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Branches

Merseyside, Chester & North Wales

Meeting Reports

Wednesday 7th February 2018
'Rail Reflections in Merseyside'
Doug Birmingham

An attendance of 26 at Liverpool on 7th February saw a presentation by Doug Birmingham entitled “Rail Reflections in Merseyside” which looked at the railway scene in the area from 1982, when he took his first railway photograph, up to 1986. The presentation covered the routes from Lime St. to St. Helens and Allerton but also included the Merseyrail electrified lines and around Birkenhead. It reminded us of how the railway scene in the area has changed over the last 30-40 years, but also of the different classes of locomotives and units which visited the area in those days. It was pleasing to see again, what is difficult nowadays to remember, that during the 1980s we had regularly such things as Cls.31, 37, 40, 45, 47, 85, 86, 87 and 90 on passenger workings and other classes on freight, including Cls.20, 25, and 56s. Even Lime St. itself has changed and is still in the throes of doing so as the station is increased in size and Doug’s presentation gave us views with as many as half a dozen locomotives in the station and not a unit in sight made it most interesting and enjoyable to see.

Tuesday 23rd January 2018
Cheshire Day Ranger

An excellent attendance of 11 Members supported this fixture. The party met at Manchester Oxford Road in order to travel over the recently opened Ordsall curve. We travelled aboard 158849 forming 2E07 10.38 to Leeds. The intention was to travel to Manchester Victoria and return immediately on 2M02 07.41 Selby – Oxford Road. A four minute late departure from Oxford Road and a further delay en route resulted in our arriving at Victoria after 2M02 had departed. In order to regain our planned itinerary we travelled by Tram to Piccadilly. 142047 then took the Party to Rose Hill Marple. We alighted at Romiley and then joined 142034 to New Mills Central. Fortunately the rain had ceased for the walk to New Mills Newtown where we then joined 150114 [+150210] to Buxton. Returning on the 14.29 departure to Manchester Piccadilly the day ended quite early compared to many outdoor fixtures undertaken by the Branch.

Monday 15th January 2018
Chester AGM
John Cowlishaw

22 members attended the Branch’s 65th AGM in Chester on 15th January at which the existing Committee was re-elected en-bloc. Following the meeting a tribute was read for Edgar Richards, who died on 9th December 2017, then John Cowlishaw gave a presentation entitled “The End of the Line, Part 1” in which he showed various shots of termini during the last 50 years or so. He started at his home town of Wrexham before visiting North Wales, Merseyside, Manchester and East Lancashire, then heading up the WCML on his way into Scotland, reaching the south Clyde coast and as far as Stranraer. It was extremely interesting to be reminded of some of the termini in the area which have now disappeared and to compare those still in existence with what we can see nowadays, both in terms of architecture and locomotives/units. John intends to cover the whole country, so we are no doubt going to enjoy a number of other parts on this subject.

Tuesday 9th January 2018
Observation at Stafford

On 9th January the Branch held another visit to Stafford, where the weather was only marginally less cold than four weeks previous. However, because it was damp and overcast it felt just as cold and it was by far the worst day of the week weather-wise. The fixture produced an attendance of nine with one member arriving at 07.00 and some staying until 16.00. Cross Country services to/from the south west were disrupted due to a cable theft at Filton near Bristol and freight movements were slightly down compared to the December fixture. Unfortunately, one of our less successful outdoor fixtures! 07.20 66066 6R51 04.55 WATFORD SOUTH JNC – BASFORD HALL 07.26 88008 4S43 06.16 DAVENTRY - MOSSEND 07.57 66957 4O14 05.36 GARSTON - SOUTHAMPTON 08.09 70008 4M95 03.44 SOUTHAMPTON – TRAFFORD PARK 09.18 66599 4L97 05.01 TRAFFORD PARK - FELIXSTOWE 09.20 66206 4M83 01.24 LONDON GATEWAY – TRAFFORD PARK 09.23 66503 4M45 02.50 FELIXSTOWE - DITTON 09.37 68012 6U76 08.59 BASFORD HALL - MOUNTSORREL 09.40 66712 4M21 03.10 FELIXSTOWE – TRAFFORD PARK 10.30 66054 6M13 01.06 DOLLANDS MOOR - DITTON 10.32 66529 4O49 09.22 BASFORD HALL – SOUTHAMPTON 10.56 66069 4O21 09.15 TRAFFORD PARK – SOUTHAMPTON 11.13 90043/90048 4M27 05.25 COATBRIDGE – DAVENTRY 13.04 86627/86638 4L90 12.32 BASFORD HALL - FELIXSTOWE 13.13 90039/90040 4M25 06.06 MOSSEND - DAVENTRY 13.19 90047/90046 4S44 12.13 DAVENTRY - COATBRIDGE 13.32 66182 6O42 11.31 HALEWOOD – SOUTHAMPTON E DOCKS 14.17 66561 4M81 08.01 FELIXSTOWE – BASFORD HALL 15.14 66955 4M63 09.12 FELIXSTOWE -DITTON 15.37 68012 6U77 13.42 MOUNSORREL – BASFORD HALL 15.51 66206 4L56 13.17 TRAFFORD PARK – LONDON GATEWAY 16.05 66543 4L92 14.03 DITTON - FELIXSTOWE 16.09 66712 4L18 14.18 TRAFFORD PARK - FELIXSTOWE

ALSO SEEN

220003/10/17/28 22102/03/06-16/18/19/21/24/25/36/40/42 350103/08/12/14/17/21/24/25 350232/33/35/38/40 350371/74/76/77 390006/09/10/13/16/20/39/40/42-46/50 390107/15/17/18/19/21/22/25/26/28/30/34-37/41/52/54/56/57

Monday 18th December 2017
'The Lynton and Barnstaple Railway'
Bob Barnard

On 18th December at Chester Bob Barnard gave a presentation to 22 attendees entitled “The Lynton & Barnstaple Railway”. Unlike the Vale of Rheidol and Welshpool & Llanfair lines which saw BR ownership, the L&B was less familiar to people in this part of the country, especially as it closed in 1935. Bob initially went through the history of the line with some photographs dating back to the days when it was open and traced its route, together with the proposed route of the preserved line which, through necessity, will have to divert in places.

