24th June 2006
The Pennine Syphons
|Locos Used||37406 & 37417|
1Z50 : Liverpool Lime Street to Carlisle
1Z51 : Carlisle to Liverpool Lime Street
|37406 (2)||Liverpool Lime Street - Huyton - St Helens Junction - Earlestown - Astley - Eccles - Manchester Victoria - Miles Platting - Baguley Fold Jn - Ashton Moss North Jn - Stalybridge - Marsden - Huddersfield - Thornhill LNW Jn - Wakefield Kirkgate - Altofts Jn - Castleford - Milford Jn - Church Fenton - Colton Jn - York|
|37406 + 37417||York - Colton Jn - Church Fenton - Cross Gates - Leeds - Shipley - Hellifield - Settle Jn - (via S&C) - Carlisle|
|37417 + 37406||Carlisle - Haltwhistle - Hexham - Norwood Jn - Low Fell Jn - Durham - Northallerton - York|
|37406 (2)||York - Colton Jn - Church Fenton - Cross Gates - Leeds - Morley - Thornhill LNW Jn - (reverse of outward route) - Liverpool Lime Street|
(1) Tour was originally planned to have been called "The Pennine Deltic" and to have been the return to mainline running for 55022 but the Deltic was not ready in time.
(2) 37417 on rear.
Sources : Chris Tyas, Brian Gooch & Andrew Martin
(from Andrew Martin)
Originally hailed as the Pennine Deltic and 55022's mainline return, this should have run in January. Feeling depressed with a lack or personal rail activity in the middle of Winter 2005-6, I thought about booking as soon as it appeared on the Pathfinder website but as my friend wasn't fancying an early Winter's morning drive from Lancaster to mine to join it, I was going to let it go. However, when it got postponed to June, and the prospect of light mornings and evenings, I persuaded him to join me on the new date. Firstly advertised as a clockwise trip, it was looking like an anti-clockwise one for most of the spring, the excuse being Network Rail's difficulties in finding paths on the S&C. However, we stayed with it when the letter came through stating that 55022 wouldn't be ready in time and so it would be 37s instead with a re-name to the Pennine Syphons.
When the tickets arrived, the route had gone back to its original clockwise one with the proposed 07.45 departure from Manchester Victoria put back to 08.15 - I've misplaced my letter but thought it was 08.15 although the tour booklet gave an arrival time of 08.03, departing at 08.06 and this roughly what happened on the day. We set off up from Victoria with 37406 at the sharp end and 37417 on the back. The journey to York was via Stalybridge - a little unusual as recent eastbound tours I've been on from Victoria have gone via Hebden Bridge - but we still went via Healey Mills. It was approaching there and I was looking out the windows through binoculars when a steward thought I was birdwatching whereas I wanted to see stabled and stored locos at HM! Arrival at York was roughly on time and there was almost an hour to meander round the station while 37417 ran round. Unfortunately, this meant we were at the wrong end for the two 37s over the S&C! While at York, 66551 was seen heading south round the avoider and 66133 went North through the station with coal hoppers. We retraced our steps back to Church Fenton but this time took the Micklefield route to Leeds. After last pick up there we headed for the S&C, passing a northbound gypsum behind 66708 in Kirkstall loop. We were slightly behind schedule but regained all arrears by passing straight through Hellifield instead of stopping for 8 minutes.
The trip over the S&C was pleasant but only 1 southbound coal was passed [loco not known], and the sky was getting darker... We had a short, leg stretching break at Appleby, but some of us had to walk forward to get out as the platform wasn't long enough. Just enough time to get a picture and we were back on-board and coasting down to Carlisle, 66074 being noted waiting leave British Gypsum at Kirkby Thore. We arrived in Platform 4 just about right-time and my friend and I wandered off into town, but unfortunately, it had started to drizzle. We headed North toward the castle and found a cafe for a late lunch and, after a sojourn in a bookshop selling old books, made our way back to the station. Departure was from Platform 1 (furthest West), 1 minute late but just when we thought we'd be getting going, we stopped for a minute or 2 somewhere near Weatheral or Brampton. However, once we set off again, we had a reasonable run to Dunston where we took the curve past the Royal Mail terminal [now disused] and joined the ECML at Tyne Yard, finally crossing to the up track at Birtley Junction. A steady 80mph (max speed for 37/4s) was then had all the way to York and we were given the fast lines South of Northallerton.
An on-time, or even slightly early arrival at York and another run-round so 37417 was back on the rear gave another half-hour or so in which we went out of the station, round to Leeman Road and used the new footbridge intended for visitors heading to / from the NRM back into the station. Back via Micklefield to Leeds where we were a few minutes late departing. The rain had now got here too and being back near the front of the train, the driver was heard to be applying the power in short bursts, presumably as we were slipping on greasy rails. This was the case most of the way to Huddersfield and we were losing time. We were booked to use the up passenger loop at Marsden and we duly recessed there to let a TP 158 to Liverpool pass - seems to defeat the purpose as it's all downhill after Standedge Tunnel and sure enough, we got some speed on again resulting in Manchester being reached seemingly in no time at all. We were about 15 late - I certainly missed the 21.21 to Wigan which I could have got to Salford Crescent and changed into a Bolton train there and so had to await the 21.58 to Blackburn. All in all a pleasant day out, no time pressures, farce factor almost nil, perhaps this is how railtours should be...The only thing missing was Pathfinder's real ale announcements!
Timings (Booked & Actual)
(from Brian Gooch)
|Liverpool Lime Street||07.00d||?||22.10a||?|
|Bootle Branch Jn||07/05||?||22/02||?|
|St Helens Junction||07/19||?||21/47||?|
|Earlestown||07.27a ~ 07.29d||?||21.39a ~ 21.42d||?|
|Ordsall Lane Jn||07/48||?||21/16||?|
|Manchester Victoria||08.03a ~ 08.06d||?||21.08a ~ 21.12d||?|
|Baguley Fold Jn||08/12||?||21/01||?|
|Ashton Moss North Jn||08/17||?||20/57||?|
|Marsden||08/34||?||20.32a ~ 20.39d||?|
|Huddersfield||08.41a ~ 08.43d||?||20.20a ~ 20.22d||?|
|Heaton Lodge East Jn||08/48||?||20/15||20/23|
|Thornhill LNW Jn||08/51||?||20/12||20/21|
|York||09.34a ~ 10.29d||09.3? ~ 10.29|
|Neville Hill West Jn||10/52||10/52|
|Leeds||10.56a ~ 11.01d||10.56 ~ 11.00|
|Hellifield||11.54a ~ 12.02d||11/59|
|Kirkby Stephen||12/45||12.44a ~ 12.46d|
|Appleby||12.56a ~ 13.06d||12.58 ~ 13.07|
|Kirby Thore SB||13/13||?|
|Low House Crossing SB||13/31||13/31|
|Petteril Bridge Jn||13/41||13/40|
|London Road Jn||13/42||13.41a ~ 13.42d|
|Carlisle||13.45a ~ 16.16d||13.46 ~ 16.17|
|London Road Jn||16/19||16/20|
|Petteril Bridge Jn||16/20||16/21|
|Corby Gates SB||16/25||16/29|
|Low Road SB||16/37||?|
|Gateshead Metro Centre||17/38||17/38|
|Low Fell Jn||17/46||17/46|
|Ferryhill South Jn||18/08||18/06|
|York||18.57a ~ 19.27d||18.54 ~ 19.29|
|Neville Hill West Jn||19/54||19/56|
|Leeds||19.57a ~ 19.59d||20.00 ~ 20.03|
Timings continue in first table.
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