Henrietta was in reality a perfect matching coach for Toby (the J70) on the Wisbech and Upwell line. Back in the 1880s, the coaches were four-wheelers as illustrated by C Reginal Dalby and reproduced on TV. On later coaches, the basic four wheel design was lengthened and small bogies added, but Henrietta's distinctive verandah ends with wrought iron railings were retained. Alone of historic Wisbech and Upwell rolling stock, one coach survived, going through the Rutland Railway Museum before being saved by the Midland and Great Northern Joint Railway Society in 2002.
Dave King at the MGNJRS, support charity partner of the North Norfolk Railway, told us how the society has taken on the restoration of Wisbech & Upwell coach No. 7 with a generous donation of £10,000 from a member. (The other coach, No 8, was destroyed some time ago after filming of "The Titfield Thunderbolt"). Henrietta now has a new, steel underframe, and restoration of the coach has made good progress with sides and railings now in place. Update June 2004: Almost completed body and interior delivered to the NNR, steel bogie frames fabricated. Update September 2008: Completely restored and taken on inaugural run.
The picture above captures the vehicle in pre-preservation state and scaled by the coupled LNER composite 3rd that is a dead ringer for Annie.
The Reverend describes how he came to to make Toby's coaches Henrietta and Elsie (a luggage van who did not appear in any story) on his Ffarquhar Branch model railway.
From the 1979 annual with thanks to Ryan.
"Toby's coaches are HENRIETTA and ELSIE. Henrietta is a model of one of the four wheeled tram coaches which used to run between Wisbech and Upwell. I got drawings of her at the same time as I got them for Toby, but she looked too difficult for me to tackle, so I had her professionally made. She was ready and in service before I had finished building Toby. Once I had finished Toby I started on Elsie. She was a small four-wheeled luggage van also from the Wisbech and Upwell Tramway. She was quite straightforward to build from wood and card once I had made a scale drawing of her. She entered service in 1953."
Henrietta arrived with Toby in "Toby the Tram Engine" (1952)Collector's Corner:
Classic model of Henrietta