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 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings

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Nige P
Sgt
Sgt


Number of posts : 35
Age : 64
Localisation : Erdington, Birmingham
Cap Badge : RCT(V), RLC(V)
Places Served : Grantham, Long Marston, Bicester, Marchwood and most rail served depots with the TA in BAOR
Registration date : 2010-11-24

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Empty
PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime9/7/2011, 21:51

After a bit of searching, I have found a few photographs of Ambulance Train Coaches. I am sure I have more, but can't locate them at present.

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Scan0001-1

I think those are what were known as British Ward Coaches in the background. Ayrshire Bks North Park

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Scan0002-1

British Wards to the left and US Wards to the right. Ayrshire Bks North Park

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Scan0003-1

At least two Baggage Cars I think. Ayrshire Bks North Park

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Scan0004-1

Picture taken from the cupola of a Van Rail Escort of Baggage and Ward Coaches at Ayrshire Bks South Park.

All the above taken on my A1 Railwaymans Course at 79 Rly Sqn around 1990 I think.

I have quite a few pictures of the unloading and placement of the Berlin Diner at Beverley if you're interested.

Nige

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Brianr
Cpl
Cpl


Number of posts : 14
Age : 71
Localisation : Ash, Aldershot
Cap Badge : L/RAMC
Places Served : BAOR, Aldershot, Woolwich
Registration date : 2011-05-26

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Empty
PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime11/7/2011, 21:47

Nigel,

Great to see these photos. As you are probably aware there is nothing left of North Park, Ayrshire Barracks. May I be permitted to confirm what is shown in the pictures.
Pic 1 - 3 Byg ward coaches to the left - the same type as the one at Keogh Barracks..
Pic 2 - All are Byg ward coaches.
Pic 3 - 2 Byg ward coaches on the left in front of 2 Bymk ex-US ward coaches.
Pic 4 - All three are Bymk ex-US ward coaches.

Regards,

Brian
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Nige P
Sgt
Sgt


Number of posts : 35
Age : 64
Localisation : Erdington, Birmingham
Cap Badge : RCT(V), RLC(V)
Places Served : Grantham, Long Marston, Bicester, Marchwood and most rail served depots with the TA in BAOR
Registration date : 2010-11-24

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Empty
PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime22/7/2011, 22:02

I think you're right Brian. I get my wards and baggage cars mixed up. I've been trying to find more photos to scan, in fact I thought I had a pic of the ward coach on the tank deck of the Arakan, but alas, no.

Nige
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tommoid
SSgt/CSgt
SSgt/CSgt
tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime14/11/2011, 22:57

For some reason these latest posts haven't been notified to me but they're really exciting! The photo just above shows the same type of ward coaches I would like to save from Montzen - which kicked off this whole forum topic. Please have another look http://baor-locations.co.uk/Hosptal_Train.aspx
It would be great to see more photos of these at North Park barracks. Does anyone know if they still exist somewhere or would they have been scrapped when the barracks were closed?
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tommoid
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tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime14/11/2011, 23:04

I put more pix of the hospital train on Flickr.

Regards: Tom

http://www.flickr.com/photos/15523528@N06/sets/72157623852511867/
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tommoid
SSgt/CSgt
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tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime14/11/2011, 23:13

The 'at least two baggage cars' two pix up are actually the ward cars. I thought the same when I first saw them. The windows are deliberately small so that the wounded lying on stretcher beds don't get cooked by the sun. If these cars were actually filled with wounded soldiers it must have been hell! There are only enough cooking facilities to brew up some tea. Does anyone have recollections of serving on these trains?
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Brianr
Cpl
Cpl


Number of posts : 14
Age : 71
Localisation : Ash, Aldershot
Cap Badge : L/RAMC
Places Served : BAOR, Aldershot, Woolwich
Registration date : 2011-05-26

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Empty
PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime14/11/2011, 23:18

Tom,
The area of the North Park sidings has been re-developed and is now a football stadium I think. I do have a number of photos in my own collection of the Bymk ex-US ward stock. Although I never knew the details I think some of these coaches were sent to India and the rest scrapped. I tried to save one of these Bymk's at the same time as I got the Byk moved back to the Uk but there was no appetite to preserve one at that time.