It was interesting to hear how the preserved railway association has bought land and then, following fencing off of the required section for the railway, resold the remainder to fund purchase of succeeding sections of line. However, the process is not necessarily easy as some of the route passes through Exmoor National Park Authority land, for which its permission is required before building upon it.

It was a thoroughly entertaining and informative evening.

Tuesday 12th December 2017
Observation at Stafford

Billy Ocean sang, “When the going gets tough, the tough gets going” and that was how the 5 members felt at the pre-Christmas Stafford fixture when the lowest recorded temperature was minus 7 degrees centigrade whilst we were on the Station!

Fortunately with the exception of one Member who did not wear enough socks, full protection had been taken against the elements. The 6 hours passed quite quickly particularly since 18 freights/light engine movements were seen.

There were several passenger cancellations due to “stock shortages”.

4M45 [02.50 Felixstowe – Ditton passed 347 minutes late with 66526 in front of a failed 70015 [failed near Milton Keynes] 0720 66066 6R51 07.26 88008 4S43 07.57 66957 4O14 08.09 70008 4M95 09.18 66599 4L97 09.20 66206 4M83 09.23 66503 4M45 09.37 68012 6U76 09.40 66712 4M21 03.10 FELIXSTOWE – TRAFFORD PARK 10.30 66054 6M13 01.06 DOLLANDS MOOR - DITTON 10.32 66529 4O49 09.22 BASFORD HALL – SOUTHAMPTON 10.56 66069 4O21 09.15 TRAFFORD PARK – SOUTHAMPTON 11.13 90043/90048 4M27 05.25 COATBRIDGE – DAVENTRY 13.04 86627/86638 4L90 12.32 BASFORD HALL - FELIXSTOWE 13.13 90039/90040 4M25 06.06 MOSSEND - DAVENTRY 13.19 90047/90046 4S44 12.13 DAVENTRY - COATBRIDGE 13.32 66182 6O42 11.31 HALEWOOD – SOUTHAMPTON E DOCKS 14.17 66561 4M81 08.01 FELIXSTOWE – BASFORD HALL 15.14 66955 4M63 15.37 68012 6U77 15.51 66206 4L56 13.17 TRAFFORD PARK – LONDON GATEWAY 16.05 66543 4L92 16.09 66712 4L18 ALSO SEEN 220003/10/17/28 22102/03/06-16/18/19/21/24/25/36/40/42 350103/08/12/14/17/21/24/25 350232/33/35/38/40 350371/74/76/77 390006/09/10/13/16/20/39/40/42-46/50 390107/15/17/18/19/21/22/25/26/28/30/34-37/41/52/54/56/57

Wednesday 6th December 2017
"Welsh Railways in the 1980's"
Geoff Morris

Following illness in the family of the booked speaker, Geoff Morris kindly deputised at Liverpool on 6th December with a presentation entitled “Welsh Railways in the 1980s”, at which 32 persons attended.

Geoff started at Fishguard and headed east via all the various routes and lines through the ‘Valleys’, with many branch lines having now disappeared. He then headed north via the ‘Marches’ and ‘Central Wales’ routes before covering the Cambrian and the North Wales coast.

We were entertained to a programme of excellent photographs, together with a detailed explanation of how the locations and traffic have changed over the last 30-40 years. We forget just how much freight ran in Wales then, mainly coal but also steel and oil, and that we had a host of diesel hauled passenger workings, which included Cl.37s and Cl.33s to the north west.

Some interesting examples shown were an InterCity HST at Wrexham, a Cl.40 at Newport, pairs of Cl.37s on freight before the heavy freight ones were modified and a rare Cl.150/1 on the Central Wales route.

Geoff also showed comparisons of standard and cut down shunters and included views of the preserved lines and steam specials which ran during that period.

Monday 20th November 2017
'UK Railways – Beyond the Blue'
John Day

John Day gave 25 attendees at the Chester meeting on 20th November 2017 a most interesting and enjoyable presentation entitled “UK Railways – Beyond the Blue”.

As the title suggests John covered the various liveries which have graced locomotives and units on our railways throughout the country since BR shelved its drab policy of ‘we will have any colour you wish, as long as it is blue’, which was reminiscent of Henry Ford when he had a similar policy with black cars!

It is difficult to remember just how many different liveries have existed since that time - with the introduction of InterCity, Regional Railways, Network South East and various PTEs, to name but a few, on passenger trains and the many sectorised ones for freight locomotives, through to those of the various TOCs which have existed up to present day.

However, John succeeded in reminding us of what has been, and likely to continue to be, an ever-changing scene, especially as franchises are invariably moving from one company to another – many of which are deciding to use white as their base colour nowadays. It is just rather unfortunate that most are owned by companies and other railways from foreign countries.

Tuesday 14th November 2017
Observation at Leamington Spa

It was 14 months since our previous visit to Leamington Spa. On that occasion the temperature reached 29c. By way of contrast the temperature today reached 10c with a distinctly cool wind.

It is always encouraging when a fixture is well supported thus we were all delighted with a double figure attendance with our “ever smiling” ex Branch Chairman Richard Neale present.

Leamington is not the busiest Station and after several hours some of the party travelled to Nuneaton which was much busier for freight.

