by

TRANS PENNINE

THE MAGAZINE OF THE PENNINE RAILWAY SOCIETY
 

No.107 Spring 1999

1974 - 1999
SILVER JUBILEE YEAR

Committee Notes

 

 




Chairman's Move

Please note the new address of our Chairman, Robin Skinner as shown in the panel above. (if you are connected to the answerphone, you will hear a suave, sophisticated voice message. This, of course, is obviously not Robin, it is just for the benefit of his employers!!!).
Our Lincoln transport correspondence, Gerry 'Roadcar' Collins tells us that coincidentally, house prices in Lincoln have risen sharply since the news of Robin's departure.

Renewal of Membership Fees

We would like to thank all those members who have renewed their subscription to the PENNINE RAILWAY SOCIETY for 1999. For those who have forgotten to renew or, more likely, too busy~ you will be delighted to know that it is not too late to rejoin.
Simply send you £4.50 fee, made payable to the PENNINE RAILWAY SOCIETY to our Membership Secretary Tony Caddick at the address shown in the above panel. You will be instantly reinstated as a member and be sent a FREE 1999 PRS diary.
For those of you who are not rejoining this will be your final magazine. In these circumstances we sincerely thank you for your valued support and hope that you may consider rejoining the PRS at some time in the future.

Magazine Contributions

Members are reminded that contributions for inclusion in the TRANS PENNINE magazine should now be sent to the Magazine Editor, Tony Booth, at the address in the above panel.
All correspondence will be gratefully received. Please note that information can now be sent to Tony by e-mail.

Annual General Meeting

A successful and well-attended AGM was held at the Corporation Brewery Taps, Doncaster on Sunday January 10th 1999.
All the committee were re-elected and the proposal that Tony Booth becomes Magazine Editor was approved.

25th Anniversary

Members are reminded that 1999 sees the 25th Anniversary (Silver Jubilee) of the PENNINE RAILWAY SOCIETY - a rare achievement. A number of Special Events were discussed at the AGM and the following are being actively discussed:-
A Celebration Lunch on the Midland Railway, Butterley on Saturday, October 9th 1999. Further details are included on the attached sheet.
A Silver Jubilee Slide Night on Wednesday October 201h 1999.
A display at Doncaster Library during September/October 1999. A display area has been provisionally booked for November 1st to 6th. 1999.
A Commemorative Issue of TRANS PENNINE magazine.
Would members please let Tony Booth have any information for inclusion in this issue as soon as possible. We are looking for things like Sighting Lists for Pennine Visits over the fast 25 years, memorable moments with the PRS and any other items of historical interest REMEMBER. We need YOUR contributions to make this Silver Jubilee issue worthwhile.
Issue of special 25th Anniversary Mug (Not Robin!).
Issue of special 25th Anniversary Pens.

We would particularly like to see as many members and their families on the train from Butterley in October.

STOP PRESS!! - EDITOR'S FIRST SCOOP

LONG A WAITED ARTICLE FROM YOUR

PRESIDENT ON PAGE 13

No Fuel

A Virgin Newcastle-Bristol express recently ground to a halt outside Tamworth and had to towed into Birmingham New Street The reason -'The locomotive ran out of fuel'.
Virgin Trains said one of the two HST power cars had broken down, so that the remaining working unit used more diesel fuel. Onward passengers had to wait another two hours for the next scheduled train.

Millenium Celebrations
Will anyone be able to go anywhere on New Year's Eve 19991 Will anyone be able to afford the prices likely to be charged at establishments which remain open!
Now the Metropolitan Police have asked London Transport to close down the entire network on the big night *to prevent vast and potentially dangerous crowds gathering in the centre of the capital'.
They feel that the alternative, which is to have only some stations and trains operating (London Transport expects half ifs 7000 strong workforce to be on holiday or of sick with *a bad back') would be 'too dangerous~. Then there's the possibility of signal failures caused by the Millenium Y2K Computer Bug There’s also the possibility of passengers harming each other by blowing squeakers and party poppers!!. Incidentally there is an army of men touring the country checking computers for the Millenium Bug. They are known as the 'Millenium Buggers.

Trains Slower than in 1922
Rail chiefs are 'massaging' timetables so much that some journeys are now slower than the steam trains of 1922. The privatised firms are 'padding out' schedules to avoid paying hefty fines and compensation to passengers for late arrivals. In some cases it is virtually impossible for services to be late, even if there were infuriating delays.
Some are even slower than before World War 1. For example, in 1910 it took an average of 28 minutes to travel from Motherwell to Glasgow: this fell to 20 minutes in 1922, but today’s expresses are scheduled to cover the same distance in 35 minutes. The St. Erth-Penzance journey to 20 minutes in 1910 and 12 minutes in 1912. It now takes an average of
15/22 minutes.
On the GNER, northbound trains to Scotland between Kings X and Peterborough are scheduled to take around 45 minutes while those heading southbound are allowed up to 61 minutes.
It takes 9 to11 minutes for a train to travel up hill from Penzance to St Erth. On the down hill return they are allowed to take up to 22 minutes.

Anglia Expansion
Anglia Railways and its parent company GB Rail are planning a series of services that could see their trains running as far afield as Southampton and Northampton. A Chelmsford-Basingstoke link, serving the revamped “Feltham for Heathrow Airport” station and running every two hours could start in autumn 1999.
The services are to be among the first to take advantage of the “open access” approach to the national network. They would operate without subsidy and be over and above franchise requirements.

Society Accounts
Following presentation of the Society accounts at the AGM by our Treasurer, which proved in healthier condition than him, they were successfully audited by Sheffield auditors Owen Moore and Moore.
 

 

 


THE CAVAN & LEITRIM RAILWAY

by Paul Slater
 

 

 


The Cavan & Leitrim was a notable example of the once numerous Irish narrow gauge railways. The line was based at Ballinamore. One branch ran to Dromod, on the Dublin-Sligo main line, another to Belturbet where It connected with a branch of the Great Northern Railways line from Belfast to Londonderry and a third branch ran to Drumshanbo and Arigna.
The Cavan & Leitrim was one of the last Irish narrow-gauge lines to function, closing in 1959. It remained steam worked to the end, using not only its own 4-4-0 tank engines but also locomotives displaced from other narrow-gauge lines, which had already closed.
2-4-2 tanks of the Cork, Blackrock & Passage Railway and 2-6-2 tanks of the Tralee & Dingle Railway were among those that were filmed working on the Cavan & Leitrim in its final years. At Arigna was situated one of Ireland's very few coal mines. The coal produced was of poor quality~ suitable only for power stations, but it provided valuable traffic for the line.
The Cavan & Leitrim did not have the steep gradients and mountain scenery of some other Irish narrow-gauge lines, although ranges of high hills rise near Drumshanbo and Arigna. However, the line had a picturesque quaintness, with its slow mixed trains including old carriages with end balconies which gave them quite a Wild West appearance, and the coal trains on the Arigna branch running alongside and across country roads without any fences or gates. The line was filmed on several occasions, favourite locations being Ballinamore Station and the roadside stretches of the Arigna branch.
A short section of the Cavan & Leitrim at Dromod has been reconstructed, and during a recent holiday in Ireland Chris and I made a point of going to see it An 0-4-2T locomotive named 'Dromod' operates a summer weekend steam service over half a mile of track to a temporary terminus at Clooncolry. It was mid-week when we called at Dromod, and the trains were not running; however, the station was open to visitors, and a small diesel locomotive stood at the platform with a single carriage. An engine shed and water tower have been built at Dromod. It is hoped eventually to extend the railway another five miles to Mohill, where the station is being restored.
On another day, when we drove as far as Ballinamore from the seaside village where we were staying we looked for further remains of the Cavan & Leitrim. Near Arigna we passed the coal-fired power station that was built to use the produce of the mines once the railway had closed; the power station appeared to be derelict and on the hilltops above Arigna numerous wind turbines represented a modern form of electricity generation. We could see no trace of the roadside railway between Arigna and Drumshanbo, but the track bed of the line at Drumshanbo was obvious, now made into a road, with the station, a goods shed and a water tower still standing.
We had our lunch in a pub in Ballinamore. The barmaid confirmed that the signs that decorated the premises were from the railway, and when I asked if there was anything left of the station, she queried it with another customer, a man of about my age, she herself being too young to remember the Cavan & Leitrim at Ballinamore. The other man told me that the station had been incorporated into a school, but the station house was still occupied, In due course I walked along the main street of the town, and at the far end I found the station house. It was immediately recognisable, a red brick gabled building very like the restored station at Dromod. On the end wall of a house nearby, a large mural depicted Cavan & Leitrim 4-4-OT 'Kathleen' standing with a train in Ballinamore station. 'Kathleen' has been preserved and I saw it is a museum in Belfast fifteen years ago during my first holiday is Ireland. Where the tracks, engine shed, yards and workshops at Ballinamore had once stood, there were now school buildings and playing fields, and a small car park with an ornamental fountain. Behind the school I recognised an old goods shed.
Later, I waited in the car park, admiring the fountain and thinking about the narrow gauge trains, while Chris went shopping. On our way back to the coast we would look at some stations on other lines, and we would buy a disc of Irish songs and instrumentals which would be my musical souvenir of this holiday. I had enjoyed my glimpses of the Cavan and Leitrim Railway.

