Saturday 22 June 2024

Ghost Lettering

Ghost Lettering

It’s an unusually quiet Saturday morning at Fountain Colliery deep in The Forest of Dean. The little people sometimes like to hide when a camera appears, so they’re probably here somewhere, with the pub in the distance being a likely choice. Others might be hiding in plain sight if you look carefully. They’re clever little bu§§ers. 

Note the former private owner ‘Northern United’ wagon, but with a British Railways numbering. Sights like this weren’t uncommon in olden times, for budgets were tight and a shortage of manpower meant wagons often weren’t repainted to reflect their new ownership, especially with wooden bodied wagons like this being near the end of their lives. 

So if you have a favourite private owner liveried coal wagon but it’s wrong for your era, grub it up a bit and pop a BR number on top. You can then feel smug when Adenoidal Andrew tells you off, for you can boldly reply “Wrong!”  

And finally, former private owner wagon numbering started with the letter ‘P’, that being for ‘private’, though of course P is not a number. Just for interest, ‘P’ is also the first letter in Peter, parp, pecker, pedantic, pint, poke, pecksniffian, persiflage, persnickety and not forgetting poppycock. 


This is thirsty work …

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