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The Liverpool & Manchester Railway considered the possibility of creating a third class as early as 1839, due largely to market pressure from the Manchester, Bolton & Bury Railway and the Manchester and Leeds Railway, but the directors were afraid that if they introduced third class, with its lower fares, it would draw passengers away from the first and second class trains.
Introduction of third class was once again discussed by the L&MR Board on 15 January 1844, which they refused to sanction, but in April the decision was reversed and new enclosed second class coaches were ordered, as this was cheaper than converting the older ‘blue box’ coaches.
These older carriages, most dating back to 1830, were downgraded to third and the first of the L&MR third class train services ran in October 1844, departing from Manchester at 06:30 and from Liverpool at 18:30.
The open third class carriage on show at the Railway Museum, along with two others, was constructed in 1930 by the London Midland Scottish Railway at their works in Derby and all three were made from second hand material to run behind MR No. 57 Lion during the Liverpool & Manchester Railway centenary celebrations that were held in Liverpool in September 1930.
The Derby replicas were designed by Sir Ernest Lemon, the Carriage & Wagon Superintendent at Derby and were based on no known prototype, being scaled to look ‘right’ behind Lion and all of the coaches shared a common underframe for ease of production.
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