W55006 after a 14 month overhaul
This vehicle was built as a single unit diesel railcar at Gloucester Works by the Gloucester Carriage and Wagon Company in 1958, as one of a batch delivered in 1958, being a class 122 vehicle from Lot 30419, diagram number 539.
This class of vehicles initially went into service on the British Railways Western Region and its lines around Birmingham, Stourbridge and Leamington Spa, and later some London area branch lines. By the 1960s these units were concentrated on the West Country branch lines. It appeared in various liveries (see note in vehicle 51073 below about liveries in general) but was first outshopped in British Railways DMU green being repainted around 1967 into rail blue and later, around 1980, into blue and grey. In 1984 this unit was transferred to Longsight depot in Manchester for use on the Stockport – Stalybridge line.However, it returned to the West Country in 1987 due to problems being experienced with the replacements units, the class 142 pacers. It was eventually replaced on the Looe, Newquay and St Ives lines in 1993 by class 153 units and later despatched to MC Metals at Sheffield for scrapping in 1995, from whence it was rescued for preservation by Mr M Evans, who is the proud owner, who has restored it to its original livery. It is one of six examples in preservation.
The vehicle has been running as M55006 as the railway is in the Midlands, however, it has been returned to the original W55006 after the vehicle emerged from bodywork repairs in the spring of 2013.
Seats: 65 second
BR set number: P106