Car No.22 (1899)

Car No.22 at Laxey, July 2021 © Alex Fairlie

In Service In Service M.E.R Red/White/Teak


No.22 is the fourth and final ‘Winter Saloon’ delivered to the M.E.R in 1899. The Car was built by G.F.Milnes, fitted with Milnes Series 3 trucks (Powered by E.C.C Motors) and noticeably larger than any of the previous saloon designs, allowing space for 48 passengers. Following the delivery of the 28-31 series, No.22 quickly received the newer equipment from Car No.31 in October 1904, gaining its Brill 27CX Trucks and air brakes whilst donating its less-powerful equipment to the now-Ratchet Car.

The Car, along with the rest of its series, settled down into regular traffic and few subsequent modifications, apart from getting reversible cushioned seats in 1932 along with trailer air cocks (for operation with No.57 and No.58) and a compressor change. It also received K12 Controllers in 1936, replacing the previous K11 units. For a period in the 1960s and 1970s, the Car was also fitted with a second headlight.  No.22 was one of three Winter Saloons repainted into the Nationalised Green livery in 1958, but reverted back to traditional livery by 1960.

No.22 underwent heavy overhaul during 1989/90, returning to service in August 1990. On the 29th of September, the Car suffered a small electrical failure near Eskadale, however managed to return to Derby Castle Car Sheds. The next evening, reports of a fire at the Car Sheds witnessed Car No.22 alight due to a resistor overheating and the body of No.22 was destroyed. A replica body was constructed in 1991 by MacArds of Port Erin, and between there and Derby Castle Car Sheds, it returned to service in 1992. The new body was manufactured in the traditional style but includes some differences to the other three ‘Winter Saloons’, including differing headlight styles and a P.A system.

The ‘new’ No.22 soon settled back into the regular service, however it was repainted into the national Isle of Man Transport livery in May 2001, similar to that carried by the Island’s buses at the time. Following fierce opposition to the livery, No.22 was returned to a more traditional M.E.R livery in November 2002. The Car also received a full repaint in Summer/Autumn 2010, in the normal M.E.R Red/White/Teak style. The car was withdrawn in Summer 2012 pending rectification to it’s trucks, with it in turn receiving a replacement from Car No.20, returning to traffic in July 2013.




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