Friday, 17 June 2016

Where Were You 17/06/78?

"If Timewarp was a loco it's status would be: Stored Serviceable."

Looking at old notes of any trips long past and the years just roll back.

08123 was noted in Stoke Yd (Closed 1981 - lifted circa 1985 and then a small forest behind the station for a good few years until becoming a car park). The peg on platform 2 flicked from red, to amber to green hinting at the imminent passage of a freight. The reason soon became obvious with the appearance of 81014 at the head of a St Blazey - Longport Clay train which was still formed of short wheelbase sheeted open wagons. During weekdays, that service always called at Stoke Yard to detach traffic for Shelton Wharf.

We were soon heading for Derby on one of Etches Parks finest Class 120 BR Swindon Cross-country dmus, just to the south of the station, 47450 was running around a rake of Mk II stock, which was to form the SO train to Holyhead.

I seem to remember that the following line up was dumped at Eggington junction at that time: 7076+8521(no number)+7096+832, they were unchanged from previous journeys and had been there some time. Seeing these machines standing there, all those years ago, faded blue paint peeling badly, it was almost impossible to believe that any of them would ever work a passenger train again, yet both D7076 & D832 are runners both based at the East Lancs Railway.

The Class 25 that flashed past us in the opposite direction was no doubt working the SO Nottingham - Llandudno. 20075+20183 were recorded at Willington PS with a coal train, back then the whole area between the main line and the power station was a mass of track, well stocked, mostly with rakes of coal trucks, but also a few tanks. On the curve at Derby 08333/455/462 20005/081/084/164 were noted as we arrived only minutes after the Derby - Yarmouth would have left, probably behind a pair of rats. Waiting for our Sheffield train, 08899 was the Derby station pilot, stabled, as usual, behind Platform 6. We looked on while 08333 drew a rake of stock slowly around the curve and into the station, with 20037+20193 on the other end. This then formed the SO Derby - Skegness. 25195/270, 47343 (noted earlier LD through Stoke) and back to back HST power cars 43038+039 all retired to the sheds, with 45130 and 46042 (service starting Derby, heading west) working passenger duties. We departed Derby on the SO Wellingborough - Scarborough service, which ran, as booked, via Nottingham, hauled by 45019.

On the approaches to Sheffield, 47181 passed with a southbound passenger. Sheffield station itself was busy to say the least with both passengers and services. 08745 was present, while 25258+25264 were recorded with the SO Manchester - Yarmouth duty (incorrectly announced as the next Doncaster service), along with 45006 (South bound)/111/144(ex St Pancras), 46028/043 and 47549? also on passenger turns in what could have been a space of no more than fifteen minutes! We left on what I believe was a Sheffield - Doncaster additional, formed of Mk I stock hauled by 37128.

08331+08485 were at the NCL freight depot, with 08128/219/261 in yards around Rotherham.

37105+123, 47177/279 were stabled in sidings near Mexborough station. 40028 passed in the other direction (on parcels vans ex Cleethorpes).

At Doncaster, we were able to enter the works directly via the over bridge from the station. The following locos were recorded inside:
03079/161/397, 08071/099/184/310(part cut?)/444/504, 24066. 31007/012/143/176/208/209/212/218/226/251/257/286/295/303 (the 31/0's may have been part cut up), 37027/072/099/125/141/160/164/208/218/226/232/242/263/266/279. 50003/005/006/011/021/024/034/042/046, 55001/002/004/008/020, 56047/048 and frames of half a dozen others, 76020, a part HST rake including power cars 43080+081, Departmental ADB986010 (a snow plow converted from a Class 08), steam No.1, 251, 4468, 4472 and 4771. St Paddy & Nimbus were not officially withdrawn for a good few months, they had already worked their last. I remember thinking that 24066 looked in a very good external condition for a condemned loco, and as it turned out, it would be cut up within days.

We then returned to the station and spent a good four-five hours on the crowded platforms. The following locomotives were recorded, almost entirely on passenger duties: 08876 (station pilot), 31115/125/178/235/299/404/409, 37007/127/216/237, 40038/071, 45015/069, 46050, 47410/417/420/422/447/471/488/523/542/549/550, 55003/009/010/011/013/019/021/022, 43065/066/067/068/069/078. Most of the ECML traffic was loco-hauled with EH power. I think one, maybe both of the 31/4's arrived ex Leeds and were replaced by larger engines. I remember one of the Deltic's arrived from the north on a railtour formed of Pullman stock, which stabled in the station area for a hour or two before returning north. We reluctantly left on the 1754 SO Doncaster - Sheffield formed once again by 37128 and the stock on which we arrived.

As we arrived at Sheffield, 47351 was recorded, standing engine running, crewed up, obviously waiting for something. We, however, were waiting for the 1620 Newcastle - Cardiff, our move back to Derby. Then came the announcement that the Cardiff would be delayed due to a fatality on the line near York.

During the hour that followed, 45050 and 46039 worked north before 45108 arrived from St Pancras and proceeded to run around, to form the 2000 return. Hoping our connection would be held, and mislead by announcements that 2000 would go first, we joined the train. Eventually the Cardiff arrived with 40193, with 47351 going forward... and it went first.

All in all a most memorable day out but with hindsight we could have done better! My main regret of that day it that I didn't keep more detailed notes at that time. So if anyone can shed any further light what the locos above might have been working or knows what locos worked any of summer dated holiday trains that day, I for one would be very interested to hear about it. I also regret not taking a camera, even though all I had at my disposal was a borrowed instamatic, which needed sunny conditions for anything like okay results. With a cloudy start to the day and a poor forecast it seamed pointless taking it. But the day soon developed into a glorious summer's day!

If you'd like to add youe memories of this day, please contact us or post into the comment box below.
These notes are revised and updated from those posted on the old Timewarp site.
Listings of the loco's that worked these trains can be found in the Classic Haulage pages.

© 'UD' & 'Clayhead' - Preserving the gen online since 1999...

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