Long Journey Home

by John Dewing

 

 

On Saturday October 18th 1998 I attempted to return home from Carlisle to Cottingham (Hull) after covering the Cumbrian Coast Explorer Railtour.
I had originally intended to travel via Newcastle on the 17.24 but due to flooding at Hayden Bridge this train was cancelled.
I was advised to catch to 17.55 Carlisle to Leeds, which I duly boarded. The train (156488) departed at 18.10 and arrived at Kirby Stephen at 19.05. This was the start of the troubles.
A major points failure at Blea Moor resulted in a 3-hour stop. The guard, (definitely not a Yorkshireman), was not at all helpful when asked questions about the reason for delay and the likelihood of any progress. 'Leeds will sort you out” or “I’ve no idea how long the delay will be' was all the information he imparted on the passengers. Eventually at 21.10 the 16.23 Carlisle/Leeds (142076/156419) was backed on to our train, which then proceeded as far as Ribblehead 'wrong line working’. We then crossed over to the correct path and proceeded to Leeds. The guard on the other train (A grand Yorkshire Lass) took over and was most helpful. Names and destinations were taken and a promise that taxi's to our final destination were being organised by the supervisor at Leeds. We arrived in Leeds at 23.25, some passengers being over 5 hours late. By this time, of course, my train to Hull was long gone but the Leeds supervisor had arranged a taxi for me to get back home to Cottingham. Three Cheers to Northern Spirit for their customer services. I finally arrived back home at 01.15…. a quick journey indeed!

This was certainly a day out to remember.
 

Severn Valley Diesel Gala

by Chris Tyas

 

 

It's 05.25 on a Saturday morning and the alarm is ringing in my ear. Ifs time to get out of bed and get ready as today we are going to Kidderminster for the Severn Valley Diesel Gala- I have to be on the first bus into town as I have arranged with Robin Havenhand to be picked up at Waterdale at 06-30. My old friend Maurice Broadhead is on the bus, something of a coincidence as I am to meet Geoff Broadhead later in the day at the Severn Valley. We have a chat about his recent trip to Germany, where he and a friend have been bashing steam on the main line.

All too soon the bus is in town and, after bidding Maurice farewell, I get off before walking along to Waterdale, where I await Robin- He arrives on time and we set off for the motorway. Happily the traffic is not too bad and we make good time to Kidderminster, in fact there is time for breakfast before the first train of the day at nine o'clock. While I am waiting for Robin to buy a ticket I notice a lorry outside the station with 'Jinty' 47327 on the trailer - I grab my camera and get a shot of the loco before it departs.

The first train of the day is hauled by the visiting Deltic D9019, the load being six coaches plus class 50 D444 on the back of the train. This is no easy load for a Deltic operating on one engine, but having left Kidderminster about ten minutes late, we make a spirited run to Bewdley where we are booked to wait for the goods train to pass with the class 25.

Leaving Bewdley on time, the Deltic copes very well with the load and is stood waiting time at all stations, although the loco has to be worked very hard up Erdington Bank, between Hampton Loade and Bridgnorth. It certainly makes a change to hear a Deltic working hard on a preserved line, as the usual loads are not over-taxing for such a powerful machine.
Upon arrival at Bridgnorth, we have a few minutes to look in the shop. We meet Martin Hall who is buying a Severn Valley Railway tie which, as he is a working member of the railway, will no doubt come in handy in the future as part of his uniform! Our next trip is to be behind 'Black Five' 45110 from Bridgnorth to Hampton Loade, where we cross platforms for the train back to Bridgnorth with 50015. Geoff and Martin decide to retire to the pub for a liquid-lunch, but I decide to have a run with D444 back to Hampton Loade, where 'Mogul' 2968 is waiting to take me back to Bridgnorth. I always find it amusing that preserved railways always have to put steam locos on service on diesel gala days - I wonder what the steam buffs would have to say if a diesel was to work during a steam gala?

Back at Bridgnorth, D9019 is waiting to depart on its next trip to Kidderminster. We travel as far as Arley, where class 17 'Clayton' D8568 stands ready to form the shuttle to Kidderminster. It has been more than nine years since my last trip behind this loco and it is having to work very hard with the light three-coach train.

D9019 is waiting at Kidderminster to go back to Bridgnorth, but this time with a lighter load. This is yet another uneventful run and we wait time at all stations en-route. 500 15 is to be our next loco, which we take as far as Highley. There is time for a cup of hot tea and a biscuit though in Geoff’s case its half a cup of tea, as he manages to throw the other half over himself (Hope your hand gets better soon, mate!) D1013 soon arrives to take us back to Hampton Loade, where D9019 is just arriving and we cross the platform to have another run behind the Deltic_ D821 is coupled to the front of the train at Bewdley. I think the two drivers are trying to prove something to each other as we shoot past Foley Park like a bat out of hell - to say that the speed increased rapidly would be something of an understatement'

At Kidderminster, D9019 runs round the train in readiness for its next trip back to Bridgnorth. Sadly, this will be our last trip behind the Deltic today. Martin has already departed for home and Geoff and I will leave the Deltic at Hampton Loade, where we will meet up with Robin who is travelling behind D444 on a final trip to Kidderminster.

It’s a swift departure from Kidderminster as Robin is giving a lift to a couple of lads who need to catch the 20.49 departure from New Street to Euston. We make Doncaster in time for the bus home, but first it's a pint at the Paddock and then bed!


 

 

 

 

 

The Pennine Quiz No. 96
by Ken King

1 . What is the length of a class 325 driving car?
2.  How many arches are there on Kentish Town Viaduct?
3.  For what purpose are the station buildings at Ballachulish now being used?
4.  In which town was Hibel Road station?
5.  Who was CME of the LMSR immediately before William Stanier?
6.  What is the name of The Snowdon Mountain Railways locomotive No. 12?
7.  What was the gauge of the Leek & Manifold Light Railway?
8.  Which line is promoted as The Bittern line?
9.  Which is the nearest station to Turners lane Junction?
10. What was the name of the ship, which brought the first class 66 into Immingham?
11. Where did the 1300 Plymouth - Leeds make an unscheduled stop on August 18th, 1995?
12. Which station opened in 1944 served Radway Green R.O.F?
13. What was the date of the head - on collision at Crowden?
14. Which branch line has a logo depicting Chapple
Viaduct?
15. Including the Royal Mail platform how many platforms does Stafford station have?
16. What were the numbers of the first two classes 90s to visit Paddington?
17. What is a GUV.?
18. Who named class 427/1 unit 1409 Operation Perseus?
19. What was the number of the first class 92 to be used on a railtour?
20. What was the value of Railtrack shares on 31st December 1998?
21. Name class D30 62418.
22. Which railway company has its locomotive works at Boston Lodge?
23. Which named train has the reporting code 1S57?
24. Which company designed the Midland Main line livery?
25. On what date was Hams Hall Freight Terminal opened?
26. Which town used to have stations called St. James and Malvern Road?
27. Which class 86 was partially streamlined and reached a speed of 129 mph?
28. Which locomotive works was locally known as "The Tank"?
29.. How many Deltics were named after racehorses?
30. Who was locomotive Superintendent of the M.S.& L Railway from 1859 - 86?

