5th February 2005

Pathfinder Tours
The East-Ender

Locos Used 37427, 37669, 60094, 73204, 73205 & 86501
Stock Used 6310+3122+3112+3140+1863+5322+5009+4902+4927+5341

Route:
1Z73 : Crewe to London Liverpool Street
1Z74 : London Liverpool Street to Southend Victoria
1Z75 : Southend Victoria to Crewe

Loco(s) Route
37427 + 37669 Crewe - Norton Bridge - Stafford - Bushbury Jn - Portobello Jn - Darlaston Jn - Bescot Stadium - Perry Barr North Jn - Aston - Stechford - Birmingham International [P5] - Coventry [P4] - Kenilworth - Leamington Spa [Up Main] - Banbury [P3] - Aynho Jn - Oxford - Didcot Parkway [P4] - Reading Up Goods (1)
73204 + 73205 Reading  Up Goods - Earley - Wokingham - Ascot [P1] - Virginia Water - Staines - Feltham - Hounslow - Kew East Jn - Acton Wells Jn - Dudding Hill Jn - Cricklewood Jn - West Hampstead Thameslink - Carlton Road Jn - Junction Road Jn - South Tottenham - Tottenham South Jn - Copper Mill Jn - Temple Mills East Jn - Channelsea North - Jn - Carpenters Road Jn - Bow Jn - Bethnal Green - London Liverpool Street [P9]
60094 London Liverpool Street [P9] - Bethnal Green - Bow Jn - Stratford - Ilford [P2] Gidea Park [P2] - (via Down Main to Down Electric at country end Jn) - Shenfield [P5] - Wickford - Hockley - Southend Victoria [P1]
86501 Southend Victoria [P1] - (reverse of outward route) - Shenfield [P2] - Gidea Park [P1] - Ilford [P1] - Stratford [P10] - Channelsea North Jn - Dalston Kingsland - (via Up London No.1) - Camden Road Jn - Camden Road - Gospel Oak - Kensal Green Jn - Harlesden Jn - Wembley EUFOC (via South Departure Line to Down Reception line 6)
37669 + 37427 Wembley EUFOC (Down Reception line 6) - Willesden No.7 - Acton Wells Jn - Acton Main Line - Ealing Broadway - Greenford South Jn - Greenford West Jn - West Ruislip - High Wycombe - Princes Risborough - Bicester North - Aynho Jn - Banbury [P1] - Leamington Spa [Down Main] - Coventry [P3] - Birmingham International [P5] - Stechford (2) - Proof House Jn - Birmingham New Street [P6] - Soho South Jn - Dudley Port - Wolverhampton - Bushbury Jn - (reverse of outward route) - Crewe

Notes :
(1) Loco change at Reading delayed awaiting the arrival of the GBRf 73's.
(2) Booked route was reverse of outward i.e. via Aston, Stechford & Bescot.

Sources : Gary Thornton, Alan Sheppard, Steve Sumners & James White

Tour Review
(from Gary Thornton)

Another of my "can't afford to miss" tours on account a class 86/6 was advertised (I need just four class 86's to clear all 100 for haulage, 86501, 86605, 86606 & 86637). Despite that I was struggling to get motivated to book in advance as, on past occasions, the 86 was dropped from the plan somewhere before the date. This time however it stuck through to the day and 7am found me at Birmingham International with the gen of 37427+37669, 73204+73205, 60019 or 60094 and 86501, 86620 or 86628...guess which 86 I was hoping for then! Got chatting to a Freightliner driver who was waiting the arrival of his freight and he kindly made a phone call to someone he knew from which came the updated gen that 86607 was the booked 86 for the tour, but it was a tight as it was still working towards Ipswich (in a pair). If it was late...86501 was the fall-back loco. Come on!!!


The 37's at Birmingham International (photo: Duncan Jennings)

37427 + 37669 duly arrived (second Saturday on the trot for haulage) and I settled in the buffet car to enjoy the journey with a few freinds. Routed via Coventry, Leamington Spa and Didcot we had our first loco change at Reading (on the goods lines round the back of the station). That took considerably longer than anticipated as our replacement locos, GBRf 73204 + 73205, were still some way short of Reading when we arrived, then they got stuck the wrong side of the station whilst half of the days GWML traffic was passing through.

On our way about 30 late we took the SR route to London, no more slam-door units to be seen, just all new stuff. Once in the metropolis we passed by Acton Wells Jn then had a brief skirmish with the Midland Mainline before dropping on to the North London Line and circling our way to Liverpool Street - and my first ever visit there with 73's! The "normal" passengers seemed a little bemused as to what we were all doing photographing our train. "It's a special train."..... "oh, right." (normal wanders off, none the wiser).


