1st August 2004
Past Time Rail
The Torbay Express
Loco Used steam: 5051 Stock Used 21245+4915+4916+4949+1813+4996+5008+4946+35453
1Z28 : Bristol Temple Meads to Kingswear
1Z29 : Kingswear to Bristol Temple Meads
Loco Route 5051 Bristol Temple Meads - Weston-super-Mare - Taunton - Exeter St Davids - Newton Abbot - Paignton - Kingswear 5051 Kingswear - (reverse of outward route) - Bristol Temple Meads
Source : Terry Jackson
(from Terry Jackson)
I'd expected the running on this tour to be the usual standard that appears to be the norm on steam these days where you hope to simply maintain the schedule but rely on the various stops to pick any time lost. It was therefore a very pleasant surprise to be treated to a resplendent 5051 being pushed to produce very fast starts and excellent intermediate running. This meant that early arrivals on every stage of the outward trip were the order of the day, the highlight being an exhilarating run along the sea wall after Exeter on a sunny and warm day. All credit to the crew who gave us a great outward journey.
A four hour break at Kingswear gave everyone plenty of time to relax or watch 4555 working the service train on the branch. However the restart from Kingswear was slightly late waiting for the service train to clear Churston and with further delays at Churston and outside Paignton we eventually passed Newton Abbot a minute or so down on our scheduled restart time. After this we ran near enough to time to Weston which we left dead on time at 1902. However it soon became clear that all was not well at the front end and after some time losing speed we came to a stand a Bedminster. We stood here for some twenty minutes due, we were told, to the spark arrester having become clogged causing a shortage of steam. There were also rumours of injector problems but eventually enough steam was produced to enable us to crawl into Temple Meads just before 22.00
It was a sad end to what was a very good day but that shouldn't detract from the superb outward run and an otherwise good tour.
Timings (Booked & Actual)
|0.0||Bristol Temple Meads||09.00d||09.01||21.30a||21.57|
|19.1||Weston-Super-Mare||09.29a ~ 09.31d||09.28 ~ 09.30||20.58a ~ 21.02d||20.53 ~ 21.02|
|28.0||Highbridge & Burnham||09/45||09/43||20/45||20/40|
|34.3||Bridgwater||09.53a ~ 09.54d||09.47 ~ 09.55||20.35a ~ 20.37d||20.29 ~ 20.30|
|45.8||Taunton||10.12a ~ 10.13d||10.08 ~ 10.13||19w54a ~ 20w20d||19.56 ~ 20.10|
|61.8||Tiverton Loop||10w42a ~ 11w10d||?||-||?|
|75.8||Cowley Bridge Jn||11/28||?||19/20||?|
|77.0||Exeter St Davids||11.33a ~ 11.35d||11.24 ~ 11.34||18w31a ~ 19w16d||18.30 ~ 19.20|
|97.1||Newton Abbot||11/59||11/57||17*56a ~ 18*05d||18.07 ~ 18.08|
|105.2||Paignton||12.15a ~ 12.35d||12.13 ~ 12.36||17.35a ~ 17.40d||17.45 ~ 17.49|
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