 
Pennine Quiz No. 95

The Answers

 

 

1 Between Haverford West & Milford Haven
2 Obstruction Danger
3 1 mile 24 yards
4 The Master Cutler
5 43
6 28 May 1995
7 60700
8. Stoats Nest
9. Sir Frank Ree
10 47810
11 Oxford
12 Barmouth Viaduct
13 35005
14 Lord Montague of Beaulieu Motor Museum
15 Saint Blaise Church 1445 - 1995
16 Restaurant
17 Alfreton & Mansfield Parkway
18 12 August 1996
19 2 October 1991
20 Class 58
21 Class 442
22 Middleton Railway - Leeds
23 Paignton
24 23 June 1997
25 92039 Johann Strauss (Father Son)
26 York Station
27 47163 47164
28 Huddersfield - Sheffield
29 10 February 1997
30 Belgrave and Birstall
3 1Warwick Avenue
32 Lancashire, Derbyshire and East Coast Rly
33 Commence 14 Oct 1936 End 31 October 1980
34 9006 9030
35 4.5 miles
36 Sir Peter Vanneck
37. 31 January 1995
38. Woodside
39. Oban
40. Great Eastern Railway

Winner overall was John Dewing with Ken King gaining second place and Malcolm Bell in third spot. Many congratulations gentlemen!

PLEA FROM EDITOR - ANYONE PREPARED TO DO A QUIZ FOR THE SUMMER ISSUE ????

1998 Slide Competition

The Annual competition was held on October 7th 1998 and judged by Derek Porter, who has our thanks for his patience and acumen. The lucky winners were:
1st Chris Nicholson - Class 121 DMU at Chappel
2nd. Tony Brown - 60059 on freight at Templeborough
3rd. Andy Dalby - 75078 on KWVR

(Apologies for delay on this item - it was lost in my file. Ed.)

Pennine
Observers
Notes

 



Cross Country:
On Dec 5 the Bristol - Newcastle and return working was in the hands on Deltic D9000.

Eastern Region:
Noted at Peterborough on 11th November were 31166 31142 37025 58007.
Steam loco 6018 (real number 6024) was in steam at Kings X on a charter train on November 22nd.
On 22nd November the 17.40 Leeds - Kings X hauled by 89001 was delayed at Wakefield for 50 minutes while the local fire brigade put out a fire in the SMOKERS COACH!
Noted at Peterborough on 28th November were 37274 31423 31166 56131 56094 58002 while 37705 was at Hull Paragon on the same day.
47722 with a rake of Anglia (Turquoise) stock hauled a Norwich - Newcastle charter on December 5th.
Saturday sightings on the Barnetby - Gainsborough line before passenger workings include:-
Dec 5 37109 Dec 12 56025 Dec 19 37156

]an 02 37703
Jan 09 56058 ]an 16 47363 lan 23 37671 Jan 30 56027 Oil trains through Lincoln were hauled by.
Dec 31 6001660050
Jan 12 6002760061
Jan 13 60027 60046 60093
Jan 19 60019 66050 (freight)
Jan 20 60019 60053
Jan 26 60049 60046
Jan 27 60049 60059
Feb 04 60047 60060
Feb 08 66033 66060 (both freight) 37411 with inspection coach 
Feb 12 37372+37411
Noted at Peterborough on December 8th were 56132 37713 37242 47523 31420 31142 58021
Again we go to Peterborough on December 29th where 37106 37116 37221 60003 56119 56087 56037 56055 58004 58030 08516 31154 and 31255 were on view.
Noted at Immingham Depot on 2nd January were 08442 08632 08824 08886 37110 37344 37705 37892 47277 47319 56008 56014 56043 56093 60019 60047
66028 passed through Lincoln (presumably crew training) on10/12 17/12 and 05/01.
Noted at Ulceby on Feb, 06 were 56102 (coal) 53128 (cargowaggon) 60059 (Iron ore).
On Feb 4th there were major delays at Doncaster due to high winds which brought down OHL south of York. Some trains were cancelled and 47744 47772 and 31514 were seen dragging empty stock to York. The 10.00 Glasgow - KingsX hauled by 91024 was running 133 minutes late.
On Feb 10 Peterborough was host to 08516 and 31420 shunting with 37013 37505 37883 56119 on the stabling point
Seen at Ipswich on Jan 23 were 86221 86250 86220 86233 86215 86237 86218 and D9000 on Norwich - Liverpool St services.
Also noted at Ipswich were 47258 47289 47301 47370 47234 47197 47270 90143 90147 86637 47099 47373 and 86609 while Norwich Crown point was host to 57001 47323 and 08870.
On Jan 28 the Hull Executive HST was rescued by 56088 when the HST set failed between Doncaster and Goole.
Mainline blue liveried 58002 still with I Z58 Worksop Aberdonian stickers from 3 years ago was an unusual sight in BSC Aldwarke sidings on lan 13. Fragonset's 31468 (Jan 15) and 31452 (]an 23) were noted on crew training duties on the  Aldwarke Junction - Rotherham Central line.
On Jan 30 86261 hauled the S&C Circular Merrymaker to York and return. 47785 'Fiona Castle' failed at Appleby on the York - Carlisle leg and was replaced by 37694 to Carlisle and then 37895 took the train from Carlisle to York via Hexham.
On Feb 13 the 'Pathfinder Yorkian Gargoylian' railtour was topped with Fragonset liveried 31452/31468 and tailed by EWS liveried 60018 form York to Monk Bretton on this severely truncated remains of the old Wath Junction/Normanton main line.

Western Region:
Our intrepid reporter, John Dewing, made the following observations during a 6 day visit to the South West commencing November 22nd
47832 hauled the 23-50 Paddington - Penzance sleeper on the 22nd with 08786 performing the shunter move at Plymouth. On the 23rd Par hosted 37669 37263 37886 and 37680 while 37672 was noted at Lostwithiel- On the same day 08798 08645 08663 08644 09013 and 37040 were seen at Laira TMD). On the 24th the Penzance - Glasgow hauled by 47702 was 50 minutes late due to the driver needing 12 hours sleep! On the 25th 60059 37510 37670 37158 47761 47791 47787 47789 were noted at Exeter.
The Aberdeen - Plymouth arrived at Exeter on one power car (43103)- The other power car (43097) had a major oil leak and was covered in oil. Passengers thought they were in for loco haulage when 37410137158 arrived from Riverside but Unfortunately these went straight on to the depot The errant power car was eventually restarted and allowed to leave 1 hour late Noted in the area on the 26th/27th were 37158 37510 47711 37671 47849 37047 37798 37411 47847 47812 47701 47812 47841 47848 37680 47832- 47849 was 35 minutes late from Penzance due to cows on the line!
On Dec 617 47811 hauled the Paddington - Penzance Night Riviera' and 37906 37680 375 10 were noted at Lostwithiel. The 08.48 Penzance was cancelled due to no stock being available due to a previous inward working cancellation. Noted at Plymouth were 08786 47784 09013 08663 08644 08798 and 37689 whilst Exeter was host to 08792 37686 47742 and 47762
On Feb, 22nd 37417 was noted at Reading hauling LUL stock.

Midland Region:
Noted at Warrington on 8th November were 56109 56044 60047 60042 60090 while at Liverpool Class 47's 47829 47749 47759 4788 47767 dragging stock between Crewe and Liverpool. The 10-08 Stafford - Liverpool was running 100 minutes late due to over run engineering work.
Paul Slater visited London on 10th February and noted the following - Euston 86223 87012 87014 87021 90006 90007 47785 (Parcels) 87019 90002. Willesden 37010 37380 47750 08451 87006 08711 37704 4779. Stonebridge Park 08617 08934. Wembley 08918 47194 66038 66059 90026 9013. North Wembley 47735. Mitre Bridge 4722. Old Oak Common 47853 47816 47830. North Pole 73118.
On ]an 2nd 37408 37421 37420 37415 37401 were noted at Chester on the Crewe - Holyhead service.
Noted at Crewe on Jan 16th were:
37418 - 10.17 Birmingham NS - Holyhead 37408 - 12.20 Crewe - Holyhead
37422 - 12.07 Birmingham NS - Holyhead 47702 - 06.36 Poole - Liverpool
47789 - 08.50 Holyhead - Euston (In)
87032- Holyhead - Euston (Out)
92024 - off southbound Freightliner
90140 - on southbound Freightliner
Noted at Preston on Feb 20th were 47289 on the 05.50 Bournemouth - Edinburgh which was taken over northbound by 86214. 47746 on the 10.40 Edinburgh - Brighton (should have been 47289-unfit) went forward approx. 60 mins late and ran via Wigan to Manchester. 86256 brought in the 12.50 Glasgow - Poole which was taken forward by EWS liveried 47758 as no 47/8 was available. Noted at Wembley on 10 March were 66W3 66007 66041 66059 92005 92021 and 92045

Southern Region:
Noted at Wandsworth road on 10 March were 31420 56040 590G4 60088 66042 73104 73118 73130 73134 92005 and Eurostars 301112 3019/20 3021/2 3107/8 whilst Hither Green hosted 60033 73114 and 73141.