Recordings during the day were somewhat predictable but the company more than made up for that! 07.24/07.25 82301/68014 1H15 06.09 KIDDERMINSTER - MARYLEBONE 08.23/08.25 82309/68015 1H22 07.05 KIDDERMINSTER - MARYLEBONE 08.32 66167 4O43 06.43 BIRCH COPPICE – SOUTHAMPTON 08.48 66599 4O15 07.21 LAWLEY ST – SOUTHAMPTON 08.55 66519 4O14 05.36 GARSTON - SOUTHAMPTON 10.02/10.03 68013/82304 1R15 08.37 MARYLEBONE – MOOR ST 10.51 70004 4O90 06.12 LEEDS - SOUTAHMPTON 11.22/11.23 82304/68013 1H33 10.55 MOOR ST - MARYLEBONE 11.25/11.26 68015/82309 1R21 10.10 MARYLEBONE – MOOR ST 11.56 66773 6M26 08.50 EASTLEIGH VQ - MOUNTSORREL 12.06/12.08 68014/82301 1G23 10.40 MARYLEBONE – SNOW HILL 12.34 66532 4M55 09.02 SOUTHAMPTON – LAWLEY ST 58 MINS LATE 12.52 66143 4O21 09.15 TRAFFORD PARK - SOUTHAMPTON 13.18 66585 + 70019 [DIT] 4O49 09.22 BASFORD HALL – SOUTHAMPTON 88 MINS LATE 13.38 70812 6M50 07.55 WESTBURY VQ – BESCOT VQ 13.46/13.48 82301/68014 1H47 13.11 SNOW HILL - MARYLEBONE 13.51/14.02 DR98958/98908 08.49 KINGS NORTON – KINGS NORTON 14.36 66128 6M48 10.32 SOUTHAMPTON E DOCKS - HALEWOOD 14.42 66775 6M40 11.56 WESTBURY VQ – STUD FARM COVENTRY DR73930/DR73936 STABLED 14.45 66066 6O42 11.31 HALEWOOD - SOUTHAMPTON NUNEATON 15.05 66705+66735 4L22 14.35 HAMS HALL - FELIXSTOWE 15.44 66115 4L56 13.17 TRAFFORD PARK – LONDON GATEWAY 15.54 66092 + 66185 3J01 10.50 BECOT TMD-MACCLESFIELD-EUSTON 15.57 66531 4M63 09.12 FELIXSTOWE - DITTON 16.06 70017 4M58 09.25 SOUTHAMPTON - GARSTON 16.17 66762 4M23 10.46 FELIXSTOWE – HAMS HALL 16.18 66747 4M29 10.29 FELIXSTOWE – BIRCH COPPICE 16.27 70003 4M61 13.00 SOUTHAMPTON – TRAFFORD PARK RUGBY 37421 STABLED 57311 STABLED 86259 STABLED 16.54 66522+86628/86639 [BOTH DIT] 4M88 09.32 FELIXSTOWE – BASFORD HALL

ALSO SEEN AT LEAMINGTON SPA

165010/28 168001/04 168106/10/11 168321/27 172103 220003/09/10/16/20/24/30/33/34 221130/32/34/40

Monday 16th October 2017
'55 Years of Railway Photography, Part 1'
Les Nixon

Dr Les Nixon was the speaker at the Chester meeting on 16th October, when he presented “55 Year of Railway Photography, Part 1” to an attendance of 34. His presentation not only covered all parts of Britain, starting with the first railway photograph he took in 1949, but also shots from a variety of countries across the globe, including some from the now war torn ‘no go’ areas of the Khyber Pass and Beirut. Les, in his photographs, does not always just concentrate on the locomotive or train as being the focal point, but seems to also be able to make taking such subjects into an art form, with also concentration on the background – be it industrial or rural – and even brings in such items as footbridges, a few passengers wandering down a platform, water columns, signal gantries etc., subjects which most of us other photographers ignore. In fact on such occasions it is the train or locomotive which becomes the background and it almost results in the photograph becoming a work of art, as was commented on by some of those present. We certainly look forward to Les returning soon for another lesson in the art of railway photography.

Tuesday 10th October 2017
Observation at Doncaster

The Branch has been making at least one visit annually to Doncaster for 12 years and whilst Doncaster is a shadow of its former self visits invariably produce something of interest.

Booked to pass on the up fast at 09.18, 1E03 05.26 Stirling – Kings Cross rolled into Platform 3 some 22 minutes late and was promptly terminated, departing ECS to Neville Hill 19 minutes after arrival. It transpired the service had actually started from Newcastle due to a fatality North of Newcastle.

Within minutes 180105 passed at 09.47 on 5F69, 07.53 Heaton – Roberts Road returning later heading back to Heaton.

Timekeeping was generally good although a Leeds – Kings Cross and return were cancelled due to a defective train.

More locomotives [excluding Class 143] were seen than in March [24 compared to 21] however in March 2017 there were more freight workings whereas there were rather more light engine workings to be seen on this visit.