Regards,
Brian
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Brianr
Cpl
Cpl


Number of posts : 14
Age : 71
Localisation : Ash, Aldershot
Cap Badge : L/RAMC
Places Served : BAOR, Aldershot, Woolwich
Registration date : 2011-05-26

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Empty
PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime14/11/2011, 23:28

Tom,
Our two posts crossed each other! You raised the subject of catering. I can confirm that the dining car on each ambulance train was for staff. The philosphy in relation to casualties was the the majority would not require full feeding whilst we had them on board. What we had were specially scaled "Beverage Packs Ambulance Trains" that provided soups and hot drinks of various types so that nursing staff could ensure that all casualties had regular hot nourishing fluids.

Regards,
Brian
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Nige P
Sgt
Sgt


Number of posts : 35
Age : 64
Localisation : Erdington, Birmingham
Cap Badge : RCT(V), RLC(V)
Places Served : Grantham, Long Marston, Bicester, Marchwood and most rail served depots with the TA in BAOR
Registration date : 2010-11-24

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Empty
PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime15/11/2011, 13:14

Tom/Brian,

Now the subject has re-emerged, I will make an effort to find and scan more pictures. I'm sure I have more somewhere.

Nige
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tommoid
SSgt/CSgt
SSgt/CSgt
tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime16/11/2011, 00:06

I was sent a page from a book about these Bymk coaches.
Unfortunately the image is very small and so I can't read the text!
79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 USATC1950s264mCars0001
It seems that these were initially just designed as troop sleeping cars. I can't imagine you'd want to get wounded personnel on the top beds.
I would be most interested in any pictures or information about these cars.

Brian, I note your comment that there was no appetite to preserve one at that time. Nothing has changed. I started this topic because there is a rake of these coaches at Montzen near Aachen and I was trying to find someone or some organisation that could save at least one. I even know the owner! I've approached the Imperial War Museum and the Nene Valley Railway without success. As the paint is failing, time is running out for them. I appreciate that the costs are very large. Transporting such a coach to the UK would be about £10,000 and then there is the equally expensive question of whether it contains asbestos.

Regards: Tom
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Guest
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79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Empty
PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime16/11/2011, 08:29

If you view the picture with Microsoft Picture Manager and enlarge it a little,you can just read it.It`s hard work tho. Laughing
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tommoid
SSgt/CSgt
SSgt/CSgt
tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Empty
PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime16/11/2011, 23:44

Some of it you can read - some of it is blurred. I tried resizing it in Paintshop Pro but it didn't work very well.
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Seedorf
Private
Private


Number of posts : 1
Registration date : 2012-10-12

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Empty
PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime12/10/2012, 20:11

Found the AMBULANCE TRAIN last week okt 2012 at MONZEN.

After searching on internet , i found this website with more information.

I read that there were a lot of actions to get this in a museum.

Is there still a chance for saving this 60 year old "cold war" train for the future?

Some details are amazing like the coal boxes under the train, that are still filled, the stetchers are still present, the old coal stove for heating.
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tommoid
SSgt/CSgt
SSgt/CSgt
tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Empty
PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime12/10/2012, 21:31

I'm afraid talk is fun and cheap. Recovering these vehicles is very expensive and that is nothing compared to the cost of restoration, especially if they contain asbestos. In these hard times I haven't been able to create any real interest in preserving any of this train. The owner actually lives not very far away at Hombourg Station. There is another of these ward coaches there and some French postal coaches. You can see it all on Google satellite view.
In England there is only one railway society that could take these coaches and that is the Nene Valley Railway. But they don't want them and like every other railway society are overstretched with the restoration projects rotting in their sidings. The task of restoring one of these is far too large for one person and they need to go somewhere with a workforce and heavy equipment, ie a railway prreservation society.
Regretfully I've run out of ideas for saving them. With the paint falling off them they will now deteriorate very quickly.

I'm always interested in photos if you feel like putting them up on Flickr, Picasa etc

http://www.arrse.co.uk/military-history-militaria/133780-79-railway-squadron-baor-ambulance-train.html is another interesting forum.

