New information has come to light following the unexpected discovery of a former LNER storage wagon in Belgium, 500 miles from the train operator’s UK headquarters. That an old LNER luggage wagon was found in Belgium isn’t hugely surprising as international freight was widespread — but why it was buried in the ground is a very big mystery.

(c) Archaeological Service, City of Antwerp

A team from the Urban Archaeology department of the City of Antwerp unearthed the train carriage in Northern Antwerp under a wall of an old fortress known as the Northern Citadel from the 19th century. The archaeologists were excavating the area in collaboration with organisations building the Oosterweel link, a ring road around Antwerp.

Consultant Archaeologist Femke Martens said: “The wooden removals truck is thought to be around one hundred years old. It’s a mystery as to how the carriage came to be in Antwerp, and unfortunately there’s very little left of the relic as it disintegrated while being excavated. Upon closer examination, its only identifiable features were the inscriptions which included ‘FURNITURE REMOVAL TO HOUSE,’ ‘Enquire at any station,’ ‘BK769,’ (which identified the truck’s size – B – and its use, for furniture, – K) and crucially ‘LNER’.”

Internal LNER research suggests this ‘truck’ was the first model of LNER removal, which was briefly in service around the year 1930. A much more common model was a blue edition which was used more widely, making the discovery of this earlier model all the rarer and more unique.

LNER Communications Director Stuart Thomas said: “This curious find has certainly generated lots of interest and we are delighted the team from the Urban Archaeology department of the City of Antwerp have helped shed more light on the discovery. We’re fascinated by LNER’s history, and we’d like to thank the team for their help in unearthing more information about LNER’s proud past.”

(c) Archaeological Service, City of Antwerp


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  1. Betterbee says:

    All the information I’ve seen strongly suggests that this was a container, not a wagon (a freight vehicle) or a carriage (a passenger vehicle).

    That’s how the LNER (and other railways) could do door-to-door removals, hard to achieve in a railway wagon because of the considerable work – and potential damage – that would be involved in transhipment at both ends of the journey.

  2. Deborah Buzan says:

    There’s something fishy about the Temu shoe ads. The prices are ridiculously low.

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