3rd / 3rd  Class Saloon F.31

An all-thirds saloon delivered from the Metropolitan Carriage & Wagon Co., Ltd., of Saltley in Birmingham arriving in 1905 as part of the first batch of saloons and consisting of two separate third class areas with flip-over seating and no opening between the two, this saloon surviving in this form largely unchanged save for livery variants until the addition of bus-style windows in 1972 in an attempt to improve ventilation at which time an all-over red livery was also applied.

Later converted in 1980 to form the rear portion of the Bar Set in conjunction with SeaLink ManxLine together with F.32 and F.35 outshopped in the burgundy and cream livery at that time, this three-saloon set was later repainted into a plain red and white scheme similar to that carried by the buses and ran in this form for several years, later in 1991 reverting to purple lake which was the standard livery at the time. The carriage was used for a Royal Train in 2001 for the Duke & Duchess of Wessex.

Converted further in 2012-2013 to become one of the dining saloons; it was withdrawn in December 2022 to receive a new roof, panelling and reconfigured seating before being outshopped in the purple lake scheme, the first carriage to do so since 1999; the torpedo roof ventilators were also reinstated at this time, having been removed at the time of the 1980 conversion, making for an external appearance very close to as-delivered.  It re-entered traffic in May 2023 partially completed.

The completed saloon will ultimately be fitted with original Railway Company crests and class designations on the panelling as it would have originally been delivered from the Metropolitan Carriage & Wagon Co., Ltd. (First replacing Third to denote dining status).  It is the intention for each of the other saloons that form the dining train to enter the workshops as time allows to be similarly treated, resulting in a uniform purple lake appearance for the dining set including replica Empress Van F.27 (ii).  Vermilion and gold lining on the lower beading will complete the works.

Fleet No.:











36’ 11”

7’ 1”

10’ 3”

3rd Class / 3rd Class

In Traffic (Dining)

Seen at Douglas Station shortly after the fitting of bus windows and the red livery in July 1973, one of several saloons so treated.

A fine study of F.31 on the new road at Ramsey Station in August 1933 showing the attractive purple lake and off-white livery to good effect.

Seen at Douglas Station in September 1947 carrying the utility brown livery; note the two droplight winodws, the far one being opened.

Work ongoing in the workshops complex at Douglas Station in April 2023 following the fitting of a new roof, panelling being replaced.

During a refit and re-roofing in January 2023, when returned the purple lake livery with off-white panels was reintroduced after several years.

F.32 at the rear of the Bar Set at Douglas Station turned out for the Royal Train in July 2001 when the Duke & Duchess of Wessex travelled to Santon.

F31 in model form on Douglas '61 in July 2014, this model was created by Association member and is currently in our care.

Ongoing work at Douglas Station in April 2023 with dining seating removed to allow access to the interior panelling work.

F.31 in post-war guise at Douglas Station in June of  1969, note the one droplight in the right-hand saoon and torpedo roof vents.

In the workshops at Douglas Station during refitting for use as part of the then-new dining train in February 2013.

On a train at Keristal Summit in June 1981 shortly after retrofitting without bus windows and carrying the maroon and cream government livery.

Douglas Station in April 2023 with exterior sea side panelling and detail being replaced ahead of a full repaint into purple lake and off-white.

An impression of how the completed F.31 will appear upon completion of the repainting for the 2024 season.