09.40 43238/43315 1E03 05.26 STIRLING – KINGS CROSS [STARTED AT NEWCASTLE & TERMINATED DONCASTER] 09.40 66134 6X75 08.45 SCUNTHORPE - DECOY 09.49 66568 4L87 08.47 LEEDS - FELIXSTOWE 09.56/09.58 82222/91119 1A19 EX LEEDS 09.59 43315/43238 5E03 10.00 DONCASTER – NEVILLE HILL ECS 10.01/10.04 82203/91113 1E04 EX EDINBURGH 10.10/10.12 91112/82219 1N08 TO NEWCASTLE 10.15/10.18 91102/82228 1D06 TO LEEDS 10.17 66735 4R79 10.09 DECOY - IMMINGHAM 10.18/10.21 82200/91125 1A20 EX LEEDS 10.20 43314/43295 1E05 EX EDINBURGH 10.28/10.30 82205/91108 1Y82 EX YORK 10.32 66129 4L45 09.36 WAKEFIELD EUROPORT - FELIXSTOWE 10.32 91130/82202 1S09 TO EDINBURGH 10.41/10.43 91111/82210 1D07 TO LEEDS 10.46 66161 0E23 08.40 TOTON TMD - BELMONT 10.48 43480/43484 1A61 EX SUNDERLAND 10.51/10.53 82208/91114 1A22 EX LEEDS 10.56/10.59 82206/91124 1E06 EX GLASGOW CENTRAL 11.02/11.06 43272/43208 1N81 TO YORK 11.07/11.11 91116/82207 1S10 TO EDINBURGH 11.15/11.18 91104/82223 1D08 TO LEEDS 1A25 EX LEEDS - CANCELLED 11.19 43251/43274 1E07 EX EDINBURGH 11.20 66766 DOWN CURVE LIGHT 11.29 43302/43239 1S11 TO ABERDEEN 11.34 66709 4N80 11.30 DECOY – NORTH BLYTH 11.40/11.49 43206/43308 1D09 TO LEEDS 11.55 DR97807/DR97507 6U87 11.47 ROBERTS RD – WAKEFIELD KIRKGATE 11.56/11.58 82228/91102 1A26 EX LEEDS 11.58/12.01 82230/91101 1E08 EX EDINBURGH 12.13/12.16 91131/82226 1S12 TO EDINBURGH 12.14/12.18 82210/91111 1A28 EX LEEDS 12.19/12.20 91106/82220 1D10 TO LEEDS 12.24 43290/43309 1E09 EX EDINBURGH 12.24 950001 06.04 WEST YARD – WEST YARD 12.27/12.30 43208/43272 1Y84 EX YORK 12.30 91117/82201 1S13 TO EDINBURGH 12.31 66134 0L08 12.33 BELMONT – WAKEFIELD EUROPORT 12.31 66725 4Z81 11.45 ROTHERHAM - FELIXSTOWE 12.41/12.42 43043/43061 1D11 TO LEEDS 12.48/12.52 82213/91104 1A29 EX LEEDS 12.55 66571/66572 4E22 05.50 FELIXSTOWE - LEEDS 12.54/12.57 82209/91103 1E10 EX EDINBURGH 13.04/13.07 91105/82229 1N83 TO YORK 13.10/13.11 91122//82225 ` 1S15 TO EDINBURGH 13.16/13.17 91112/82214 1D12 TO LEEDS 13.18/13.20 43308/43206 1A30 EX LEEDS 13.24 43257/43299 1E11 EX ABERDEEN 13.30 43277/43317 1S16 TO INVERNESS 13.34 66432 6Z50 11.45 YORK WORKS - DECOY 13.36 66221 06.08 12.35 WAKEFIELD EUROPORT – BELMONT 13.38 66510 6E50 09.14 IPSWICH YARD - LINDSEY 13.40/13.43 91119/82222 1D13 TO LEEDS 13.47/13.49 82220/91106 1A31 EX LEEDS 13.52/13.54 82219/91132 1Y32 EX NEWCASTLE 14.10 66432 0Z50 13.58 DECOY – YORK PARCELS SIDING 14.16/14.19 91113/82203 1N17 TO NEWCASTLE 14.17/14.19 43061/43043 1A33 EX LEEDS 14.22/14.24 91125/82200 1D14 TO LEEDS 14.28 43316/43296 1E13 EX INVERNESS 14.28 43484/43480 1N93 TO SUNDERLAND 14.31/14.33 82229/91105 1Y86 EX YORK 43468/43465 1A65 EX SUNDERLAND 91126/82211 1S18 TO EDINBURGH 14.39 66050 6N70 13.40 BELMONT YD – TYNE YD 14.48 66764 6E89 10.20 WELLINGBOROUGH - RYLSTONE 14.50 66133 6E51 12.17 PEAK FOREST - SELBY 14.47/14.30 82214/91112 1A34 EX LEEDS 14.54/14.56 82216/91127 1E14 EX EDINBURGH 1D15 TO LEEDS - CANCELLED 14.54 66768 6E84 08.20 MIDDLETON TOWERS – MONK BRETTON 15.02/15.05 43295/43314 1N85 TO YORK 15.05 73967/73970 0Z73 11.13 LOUGHBOROUGH BRUSH - CRAIGENTINNY 15.08/15.11 91108/82205 1S19 TO EDINBURGH 15.13/15.14 91124/82206 1D16 TO LEEDS 15.15/15.18 43318/43315 1A36 EX LEEDS 15.19 66138 4E26 08.10 DOLLANDS MOOR - SCUNTHORPE 15.20 43305/43311 1E15 EX ABERDEEN 15.31 43274/43251 1S20 TO ABERDEEN 15.45/15.46 90036/82231 1D17 TO LEEDS 16.44 66705 6F64 11.32 NORTH BLYTH – COTTAM P.S ALSO SEEN; ROBERTS RD 66703/66753 HEXTHORPE YARD 66701/66742 WEST YARD 67028 STATION 142016/19/26/28/35/94 144001/02/05/08/10 150141 153355/57 158791/92/842/45/906/09 180101/05-07/10/11/14 185110/23/24/28/29/35/48 220003/07/11/21-24/27 221140/41 322484/85

Wednesday 4th October 2017
'Had Bike will Travel 1961 - 1963'
Barry Shore

The first Liverpool meeting of the season on 4th October saw Barry Shore present “Had Bike Did Travel 1961-63” which mainly covered his biking holidays in those years in the North East, Yorkshire and the East Midlands and on the Southern Region and in South Wales respectively, although the north west scene for the period in question was well covered. Barry’s presentation was, as usual, accompanied by thorough detailed information of the locomotives and classes shown by him with especially the apple green J72 on pilot duties at Newcastle looking resplendent. Although approximately 30 attendees arrived, which was a good response considering it was during the first week of the Lime St. closure when trains from Wigan and Earlestown were terminating at St. Helens, an administrative error on the part of the venue staff meant that entrance to the premises was over 45 minutes late and unfortunately only 18 stayed to see what was another exciting presentation. Barry is to be commended for his stamina in presenting his talk without a break despite matters beyond his and our control trying to wreck the occasion. We will welcome him back shortly for more of his cycle meanderings.

