2nd April 2001

PTG Tours
The Alco Farewell

Loco Used CP 1510
Stock Used 10 69 008-4 + 88 40 003-6 + 10 69 014-2 + 10 69 015-9

Route :

Loco Route (1)
1510 Tomar - Entroncamento
1510 Entroncamento - Alfrefarlos - Coimbra-B
1510 Coimbra-B - Coimbra - Serpins
1510 Serpins - Coimbra - Coimbra-B
1510 Coimbra-B - Alfrefarlos - Verride - Amieira - Torres Vedras - Mafra - Cacm - Benfica - Lisboa-Rego - Lisboa Saint Apolonia

Notes :
A number of passengers (myself included) used the 08.05 service train (EMU 2101) to get to Entroncamento as a visit to the works and depot had been arranged. We got there from the station (works halt) on a two-coach train hauled by 1212. We returned on a train formed of 1-car DMU trailer (22 29 305-9) and hauled by Sentinel shunter 1169. We joined the main tour when it arrived into Entroncamento.

Source : Gary Thornton.
(joined at Entroncamento then on the train for rest of the day)

Tour review :

Follow this link for some photos.

Final day of the PTG Tours series of trips - and what a finale. After over 50 years it was time to bid an "official" farewell to the 1501 class Alco's. Having experienced a couple in 1999 I knew what to expect - a lot of noise!

We weren't disappointed.....

I actually flagged the start of the tour as a depot and works visit to Entroncamento had been arranged. This involved getting from Tomar to Entroncamento on the 08.05 service train (DMU). With the tour stock also in however a front coach compo was bagged simply by dumping our main bags and locking it! Cheating? Not really - Roger and Chris were not doing the depot visit so weren't far behind us.

Bit of a ticket farce - no-one was really sure what the arrangements were so some people bought singles and others didn't...guess who was in the latter category....

The gripper seemed clued up however and didn't ching us on the DMU to Entroncamento. At Entroncamento we walked to the works platform (just off the main station platforms) and along came 1220 on two coaches to transport us to the depot. The works shuttle works regularly throughout the day and can be formed of almost anything...so trust us to get a dud 1201....

We had about 45 minutes of freedom to roam and I managed to get most of what was on works/depot, plus loads of reasonable photos. Motive power to get us back was Sentinel 1169 (required) on a DMU trailer car. We got rather wet waiting for it as a heavy drizzle was falling....

We arrived back to Entroncamento station to no sign of 1510 on our tour - it was late! Not a problem though, it came in with a few minutes to spare before booked departure time - CP can match railtrack for pathing a railtour behind an all-shacks stopper!!

Although all seemed set for an on-time departure we didn't get away until just gone 10.30 then our "fast" run to Coimbra-B turned into a real stagger, turning a 20 late departure into a 40 late arrival. Time at Coimbra-B to get photos - though as we'd been there the day before and it was raining on this visit, not so many bothered.

With 1510 on the other end of the train we eventually set off down the hill to Coimbra. After a short pause it was time to tackle a bit of street-running to get us onto the Serpins branch. What a riot - a couple of traffic cops ensured no motorist was so stupid as to attempt to take on the Alco at any of the junctions we passed. Much use was also made of that monster of a horn!

The whole Serpins branch was enjoyable with quite good scenery and loads of thrash/horn/thrash most of the way. Various Allen railcars (old and rebuilt) were passed en-route to Serpins. At the terminus were a long line of them, presumably stored/withdrawn?

A shorter than booked run-round enabled us to claw back the deficit to about 20 minutes and the run back along the branch was just as enjoyable. After another bout of street running we found ourselves back at Coimbra-B for a booked hours break. With 1510 on the south end again and the sun (finally) shining a cry of "seminar" went up and promptly the front end of 1510 was invaded by tour participants! Try doing that in the UK and see what Railtrack do....

Time now to head back south along the "coast" route to Lisboa. With photo-stops en-route and the evening meal the time went by quickly and all too soon we were into our last two or three hours of the tour. Along this stretch the CP inspector on the train was allowing cab rides and I managed to get myself in from Pero Negro to Mafra. That was some experience - inside the cab was quiet and very smooth, even the air horn was quiet! We touched 100km/h during my time in the cab. At Mafra we paused whilst the crew investigated a cloud of smoke which was coming from one of the bogies on the restaurant car. Satisfied all was well we carried on our way.

The final run from Cacm to Lisboa SA was memorable - we thrashed our way through one suburban station after another and there was much bellowing from (at least) the leading coach at the normals on each station. Some got into the spirit ad bellowed back! At one point the brakes went on hard and we pulled up to a stop about the Alco's length past....a red signal....