Preserved Railways:
Paul Slater visited Barrow Hill on 16th January where, in residence, were 37111 45060 82008 83012 D9009 D9019 E3003 and steam locos 2700 and 45593 Kolhapur. Also two industrial shunters and steam loco 48773 off the *Barrow Hill Collier' railtour.
The Great Central Railway Winter Gala on 30th January had 6990 *Witherslack Hall', 7029 'Clun Castle", 7821 'Ditcheat Manor and 92212 on passenger and goods trains.
On Jan 30th at the 'British Railways Weekend' the following locos were in steam - 60007 76079 62005 45337 45407 80136 1450. The DMU shuttle to the loco works was 5 1842 51813 59701 with Beverley and Bridlington destination blinds.
On Feb 16th steam loco 45110 visited Hull with a special charter 'Business Pager' organised by Big Roy Hattersley. The train did a circular trip Hull, Selby, Snaith, Goole, Hull.

 Thanks Tony Caddick, Paul Slater, Tony Booth and John Dewing for their contributions.


What the Papers Say !

A Pot Pouri of magazine
and newspaper articles
relating to the rail industry


 

 


 

SIGNAL FAILURES (from Private Eye)

Focus on GNEAarghl

FINGERS are still crossed at GNER (spelt 'GNEAargh')in recent ads) that the government will ignore the company's track record and extend its seven-year franchise on the London to Edinburgh line.
Despite having the most modem main line in Britain (upgraded in 1991) GNER has consistently missed even the soft passengers charter targets for annual average punctuality. The latest report showed that GNER received the second largest number of complaints~ after Virgin; but the association of train operating companies (whose board includes GNER chief executive Christopher Garnett) insisted complaints had increased because 'the new customer driven railway is encouraging more comments and suggestions and responding positively to them*. GNER was held up as a shining example of a company that hands out compensation claim forms on seriously delayed trains (although no mention was made that GNER views such forms as a useful way to gather addresses for junk-mail purposes). One Eye reader who commutes between Durham and York gives an insight into what really happens when a passenger complains to GNER, Fewer than half the 31 GNER trains he used during October arrived no more than five minutes )ate. His 50 minute journey was delayed more than 90 minutes three times and once by 155 minutes, partly because GNER locomotives caught fire twice in as many weeks. He felt entitled * to a refund on his £206 monthly season ticket.
GNER's exemplary complaint service swung into action after only six weeks of unexplained delay and just one reminder from the complainer. 'We at GNER cannot in all fairness prevent delays to our services caused by Railtrack,' wrote Christopher Wright of GNER customer relations, before admitting GNER was responsible for reliability of its "trainsets". He added: 'I would advise that our equipment is man-made and mostly manufactured by outside industry It will, as with any other technology, be prone to human error in manufacture and maintenance.* He concluded no refund would be paid, as the 12-month average punctuality figures had not been officially published. (They will register arrivals at London and other termini, not punctuality in the York area.).
Other passengers may also feet cheated. In January 1997 GNER and its parent company, Sea Container's hyped an imminent order for two tilting express trains, to be delivered within two years., and plans to convert 45 sleeping carriages into extra rolling stock for daytime trains. Two years later the converted carriages have yet to appear and the tilting trains, now due, have not even been ordered.
GNER's failure this time is due to a man-made franchise bid by a rival company. Sea Containers had high hopes of securing the 1 5-year west coast franchise - involving a big fleet of tilting trains to which the GNER pair would be a cost-effective addition but Virgin severely undercut Sea Containers. From being prepared to buy the new trains *even if we are compelled to stick with seven years~, Sea Containers changed tack, threatening not to order them unless the government met its demand for a 15-year GNER franchise.
Arguing for an extension must surely be a waste of GNER's time, even though the government has invited proposals from train companies. Sea Containers~ last annual report describes its involvement with Burma's tourist industry, and it is official UK government policy not to encourage trade with Burma because of its human rights record. A labour government would never award a franchise to a company with such connections. Or would it?

Lying on the rails

Finding themselves with nothing to shout about from the rooftop's, some rail businesses are shouting from the rooftops anyway - and keeping the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) very busy.
For example, the ASA upheld a complaint against a Railtrack advert that claimed the privatised system had generated 'the first substantial growth in rail travel in a generation'. Men it was pointed out that rail travel grew similarly in the late 1980is, Railtrack tried to argue that the gap from 1988 to 1998 could be defined as a generation- Given that pregnancy among 10 year olds is not yet the norm, the ASA ordered Railtrack not to repeat the daft claim. Virgin Trains, meanwhile, has adopted the Stalinist maxim that anything is possible as long as you say it has happened. Striking posters in red and black tell people to rejoice at the improvements they are witnessing under the new regime and those to come under the 15-Year Plan- We've started reducing the confusing number of ticket option!.,* says one poster hoping the plebs won't realise how many extra tickets Virgin has introduced. Virgin has promised the ASA it will not repeat an advert in which it claimed, with no factual basis at all, to run more trains each weekday between Holyhead and London. Things began to go awry in February 1997 a month before Virgin took over the west coast franchise, Virgin is committed to moving quickly to restore customer confidence in the service, by achieving 90 percent punctuality for most services within a year from take-over. 'After 18 months Virgin's 12month average punctuality is still below 90 percent on all its routes, with only 74.4 percent of Anglo-Scottish expresses 'on time' in the year to September 1998.
To excuse Virgin's spectacular failure to keep its promise, Richard Branson complained to the Times that *virtually no money was spent on track and rolling stock` on the west coast line by British Rail in its fast 20 years. Oh dear. Between 197314 and 199314 BR invested nearly half a billion pounds on the route, at current prices~ on items such as new locos and carriages in the 1980s, extra electrification in the 1990s, creating Milton Keynes station and rebuilding the tracks at Crewe. Were it not for the process of preparing the line so Branson could play with it the route's modernisation would be finished already. Despite the ageing infrastructure, BR handed the line to Railtrack in 1994 with not a single speed restriction in force.
Virgin has already had its knuckles rapped for claims it made in the Times and the ASA criticised a travel promotion which 'had caused unnecessary disappointment` to travellers.
Thameslink might also have disappointed travellers if anyone had believed its leaflet boasting of trains 'every 15 minutes~. The company said this was a 'concise' description of its service. But as the ASA found: *Sometimes intervals between trains were more than 30 minutes in duration and only two trains departed in each hour.'
A complaint against Connex SouthCentral was upheld as the ASA was unhappy with a poster proclaiming 'Connex express every half an hour' between London and Brighton. Regular passengers ~t think 'Connex express` a contradiction in terms, but the ASA objection centred on the chunks of the day when the trains are not half-hourly.
It's not only passengers who are not amused by the rail companies! attempts to con them. The ASA has upheld two complaints against Great Eastern Railway over publicity for fares between Ipswich and London- The complaints were made by. -- Anglia Railways!

Happy Christmas from Railtrack

The season of goodwill to all shareholders is approaching and as usual passengers are expected to give generously of their time, patience and money. Christmas, you see, is traditionally seen by the rail industry as open season for messing passengers about. 
As well as the almost total suspension of services for two days, this year unprecedented hurdles are being placed in the path of passengers.
In November rail regulator John Swift belatedly realised rail companies had not complied With their obligation to publish Christmas timetables at least 12 weeks ahead He said.---The position has now been reached where, on many routes, customers cannot reliably plan or book their travel arrangements over Christmas and New Year.' (As punishment the companies had to give the fearsome regulator 'a report).
Railtrack said the situation was "due to the over intensive programme of heavy engineering work planned over Christmas"  That programme will disrupt many journeys - but at the same time long distance fares will be increased. From 18 December to 1 January there will be no supersaver tickets Passengers will have to buy more expensive saver fares, even for journeys that involve switching from trains to buses at Railtrack's convenience.
Railtrack has chosen to work at the giant Manchester Piccadilly station on 19 and 20 December, ensuring the station is dosed for one of the busiest weekends of the year. Travellers from the south, many laden with luggage and presents, will switch to buses at Stockport and arrive in Manchester much later than normal. Passengers travelling from Birmingham to Manchester, for example, will be caught up in this hassle and have to pay £26.10 instead of the usual £ 19.50 for the privilege. The buses will he laid on by North Western Trains~ so connections With Virgin services may not be guaranteed (as when buses were provided for rail passengers between Wilmslow and Stockport recently).
Railtrack is causing more and more disruption to passengers during the year while information becomes harder to find There are now no weekend timetables in the official guide to InterCity services, which itself is becoming harder to obtain. Yet the rail industry is making unprecedented use of computers and information technology capable of planning train timetables and dispersing information rapidly at the press of a few buttons.
Railtrack and its contractors are improving engineering productivity by investing in new machinery which works faster and needs fewer operation. This has already helped drive down operating costs (by 4 percent in the first half of 1998). Passengers might expect to benefit from these efficiencies through less disruption to journeys from engineering work and clearer information being provided further in advance. But that would be a selfish assumption, especially at Christmas when everyone should remember the poor and needy like Railtrack shareholders and directors who have to make do with six month profits rising by a not very Scrooge-like 13 percent to £224m and dividends up by 10 percent Bah humbug indeed!

