This vehicle has had a complicated life, starting as a 20 ton Brake Van, built by the Great Western Railway at Swindon in 1904, to Diagram AA.2, Lot No. 464. It was known as a ‘Toad’ for telegraphic purposes. It was subsequently converted to a 25 ton Staff/Tunnel Van, becoming a Departmental Vehicle DW 17639 and then acquired privately. It was berthed at the Swindon & Cricklade Railway until coming to Midsomer Norton in 2006. Here, it languished for a while until is was agreed to restore/redevelop it as the Permanent Way Mess Van. This work was completed in 2014. Rumour has it that it worked on the demolition trains through Midsomer Norton.

Opening Times

Sundays 10.00 to 16.00 for viewing, museum, wartime pillbox, buffet coach, gift shop and second-hand bookshop. 
Mondays, but for viewing only, rather than full facilities, shop and museum open from 13.00 to 16.00. Buffet coach open from 10:00 until 15:00.


Somerset & Dorset Railway Heritage Trust
Midsomer Norton Station
Silver Street
Midsomer Norton

01761 411 221
Phones are manned when the shop is open.

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