55028 Class 121 Driving Motor Brake Second

Home Railway

Swanage Railway

Location History

Swanage Railway Mar 09-Sep 14

Current Location

Eastleigh Works



Current Status

Under Overhaul

Visited Railways

Rampart C&W (Contract Overhaul) Mar 09-Jul 09

Current Livery

BR Green (Half Yellow Panel)


Eastleigh Works (Contract Overhaul) Sep 14-Present

TRA Designation



Partner Vehicle(s)











Record Last Updated

1 January 2018


Preservation Modifications
Some previous modifications during the vehicle’s departmental years that have not been removed are the several additional windscreen wipers on the front end windows, with five out of the six still fitted! Several passenger doors have also not been reinstated for cost reasons, and the original 4-character headcode located in the roof dome remains plated over. Internally, the luggage racks are missing.

Preservation Information
55028 ended its career on the national network as route learning vehicle for South West Trains and was modified in 2005 running as 960012 (977860). Early in 2009 the vehicle was purchased (fully operational) for use on the Swanage Railway. 55028 arrived under its own power via the railway’s mainline connection in March of that year.

55028 briefly entered service during the line’s “Railway at Work” weekend. However soon after the vehicle was moved to Rampart, Derby for conversion back into a passenger vehicle as many internal modifications had been made during its time as a departmental vehicle. 55028 was also fully overhauled and repainted into BR Green during the four month stay, returning to the Swanage Railway in July 2009.

55028 was then immediately launched into service and joined the operational DMU fleet. It proved to be a useful vehicle and was used regularly both on its own and substituting for failed powercars in the line's Class 108 and 117 sets.

In September 2014, 55028 was withdrawn from service and sent to Eastleigh Works for overhaul and mainline registration. The overhaul work, particularly the mainline specifications, took far longer than originally hoped for. The vehicles involved in the project were the subject of several setbacks concerning the mechanical components such as freewheel units and wheelsets. Combined, these issues led to 55028 being inside Eastleigh works for several years.

By November 2016 the vehicle had progressed to the stage where bodywork and painting was required. Moved into the excellent paintshop facility at Eastleigh, 55028 was transformed rapidly, emerging in January 2017 in primer when it was returned to the main works for further fitting out. The following month overhauled engines were fitted to 55028. In April 55028 was returned to the paintshop to receive its final topcoats in BR Green.

By late 2017 55028 was back inside the main workshops at Eastleigh with mechanical overhaul work to the bogies progressing.

Future Plans
55028's overhaul to mainline standards is understood to be well advanced. This work is planned to be completed at Eastleigh Works, after which it will be returned to the Swanage Railway to operate link services to the mainline at Wareham.


W55028 stabled at Herston Halt, 6/5/11. David Beardmore


W55028 in service near Corfe Castle, 17/10/10. Mike Gill


55028 & 51346 at Norden, whilst operating half term week service, 27/10/09. Chris Moxon


55028 & 51346 between Corfe Castle and Harmans Cross, whilst operating half term week service, 27/10/09. Chris Moxon


55028 & 51346 during the sunset at Swanage, whilst operating half term week service, 27/10/09. Chris Moxon


A clue to the vehicle's fomer life: a non standard large passenger window inserted into the guards area during the vehicle's departmental days, seen at Swanage, 27/10/09. Chris Moxon


55028 & 51346 at Corfe Castle operating evening services, 27/10/09. Chris Moxon


55028 at Corfe Castle, September 2009. Simon Edwards