Normal service will be resumed (From The Guardian)

It was a normal day at the office at Virgin Rail; Britain's biggest and most criticised railway franchise. Flooding along the line near Gloucester had caused, considerable delays, there had been numerous track circuit failures throughout its vast network from Aberdeen to Penzance and back to London, causing delays of at least 10 minutes. An irate businessman from Shrewsbury who had missed his plane connection to Brazil had been put up overnight at a hotel near Heathrow at the company's expense You might say business as usual .
From a modest first floor office tucked away behind the main concourse at Euston station, Virgin Rail's chief executive, Brian Barrell sits in a small office at the nerve centre directing operations. It is the most unpretentious part of Branson's empire.
No swept-back approach through potted palms and plush carpets. Entry is via Railtrack's customer relations desk up a flight of stairs, and past a few half empty offices. Lavish it is not....the old railway lives on here.
Mr Barrett spends an hour each day dealing with a list of 'pinch points' in the system over the previous 24 hours, From a selection prepared by his team, he follows up each problem, like the Gloucester flooding, punching the telephone, trying to get explanations. It sounds like a case of locking the stable door after the horse has bolted, but Mr Barrett believes that stag like to feel that 'someone is taking an interest in what they are doing and that personal intervention might ensure that the difficulty does not occur again - or that if it does, it Will be dealt with in a different way.
Mr Barrell aged 53, is cheerful and straightforward. like his boss Richard Branson, his face is covered in hair. But it is thick and grey-black not finely trimmed, giving him the look of a friendly pub landlord. Like his boss, he is rarely out of sweaters, but Marks and Spencer, rather than designer label.
He came to Virgin after 10 years as director of marketing at Forte, where, he says, his greatest triumph was helping to design and set up the Travelodge hotels, 'bringing affordable accommodation to the public'. He had decided to retire at 50, but found the challenge of running Virgin Rail 'Irresistible' ' Have patience, he appeals to Virgin's thousands of daily customers, we will get it right in the end.
He is honest He has to be. There is no point in hiding behind excuses. 'The view is still around that privatisation of the railway is a bad thing It is entirely fight that the railway should he criticised for its current performance But it should be fairly dear that given the current trend, either the wrong franchises have been chosen, or there is a structural problem militating against our objective.
Train operators are unhappy about pointing the finger at Railtrack, particularly when, in Virgin's case, it has a revenue sharing deal with Railtrack to operate the west coast main line between London and Glasgow. But Mr Barrett has no qualms in saying 70 per cent of delays are due to 'circumstances outside our control' .
Poor track and poor maintenance work top the list In other words, the culprit is Railtrack. Mr Barrett is running his clapped-out rolling stock on a clapped-out railway.
Barrett cites numerous instances where Railtrack fail to deliver track paths on time, leading to a considerable build-up in delays on Virgin services, which are predominantly long distance, but says cautiously. We have to team to live together.'
He is prepared to put up his hand and say, yes, the passenger can blame Virgin if a train breaks down or if staff do not turn up for work the most notorious example being when half the labour cabinet failed to get to Blackpool on time.
'None of us deliberately set out to run poor services, but if the problems relate to shortage of staff, immediate remedial action is dearly possible,' he says. We have a limited spare capacity to deal with surges in demand but we can't prevent people with a ticket from travelling.* Branson took over Britain's two most extensive rail franchises some two years ago. At first the tactic was to blame the old regime- When that failed, the organisation promised jam tomorrow, new rolling stock and 140 mph tilting trains. But these are bound to bring teething troubles.
Barrett's answer has been to put his trust in staff to make things work as best they cam If the system breaks down, managers lay on 150 extra taxis at Euston station, while staff have been commended for rebooking a passengers onward flight from Heathrow to Greece using their own credit card.
Barrett puts it this way. 'it means staff using their own initiative. We are seriously trying to dig ourselves out of this hole and there is a massive expectation that the 2,900 we employ will get it right"
Mr Barrett says that everybody knows that the captain of a plane is in charge. On a train, it is the driver, who is at present powerless to communicate with passengers. But that will change when the new rolling stock comes on stream.
Come the spring the company will have refurbished the 30yeaT-old rolling stock it was handed by British Rail. Better ventilation, new upholstery and toilets will be on some 90 units which will be scrapped when they are replaced by 126 trains at a cost of £970 million in time for the summer schedules of 2001.
Virgin has often been criticised for higher-than-inflation fare rises. Being largely outside the 50-mile London radius, within which fares are regulated, it can escape sanctions from the rail franchise director, though not his adverse comments.
The standard return from London to Manchester, one of Virgin's most popular routes, went up 13-7 per cent last year from £95 to £108. Similar increases have been notched up on the route between Glasgow and London.
In his defence, Mr Barrett produces a list of 'red hot' tickets which can be bought from a fortnight in advance. You can travel, for example, between London and Liverpool for £ 16 return, and from London to Glasgow for £25 return. About 25 per cent of its use these deals but the aggravate many others who have always regarded the industry as a walk-on railway, and want to buy a reasonably priced ticket on the day of travel.
The remarkable surge in Virgin's operation has been in first class travel, which amounts to 40 per cent of its business. Barrett is unapologetic about championing first class, and the fact that standard rail travellers can cat in the dining car only if they pay the full fare. 'The first class ticket gives the holders the right to free drink, plus the meal. They must be afforded special treatment. He believes that the industry is over regulated with too much red tape, a view almost certainly held by an increasingly frustrated Mr Branson. Virgin and other franchisees are committed to in~ far more than we need to satisfy our franchise requirements,' Mr Barrett says, *yet we are subject to a mindboggling array of rules, which if we break them, could result in franchise termination'.
Is this the voice of a company in defiant mood, or the views of somebody about to pull the plug? Certainly not, retorts Mr Barrett. We have not come so far along the way that we are about to call a halt Golden times are ahead and we will there to enjoy them.
But key people in the industry detect that Branson may be getting tired of the damage his rail arm is doing to the Virgin brand. The industry's other big player is Stagecoach, whose chairman, Brian Souter, has taken a 49 per cent share in Mr Branson's rail business which at the time valued Virgin Rail at £280 million.
If at any time over the next two years Mr Branson calls time, expect Stagecoach to start pulling the pints.

Focus on fares

A rare consolation for passengers when British Rail was being privatised was the guarantee that the cost of certain tickets would not increase faster than the rate of inflation. So much for guarantees.
Passengers in the south east were shocked last autumn when Opraf, the office of passenger rail franchising, announced that it was allowing most London commuter franchises to raise price-capped season tickets by more than inflation - 2 percent more in several cases. Now another *protected' fare, the long-distance saver ticket is also mutating
Opraf ostensibly protects the saver from abuse by the likes of Virgin Trains, whose intention is to force passengers to buy tickets valid on Virgin services only. Yet Virgin has banned savers on early evening departures from Euston. For passengers who have to travel at this time it means a huge price rise: they have to buy standard return tickets instead of savers (even if travelling to London at off-peak times)- A saver from Manchester to London, for example, costs £46.50, but a standard return costs £108 - a rise of 132 percent Not bad for a fare the Tories promised would not rise by more than inflation.
In the small print on the savers' regulations is a loophole allowing their prohibition in evening peaks, practically inviting companies to rip off passengers who thought their ticket was safe. Great Western Trains has now banned savers on peak trains out of Paddington. it reduced the saver fare by 5 percent as compensation, but this is no consolation to people now forced to buy standard returns instead of savers. Residents of western Cornwall, for example, may have to buy £111.00 standard returns as the last train of the day to Penzance on which the £55 saver is valid leaves London at 3.35pm.
Virgin meanwhile is creating more complications with new local tickets valid on Virgin services only. These undercut established fares only by a quid or two, but Virgin keeps all the income instead of sharing it with other operators. For journeys from Stoke-on-Trent to Stockport; for instance, Virgin has introduced six new tickets. Staff must explain them to passengers while queues grow at the ticket window.
If other operators follow suit even simple local journeys could become impossibly confusing. This would then increase the incidence (already widespread) of clerks and the rail inquiries phone line failing to advise customers of cheapest fares. The regulating authorities are doing nothing to stop this, preferring to criticise staff and fine the inquiries service for poor performance.
Curiously, Virgin Trains displays posters boasting 'Booking a train ticket should be simple. So we've started reducing the confusing number of ticket options. We've also started removing the baffling terms and conditions you've encountered before. ' Is this the same Virgin Trains that has introduced heaps of confusing new tickets? Er, yes.

