11th May 2002
The Hop 'n' Stop
|Locos Used||56046, 56065, 58029, 60081, 66539, 73131 & 92007|
1Z85 : Crewe to Folkestone Harbour
1Z86 : Folkestone Harbour to Crewe
|56065||Crewe - Norton Bridge - Stafford - Bushbury Jn - Wolverhampton - Portobello Jn - Darlaston Jn - Bescot Jn - Bescot Up Loop|
|92007 (1)||Bescot Up Loop - Newton Jn - Perry Barr North Jn - Aston - Stechford - Birmingham International - Coventry - Rugby - (WCML via Weedon) - Watford Junction - Wembly Central - Wembley Euro Ops Centre|
|66539 (2)||Wembley Euro Ops Centre - Willesden West London Jn - Mitre Bridge Jn - Kensington Olympia - Latchmere Jn - Clapham Jn - Balham - West Norwood - Crystal Palace - Bromley Jn - Norwood Junction (via down London Bridge slow) - East Croydon - Purley - Redhill - Godstone - Tonbridge - Tonbridge M.L.O. - Ashford International - Folkestone Central - Folkestone East - Folkestone East Train Roads|
|73131 (3)||Folkestone East Train Roads - Folkestone Harbour|
|66539 (2)||Folkestone Harbour - Folkestone East Train Roads|
|73131 (3)||Folkestone East Train Roads - Folkestone East|
|66539 (2)||Folkestone East - Dover Priory - Canterbury East - Faversham - Sittingbourne - Chatham - Strood - Hoo Junction Up Yard|
|60081 (3)||Hoo Junction Up Yard - Strood - Aylesford (4) - Maidstone West - Paddock Wood - (reverse of outward route) - East Croydon - Selhurst - Streatham Common (5) - Balham - Clapham Jn - (reverse of outward route) - Wembley Euro Ops Centre|
|58029 + 56065||Wembley Euro Ops Centre - (reverse of outward route) - Newton Jn - Bescot Up & Down Goods|
|56046||Bescot Up & Down Goods - Bescot Jn - (reverse of outward route) - Crewe|
(1) plus 56065 dead-in-tow.
(2) 73131 on rear.
(3) 66539 on rear.
(4) 60081 struggled from Hoo Yard to Aylesford where the driver failed the loco due to faulty TPWS equipment causing frequent emergency brake applications. It is assumed agreement was reached to carry on with the TPWS isolated as 60081 completed its booked journey to Wembley.
(5) Train was booked via Streatham, Tulse Hill, Herne Hill, Brixton & Longhedge Jn to Latchmere Jn but was diverted via Balham & Clapham Junction owing to the driver not having route knowledge of the booked route.
Source : Gary Thornton.
(Joined/ left the train at Coventry)
(by Gary Thornton)
Here are some photos taken on the day of the various locomotives used.
Another "spin-and-win" tour beckons, this one a jaunt round the Southern Region with traction ranging from classes 56, 58, 60, 66, 73 & 92. With a total of six locomotives booked to haul the train, including a GB Rail 66/7 and some required track (Greenford South to East Junctions) my booking soon went in for this outing. Unfortunately the tour spec went the way of many these days and in a later advert the GB Rail 66/7 had became a Freightliner one and my required curve vanished without trace or mention. Despite the alternative attraction of the class 59 farewell (no, not our 59's, these are foreign ones!) in Belgium I stuck with my booking on this trip.
Some decisions to be made on the run up to the tour. It was originally advertised that the 56 would haul the train to the Rugby area where a 92 would be added. It then changed to the Bescot area for the addition of the 92....but I was joining at Coventry... In theory the 56 would remain on the train as a barrier vehicle between the 92 and train and should work back in the evening in tandem with the booked class 58....but what if it didn't...especially if it was a required one (as the rumours on Thursday evening suggested - 56129)?
In the event laziness took over and I decided on the Coventry join regardless. It wasn't really a difficult decision - Coventry depart 08.35 against Wolverhampton at 06.37!!
On-the-day gen gleaned from a couple of others on the station confirmed the pairing to be 92007 (required) and 56065 (not required). With the grid being dud my decision to stay in bed a little longer looked fully justified :-)
Sure enough, a little before 08.15 and in rolled 92007 atop 56065. With a 20 minute stop there was plenty of time for photographs for everyone on board as well as those of us joining.
The run south along the West Coast Main Line was a fair stagger. We collected more passengers at Watford Junction (10am departure) before turning into Wembly Yard and our first loco change. Here we lost the 92 and its minder in favour of Freightliner 66539 (a haulage scratch for all and a required for sight for me too!). The opportunity to bolt on ED 73131 (dud, not my best outing for locos this!) at the rear of the train was also taken during this stop.
As we left and traced our way out of the yard the pens were busy recording stabled locos 08865, 08711, 08919, 08635, 66241, 66132, 66133, 66080, 66137 & 92031. A cheer from me as we passed Willesden depot heading for Southern metals - stabled outside were 66701, 66706 and 66524 - 66701 being the last of the first batch of "bluebirds" I needed for sight!