Monday 18th September 2017
'Railways in the Chester Area from my Archives'
Jon Penn

The first meeting of the season, held at Chester on 18th September, was presented by the Branch Chairman, Jon Penn, and was entitled “Railways in the Chester area from my archives”. Around 300 digital shots were shown by Jon, which he had accumulated from various sources, including some railwaymen. The presentation was centred within a one mile radius of the station during the 1950s/60s, apart from some specials taken during later years and shots of the aftermath of the collision and fire in the eastern bays in 1972, when a Cl.24 hauling an Ellesmere Port-Mold Jct. freight, which included some tanks in its formation, ran away in to the station and collided with an empty DMU. Jon also visited Mold Jct. and related an amusing incident, when a plane coming in to land at Sealand air base struck the tender of an LMS 8F with its landing gear, which it lost, although the 2-8-0 suffered no damage. The 25 attendees witnessed an extremely interesting, informative and enjoyable presentation, as with some railway employee input there were shots taken from various normally inaccessible locations and alongside the running track, which were not available to the railway enthusiast.

Tuesday 12th September 2017
Observation at Tamworth

Only 4 Members attended the fixture due to a variety of personal circumstances preventing the attendance of some of “the regulars”. Two of those present however had a combined RCTS membership of over 120 years! Tamworth can be an infuriating place to observe as it is impossible to record all Voyagers & Pendolinos. It was reasonably busy with 16 freights in 3.5 hours. We then moved south to Nuneaton where the freight flows are a little different, recording 14 freights in 2 hours. Finally we moved on to Rugby in order to return North on one of the few Virgin West Coast services which stop at Rugby and head North to Crewe.

Seen;

TAMWORTH 10.31 70010 + 66414 DIT] 4O49 09.22 BASFORD HALL –SOUTHAMPTON 10.54 43384/43366 1V50 06.06 EDINBURGH - PLYMOUTH 11.30 66065 4O21 09.15 TRAFFORD PARK - SOUTHAMPTON 12.07 60039 6E54 10.34 KINGSBURY - HUMBER 12.08 90044 + 90045 4M27 05.25 COATBRIGDE - DAVENTRY 12.24 60059 6M57 07.18 LINDSEY - KINGSBURY 12.31 66160 6D44 11.09 BESCOT - TOTON 12.37 66061 4M07 04.18 FELIXSTOWE – BURTON ON TRENT 12.44 66125 4L07 11.38 BURTON ON TRENT – FELIXSTOWE [TO BESCOT] 12.50 90016 + 90048 4S44 12.13 DAVENTRY - COATBRIDGE 13.13 66622 6G65 09.19 EARLES - WALSALL 13.26 86628 + 86604 4L90 12.32 BASFORD HALL - FELIXSTOWE 13.30 66129 4M11 10.01 WASHWOOD HEATH – PEAK FOREST 13.46 66510 4M81 08.01 FELIXSTOWE – BASFORD HALL 13.46 90020 + 90034 4M25 06.06 MOSSEND - DAVENTRY 13.57 66107 6X01 10.17 SCUNTHORPE - EASTLEIGH 14.00 66079 6O42 11.31 HALEWOOD – SOUTHAMPTON E DOCKS NUNEATON 14.38 66413 6Z77 09.19 WILLESDEN – STUD FARM 14.42 66568 4M63 09.12 FELIXSTOWE - DITTON 15.05 66764 4L22 14.35 HAMS HALL - FELIXSTOWE 15.20 66768 6E45 13.56 BEDWORTH - IMMINGHAM 15.26 37884 + 319431 5H70 12.17 ALLERTON - WOLVERTON 15.29 66023 4L07 11.38 BURTON ON TRENT – FELIXSTOWE [FROM BESCOT] 15.43 70015 4M58 09.25 SOUTHAMPTON - GARSTON 15.45 66115 6O11 10.00 DOWLOW - SOUTHAMPTON 15.46 66135 6B30 12.55 MOUNSORREL - NORTHAMPTON 15.50 66779 4M23 10.46 FELIXSTOWE – HAMS HALL 15.52 66174 4L56 13.17 TRAFFORD PARK - SOUTHAMPTON 16.29 66732 4M29 10.29 FELIXSTOWE – BIRCH COPPICE 16.37 66551 4O17 15.48 LAWLEY ST - SOUTHAMPTON 16.39 86614 4M88 09.32 FELIXSTOWE – BASFORD HALL

TAMWORTH 10.31 70010 + 66414 DIT] 4O49 09.22 BASFORD HALL –SOUTHAMPTON 10.54 43384/43366 1V50 06.06 EDINBURGH - PLYMOUTH 11.30 66065 4O21 09.15 TRAFFORD PARK - SOUTHAMPTON 12.07 60039 6E54 10.34 KINGSBURY - HUMBER 12.08 90044 + 90045 4M27 05.25 COATBRIGDE - DAVENTRY 12.24 60059 6M57 07.18 LINDSEY - KINGSBURY 12.31 66160 6D44 11.09 BESCOT - TOTON 12.37 66061 4M07 04.18 FELIXSTOWE – BURTON ON TRENT 12.44 66125 4L07 11.38 BURTON ON TRENT – FELIXSTOWE [TO BESCOT] 12.50 90016 + 90048 4S44 12.13 DAVENTRY - COATBRIDGE 13.13 66622 6G65 09.19 EARLES - WALSALL 13.26 86628 + 86604 4L90 12.32 BASFORD HALL - FELIXSTOWE 13.30 66129 4M11 10.01 WASHWOOD HEATH – PEAK FOREST 13.46 66510 4M81 08.01 FELIXSTOWE – BASFORD HALL 13.46 90020 + 90034 4M25 06.06 MOSSEND - DAVENTRY 13.57 66107 6X01 10.17 SCUNTHORPE - EASTLEIGH 14.00 66079 6O42 11.31 HALEWOOD – SOUTHAMPTON E DOCKS NUNEATON 14.38 66413 6Z77 09.19 WILLESDEN – STUD FARM 14.42 66568 4M63 09.12 FELIXSTOWE - DITTON 15.05 66764 4L22 14.35 HAMS HALL - FELIXSTOWE 15.20 66768 6E45 13.56 BEDWORTH - IMMINGHAM 15.26 37884 + 319431 5H70 12.17 ALLERTON - WOLVERTON 15.29 66023 4L07 11.38 BURTON ON TRENT – FELIXSTOWE [FROM BESCOT] 15.43 70015 4M58 09.25 SOUTHAMPTON - GARSTON 15.45 66115 6O11 10.00 DOWLOW - SOUTHAMPTON 15.46 66135 6B30 12.55 MOUNSORREL - NORTHAMPTON 15.50 66779 4M23 10.46 FELIXSTOWE – HAMS HALL 15.52 66174 4L56 13.17 TRAFFORD PARK - SOUTHAMPTON 16.29 66732 4M29 10.29 FELIXSTOWE – BIRCH COPPICE 16.37 66551 4O17 15.48 LAWLEY ST - SOUTHAMPTON 16.39 86614 4M88 09.32 FELIXSTOWE – BASFORD HALL RUGBY 57304 STABLED 16.56 70004 4L92 14.03 DITTON - FELIXSTOWE 17.01 66708 4L18 14.18 TRAFFORD PARK - FELIXSTOWE

