Great Western Railway coach arrives at Margate storage site

The Collet coach arrives at Locomotive Storage Photo John Horton

A Great Western Railway coach has arrived in Margate today (January 3) for storage.

The Collet coach has been transported from Buckfastleigh.

The GWR built eight coaches known as “Super Saloons” and named after members of the royal family, which were planned to be more opulent than the Pullman Company carriages created by rivals for boat train traffic from London to Plymouth.

Photo John Horton

Withdrawn from active service in 1967, five of the original coaches survive, The coach now housed at Margate, coach number 9005, although not a super saloon, was a Collett design of the Great Western Railway. It was constructed for use on the Ocean Liner Express from London Paddington to Plymouth Millbay in 1931.

Photo James Mitchell

It carries its original GWR livery and is classed as a special saloon carriage. It was based on the south Devon railway, at Buckfastleigh near Newton Abbot, where two of the Super Saloons form part of a dining train, 9115 King George and 9116 Duchess of York.

Photo John Horton

Super Saloons 9114 Duke of York, 9115 Duke of Gloucester and 9117 Princess Royal were all scrapped – 9112 Queen Mary, 9113 Prince of Wales and 9118 Princess Elizabeth are all preserved at Didcot Railway Centre.

Photo John Horton

Locomotive Storage, at the Hornby Hobbies site in Ramsgate Road, operates a storage and maintenance business for classic railway locomotives and heritage rolling stock.

Its main depot facility is in Crewe but the company also bought the Hornby factory site at Westwood in February 2017.

The main warehouse has been converted with seven railway tracks laid in the warehouse and access loading docks to facilitate the unloading and loading of locomotives and carriages. It is expected that up to 30 items of rolling stock will be housed there for eventual public display.

Report John Horton


  1. Today I watched a television program about ancient and modern railway carriages and engines in Japan. My goodness how superior they are to the UK stock. Rotating seats for booked seats these same seats going lengthways down each carriage. Charging points built into the armrests. Each carriage being individually crafted. Buffet cars with full waitress service serving gourmet foods. A special carriage where conferences, wedding receptions, or entertainments can be held. How long is the journey….Just 2 hours

  2. R,
    Not on the normal services in Japan they are not – only the expensive flag-shi[p ones. You need to compare like for like – not everything in Japan is that wonderful – apart from time keeping, possibly, and that comes at a price to the employees, believe me. Japan is good, but not that superior all things considered.

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