Strange bedfellows at Liverpool Street! (photo: Gary Thornton)

60094 was soon bolted on to the back of the train and we departed pretty-well on time for Southend Victoria.


60094 in the murk of Liverpool Street (photo: Gary Thornton)

By this time tension was mounting for myself and a colleague - he wanted 86607 and not 86501, I of course wanted 86501 but not 86607...yes, one of us was going to be rather disappointed when we left Southend!

Arrival into Southend Victoria was 15 minutes early. I spent the break talking to a few people I know about various subjects. Thanks, by the way, to all those recently who have voiced/written in with their appreciation and continuing support of my Website - particularly as one enthusiast society which recently printed in their newsletter a very critical statement by one of their members questioning the accuracy and appropriateness of the historical content contained within. Seems to me the comments made by the person concerned are not generally supported by the majority of people with whom I've had contact, a number of whom are members of said enthusiast society. I would simply point any doubters to the review in the February 2005 issue of Railways Illustrated which lists and reviews Six Bells Junction in their "Best Website Hits of 2004" article which includes the statements "very good", "outstanding" and "excellent" within their review. Make up your own mind. Anyway, back to the tour...so, where were we...

Oh yes, the 86 was our next performer. Wandered up to the end of the platform to see if it had arrived but the train was still loco-less...but comments from a couple of people I passed suggested it was indeed going to be 86501. Arriving at the platform end and it was confirmed, someone even deciding to put 86501 through the washer plant before letting it drop on to the train.


Gotcha! 97 down, 3 to go... (photo: Gary Thornton)

A celebratory beer was consumed (not that I really needed an excuse for another one!) as we headed back from where we'd come, as far as Stratford at any rate, before another stagger round the North London Line to Wembley and our last loco change, back to the pair of 37's. Parked up next to us in the yard was brand-new Hull Trains 222101, a definite new sighting for all on board I don't doubt.

After sitting a while....we set off northwards instead of south as booked. OK, still 86501 then. Stopping a little further down the yard we then did the loco change after which we departed south as booked, back through Acton Wells Jn then we sat for 15 minutes at Acton East Jn whilst the various train operators over this stretch of the GWML paraded their entire fleets of trains past us (several times...at least that's how it felt!). At this time on a tour, it's now dark, we are happy to head home so any delay seems too long. We were only on the GWML long enough to set-down passengers at Ealing Broadway then we turned right, then left on to the Chiltern line. By this time I'd decided it was high time to leave the buffet car and visit some people I knew in coach A - which happened to be at the front - typical, I come up for a chat but couldn't as the tractor thrash was so loud! Regaining our outward route at Aynho Jn we got back to Birmingham International a couple of minutes behind schedule, though departure from the station was delayed for some as one of the car-park ticket machine was happily swallowing peoples 5's and not returning their tickets to allow them to escape the car park!

Excellent tour, particularly good for me as I scooped my 97th 86 out of the fleet, but even without that it was an enjoyable day out.

Gary Thornton.

Timings (Booked & Actual)
(from Gary Thornton & Alan Sheppard)

M.C Location Booked Actual   Booked Actual M.C
0.00 Crewe 06.05d ?   22.35a ? 166.36
8.06 Madeley Jn 06/17 ?   22/24 ? 158.30
19.08 Norton Bridge 06/27 ?   22/15 ? 147.28
24.37 Stafford 06.32a ~ 06.34d ?   22.07a ~ 22.09d ? 141.79
38.14 Bushbury Jn 06/47 ?   21/49 ? 128.22
40.62 Portobello Jn 06/52 ?   21/42 DIV 125.54
44.79 Bescot Stadium 06/56 ?   21/35 DIV 121.37
49.36 Perry Barr North Jn 07/00 ?   21/29 DIV 117.00
51.58 Aston 07/03 ?   21/24 DIV 114.58
54.51 Stechford 07/07 ?   21/13 ? 111.65
59.04 Birmingham International 07.11a ~ 07.23d 07.17 ~ 07.23   21.00a ~ 21.07d 21.03 ~ 21.06 107.32
69.60 Coventry 07.34a ~ 07.36d 07.37 ~ 07.38   20.46a ~ 20.48d 20.48 ~ 20.50 96.56
74.40 Kenilworth 07/44 07/44   20/39 20.38a ~ 20.40d 91.76
79.14 Leamington Spa 07*53a ~ 08*02d 07.52 ~ 08.02   20/31 20.26 ~ 20.31 87.22
90.43 Fenny Compton 08/13 08/13   20/17 20/16 75.73
99.23 Banbury 08.22a ~ 08.24d 08.30 ~ 08.32   19.49a ~ 20.06d 19.50 ~ 20.06 67.13
104.27 Aynho Jn 08/30 08/37   19/42 19/43 62.09