Tuesday 8th August 2017
Observation at Ashford

6 Members travelled South meeting briefly at Ashford International. The advance party travelled on the 07.47 from Liverpool Lime St appropriately aboard 390148 “Flying Scouseman”. From St Pancras International we travelled on Javelin 395009 on 1J26 11.12 to Margate. Ashford International was rather disappointing being less busy than we anticipated and we quickly decided to head back towards London travelling on 375630/375704 forming 2W42 12.58 Dover Priory – Charing Cross to Tonbridge. The party spent 90 minutes at Tonbridge before travelling on 375714 which with 375623 formed 2W48 14.19 Ramsgate – Charing Cross. At Sevenoaks we changed into 1H58 14.50 Hastings – Charing Cross [375702/375819]. At Orpington we alighted and enjoyed 40 minutes at this busy location before boarding 465907 [+ 466030/465922] forming 2H60 16.21 Tunbridge Wells – Charing Cross. We finished our day in the South East with 90 minutes on Waterloo East. 2 of our group spent the day riding units, concentrating on the Class 171 units working from Ashford to Brighton. The party saw only 3 freights/light engine movements at Ashford; 92044 0M92 12.04 Dollands Moor – Willesden TMD [12.40], 097C 67012+92016 14.19 Dollands Moor to Wembley Euro Freight Ops Centre [14.32] & 6M95 37602+37609 16.35 Dungeness British Energy to Crewe Coal Yard [17.35]

Tuesday 27th June 2017
Strathclyde Day Ranger

In the previous two years the Branch had enjoyed good weather for our annual visit to Strathclyde. We wondered could we make it three in a row. The answer was a resounding “no” as it rained continually whilst we were there. When you consider that Glasgow has an annual rainfall of 43.1 inches and Dunoon has 94 inches [higher than Fort William] it is hardly surprising.

The party of 9 travelled north separately travelling on 350406 & 390011 “City of Lichfield” meeting at Glasgow Central. 314204 took the party to Gourock on the 10.55 departure where we joined Argyll Ferries “The Ali Cat” for the sailing to Dunoon. We returned to Gourock aboard Argyll Ferries MV “Argyll Flyer” before travelling to Kilcreggan aboard Clydelink MV“Island Princess” which had been out of service earlier in the Month.

At Kilcreggan we travelled on Optare YJ13HKX of Garelochhead Coaches. The timetable allows 33 minutes for the 15.6 miles which results in a rather hair-raising journey due to the narrowness of the roads particularly on the west side of Gare Loch. From Helensburgh we travelled aboard 334010 to Partick and then rode the Subway to St Enoch before spending 80 minutes at Queen St High Level.

Appropriately 390131 “City Of Liverpool” returned us South on 1M19 18.40 Glasgow Central - Euston.

Please contact Alan Turton for a list of what was seen.

Tuesday 13th June 2017
East Suffolk Line

As the days get longer our monthly outdoor fixtures also head to more distant areas. Thus for the first of two June fixtures we travelled to East Anglia. Seven Members attended travelling to London on different trains before meeting at Liverpool Street to travel on the 11.00 to Norwich with 90006. At Ipswich we were met by Ipswich Branch stalwart John Day, changing into 156416 on the 12.17 to Lowestoft. Upon arrival at Lowestoft we continued to Norwich aboard the same unit forming the 13.48 service. At Cantley we passed 68024/68003 on the 14.05 Norwich – Lowestoft. We then enjoyed 90 minutes at Norwich before departing on the 16.00 to Liverpool Street with 90005. John left the party at Ipswich and we travelled to Stratford enjoying a hectic 60 minutes number bashing before travelling into the Capital. Many thanks are due to John for giving up his day to travel with the party and share his considerable knowledge of the area. If anyone would like a list of what was seen please e mail;mrrory11@btinternet.com

Tuesday 9th May 2017
Observation at Newport

11 Members attended the fixture of which 3 were from other RCTS Branches. Most of the party travelled both ways aboard “The Wag” with 67020 for haulage. The weather upon arrival at Newport was cloudy with a cold easterly wind. At Cardiff the weather was sunny and much warmer and the freight traffic was reasonable by 2017 standards. At the Newport fixture it is the norm to visit Cardiff for part of the day taking in an HST ride in both directions. The highlight was the working of 70811/13/14/17 from Westbury to Canton. 70809/10 were also seen by the RCTS Party. TOPS indicated 5 others were at Canton so 11 of the 17 Colas Class 70’s were actually in the Cardiff area when the party was there! A total of 21 different locomotives were seen in addition to 17 HST sets.

