Originally a Brake was used for ‘breaking’ or training teams of horses. It was a carriage with a skeleton frame and a heavy undercarriage, with hardly any body construction on top. The undercarriage was like that of a coach using a long pole (called a perch) to connect the front and back axles. Around the middle of the 19th Century it became more common to put a wagonette body onto the break undercarriage. This was then called a body break and was used not only for training horses but also carrying up to sixteen passengers and luggage!
Built in the late 19th century by Shanks of London, this Body Brake is constructed on a perch and was part of the 20th Earl of Shrewsbury’s collection of road vehicles. It was used for carrying shooting parties, workers around the estate and on days out for servants.
Accession Number : 64.064.0009