27th July 2003

Past Time Rail
V.S.O.E. Bournemouth Belle

Locos Used D1015, 59205 & steam: 34027 (1)


Loco(s) Route
34027 (2) 09.15 London Victoria (P2) - Stewarts Lane - ??? (3)
34027 (4) ??? - Clapham Junction – Richmond – Staines – West Byfleet – Woking – Basingstoke – Andover - Salisbury
D1015 (5) Salisbury – Romsey – Eastleigh – Southampton Central – Brockenhurst – Bournemouth ( down plat)
D1015 Bournemouth (down plat) - Brockenhurst – Southampton Central – Eastleigh (P2)
D1015 (6) Eastleigh (P2) – Southampton Central – Brockenhurst – Bournemouth (down plat) – Branksome – Poole (P2)
34027 Bournemouth (up plat) - Brockenhurst – Southampton Central
D1015 (7) Southampton Central – Eastleigh – Winchester – Basingstoke – Woking – West Byfleet – Chertsey – Staines – Richmond – Clapham Junction – Stewarts Lane – London Victoria (P2)

(1) 34027 "Taw Valley" was masquerading as 34045 "Ottery St. Mary".
(2) Banked to Grosvenor Bridge Jn by 59205.
(3) Train stopped at signal on incline up to Clapham Jn Windsor platforms and loco could not restart train unassisted. 59205 utilised to push start the train.
(4) 59205 on rear.
(5) D1015 named "Sir Misha Black" in a ceremony at Salisbury station before taking the train to Bournemouth. 34027 ran light engine to Eastleigh via Southampton Central.
(6) The train was turned on the loop at Eastleigh and 34027 was attached to the train on the opposite end to D1015 so it was on the rear in light steam to Poole.
(7) Plus 34027 "in light steam". Problems with 34027 became apparent at the water stop at Southampton. It had used more water than it should have had. The decision was taken to use D1015 to haul the train and 34027 in light steam (it had been following the train light engine) back to London. There was a risk that 34027 might run dry if allowed to continue.

Source : Andy Pullar

Tour Review
(from Andy Pullar)

I had resisted my wife’s nagging to be taken on the Orient Express for two reasons; the cost and the duff motive power. I had to give in gracefully when the PTR brochure was waived in my face with a dare you refuse glare close behind. As all things Southern and Hydraulic ( Plymothian that I am) are my railway passions I would have gone anyway but don’t tell the wife.

The train being so heavy it was not a surprise that difficulties were encountered with the steam loco on the outward and return. However the thrash as the driver fought for adhesion between Victoria and Clapham was well worth the delay.

Additional Western mileage between Bournemouth and Eastleigh was offered instead of leaving the train which added to the extra champagne quaffed by this move made for a pleasant way to spend the afternoon between the main events; the run to Salisbury by steam, the re-christening of D1015 Sir Misha Black in honour of the Western class designer and the return by steam from Poole to London (something I’d only experienced in videos but we won’t go there).

An inner groan was almost audible when it was announced that 34027 had been failed and the return from Southampton would be by diesel ; with visions of  a brush with my worst nightmare coming true and the hole in my pocket reminding me of the cost to my solvency. Then Sir Misha Black glided past the picture window and dropped on the front. The double ching of this extravagant day out was instantly forgotten when D1015 was commandeered for the thrash back to Victoria. Slumped in an armchair of a real train wining and dining with hydraulic music playing in my ears. What a way to spend an evening.

Only problem is my wife now wants to go to Venice. Someone fit the necessary equipment to the Champion please!

Andy Pullar

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