Part of the preparation to move the Barnum carriage at Ruddington is to top up the oil in the axle boxes to ensure that each wheel set turns easily when the time comes for its first vital shunt since arrival 20 years ago, across to the other side of the Engineering shed. There it will be jacked and propped to enable the bogies to be rolled out each end and craned aboard waiting road transport.

What the team discovered was that the pads are not just time expired but also almost worn to the non existent. It is likely, according to the brief note from its last rail service some 60 years ago, that was the last time they were formally inspected before release as a support vehicle.

In the heavy overhaul planned by Nemesis Rail, these pads will be replaced – at £60 per axle box…..! Any replacements do not come cheap……

Caption – Oil pads being extracted from Barnum axle box – Courtesy Keith Stimpson