In The Beginning…

Posted on March 17th, 2014


In the beginning there was a 4VEP called Gordon. It was much loved, but there were many people who were too busy to look after it properly. It sat at Clapham Yard and slowly became faded. People thought it had been forgotten, but they were wrong. Minions arrived and were told “fix this VEP, because it’s the last one left.” They agreed, and the Southern Electric Traction Group was born. Now, read on.

This is the new Southern Electric Traction Group workshop page. This is where SETG technical staff (known as Gordon’s Minions) will keep you updated on the work being carried out to bring 4VEP No. 3417 back to serviceable condition.

• Cleaning.
• Coach No. 76262 (Driving Trailer Composite)
• Cab swept.
• Coach swept, ventilated. Cushions placed in luggage racks to prevent water damage from leaking passenger windows.
• Coach No. 70797 (Trailer Standard)
• Coach swept, ventilated. Cushions placed in luggage racks to prevent water damage from leaking passenger windows.

This comprised about 4 hours work for two minions, revealing £1.67 in coins found under seat cushions, discarded beer bottles and a pair of discarded ladies knickers (we’re not making this up).

In the near future the SETG are arranging with SWT staff to bring No. 3417 back under cover, pending completion of drainage work within the carriage cleaning shed. Once under cover we have more work to carry out, including:

• Restoration of the toilets to working use.
• Assessment of trim and interior fittings for restoration or replacement, including both driving cabs, doors and the guards compartment.
• Examination of the train power line, brakes, hoses and jumper cables.
• Re-fitting 3rd rail pickup equipment to the unit to allow traction & auxiliary power to be restored to the unit.

Because of the current location of the unit only persons with DC Line Personal Track Safety qualifications can access the unit. Offers of help are always appreciated, but at the moment we can only allow qualified staff access to the unit.

Donations towards the work to be carried out are a massive help, and will speed the day when No. 3417 can once again do what it was designed to do – run under it’s own power on the mainline.

From here on we hope to update regularly – and we hope to have an announcement soon regarding the future of the unit. Stay tuned!

Thanks for reading.

The Minions