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LMS Route: Evesham to Birmingham

Evesham Station: mre2027

Richard White & Sons Coal Wagon No 109 built by the Gloucester RC&WCo in 1924 and painted Azure Blue with Whilte lettering


There were two Evesham coal merchants named Richard White in the nineteenth century, with no known relationship. The first was Richard, born in 1811 in Upton on Severn and who moved to Evesham around 1847. He had a son, Richard, born in Upton in 1845, employed as a Waterman. Richard senior was still trading in 1881 as a corn and coal merchant and also a farmer, but no longer in 1891. The other was Richard White, born Eckington in 1866, the son of a further Richard White, a coachman and gardener, and living at 29 Hyde Street Evesham with wife Rose and sons Archibald, born 1890 and Horace, born 1896, trading in 1901 as a coal, fruit and vegetable merchant.

It s apparent that it was the second Richard White that was trading in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and that with the deliveries of new wagons in 1911 had taken his 21 year-old son Archibald into partnership, confirmed by the census of that year. Additionally, when his two new wagons were delivered in 1924, they proclaimed that an additional son, this time Horace, then aged 28, had been admitted to the family firm (see above).

The wagon No 109 was delivered early in 1924, but of a very dated design. Rounded ends and internal diagonals were more like nineteenth century features, and it must have been one of the very last built by the Gloucester company to the 1908 specifications. The body colour Azure Blue is almost unique, as is the style of the main lettering, which may have been copied from a letterhead and applied to some of the older wagons when repainted. Note the different plank widths, from top, one x 4-inch, two x 7-inch, two x 8-inch, two x 9-inch; and the fold over flap door, and the 10-tons load capacity.

Date Numbers Registered Builder Colour
November 1898 50-55 GWR 1496, 1498-1502 Gloucester Lead
April 1905 100-103 GWR 65929-69532 Gloucester Lead
March 1911 104-105   Gloucester(a) Black
August 1911 62- 67 (?)   Gloucester (a) Black
November 1911 68-69 (?)   Gloucester (a) Black
February 1924 109 and (?)   Gloucester (b) Azure

Keith Turton