14-ton tank wagon 14-ton tank wagon 14-ton tank wagon

PW012 Rainford Tar Products Ltd
14-ton tank wagon
Dark grey with unshaded yellow lettering


Today's gas fires and boilers and cookers are fuelled by natural gas, a fossil fuel extracted from deposits deep underground. But back in the steam age, the gas would have been so-called 'town gas', produced in the local gasworks by baking coal at high temperatures and collecting the gas which was given off. This turned the coal into coke, and also generated various other by-products along the way. One of these was 'coal tar', a thick dark strong-smelling sludge which might seem fit only for throwing away. But it turns out that this unpromising substance, nowadays known by the pharmaceutical initials LCD, has a vast range of medicinal and industrial uses. A whole industry developed of companies specialising in distilling the coal tar into separate fractions, such as naptha, creosote and pitch, along with all sorts of other nasty chemicals. One of these companies was Rainford Tar Products Ltd., based in the small Lancashire town of Rainford, near St.Helens. Their modest fleet of wagons would have ventured out on the local network of the London Midland & Scottish Railway to the gasworks of the towns and cities of Lancashire, and returned loaded with coal tar ready for distillation. They could also have been used for delivery of the end-products, being filled with creosote or whatever and then dispatched to the customer's factory, so from time to time the tankers might have been seen a long way from their Lancashire home.
Bring a whiff of coal tar to your layout with our Rainford tank.

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