After a few minutes we backed up behind the signal, it then changed and we were on our way again. Hmmm....

We rolled into Lisboa SA at about 9.15pm at the end of a real decent day out. After some encouragement the driver woke up any early-to-bed locals with a few last blasts on that absolute riot of an air horn :-)

Rumours of the tour participants being able to ride the ECS back to Barriero proved unfounded as 1510 was booked to return "light engine" so we all headed for the taxi rank and our allocated hotels. With a bit of good organisation by PTG we managed to get taxi-fulls rather than one and twos in each as many of us ere off to the same hotel which was booked as part of the tour package. Unfortunately this hotel (the AS Lisboa) proved to be the poorest of the batch. A beer cost 425$00 - about four times what it did in a station bar - and our "twin" room turned out to be one with a tiny (4" wide) double bed! I volunteered to sleep on the floor but David rummaged in the wardrobe, found some extra pillows and blankets, and made himself comfortable on the floor. Thanks David! A good nights sleep as still however denied us as the hotels waterworks were extremely loud and one of our neighbours decided to have a shower at something like 4am which was accompanied by so much noise from the water system that it woke both of us!!

Verdict : another superb tour, shame about the hotel though.

Timings :

(additional information by Matt Gaskarth)

Train reporting numbers :
13844 : Tomar - Entroncamento (23.13km)
13845 : Entroncamento - Coimbra-B (111km) 
13847 : Coimbra-B - Serpins (36.89km)
13848 : Serpins - Coimbra-B (36.89km)
13850/13851 : Coimbra-B - Lisboa SA (245.06km)

Location Booked Actual
Tomar 09.30d  
S. Cita 09/36  
Lamarosa 09/46  
Entroncamento 09.52a ~ 10.12d 10.04 ~ 10.32
Lamarosa 10/17  
Paialvo 10/21  
Chao Macas-Fatima 10/26  
Caxarais 10/32  
Albergaria dos Doze 10/39  
Vermoil 10/46  
Pombal 10/51  
Soure 10/59  
Alfarelos 11/06 11.49 ~ 11.56d
Formoselha 11/08  
Taviero 11/14  
Coimbra-B 11.19a ~ 11.47d 12.01 ~ 12.23
Coimbra 11.56a ~ 11.56d 12.28 ~ 12.30
Lousa 12.54a ~ 12.59d 13.21 ~ 13.24
Serpins 13.06a ~ 13.40d 13.31 ~ 13.58
Lousa 13.46a ~ 13.52d  
Miranda do Corvo 14.01a ~ 14.06d 14.17 ~ 14.22
Ceira 14.18a ~ 14.30d  
Coimbra Parque 14.37a ~ 14.38d  
Coimbra 14.48a ~ 14.55d 15.03 ~ 15.12
Coimbra-B 15.00a ~ 16.00d 15.17 ~ 16.02
Taviero 16/06  
Formoselha 16/12  
Alfarelos 16.16a ~ 16.26d  
Verride 16.33a ~ 16.42d 16.42 ~ 16.45
B d Veride 16/48  
Ameira 16.52a ~ 16.53d  
Lourical 17.03a ~ 17.08d 17.01 ~ 17.12
Monte Real 17/19  
Leira 17/26  
Marinha Grande 17.33a ~ 17.38d 17.38 ~ 17.45
Martinganca 17/43  
Pataias 17/47  
Valado 17.53a ~ 17.59d 17.59 ~ 18.04
S Martino do Porto 18.09 ~ 16.16  
Caldas da Rainha 18.25a ~ 18.35d  
Bombarral 18.48a ~ 18.55d  
Outeiro 19/02  
Ramalhal 19/06  
Torres Vedras 19.13a ~ 19.21d 19.16 ~ 19.25
Dois Portos 19/29  
Pero Negro 19.35a ~ 19.47d  
Malveira 19/56  
Mafra 20.00a ~ 20.04d 20.00 ~ 20.05
Sabugo 20/10  
Cacm 20.16a ~ 20.17d 20.18 ~ 20.19
Queluz-Massama 20/23  
Amadora 20/29  
Benfica 20/35  
Km4-L Sintra 20/38  
Sete Rios 20/40  
Lisboa-Rego 20/41  
Entrcampos 20/44  
S1C-Chelas 20/48  
S2.bif. Xabregas 20/51  
Lisboa SA 20.56a 21.12

Key :
a : arrival time
d : departure time
/ : passing time

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