Class E Cold storage vans (Class Q before 1900)

The W.A.G.R. had a total of about 150 class E cold storage vans of four different designs.

The first wagon was unique and was a conversion of a D class van (94) in 1894. A public notice from WAGR General Manager, John Davies dated 4 December 1894 reported that the WAGR were about to introduce a special Cold Storage Van with cold apartments full of ice to run from Perth - Bunbury. It was to convey fruit, dairy produce and meat. Ex Perth on Saturday, Tuesday and Thursday and returning the following day. It is almost certainly the small white van in the middle of the cruel enlargement from an early shot of Fremantle above. The blow up at right of a photo taken by Roy England in the 1920s includes a van which in all probability is also E94.

E94 eventually became a DW class workmen's van in 1934.

In 1896 six D class vans with the standard N.Z.R. type underframes (574, 577, 581, 1178, 1188 and 1348) were converted to cold storage vans and fitted with a pair of new doors on either side.

One van (577) was rebuilt in 1909 but it is not known whether the result of this rebuild was any different. However at some point the original pairs of doors were replaced by a single door on either side and it may be that this is what is referred to here.

These six vans were written off over a long period:

1946 574 written off
1953 577 written off
1954 1188 written off
1969 581 written off
1970 1348 written off
1972 1178 written off

The WAGR outline diagram is shown below. This shows the original arrangement with two doors - compare with the picture above. The roof also appears to have undergone changes over the years as can be seen here and in this view of E1178 later in life.

WAGR official photo of E5226 at Geraldton in 1932 (RHWA collection)

The third group of fifteen vans were built new at Midland in 1901 (5219 - 5221), 1902 (5222-8) and 1907 (71-75). These vans had the 17'-0" long GA type underframe. Four of these vans were at least notionally reclassified as EA in 1940 (5221) and 1954 (5225, 5226, 5228). The remaining wagons were written off as follows:

1950 5220 written off
1953 71, 74, 5224 written off
1954 73, 5223, 5227 written off
1957 5219 written off
1958 75 written off
1962 72 written off
1976 5222 written off

It is not known if number 5222 was ever changed or rebuilt during its charmed life.

The WAGR outline diagram is shown below.

The final group of vans were originally intended for Wyndham Freezer works but were returned by the P.W.D to the W.A.G.R in 1920. They were numbered 10117 -10128 and had been built at Midland in 1917. The WAGR Official photo at right shows one in the original Wyndham livery.

There is a photograph of one of these vans being unloaded amongst the State Library of WA collection.

These wagons were written off as follows:

1961 10122 written off
1962 10117, 10119, 10127 written off
1963 10120, 10125 written off
1964 10128 written off
1966 10123 written off
1970 10118, 10126 written off
1972 10121,10124 written off

The WAGR outline diagram is shown below.

During 1932 vans 1188, 72, 5219 and 5226 were used for Geraldton - Kalgoorlie Crayfish traffic whilst in 1934 vans 1178, 5221 and 5224 were used for rabbit traffic.

Other Cold storage vans

The W.A.G.R.'s other cold storage trucks were classes EA, and EB, and the bogie vehicles in Classes W , WA, WAM, WAR , WBR and WVD .

Return to class E

Return to alphabetical list