier age, disability access and lack of septic tanks, although they have mostly gone to scrap. Won't be long until the majority of the MK4s are gone aswell
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