There was another webpage created for my pix on bfg-locations. There are links to it throughout his topic but they don't work any more.

Regards: Tom
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tommoid
SSgt/CSgt
SSgt/CSgt
tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime3/11/2012, 23:05

Brian 'browwe' started another topic 79 Sqdn Amb Train and we've agreed that we should move the content here and close his topic down.
So I'm going to copy the contents of the posts across. I'll attribute his posts to him as I copy them.
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tommoid
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tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime3/11/2012, 23:07

Posted by browwe on 79 Sqdn Amb Train - Thurs Nov 1st

Hi Chaps,
I don't want to raise any false hopes, but as a volunteer working on the Great Central Railway I brought the plight of this train to the notice of one of our "Top Brass".
My details have been passed onto someone who is connected with the Heritage Railway Press and who is very interested.
He seems to think that it would be good material for the next issue of "Steam Railway Magazine".
If so, that would be excellent publicity!
He has asked whether anyone has any photos that he could use, so if anyone can help will they forward them onto me via a private message?

As I said, let's not get too excited, but this may be the breakthrough we have been waiting for.
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tommoid
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tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime3/11/2012, 23:09

Posted by browwe on 79 Sqdn Amb Train - Thurs Nov 1st

I have received a reply from Toby Jennings who is involved in the publication of Steam Railway Magazine,and my letter to him was to ascertain whether he would have any objection to me posting his details, or would he prefer me to pass on to him any response to my post on this forum, so his response is as follows:

Hi Brian,
No objection at all, I think this could potentially make a good story but it's a subject that I know next to nothing about. Any further information would be helpful and we will probably need a photo if you can find one – it'll be fine for everything to be sent to you first and then to me.
The implication in your original email to Richard was that you were hoping to start a scheme to preserve the vehicles – if so, do you want your contact details to be included in any article we write, or is there anyone else who'd be willing to allow that so that interested readers can get in touch?
Regards,
Toby

All I can do with regard to this topic is to pass it on to whoever can assist.
I ask that if you have any material for him, i.e. photos/info/History of the train, or ANYTHING that will help, let me have it, as a "Private Message" and also pass this on to your pals, to swell our numbers so that I can give it to him.
Also, his question as to whether anyone who would be willing to help in this is really, up to you.
The more interest we can generate the better!
His magazine has quite a respectable circulation, so it will possibly mean that thousands more will become aware of this sorry situation, and do something positive, at last.
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tommoid
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tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime3/11/2012, 23:17

Posted by tommoid on 79 Sqdn Amb Train - Fri Nov 2nd

Hi Brian,

I certainly have photos from two visits. Here are some on flickr:
Montzen sidings
Not many of the ward coaches (the ones which look like baggage cars) because a friend created a webpage linked to this site with my detailed photos which has recently disappeared. (You might also find it interesting to look round some of my other sets)

I would like to preserve one or more of these vehicles but that requires a lot of money (even more if they are found to contain asbestos), and more importantly, undercover facilities at a railway society so they can be worked on faster than they rot.
It seems to me that only the NVR in the UK (built to continental loading gauge) would be able to take these and they're not interested. I feel there's another kind of historical experience to be offered by running these as well as the Santa specials.

I have enough info here and also on ARRSE to make rather a good article!


Last edited by tommoid on 3/11/2012, 23:24; edited 2 times in total
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tommoid
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tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime3/11/2012, 23:19

Posted by browwe on 79 Sqdn Amb Train - Fri Nov 2nd

Hi tommoid,
Re your assertion that only the NVR would be able to accommodate the train is not quite correct, as the GCR was constructed in the 1890's to the Continental Gauge too.
I have forwarded your Montzen Sidings link to Toby Jennings of Steam Railway magazine for his perusal.
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tommoid
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tommoid

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Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime3/11/2012, 23:24