Mobile phone terrorist cut off (from The Guardian)

Last Thursday the Virgin journey from York to Taunton was as crowded and uncomfortable as we've come to expect In our compartment an obnoxious young man was engrossed in al most non-stop phone conversations which he conducted in loud and self-important tones.
There were angry mutterings, polite requests for him to switch the mobile off, all to no avail. Shortly before Derby, an elderly man stood up and, shouting to attract attention, told him if he didn't switch the off it would be thrown out of the window. 'I didn't pay to suffer your inane waffle from Newcastle to Plymouth.' At this everyone broke into spontaneous applause, though the mobile terrorist appeared to take no notice until another grey beard entered the fray, courageously wrestling with him and forcing him to put the phone away.
A wave of jubilation now swept through the crowded carriage as if a victory had been won against a minor Pinochet. The rest of the journey was a good deal more chatty than usual with a feeling of wartime camaraderie in the face of a common foe. As we approached Gloucester the phone rang again but such was the hostility he pushed his way into the corridor and we could see him answering It outside the loo

Joy Peach.

Whitby.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1999 Meetings Report

Tony Caddick

20th January 1999 - An excellent show from Peter Marsh covering a wide area with slides ancient and modern. Also some Blackpool Trams especially for your Membership secretary.

3rd February 1999 - Glen Williamson created a FIRST in 25 years of Pennine slide shows. Slides of Smoky Russian Diesels. Our previous East European correspondent~ Mr Sanderson (Polish Ice Speedway specialist) looked on in amazement and awe. He has now decided to stick to horse racing and Eurostar.

 17th February 1999 - Derek Porter, as always, gave a thoroughly interesting show on Classes 50 55 56 and 58. Especially poignant were several 'cradle to grave' shots of 56's being built and, after a criminally short service life, scrapped.
 

"Go WEST" (or East) The choice is yours.

by Andy Dalby

 

 

As many of the Pennine Railway Society members will have noticed, more foreign railway slides are appearing during the slide shows and competitions at the Taps. In my case the reason for this is the dwindling interest in the rail system of the UK.
My first venture abroad was to the Netherlands in 1981 chasing EM2's, one of the few 'exports' from British Rail. Sadly now only one EM2 remains in Holland, 150 1 (ex BR 27003). On occasions this loco does work Railtours and has also worked some service trains on special occasions, the last day of the through services from Den Haag (The Hague) in Holland to Koln (Cologne) in Germany in May 1995 being an example. Since my first visit in 198 1 my interest with foreign systems has increased to a point where 1 prefer to go abroad rather than to do anything in this country. Only family commitments, money and lack of time restrict my movements further afield.
There are many ways of introducing yourself to the rail systems of Europe - One of the best ways being to do a tour with 'Along Different Lines', a travel firm which deals with tours to many rail systems in Europe, and, if you fancy it they have arranged a trip to PERU !!! this year, (Paddington Bear, Beware). Closer to home ADL run trips to Belgium covering depots, lines that don't normally carry passenger trains, Antwerp docks for example. They try to use unusual motive power to haul the tours, for the haulage crowd (myself included). The depot visits are normally unsupervised, sometimes the time spent in the depots can be a little tight but normally you can spot most of the locos and still have time to take photo's. This is one good way of finding out other countries systems, locos etc.

Getting There.

First thing to mention is the need for a passport At one time there was a British Visitors Passport valid for a year but now these no longer exist so a ten-year passport is needed. They can be obtained from the passport office in Liverpool, for people living in the Doncaster area, either by post or by hand (over the counter). It is possible to get them on the day but you have to show that you are going abroad within the next few days. Cost of passports is £2 1.00 by post or £3 1.00 if you turn up in person to get one over the counter. Visa's are not now required for the EU countries but some of the old Eastern Block countries still require visa's, some that have to be obtained in advance. Certain Pennine members can assist with info on the subject. As you are all aware, travelling to Europe can be done by train from Waterloo International (how long the name will stay like this if the French get their way, Waterloo being one of their defeats in wartime long ago). Eurostars run to Paris and Brussels all year and to various French ski resorts in winter. An example of cost to Brussels £79.00 return, you must stay a Saturday night or three nights during the week. The booking offices at Doncaster, Sheffield and Leeds can book on Euro-stars. GNER have an 'add on fare' from Doncaster of £24.70 taking you to Waterloo.

Flying is another way to get there. KLM UK fly from Sheffield to Amsterdam. Virgin fly Stansted to Brussels, Easy-Jet fly Luton/ Liverpool to Amsterdam/Nice/ Barcelona, BA and BM fly to various European destinations too many to list.
Fast ferries run to Ireland, Holland and Belgium from British ports like Holyhead, Harwich PQ and Dover. From Dover to Oostende the ferry costs £25.00 for a five-day return. P&O North Sea Ferries run from Hull to Rotterdam and Zeebrugge, the ways of getting there are once again too long to list
If you are prepared to drive to Dover the tunnel Shuttle service takes you to Calais in 30 - 35 minutes, it can be cheap at 3 am. If you enjoy bus/coach journeys, Euro-lines coach firm runs from London to over 250 destinations in the EU.
If anyone decides to try *Pastures New', people like myself, Neil Taylor, Rob Havenhand, Paul Micklethwaite and Andy Jessop can give help and advice on locos, getting there, hotels etc.
You can also go 'tourist mode' using the railway to visit places of interest travel on some spectacular lines (the lines in the Alps being some of the best I've seen)
One magazine that's currently on the go 'Today's Railways', gives information on the foreign systems with railtour guides, articles on signals, new buildings, new services, loco information, in fact anything to do with the DB, AG, SNCB, CFL, CP, RENFE, DSB, FS, PKI, OBB, BILS, CD, ZSR, to name but a few.
If there is interest in foreign railways I'll try and put together a few articles on various countries for future Pennine magazines.
As the saying goes 'Take the Plunge', You may be surprised.


Rail Ale
Gans roon thu Toon!
 

by David Bladen

 

