Car No.26 (1898)

Laxey Car Shed, 2015

Car No.26 inside Laxey Car Shed, April 2015 © Josh Haworth

Stored, Derby Castle Car Shed 2009 M.E.R Red/White


Car No.26 was originally delivered as Trailer No.21 in 1898, in line with the rest of its series. Following the delivery of the ‘Winter Saloons’ in 1899, it was renumbered as Trailer No.42, although it did not keep the identity long, being motorised with new Brush ‘D’ trucks in 1903, while also gaining Christensen air brakes, K11 controllers and a renumber to No.26, being the first of the batch to re-enter service in June of the same year. The fitting of the wider Brush Trucks meant new footboards had to be built to clear over the axleboxes, giving No.16 and No.24-27 the nickname ‘Paddleboxes’.

The Car settled down to a regular working pattern, and was most frequently seen operating with regular partner Trailer No.56 until it was converted to a disabled access trailer in 1995. No.26 gained a full repaint by members of the Manx Electric Railway Society in 1992 in time for the M.E.R centenary events the year after. It then suffered a small identity crisis during the enthusiast events of the 1990s, carrying the number No.24 in 1994/95 to recreate the lost ‘Paddlebox’ which perished in the Laxey Car Shed Fire of 1930, its old Trailer Number of 42 in 1996/1997, and even the bizarre No.11 in 1996 alongside a renumbered No.6 as No.10!

No.26 was a popular choice for specials throughout the 1990s and 2000s, particularly the popular motorman lessons. The Motor was stored after the 2009 season, and has not ran since, initially stored at Derby Castle Car Sheds, then being moved to Laxey Car Shed in Autumn 2010. The Car was returned for further storage at Derby Castle in 2020, where it remains on a set of Milnes Series 1 Trailer Trucks.




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