4COR 3142 is the Southern Electric Group’s preserved electric multiple unit, built in 1938 for the Southern Railway. We also have a 5th COR vehicle in our care.
The 5 vehicles are: 4COR Vehicles
|11201||DMBTO||(Driving Motor Brake Third Open)||In commercial store, not available for viewing|
|11161||DMBTO||(Driving Motor Brake Third Open)||Restored and operational at East Kent Railway|
|10096||TK||(Trailer Third Corridor)||In commercial store, not available for viewing|
|11825||CK||(Trailer Composite Corridor)||In commercial store, not available for viewing|
|11187 *||DMBTO||(Driving Motor Brake Third Open)||Restored and operational at East Kent Railway|
* 11187 was owned by the late Brian Juniper and is now in the care of the Southern Electric Group
4COR 3142 PRESERVATION HISTORY
In the Beginning …
The Southern Electric Group was originally planning to buy a 2BIL unit, however in mid-1971 the National Railway Museum decided to preserve a 2BIL, so the Group decided to purchase a 4COR. Due to lack of funds at the time the group purchased the motor coaches and two Group members purchased the trailer coaches. Therefore, in 1972, the original aim of preserving some of the early electric stock had been achieved. To protect SEG members, actual ownership of all the coaches eventually passed into a newly formed company, S.E.G. (Preservation) Limited.
Unit 3142, one of the last units to run in BR revenue earning service, did not keep in its original formation for most of its working life. The as-withdrawn 3142 represented how it ran in service for the majority of its service career. Motor coach 11201 and trailer third 10096 were originally from the as-built 3142. The original Trailer Composite from 3142 had been damaged after withdrawal, so the Group purchased Trailer Composite 11825 from unit 3135 as a replacement. Motor coach 11161 came from 4RES unit 3065 and was reformed into 3142 during the Second World War as a means of overcoming war damages.
South Eastern Steam Centre, Ashford
In April 1973 3142 was moved to the South Eastern Steam Centre at Ashford, Kent. The South Eastern Steam Centre had many attractions to the Group, not least that it was rail connected to the Southern Region as the aim was, and remains, to return 3142 to active service on the third rail network.
However, in February 1976 3142 was moved to the Nene Valley Railway near Peterborough where better facilities existed and the Preservation Team was able to undertake much needed repair work. 3142 returned to active service (although hauled by steam locomotives) on 1st June 1977 when it formed the ‘Opening Special’ train of the Nene Valley Railway.
In the early eighties, it was clear that undercover accommodation would be needed so that essential major overhaul work could be undertaken. Therefore, 3142 was moved, by rail, to the newly established Brighton Railway Museum in the former Pullman Car sheds at Preston Park on 5th September 1986; returning, once again, to Southern metals. Here serious restoration work could be started.
Off to St. Leonards
On 29th June 1991 it proved necessary to move 3142, by rail, to the former St Leonards Depot workshop where the excellent facilities provided greatly helped restoration. Full restoration was then started with the object of bringing it up to mainline running standard – a much higher standard than required for running purely heritage railways.
The 5th Vehicle
In the early seventies, Brain Juniper acquired motor coach 11187 (from unit 3135) who subsequently moved it to his garden in Hertfordshire. Brian Juniper generously agreed to loaning his coach to the Group. Therefore, on 13th January 1993 motor coach 11187 was moved, by road, to St Leonards to rejoin its sister vehicles. Consequently, the Group today has 5 COR type vehicles in its care – 3 motor coaches and 2 trailers.
To the Bluebell and Acton
St Leonards Engineering’s commercial business built up over time and by 2003 was in need of the space taken up by others’ preserved stock. In August 2003 the group was given notice to quit and it became necessary to find alternative accommodation – not an easy task. In February 2004 three cars, 11161, 10096 and 11825 were moved to the Woodpax site at Sheffield Park for storage in the open under tarpaulins. Eleven months later 11201 followed to Sheffield Park.. On 18th January it was delivered onto the tramway at Sheffield Park and two days later tripped to Horsted Keynes. Where it was put on display as a static exhibit. . The final car to be relocated was 11187 and in December 2005 it was moved to London’s Transport Museum Depot at Acton.
In late May 2006 a further move was required and the three cars on the Woodpax site were moved to Shepherdswell on the East Kent Railway, where in September 2001, DMBTO 11161 carried passengers for the first time in over 30 years. In October 2012, DMBTO 11187 moved from Acton to Shepherswell to join the 3 cars already there.
In 2012, DMBTO 11161 carried passengers for the first time in 30 years. In 2015 11201 was moved from the Bluebell Railway to the East Kent Railway. In 2016, 3 vehicles 11201, 10096 & 11825 were removed from the East Kent Railway and placed into private storage.