MGWR 53

At a glance:

Builder:Midland Great Western Railway (Broadstone Works)
Build date:1892
Original company:Midland Great Western Railway
Withdrawal date:1964
Final company:Córas Iompair Éireann
Arrived at DCDR:2006
Current status:Museum display
Current owner:DCDR

Over 70 of these carriages were constructed in the 1890s to a standard design en masse, to provide passenger accommodation on the Midland Great Western Railway’s then-new branch lines. 53 was built in the MGWR’s Broadstone works in Dublin, seating third-class passengers. The carriage passed into the ownership of Great Southern Railways in 1925, who suffixed it with an ‘M’, and then Córas Iompair Éireann twenty years later. It was withdrawn in 1964 as one of the last 30ft carriages in use in Ireland to be put on the departmental books as an examiner’s coach on the Thurles breakdown train.

When it came to the end of its service life in the 1980s, the carriage was purchased by the Great Southern Railway Preservation Society at Mallow – without their efforts, there would certainly be far fewer of these museum pieces around today. After many years of lying outside in both Mallow and Inchicore, it was brought to Downpatrick along with MGWR 25 and SLNCR B in 2006. It is on display in unrestored condition in the Carriage Gallery, and will eventually be overhauled pending time and money.