 

M.C Location Booked Actual
110.18 Heyford 08/36 08/42
119.07 Wolvercot Jn 08/43 08/49
121.78 Oxford 08/45 08/52
132.29 Didcot Parkway 09.02a ~ 09.05d 09.04 ~ 09.07
148.43 Reading West Jn 09/24 09/27
149.41
0.00
Reading (Up Goods) 09L26a ~ 09L52d 09.30 ~ 10.20
0.77 Reading Spur Jn 09/54 10/24
2.72 Earley 09/57 10/27
6.65 Wokingham 10/02 10/32
14.37 Ascot 10/15 10/42
20.21 Virginia Water 10/39 10/52
24.34 Staines 10/46 11/01
28.48 Feltham 10/52 11/08
30.79 Hounslow 10/56 11/12
33.67 Brentford 11/00 11/15
35.00 Kew East Jn 11/09 11/19
37.46 Acton Wells Jn 11/20 11/34
38.06 Acton Canal Wharf Jn 11*23a ~ 11*31d 11/37
40.43 Dudding Hill Jn 11/38 11.43a ~ 11.44d
42.46 West Hampstead Thameslink 11/47 11/58
44.33 Carlton Road Jn 11/51 12/02
45.10 Junction Road Jn 11*54a ~ 12*02d 12/06
45.48 Upper Holloway 12/05 12.08a ~ 12.13d
46.63 Harringay Park Jn 12/10 12/17
49.03 Tottenham South Jn 12/16 12/25
49.50 Copper Mill Jn 12/18 12/27
52.18 Temple Mills East Jn 12/23 12/34
52.77 Channnelsea Jn 12/27 12/38
53.28 Carpenters Road South Jn 12/29 12/40
54.09 Bow Jn 12/33 12/42
55.68 Bethnal Green 12/38 12/47
56.78
0.00
Liverpool Street 12L41a ~ 13L20d 12.50 ~ 13.21
1.10 Bethnal Green 13/24 13/24
2.69 Bow Jn 13/27 13/27
4.03 Stratford 13/30 13/28
5.21 Forest Gate Jn 13/33 13/30
7.28 Ilford 13/41 13.35a ~ 13.40d
13.41 Gidea Park 13/55 13/47
20.16 Shenfield 14/09 13/57
21.32 Mountnessing Jn 14/14 13/59
29.00 Wickford 14/24 14/08
36.10 Hockley 14/32 14/16
41.39
0.00
Southend Victoria 14L43a ~ 15L42d 14.28 ~ 15.43
5.29 Hockley 15/49 15/50
12.39 Wickford 15/56 15.57a ~ 16.00d
20.07 Mountnessing Jn 16/07 16/09
21.23 Shenfield 16/12 16/13
27.78 Gidea Park 16/19 16/19
34.11 Ilford 16/25 16/24
35.56 Forest Gate Jn 16/27 16/26
37.36 Stratford 16/30 16/29
37.79 Channelsea Jn 16/33 16/31
40.76 Dalston Jn 16/40 16/37
43.64 Camden Road Jn 16/50 16/49
44.75 Gospel Oak 16/55 16/53
49.02 Kensal Green Jn 17/05 17/05
50.02 Harlesden Jn 17/10 17/08
51.15
0.00
Wembley EUFOC 17L23a ~ 17L48d 17.35 ~ 17.52
0.79 Willesden No.7 17/57 17/58
1.34 Acton Canal Wharf Jn 18.00a ~ 18.02d 18/00
1.74 Acton Wells Jn 18/07 18/04
? Acton East Jn ? 18.05a ~ 18.18d
2.46 Acton Main Line 18/16 18/20
4.01 Ealing Broadway 18.21a ~ 18.24d 18.23 ~ 18.24
5.37 Drayton Green 18/29 18/28
7.26 Greenford West Jn 18/35 18/33
11.59 West Ruislip 18/42 18/41
17.09 Gerrards Cross 18/48 18/46
26.20 High Wycombe 18/59 19/00
31.18 Saunderton 19/07 19/05
34.41 Princes Risborough 19/14 19/09
53.07 Bicester North 19/32 19/32

Timings continue in first table.

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