Clapham Junction put paid to our 15-early running, we sat in the platform for the duration until we were back to right time. Still, a profitable time as I scored Juniper EMU's 8004 & 8024 which passed as we sat.
Our route then took us through Crystal Palace and don to Norwood junction. Hopes we might take the "through goods road" to East Croydon (shown separately in the Baker Rail Atlas) were dashed as we took the down London Bridge slow - and seeing the state of said goods line I doubt I'll ever get it as there were small trees growing up between the rails!
Onwards via Redhill to Tonbridge. Here we got my only required piece of track all day - we ran from the down fast, cross and through the Royal Mail platform, and back to the down main. Still, it's in "Bakers Bible" so I can get the marker out and do some highlighting!
Loads of locos as we passed the freight yards outside the immigrants entrance to GB (a.k.a. the Channel Tunnel) - I noted 66119, 66197, 66173, 66081, 66041, 92016, 92026, 92015, 92019, 92039, 92008, 99234 & 92043...and there were some others I missed!
An unscheduled stop was made at Folkestone Central - under the guise of allowing people the opportunity to alight at one station in Folkestone, join at another and get some food if they wanted, we all know it was really just so the Pathfinder stewards ensured they got their food move "in"...
At Folkestone East we turned into the "train roads" where we reversed, 73131 chugging us down the steep hill (i.e. on diesel power) to Folkestone Harbour station. What a tip that station now is -with just one platform operational, primarily for VSOE (Orient Express) occasional use. Still, half an hour here to either (a) photograph both locos or (b) find some hot food. I chose the former, many went for the latter and the various complaints I heard back on the train about dubious chips suggested option (a) was the better one!
Back to the top of the hill and a double-reversal later and we were off towards Dover. Passing Shepherds Well on the way to Hoo Yard we all were hoping for a view of 33063 and/or 33065 as they were both out working on the East Kent Railways diesel gala. A couple of gronks were noted but no sign of the shredders.
Into Hoo Yard and we lost 73131 in favour of dubious-liveried 60081 "Isambard Kingdom Brunel" - in lined GWR green it's not really my idea of a good livery for a class 60! Our "Fred" remained on the back of the train and was not booked to play any further part in proceedings (the cheapest way to get it back to Wembley I guess).
Though, in the event, 66539 might well have found additional work on our train....
....heading out of Hoo Yard in the direction we had come from, 60081 staggered big style. After Strood we took the line towards Maidstone West. We got to see a lot of this line, mainly on account that we stopped every few hundred yards, staggered a bit then stopped again. By Aylesford the driver had obviously had enough and he gave up. Apparently a TPWS defect was to blame, causing the numerous brake applications we had suffered. Never mind, this was an unexpected chance to photograph the loco.
So, chance for a farce then? Not really, whilst we sat for a while waiting for decisions to be made, it was soon a case of "all back on" and we carried on as booked, just running about 40 minutes late. Presumably the TPWS had been isolated to allow us to continue.
Running back to London we gained back a few minutes, then lost it again as we joined the queue of EMU's heading for the capital. An announcement on the approach to Streatham Common however told us we would not be taking booked route via Tulse Hill & Herne Hill owing to the driver not knowing the route. Heading via Balham should gain us back some more time too...
...shame no-one told the signaller at Streatham Common - we had the signal for the booked route so a few minutes were lost whilst the route was reset!
More of our regained time as then handed back as we had 10 minute unscheduled stop at Kensington Olympia....waiting a pilotman as we had reached some more track over which the driver didn't have route knowledge. Seems strange that EWS can happily roster crews when they cannot physically take the train where it is supposed to go without additional assistance....yes, we do take some strange routes on occasions, but....
We arrived back at Wembley Yard to see 58029 & 56065 being bolted together. Arrival was only about 15late but with a booked fester of almost an hour we had the opportunity to be back on time once we had lost IKB & "Fred" from our train.
Almost....we departed 4 minutes late. Once out of the yard the driver opened up the 56/58 combo and the whole train and most of the local part of London vanished into a thick white fog! Bone 58029 was apparently not all that well. The exhaust was white and stank very heavily of hot-oil going-on hot metal. Even on tick-over there were clouds and clouds of clag pouring from 58029! Being in the leading coach (with all windows open to enjoy the thrash) we got the brunt of the smoke and smell...mind you, several severe cases of flatulence that seemed to afflict several of the occupants in our coach were competing very well with the front end traction on the smell (and noise) front!!
6,550bhp on load 10 - quite a power/weight ratio and boy did it show, acceleration was rather swift on the handful of occasions we had greens ahead of us! As we shot through Bushey at around 70-80mph some on board began to wonder if the driver was going to make the planned Watford Junction set-down - as we passed the Tesco Metro store with both locos still screaming I too began to wonder but a bit of masterly braking had us in and stopped without too much trouble.
Good running along the WCML saw us almost 15 up by Rugby, but the signallers there repeated the morning Clapham Junction move and held us outside until correct time, grrr...