Monday 24th April 2017
Onwards to Corwen
George Jones

31 attendees were at George Jones’ presentation in Chester on 24th April, which was appropriately entitled “On to Corwen”; it being 50 years to the week after the WM&CQ RailTour, organised by the Merseyside Branch as it was then, ran - the last passenger train to reach Llangollen. George’s most interesting and informative talk began by him looking at the rather dilapidated scene around Llangollen station in the early 1970s, when local dignitary and residents saw it as an eyesore and embarrassment. He then traced the line to Carrog, through its various stages of re-opening up to there between 1975 and 1996. It was pleasing to hear from the inside, so to speak, as George was responsible for the Corwen extension publicity, and he stressed the importance of winning support from local councils, MPs, Welsh Assembly Members (AMs), businesses, residents and conservation groups for the parliamentary submission stage, the two which cost £230,000 in total, highlighting and, persuading them what advantages the railway would bring to the town. In 2014 services began temporarily to Dwyrain Corwen East, called by some ‘a blot on the landscape’ and by others ‘an engineering achievement’, with the aim of reaching Corwen Central for the 2018 season, finances permitting.

Tuesday 11th April 2017
West Midlands Day Ranger/Severn Valley Rly

Eight Members journeyed to the magnificent Severn Valley Railway on a sunny spring day.

There were 4 operational Steam locomotives, GWR 2857, 7714 & 7812 Earlestoke Manor on normal service duties with 34027 Taw Valley working a Charter train.

After a return trip on the S.V.R the opportunity was taken to sample the delights of the Parry People mover on the service from Stourbridge Junction to the Town. We then travelled to Bromsgrove spending an hour at the new Station which opened on 12 July 2016 before ascending “the Lickey” observing the progress being made on the Electrification between Barnt Green & Bromsgrove. It is expected the overhead equipment will be energised in September 2017 prior to the introduction of Electric services to Bromsgrove in May 2018. WOLVERHAMPTON [09.35-09.50] 170631 1G13 08.47 SHREWSBURY – NEW ST 221132 1O10 08.27 MAN PIC – BOURNEMOUTH 323222 2A15 09.50 TO WALSALL [RIDE] 221113 ADDED TO FRONT OF 9M48 390124 9S47 07.43 EUSTON – GLASGOW

WOLVES STEEL TERMINAL 66188 TO WORK 6E08 13.03 TO IMMINGHAM

SMETHWICK GALTON BRIDGE [10.07-10.14] 172344 2K10 09.40 WHITLOCKS END – KIDDERMINSTER [RIDE]

ROWLEY REGIS [10.19/10.20] 172218 + 172??? 2C20 09.55 KIDDERMINSTER – DORRIDGE

CRADLEY HEATH [10.24/10.25] 172339 2S26 09.52 WORCESTER SHRUB HILL – WHITLOCKS END

STOURBRIDGE JNC [10.29/10.30] 172340 2D22 10.28 STOURBRIDGE JNC – STRATFORD ON AVON 139001

HAGLEY [10.33/10.34] 172337 2S28 10.25 KIDDERMINSTER – WHITLOCKS END

S.V.R KIDDERMINSTER 7812 EARLESTOKE MANOR 11.00 TO BRIDGNORTH [HAULAGE] [STOCK - 12992/1086/1146/5883/W1856/1116]

OTHER STOCK 9084/9654/M31420M

KIDDERMINSTER SHED D2960 D3022/D4100 20177/D8188/20189/20205 50007/50031/50035/50044/50049

STOCK 10734/17167/3247/3275/3182/1566/3273/3174/92904/1953/10606

BEWDLEY [11.15/11.17] 43106 M50933/M56208 M51941/E59250/E52064

ARLEY [11.29/11.34] 2857 10.50 BRIDGNORTH – KIDDERMINSTER [STOCK - W25771/43612/643/24506/52255/43600/2701]

IN SIDING; 9085

HIGHLEY 73202/624 [TRACK MACHINES]

HAMPTON LOADE [11.59] 34027 TAW VALLEY SOUTH - CHARTER TRAIN [STOCK - W80972W/9055/3930/9103/9653]

BRIDGNORTH [ARR 12.14]

7714 12.20 BRIDGNORTH – KIDDERMINSTER [HAULAGE] [STOCK – 80969/24617/149/26880/2300/27270/27218]

SHED 1450 4566 4930 HAGLEY HALL [MINUS BOILER] 7802 BRADLEY MANOR 34053 SIR KEITH PARK 92214 D3586

STOCK S24845/S25686 ADM1091/30

HIGHLEY 2857 12.30 KIDDERMINSTER – BRIDGNORTH [ARRIVE 13.12] 7812 13.05 BRIDGNORTH – KIDDERMINSTER [HAULAGE]

THE ENGINE HOUSE 7325 45110 46443 47383 48773 80079 WD600 GORDON THE LADY ARMAGHDALE

STOCK 798 W80300

ARLEY 34027 NORTH ON CHARTER TRAIN D 13.50

BEWDLEY [14.03/14.12] 7714 14.00 KIDDERMINSTER – BRIDGNORTH

KIDDERMINSTER [ARRIVE 14.23]

KIDDERMINSTER 172222/172215 [RIDE] 2C48 14.00 GREAT MALVERN – DORRIDGE

STOURBRIDGE JNC [ARR 14.47] 172336 2J49 13.26 STRATFORD ON AVON – STOURBRIDGE JNC 2S54 14.57 STOURBRIDGE JNC – STRATFORD ON AVON 139002 [RIDE] 2P11 14.55 – STOURBRIDGE TOWN 2P12 15.00 STOURBRIDGE TOWN – STOURBRIDGE JNC 172343 2C50 14.55 KIDDERMINSTER – DORRIDGE 153375 [RIDE]/170630 2V34 14.19 WHITLOCKS END – WORCESTER F ST

