RCTS Logo

Royal Train Formations of the 1970s and 1980s

A forum for the discussion of railway related topics

Royal Train Formations of the 1970s and 1980s

Postby Peter Hall » Mon Sep 05, 2016 2:59 pm

A couple of topics I have recently got embroiled in concern Royal Trains and their formations (locomotives and carriages).

The first involves visits of the Royal Train to Sheffield in the 1970s and 1980s were I have some incomplete notes of usage including formations. These though are not complete and some confusion exists over the locomotives used and their role as it appears a second locomotive was usually involved but not always used.

The second is more general in that it concerns the evolution of formations during the same period from a predominately pre-nationalisation fleet to one of 14 Mark II and III carriages. Similarly the evolution of varied motive power to Class 47/4 becoming the norm. I am sure some compilation of this type of information already exists and if any one can point me in that direction. Otherwise, any observations of formations during that period would be welcomed including if possible the date and royal visit.

I am aware the likes of the RO over the years has included information and although a trawl for the Sheffield visits has been made a more general trawl has not. Perhaps a member has done that.
Peter Hall
 
Posts: 267
Joined: Tue Nov 18, 2014 11:51 am

Re: Royal Train Formations of the 1970s and 1980s

Postby MisterC » Wed Sep 07, 2016 2:58 pm

I have also developed an interest in Royal Train workings as part of other research, particularly after I discovered the extent of use of Old Oak Common class 31s on Royal Trains during the period 1972-77.
Royal train working changed significantly in 1977 when the new train was introduced for the Silver Jubilee. My main interest is in the period from when diesel locomotives took over from steam through to 1977, using the old pre-Nationalisation Royal rolling stock. After 1977 the formations and locomotives became less interesting, particularly because the locomotives required ETH.
For most of the period up to 1977 there is a wealth of sources and I have not had time to deal with all of them. The most important are:
The National Railway Museum at York has a lot of files, which I think come from Wolverton, regarding use of the old vehicles, though this source becomes less comprehensive after about 1972. From these I think it is possible to identify Royal Train workings where the stock was from Wolverton, in most cases including an outline itinerary and which vehicles were booked to be included in the formation.
The National Archives at Kew has some information, including most Western Region Royal Train STNs for the period 1967-75. I suspect that other STNs have survived, including many in private collections, and they occasionally appear in auction catalogues.
The Times newspaper includes the Court Circular and, when it reports Royal Family official engagements, it usually states the mode of transport: for example Prince Charming arrived at Ambridge by train and was greeted by the Lord Lieutenant of Borsetshire. This is available for digital searches that can be accessed free of charge at Kew, the British Library at St Pancras, and possibly other places too.
And of course many rail enthusiasts, including RCTS members, will have important information in their own records.
This is an example of an area of research that might involve a lot of duplication of effort that could be avoided by a co-ordinated approach, so I will be interested to see if other RCTS members are interested in this subject.
MisterC
 
Posts: 94
Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2015 8:51 pm

Royal Train visits to Sheffield

Postby Peter Hall » Sat Sep 10, 2016 10:54 am

The initial bare bone results from my notes regarding visits of the Royal Train to Sheffield have been added to the Sheffield pages http://www.rcts.org.uk/branches/sheffie ... RoyalTrain I am sure many local members could add nor notes and hopefully some pictures.
Peter Hall
 
Posts: 267
Joined: Tue Nov 18, 2014 11:51 am

Re: Royal Train Formations of the 1970s and 1980s

Postby Train Spotter » Thu Oct 13, 2016 3:33 pm

I observed the Royal Train at Doncaster on the following day the Locomotive & formation follow I've cannot remember why it was at Doncaster

Friday 12th December 1986

47585
2906
2922
2923
2903
2902
2901
2915
2907
2911
2914
2905
Train Spotter
 
Posts: 57
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2014 2:33 pm

Royal Visit to Sheffield 12/12/1986

Postby Peter Hall » Fri Oct 14, 2016 10:36 am

Thanks to 'Trainspotter' for the formation on this date. Her Majesty The Queen visited Sheffield to open the roofed Spion Kop at Hillsborough and the extension to the Assay Office. The train presumably ran to /from Sheffield station for the visit. Has anyone any further details?
Peter Hall
 
Posts: 267
Joined: Tue Nov 18, 2014 11:51 am

Re: Royal Train Formations of the 1970s and 1980s

Postby Train Spotter » Thu Oct 20, 2016 3:33 pm

On Tuesday 20th November 1984 at Doncaster The Royal Train arrived at 2347 pm dep at 2350 pm & was formed as follows