Posted by tommoid on 79 Sqdn Amb Train - Fri Nov 2nd

Well that's very interesting! The reason the NVR was apparently built like that is that serviceable UK stock was scarce when they started. So they bought a rake of Danish coaches in good enough condition to start creating revenue immediately. The Blunsdon, Cricklade and Swindon railway has a pair of teak Norwegian Wagon Lits restaurant cars which they use as a static cafe because of loading gauge.
So might the GCR be interested??? Moving each coach to GCR would probably cost around £10,000. We don't know how much the owner would want for them. He might give them away. Alternatively he might get greedy and guarantee their fate by putting a silly price on them. (100% of nothing is errr... nothing!) But then the real work and costs start.
If possible it would be interesting to talk to Toby Jennings direct to find out what I can do for him? I could certainly write an article with photos
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alte bahnbeamter
LCpl
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alte bahnbeamter

Number of posts : 5
Registration date : 2011-06-19

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime4/11/2012, 11:23

Gentlemen

The expert's expert on BAOR Ambulance Trains is the RAMC (V) Colonel who commanded it last, and repatriated one car from it to the RAMC Museum at Keogh Barracks, where it remains. If Steam Railway wants to talk to him, they can reach him through me on sales@trainofevents.co.uk.

The difficulty you will have with running them at GCR is not the bridge loading gauge - UIC coaches are wider at the solebar and will hit the platforms. See the problems NRM York had when shunting their CIWL sleeper into the museum - it got stuck against the platform edge. I doubt GCR is too keen to replace all their platform coping stones for one very non-standard train.

There is a reunion of Ambulance Train and British Military Hospital Berlin staff on the 2013 Crossed Swords train next year - see the latest issue of Cold War Express News, downloadable here;
http://www.trainofevents.co.uk/downloads/cold-war-express/cwe-2-1012.pdf

Some of the US Duty Train carriages are now in use as a charter set, based in Munster.
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tommoid
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tommoid

Number of posts : 48
Registration date : 2010-04-27

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime4/11/2012, 16:19

That cold war express news is very interesting! In particular that photo of the staff in front of the train. The coaches to the centre and left are the same type as is rotting at Montzen. These were specifically built for the US in the late 1950s, and subsequently taken over by 79 Squadron. The coach to the right is an Umbauwagen which has been fitted out with bunk beds/stretchers. After WWII the Germans had to rebuild their stock quickly, salvaging chassis from war-damaged and old coaches, thereby creating new stock very cheaply. The Umbauwagen was essentially a new body on an old chassis and many of them were 6 wheelers.

Can you confirm which type is stored at Mytchett? I understand it's in a very poor state!

Do you have a line-up of the railway carriages to be used in your Crossed Swords train next year? I looked around your trainofevents website and couldn't see a stocklist?
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alte bahnbeamter
LCpl
LCpl
alte bahnbeamter

Number of posts : 5
Registration date : 2011-06-19

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime5/11/2012, 00:11

The coach at The RAMC museum is as described by Brianr a few posts above, and he knows the car better than anyone.

Cold War Express will be formed of stock from two operators - Baggage Car + 7 first class day cars + 2 diners ex US Duty train and 2 x second class day cars and a Mitropa buffet bar from Rotterdam. I am afraid I don't know the painted numbers...but you can always come to the Hook on 20 June and write them down, we are booked to depart 08.40 after the overnight ship arrives from Harwich.

The Poles still have an ambulance train which can run internationally, it is coming to Utrecht and will be on show there when we drop in for the Service of Commemoration for Sapper railwaymen who died in Holland in 1945.

Hope this helps....
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brrowe
WOI
WOI
brrowe

Number of posts : 119
Age : 81
Localisation : Leicester
Cap Badge : REME
Places Served : UK/BAOR
Registration date : 2010-06-30

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PostSubject: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime7/11/2012, 11:45

Hi All,
As tommoid has mentioned. we have agreed that, in the interests of tidiness, all my postings from 97 Brgd Amb. Train be transferred to this thread.

Can anyone assist by letting me know how to delete my previous thread?
Do I have to contact the Administrator, and if so, how do I go about it?
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steve
LE Maj
LE Maj
steve

Number of posts : 852
Age : 70
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Cap Badge : Royal Signals + Royal Engineers
Places Served : Verden-Aller + Willich + Iserlohn + Hameln
Registration date : 2010-02-14

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PostSubject: Re: 79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings   79 Squadron ambulance train rotting away in Montzen sidings - Page 5 Icon_minitime7/11/2012, 12:45

All done
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