Ok, you can stop panicking now. I haven't given up beer and there's no need to sell your brewery shares - Rail Ale is back!
As most of you are probably aware, I am now employed by Ed's Wonderful System at the new Customer Service Delivery Centre (affectionately known as the 'Death Star') in Doncaster, as a member of the Mobile Resources Team. The team's task is to plan and monitor the usage of the company's locomotives and wagons and my particular role is overseeing the fleet of hoppers and open wagons. I am also heavily involved with planning the disposal of the company's remaining vacuum braked wagons.
When I first started the column, I bemoaned the fact that I did not get around as much as I used to. This has all changed and I've done a fair bit of travelling whilst I've been with EWS. Don't, however, run away with the idea that this must be a heaven-sent opportunity to gather material! In-line with all railway companies, EWS rightly enforces a very strict no-alcohol policy for staff on duty, but overnight stays are a feature of the job and once railway business is concluded for the day, it's time to get out of the hotel, have a wander around and hopefully find a decent pint, which brings me neatly to the subject of this article.
Newcastle is not a city I have visited much, however, recent trips to various yards, collieries and power stations in the north east, plus a seminar at the University of Northumberland have rectified this shortcoming. I am very impressed with the city centre - it has some magnificent architecture, superb shops and rather good Indian and Chinese restaurants. Best of all, it has some excellent pubs within easy walking distance of the station! If you do decide to stop off for a beer or two, I would suggest you invest in a map before embarking on your wanderings. The pubs described are all in different directions from the station and I visited them on different occasions, added to which, street-name signs are not Newcastle council's strongest point!.
Our first port of call is one you will not need a map for! The Head of Steam is directly opposite the station entrance on Neville Street If you expect to find a place full of railway memorabilia, then you may be disappointed. Minimalist is how I would describe the decor of this establishment' This, together with bars on two floors, gave the place an initial . cocktail -lounge" feel, however, some excellent Hambleton Bitter soon dispelled that impression. Black Sheep Bitter, Tetley's and John Smiths were also on sale during my visit. Jazz features very highly here and the barman told me that a number of excellent jazz acts perform at the weekends.
On Westgate Road next to the New Tyne Theatre, you will find the Bodega. This pub has been impressively restored in recent times and has justifiably won several CAMRA awards for the quality of the interior. Wood-panelled booths are a feature and the ceiling boasts two beautiful stained-glass domes, reminiscent of the buffet at Manchester Victoria in its heyday. The pub is very popular with Newcastle United fans and this is demonstrated by the pump-clips on the bar - Mordue Geordie Pride is sold here under the name 'No. 9", in honour of someone called Alan Shearer - who he? (though if he wanted to sign for Doncaster Rovers, I would have no complaints) I have to say, I don't care what the beer is called - it's rather drinkable and, at £1.70, not too badly priced for a city-centre venue. Good food is also available - the chip butties come highly recommended.
Standing at the Newcastle side of the High Level Bridge nest~ ling in the shadow of the castle, is the Bridge Hotel. I think it's the only pub I've been to which can boast what appears to be a turret no doubt in homage to its more illustrious neighbour. The pub had been neglected for a number of years but, like the Bodega, has now been superbly restored internally. It is a plush and comfortable place, with several distinct seating areas. Locally produced beers, including Mordue and Four Rivers, feature and guest beers are also on sale. Well worth a visit.'
And so to the final pub in this brief tour and, in my humble opinion, the best It makes me wish I'd visited Newcastle sooner! The Crown Posada on Side can only be described as an unspoilt gem. Boasting a magnificent original interior, with an ornate ceiling mirrored walls and some wonderful stained glass panels, this tiny place has very few concessions to the 2011 century. There are no TV's or jukeboxes to disturb you but occasionally, 'piped' music comes courtesy of an old Dynatron record player perched precariously on the bar, alongside a pile of equally ancient records. A varied selection of beers graces the many pumps on the bar, behind which is a carved mahogany gantry, and the 'stotty" bread sandwiches provide a welcome respite to those whose palates can't face another 'Carvery of the Day'. The one drawback to the place is that it is at the bottom of a steep bill and it's a fair slog back to the station, but if you only have time to visit one pub in Newcastle, brace yourself for some exercise and visit the Crown Posada, before some clown takes it in to their head to 'modernise' the place.
 

 HISTORIC SHOT CHIEF

by Geoff Bambrough

 

 

 

Being a regular attendee at Pennine social evenings I never cease to be amazed at the quality and variety of the slides shown by our guest speakers, many of whom are members from the midst of our society. Although the photographer did not realise at the time of pressing the shutter, he was in the words of `Sooty' (not to be confused with the one of Harry Corbett vintage) taking an Historic shot chief '. These 'Historic shots` sometimes take a few years to mature, but in some cases owing to the 'speed of charge' can develop within just a few months of the original exposure.
I recently came across two albums full of my own 'Historic shots' , all of the 5-x 3---black and white variety mostly taken with a Coronet box camera and dating from around 1960. The memories that these photos stirred up in my mind makes these photos priceless to me.
Amongst the examples that I found were:
A.      Many examples of non-class 08 diesel shunters eg. D2046, D2047, D2-218, D2253, D2267, D2506, D2610 12067 etc

B.      Various photos of D50XX Sulzers at work, on shed, and in the case of D5051 awaiting scrapping at Inverness.

C.     Many pre-Tops numbering examples are in evidence with many of the Brush Type 4's also in the two-tone green livery which is unfortunately not enhanced by black and white photography.

D.    Many of the diesel photos were taken in Scotland and feature D61XX and D85XX locos.

E.    Other locos of the past are prominent e-g D5703 in Crewe Works D9537 at Cardiff, 10001 and DP2.

F.    Of particular interest to some Pennine members may be D400 - D404 brand new within the confines of Crewe works.

In those days steam locos were obviously uppermost in my interests as is demonstrated by the following list of locos photographed:
4707, 6855, 6903, 7037, 30911, 31799, 31807, various West Countries and Battle of Britain Classes, 45512, 45697,45742, 47202. 8F's etc. Doncaster scrap line features with 42526, 60014 Silver Link, 69523 (now preserved), a line of 695XX locos, all in evidence at various points In time.
The above is by no means a comprehensive list of all the photos in the albums and I am sure that 1 have many other photos taken around the same time which are hopefully lurking away in boxes, cases, folders awaiting their turn to join my historic shot collection. This collection being much smaller than it ought to have been, owing to the fact that one roll of 120 film only produced 8 photos (if I remember correctly), whilst an exorbitant charge for developing and printing was in force. This, together with my limited income at the time and the desire to trip off to Derby, Crewe, Birmingham, Manchester and London etc. in search of further new underlining in the combined has taken a heavy toil on the quantity of photos included.
I am particularly pleased that I have recorded on film the occasion when 'Clun Castle' came to Doncaster, and similarly 'Flying Scotsman' working through Stairfoot near Barnsley on a excursion. There were however many more railway occasions that I witnessed but did not record on file, just ten of which I have listed in the following text

 1.     30850 Lord Nelson (1 week after official withdrawal) at Leeds City behind a 'Patriot' class on passenger coaches.

 2.     45600 Bermuda when it appeared at the head of my return excursion to Barnsley from Blackpool- (N.B. Haulage to Blackpool in the morning was carried out         by a Brush Type 2 D5686 I think).      

 3.      61017 Bushbuck when it appeared at Barnsley Court House to haul me to Doncaster on the soon-to-be discontinued service train.

 4.     Numerous occasions ~ locomotives entered Don aster Plant Works for the final time prior to being cut up. This was a particularly sad time as many of the locos   were being 'spotted by me for the first time A much more pleasant occasion was that of outshopped locos some of which appeared to glisten if the sun was shining.

 5.     My school railway society trip around Birmingham and Wolverhampton depots. NB. 16 Kings were spotted during the day, two of which we had for haulage. Also many of the locos were truly historic (NB The year was 1959)

 6.     The magnificent locos which used to grace Crewe especially the Princess Royals and the Semis (Duchesses or Coronations). The sight of the Semis on the Royal Scot and Caledonian was a commonplace sight but one that I never committed to film.


7.       The time when I went around Thornaby (another railway society visit) with steam still firmly established but new diesels starting to make their mark.

8.       Another occasion was a trip to Farnborough behind The Flying Scotsman from Sheffield on The Farnborough Flyer for the air display. Southern Steam was still in service, however the camera did not come out


9.       For a long period whilst living in Barnsley I visited Doncaster Works on virtually a weekly basis and witnessed numerous brand new diesel locos posing perfectly near the gates outside the paint shop. Various classes were involved, but each one failed to attract the attention of my camera lens.

10.     Much of my school holidays were spent locally (in Barnsley, where I lived at the time), Cudworth and Worsborough being two of my favourite haunts, both easily reached by push bike from home. 1Irealised recently however that I never took a photo on any of these visits. Hence photos of the Waverley, Thames-Clyde express and 25KV electrics are all omitted from the collection.

The above by no means covers all the missed opportunities but will hopefully stimulate at least one of your fingers into shutter-release mode so that the same fate does not befall you in later years. Repaints into new liveries, renumbering and reclassifications (eg. Class 57), naming and de-naming track rationalisation and station refurbishment are further reasons to get your shutter clicking now.
 
Who knows, in a few months you could 'take the stage at the 'Taps' in front of an appreciative audience where you may become one of an elite few who's photo have stimulated renowned railway historian "Sutty" into verbal approval, as the shout of 'Historic Shot Chief' reverberates around the room.

