Ribble Steam Railway has recently purchased and restored a Travelling Post Office coach. It will become a great addition to our museum and enable us to add to our educational curriculum for visiting schools, telling the Mail by Rail story and reflecting on Preston’s own role as a main hub for the Post Office in the North West of England.
Visitors will be able to go on board and learn about Travelling Post Office services across the UK.
The TPO is 80377, built York, 1972/73, lot 30839, 25 in the lot, Two others are preserved, one at Gwilli and one at Nemesis rail. Originally allocated to London Euston in 1991.
The inner workings of Royal Mail are, by contrast, mostly unseen by its customers. A large and complex distribution network exists behind the scenes to handle the mail. This network encompasses the length and breadth of the nation and involves all modes of transport – road, rail, air and sea.
One aspect of this network that has often caught the public imagination, most vividly through the poetry of W H Auden and the music of Benjamin Britten which combined to accompany the classic 1936 documentary film “Night Mail” is that of the Travelling Post Office (TPO). TPO’s are trains containing letter sorting carriages which enable mail to be processed on the move. The TPO’s ran for over l60 years, continuing to provide a first class service until their cessation on January 10th 2004.
Read more via our blog https://ribblesteam.wordpress.com/2016/08/12/royal-mail-travelling-post-office/