Coventry was reached virtually bang on booked time. Although by now I knew the train was planned to have a seventh loco - 56046 taking over at Bescot - I chose to leave the train as I didn't need the grid...and it was half-ten at night too....by the time the train got to its next set-down point it wouldn't be far short of midnight!
Verdict : With 22 of us booked together on this trip it was quite a sociable affair. From the "gains" point of view it was a little disappointing - I only scored three of the tour locos for haulage (92, 66 & 60) plus a gnats cock of track. At least the potential farce with 60081 was avoided! As was pointed out, the tour name was quite descriptive of our day "hop 'n' stop" - lots of stopping being very much order of the day. Coventry to Coventry - 400-odd miles in 14.25 hours, an average speed of just 28mph! The day was made for me though by being in the front coach for the 56/58 thrash along the WCML - very loud, smoky and smelly - quite superb!
Timings (Booked and Actual)
(by Gary Thornton/David Clark)
|1.64||Basford Hall Jn||05/54||-||00/22||-||44.32|
|24.37||Stafford||06.14a ~ 06.17d||- ~ -||23.58a ~ 00.01d||- ~ -||21.59|
|39.25||Wolverhampton North Jn||06/32||-||23/42||-||6.71|
|39.68||Wolverhampton||06.34a ~ 06.37d||- ~ -||23.27a ~ 23.40d||- ~ -||6.28|
|Bescot UL / DUG||06L53a ~ 07L20d||- ~ -||23L08a ~ 23L23d||-||0.00
|4.08||Perry Barr North Jn||07/26||-||23/00||-||108.57|
|13.56||Birmingham International||07.42a ~ 08.00d||- ~ 08.04||22.41a ~ 22.44d||- ~ -||98.11|
|24.32||Coventry||08.13a ~ 08.35d||08.14 ~ 08.35||22.28a ~ 22.30d||22.27 ~ 22.30||87.35|
|35.71||Rugby||08.49a ~ 08.55d||08.48 ~ 08.53||22.14a ~ 22.17d||22/13||75.76|
|68.46||Milton Keynes Central||09/23||09/23||21/40||21/35||43.21|
|100.76||Watford Junction||09.57a ~ 10.00d||09.52 ~ 10.01||21.00a ~ 21.03d||21.01 ~ 21.02||10.71|
|107.01||Harrow & Wealdstone||10/06||10/10||20/53||20/55||4.66|
|110.27||Wembley Central||10/10||10.15a ~ 10.17d||20/50||20/49||1.40|
|Wembley Euro Ops Centre||10L16a ~ 10L46d||10.22 ~ 10.43||19L56a ~ 20L41d||20.09 ~ 20.45||0.00
|1.26||Willesden West London Jn||10/59||10/51||19/25||19/50||76.12|
|1.53||Mitre Bridge Jn||11/00||10/52||19/24||19/49||75.63|
|2.10||North Pole Jn||11/04||10/53||19/23||19/47||75.26|
|3.78||Kensington Olympia||11/08||10/59||19/19||19.33a ~ 19.43d||73.38|
|7.27||Clapham Junction||11/17||11.03a ~ 11.16d|
|14.65||Norwood Junction||11*44a ~ 11*50d||11.47 ~ 11.49|
|15.79||Windmill Bridge Jn||11/52||11/52|
|20.30||Stoats Nest Jn||12/00||12/02|
|46.42||Tonbridge||12/34||12.43a ~ 12.45d|
|47.12||Tonbridge Post Office Jn||12/37||12/49|
|86.73||Folkestone Central||13/19||13.25a ~ 13.27d|
|Folkestone East Train Roads||??.??a ~ ??.??d||13.34 ~ 13.40|
|Folkestone Harbour||13.36a ~ 14.15d||13.45 ~ 14.17|
|Folkestone East Train Roads||14L20a ~ ??.??d||14.21 ~ 14.29|
|Folkestone East||14L20a ~ 14L40d||14.32 ~ 14.37|
|49.49||Rochester Bridge Jn||15/51||15/50|
|Hoo Junction UpYard||16L05a ~ 16L29d||16.13 ~ 16.50|
|25.59||Paddock Wood||17.28a ~ 17.35d||18.06 ~ 18.12|
|56.14||Stoats Nest Jn||18/26||18/56|
|57.05||Purley||18.28a ~ 18.33d||18/57|
|60.45||Windmill Bridge Jn||18/39||19/01|
|63.78||Streatham Common||18/52||19.11a ~ 19.14d|
|68.28||Shepherds Lane Jn||19/08||DIV|
Timings continued in first table.
a : arrival time
c : crew change
d : departure time
DIV : diverted
L : loco change
/ : passing time
A time or mileage in brackets is approximate.
All distances, in miles and chains (M & C), are taken
from the timing sheet given out on the train. No attempt has been made to verify
the mileages given. A recalculation is required to account for the deviation
frombooked route between Streatham Common & Latchmere Jn.
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