55032 Class 121 Driving Motor Brake Second

Home Railway

Wensleydale Railway

Location History

Crewe (Basford Hall) 94-?

Current Location

Wensleydale Railway


Crewe (Heritage Centre) ?-Sep 05

Current Status



Wensleydale Railway May 15-Present

Current Livery

Arriva Trains Wales


TRA Designation


Visited Railways

East Lancashire Railway Jun 94

Partner Vehicle(s)



Chiltern Railways (Mainline) Sep 05-May 15







Record Last Updated

13 May 2018


Preservation Modifications
None, although the vehicle is in far from original condition as its use on the mainline railway in the 21st century required it to be fitted with a modern interior and safetly features such as central door locking etc, all of which it retains.

Preservation Information
55032 was converted into a route learning/Sandite car by British Rail, but it is thought that the modifications for this role were not particularly severe.

Preserved in the early 1990’s by Pete Waterman, the vehicle made a brief appearance at the East Lancashire Railway for a diesel event before being relocated to Crewe Basford Hall.

The vehicle then spent several years with little operational activity, and was moved to the Heritage Centre site, also at Crewe. It was however reliveried twice during this period, carrying BR Blue and later BR Green.

By the year 2000 the vehicle was reported to have been overhauled with seat reuphostery and an engine overhaul having been carried out. The vehicle was advertised for sale at £33,000 by Rail Charter Services.

In September 2005, the vehicle was sold to mainline operator Arriva Trains Wales who extensively overhauled and returned the vehicle to mainline passenger use as a shuttle unit for their Cardiff Bay branch line. Although being based in Cardiff for several years, reliability of the unit was often poor, and 55032 was withdrawn from these duties in 2013 and sold to Chiltern Railways.

In June 2013, the vehicle was hired by the Llangollen Railway or a weekend to star at their annual railcar gala, it was later retuned to Chiltern Railways at put in store at their Aylesbury depot.

In March 2015 the vehicle, still in complete and operational condition, was put up for sale, and was purchased the following month by the Wensleydale Railway, effectively returning the vehicle into preservation after 10 years of mainline ownership. The vehicle was moved to its new home in May and was operating services only three days after arrival.

2015-2017 saw 55032 intensively used on services, operating in different formations. At one stage it was formed for some time as an unusual 3-car set with Class 117 59509 & 51400

More recently, 55032 has been in and out of service requiring various repairs.

Future Plans
To maintain in service.


55032 stabled at a sunny Leeming Bar, 22/6/16. Alex Lomax


55032, recently returned to preservation, stands at Leeming Bar, 4/7/15. Richard Thornton


55032 being hauled from Aylsbury to Tyseley and back into preservation, 28/4/15. Mark Miller


55032, being reliveried again, at Crewe, 20/5/01. David Beardmore


55032 at Crewe, summer 1997. Paul Moxon


55032, now in green, at Crewe, 15/2/97. David McGuire


55032, now repainted into BR Blue, at a Basford Hall open day, 27/8/95. Martin Sprigg


977842, at Basford Hall, Crewe, 21/8/94. Robert Frise


977842, seen at a East Lancs diesel event, June 1994. Bill Read