47579

2910

2915

2912

2900

M17126
Train Spotter
 
Posts: 57
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2014 2:33 pm

Royal Train 10th June 1981

Postby Peter Hall » Tue Jan 03, 2017 4:29 pm

A picture has emerged of the Royal Train passing through Dore on 10th June 1981 captione4 as an ecs. It is however known HRH Prince Charles visited Sheffield at some point in 1981 but details of the visit have not been traced. It is possible this train was in connection with that visit. The locomotive was 47574 and although the carriages were not recorded the formation is short suggesting HRH Prince Charles or possibly HRH Princess Anne may have made use of the train. Any one able to add to this?
Peter Hall
 
Posts: 267
Joined: Tue Nov 18, 2014 11:51 am

Re: Royal Train Formations of the 1970s and 1980s

Postby Ian Prince » Wed Jan 04, 2017 10:38 pm

I have seen the Royal Train a few times, but can clearly recall it running apparently empty stock heading west in the Sheffield direction through Retford low level.

I think it was just after the two Mk3s were added (as I wanted to model them at the time). Finding such a record will be difficult, I am not sure if the coach identities were even noted, although I recall a Royal liveried early Mk2 genny van tacked on the rear as the train progressed very slowly through.

I don't think I had a camera with me either. But from memory, the set was either 2 x Class 31 or Class 47 hauled. Not sure of its origination or destination but nothing on the RCTS Sheffield record seems to tie in, date wise, either. Feasibly it was from a Lincolnshire function or heading for a pick up further west.

I do recall seeing pictures of pairs of Class 40s set up for Royal Train haulage elsewhere in the past, but never 37s or even Deltics. That doesn't mean it couldn't have happened, although the intensity of Deltic use probably precluded it.

In later more recent years I recall it being reported that HMQ travelled by GN Unit (313 or 365 presumably) to get to Sandringham from Kings Cross, presumably with a car transfer involved in Norfolk.
Ian Prince
 
Posts: 102
Joined: Wed Apr 20, 2016 5:42 pm

Re: Royal Train Formations of the 1970s and 1980s

Postby MisterC » Thu Jan 05, 2017 8:37 am

Ian Prince wrote:In later more recent years I recall it being reported that HMQ travelled by GN Unit (313 or 365 presumably) to get to Sandringham from Kings Cross, presumably with a car transfer involved in Norfolk.


There is a long tradition of the Royal Family using service trains for travel between London and Sandringham. Nearly all of these journeys are not on official engagements so difficult to trace. The Royal Family stay at Sandringham for Christmas and New Year so most of these journeys are in December or January.

Up until the early 1970s this was usually done by attaching a saloon to the loco hauled formation going to/from Liverpool Street, then just taking over a First Class coach.

I'm not sure but I think these journeys by rail ceased in the NSE era and possibly only restarted in the FCC era, taking over the First Class compartment at one end of a class 365 (I can't imagine the Royal Family in a class 313).

Her Majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh had planned to travel by train from Kings Cross to Kings Lynn on 21 December 2016 on their way to Sandringham for Christmas but for health reasons they went by helicopter the following day. 365514 was cleaned up for the occasion and looks quite smart in comparison to its classmates: one very noticeable feature of GTR cheapskatery in comparison to First is the atrocious external condition of the train fleet.

And somehow I doubt that these journeys will continue once class 365s are replaced by class 387s!
MisterC
 
Posts: 94
Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2015 8:51 pm

Re: Royal Train Formations of the 1970s and 1980s

Postby MisterC » Tue Sep 25, 2018 8:50 pm

I have been making progress on researching Royal Train journeys between London and Sandringham via Liverpool Street and Kings Lynn. Members here might be able to help me by confirming or contradicting the following conjectures suggested by my research:

Liverpool Street was used instead of Kings Cross for the first time on 22 December 1958;
the last Royal Train to use Wolferton was on 27 January 1966;
the ex ECJS Royal Saloons 395 and 396 were last used on 28/12/72 and 20/11/73 respectively, the latter for engagements at Ely and Hitchin, not a journey to or from Sandringham.

Also I'd be pleased to hear of any other information that could be relevant.

Finally, Her Majesty did travel by class 387 for Christmas 2017. Media reports, following the Thameslink timetable collapse, suggested that Her Majesty was unimpressed and expressed a preference for class 365s.
MisterC
 
Posts: 94
Joined: Sat Nov 07, 2015 8:51 pm


Return to Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot] and 2 guests

cron