KIDDERMINSTER [15.21/15.22] 172337 STABLED, TO WORK 2S58 15.25 TO WHITLOCKS END

DROITWICH SPA [15.31/15.37] 170633 [RIDE] 1M89 14.39 HEREFORD – NEW ST

BROMSGROVE [15.46-16.42] 170106 1V11 14.10 NOTTINGHAM – CARDIFF 220027 1V59 14.07 MAN PIC – PAIGNTON 220018 1M53 15.00 BRISTOL – MAN PIC 170504/153366 1V30 15.49 NEW ST – HEREFORD 170102 1M98 14.45 CARDIFF –NOTTINGHAM 221136 1V60 09.34 DUNDEE – PENZANCE [TRAIN CANCELLED ABERDEEN – DUNDEE] 221128 1S53 13.25 PLYMOUTH – EDINBURGH 170633 1V20 16.19 NEW ST – GREAT MALVERN 170513/170634 [RIDE] 1M72 15.39 HEREFORD – NEW ST

Wednesday 5th April 2017
Railways - The Digital Effect
David Rapson

The Liverpool meeting on 5th April was an intriguing presentation by David Rapson entitled “Railways – the Digital Effect”. He showed a varied selection of excellent photographs, many his own, but including some obtained through a variety of sources, ranging from extremely good examples that had needed little correction to those which initially were at the other end of the scale requiring much-detailed attention.

David proved that, with the right software, it is possible now ‘to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear’, including one which initially was a dubious quality colour shot that he had transformed into an excellent b&w example.

There was a vast variety of motive power covering 1910 to present day, which encompassed all ‘big four’ examples, standards and modern, with scenes taken during all seasons both in Britain and across the globe, even thick snow in Mongolia, whilst steam locomotives existing into BR days seen, included those with the longest and shortest service – 58865 (93y 0m) and 9499 (4y 2m) plus 61057 (3y 9m) – Witham accident, March 1950.

This extremely thoughtfully and professionally executed presentation was witnessed by 33 attendees, who eagerly await a return, and he is sincerely thanked for his great efforts.

Tuesday 28th March 2017
Observation at Nottingham/Toton

Seven intrepid explorers left Crewe to visit Nottingham and onward to the famous hill overlooking Toton Yard & Depot. On arriving at Nottingham, another member joined us, making eight in all. At the station, the party split with a couple riding the Nottingham tram system, another couple travelling on various other lines in the area. The other half of the group took the tram to Toton, and, led by our excellent guide, walked to the hill overlooking the works. After being suitably fed and watered, we decided to have a go at walking round to the other side of the works to see what we couldn’t see from the hill. Into the unknown we went, led by our own “David Livingstone”. After walking through a nature reserve, we walked round the other side and picked up a few more numbers, which we could not see from the hill. It was then a route march back to the tram and on to the station. We all finally met back together at Derby, where the days experiences were exchanged. If the resting eyes, on the way back to Crewe were anything to go by, a good day was had by all.

Monday 20th March 2017
A Colour-Rail Presentation
Paul Chancellor

The attendees, 27 in number, at the Chester meeting on 20th March witnessed a most interesting and enjoyable presentation from Paul Chancellor, who concentrated on Cardiff, Peterborough, Carlisle, Bournemouth, Birmingham New St., Edinburgh and Leeds/Bradford. At each of the locations Paul started with a shot taken around the 1930s, but also included one of an S&DJR 4-4-0 taken in 1909, and he then worked through the decades to almost the present day. Some of the interesting shots taken in earlier times were 1340 Trojan at Cardiff East Dock, plus some Taff Vale and Cardiff Railway locomotives around Cardiff, LMS 10456, WD601 and the unusual combination of D8113+70028 on passenger stock at Carlisle, LNER 2001, 2002 and the Waverley pilots, 68481 in apple green and 68474 around Edinburgh with ex LNWR 25677 seen at New St., whilst more modern images at Bournemouth were of 10000, 10203 and other regions locomotives borrowed in 1953, then Cl.141s in white with green band in Yorkshire. Paul finished with a section from around the country of ‘Where you here?’ showing various shots at stations depicting enthusiasts enjoying their hobby, which was interspersed with some of his ‘dry humour’. Those present would certainly welcome an early return.

Tuesday 14th March 2017
Observation at Doncaster

There is not much to say about trips to Doncaster which has not already been said! This was the Branch’s first visit since Platform “0” was officially opened to traffic on 12/12/16. As a consequence, as we invariably “observe” at the South end of the Station we now miss the Northern services which arrive & depart from the new platform. Generally time keeping was good, the exception being 1E11 ex Aberdeen which passed 35 minutes late & 1N93 to Sunderland which was 40 minutes late. Nine Members attended. For a list of all recordings please e mail alan.christine@daisytally.fsnet.co.uk

Tuesday 28th February 2017
South Pennines Day Ranger

The weather in the UK can be changeable [as we all know] No sooner had we recovered from “Storm Doris” on Thursday 23/2, we then had to contend with a blizzard lasting for one hour around our departure time of 09.20 from Manchester Piccadilly. The Peak District hills were covered with snow but only on the west side as there was no snow to be seen towards Sheffield. From Sheffield we travelled to Leeds via Barnsley & the enjoyed 70 minutes of number bashing at Leeds. Travel was then to Huddersfield via Bradford Interchange. From Huddersfield we caught the 14.13 to Sheffield via Penistone. All went well until Shepley where we crossed the northbound unit. We remained in the Station and it was announced that the Conductor had been assaulted by a Passenger & B T Police had been summoned. Some Members of the party had seen 2 females running off the Platform so we assume they were the culprits. We saw no evidence the Police arrived and we departed 17 minutes late. To avoid the “melee” at Sheffield we joined our Manchester bound service at Meadowhall arriving in Manchester on time. The fun was not over for the writer as problems near Liverpool Lime St caused by a partial wall collapse resulted in the LM service to be terminated at Crewe thus requiring travel home via Chester. Seven Members attended.

last updated: 12/02/18