 

 

 ROBIN's REVIEW

No. 4 - Back Track

Back Track is published by Atlantic and currently costs £2.95 per issue. Subscription rates are £35.00 for 12 issues, which includes 15% discount on the full range of Atlantic Books. Subscribers can also pay a little more and have their magazine specially packaged for £40.00 per 12 issues.
Backtrack claims to be 'Britain's leading Historical Monthly', quite what that means is anyone's guess, and I suppose if they were asked to qualify the statement they would point to the all round quality of the magazine. unless they know something about the circulation figures that we don't.
The March issue is Volume 13. No.3 so ir's been going a bit longer than some but not very long by the standards of Railway Magazine. At some stage in its history it incorporated Modellers Backtrack but quite where the modellers section is in the magazine is a mystery. I found only one 'scale drawing` in its 51 pages.
The photography is good with plenty of colour prints and variety. There are good photo articles in colour on the following subjects:- Collett's Six Coupled Radial Tanks and Essex Electrics, Across the Mena to Anglesey, Atlantic's of the LNER, North British Steam Banking Tanks, Midland Viaducts and Rolling Stock Focus. As these, I suppose. could be of interest to the modeller it you were building your own as opposed to running your own layout Four good feature articles include Hastings Line Dieselisation, The Electric Trains of Newcastle, The Lame Lines Troubled 'rimes and Waterloo & Riverside (Liverpool Docks).
There are also regular features such as Readers Forum, Book Reviews and, quite interestingly, editorials from guests.

VERDICT: - Overall Backtrack is a broad historical railway monthly which covers pre-grouping & the big four and right up to the 60/70's (and 80's in the case of Hastings Diesels). In parts it is a good read although with so many similar publications on the market I wonder how long it would survive if the market began to shrink. This is the fourth magazine I have reviewed in the last year. First Steam World, second British Railways Illustrated, Third Steam Days, and know Backtrack. The theme of these four is very similar but the style is very different It may come as no surprise to the reader that I have also reviewed in my order of preference. I can't help thinking that currently having four magazines of this type on newsagents shelves is a bit of a luxury and that's not counting Railway World, Railway Magazine and Traction which have similar overlapping contents but mixed with modern day information on either preservation or current railway news. What do you think?  Write and let me know.
In the next edition of Trans Pennine I will review the oldest tide, Railway Magazine. It may be the oldest but it is, and always has been, up there among the best .I wonder how long it will take me to review all the railway enthusiast's magazines. I have already done four and I can think of another nine without really looking.
 

ROBIN'S RAMBLES

As you may have gathered from the opening pages I have moved to a place called Bourne. It does not have a railway station, at least not since the M&GN Joint line dosed in 1959. So why Bourne? Well, my wife originates from a small hamlet not far from Bourne, and it's very handy for Peterborough as I now work at Kings Cross. Travelling daily from Lincoln to Kings Cross over time would have taken its toll, so by moving to South Lincolnshire I have halved the journey time As the crow flies the ECML is only a few miles west (Stoke Bank-Essendine), Humm's book shop in Stamford is only five miles away and, oh yes, Delaines pass by the end of the road (sorry Gerry) every 30 minutes.

Anyway, enough of where (and why) I live, it's time to talk about Merrymakers in this edition, so here goes.
The origins of Merrymakers probably stems from trains to race meetings, seaside specials to Cleethorpes and Skegness and, indeed, fishermen's specials early on Sunday mornings to the depths of Lincolnshire, particularly from the Sheffield area. In the early 1970's as a new angle was spun on day trips and the Holiday Preview Trip was born, the title soon becoming Merrymakers. The idea was that on a Saturday. spare locomotives, usually Class 47s and coaching stock (10 or 11 Mk 1's with a buffet car) which would usually be stood spare in sidings were utilised.
In our area there were three Eastern Region divisions, Sheffield, Doncaster and Leeds.
Each had a rake of spare Mark 1's allocated respectively to Nunnery CS in Sheffield, Neville Hill CS in Leeds and either Cleethorpes or Hull in Doncaster division. So we had an excellent choice of trains usually in early spring and autumn. I have pulled out of my publicity drawer a Sheffield Division Holiday Preview leaflet for Autumn 1994. There were 11 trips between 27th August and 2nd November, to such destinations a Windsor, Weston super Mare, Ayr, Bournemouth, Torbay Steam Railway, etc.
This is where a lot of the original Pennine members would be on the dates concerned. The wall at Chesterfield, Platform 5 at Sheffield Midland would not have so many regular faces as they would all be on the Holiday Preview or Merrymaker.
As far as the Pennine Railway Society is concerned 1974 was our inaugural year 25 years ago. Merrymakers were great days out around which to organise club trips and as I worked in the Divisional Manager's Passenger Section at Doncaster with the people who organised these trips. I would be able to arrange the Pennine trips around the Merrymaker long before the trains were advertised to the public.
After a rummage in the box (they are now stored in a plastic storage box under the desk in one of the spare bedrooms) I came across 4 trips in 1981/2/3 quite quickly:-

Saturday 9th May 1981
0620 Cleethorpes       2347
0630 Grimsby Town   2336
0721 Crowle              2238
0750 Doncaster         2207
0820 Sheffield           2130
1150 Cardiff             1810

25 people on the trip visited Cardiff Canton at 1200, Margam at 1400 and Landore at 15.30. People on the trip included S Payne, M Bloomer, F Heyes  P Stojanovic, G Dawson, P Wesley, B Needham, D Bladen, L Bladen, K Connell (3), D Whitworth, T Caddick and A Sadd. OK Coaches conveyed us around South Wales and I believe we visited Radyr on the way back to Cardiff. If any member has detailed sightings for this visit please send them to the editor for publication.

On June 415/6 we did an overnight Merrymaker to Kyle of Lochalsh, out via the Highland Line and re turn via Aberdeen. Timings were as follows:
2142 Fri Cleethorpes 0913 Sun
2153 Grimsby Town 0901
2206 Habrough 0843
2217 Barnetby 0833
2235 Scunthorpe 0814
2245 Crowle 0802
2332 Doncaster 0720
0925 Sat Inverness 2115
1436 Sat Kyle of Lochalsh 1536 Sat
We took 25 Pennine members including P Stojanovic, D Whitworth, G Collins~  G Dawson,  S & D Payne, F Heyes~ T Caddick
P Wesley, D & L Bladen, S Taylor, R Peach (3) T Needham, R Skinner, D Whitlam, A Watts, K King and T Helliwell.
We also visited Inverness depot on the Saturday morning and hit the town (Inverness) on Saturday evening !! A Chinese restaurant
if I remember.

On August 201h 1982 we headed off for Oban and Mull leaving Doncaster at 23 15 on Friday night and arriving at Oban at
0723 Saturday. Departure from Oban was 2000 Saturday arriving back in Doncaster at 0449 Sunday. We took only 10 in the party on this trip but it included a Mr. P. Sutton (yes, the Mr. Sutton) who parted with the then princely sum of £15.00 to regale us with his company.

 On Saturday 26th September 1981 we went ftom Sheffield to Eastleigh and Southampton.
0800 Sheffield 2245
1227 Eastleigh 1658
1710 Southampton 1827
Visiting both the works and the MPD at Eastleigh we took 24 people including J Reader, R G Butcher, A Phillips, G Bambrough (who he), R Skinner, N Swift J Sanderson (with money belt), T Needham, P Wesley (2), K Connell (2), T Booth and M Bloomer.

Of course, on most trips there was the added incentive of the 'BUN RUN'. Myself, G Bambrough, J Sanderson, Sue Taylor, even Tony Booth and, of course, Pete Barsby (of limited fame) did Bun Runs by the dozen at this time. In fact most Merrymaker trips that had a party of Pennine members on board had a Bun Run element to them.

 Quiz Question. What is a 'Bun Run?'. No prizes for the first person to get the right answer other than a mention in the next issue of Trans Pennine- If you have done a Bun Run you are exempt from this quiz. Sorry.

 Thanks to Steve Payne from Lincoln for the lists of numbers seen on trips discussed in this issue. I will pass them on to readers in the June edition. Meanwhile, if you have any memories of Pennine Trips and list of sightings, please send them to the editor. We would like to put together a section on your memories in the 25th Anniversary issue later in the year.


ROBIN'S MEETINGS

 

 

 

All meetings are held at the Corporation Brewery Taps,
Cleveland Street Doncaster and commence at 20.00 hrs.


Wednesday April 7th          Chris Theaker

Wednesday April 21st        Ian Waller

Wednesday May 5th          Chris Tyas

Wednesday May 19th         Paul Micklethwaite

Wednesday June 16th        Chris Day - 'Steam in China'

The next edition of Trans Pennine will be published at the end of June 1999. Please let me have your contributions by 14th June. Thank you!