3rd March 2007
Railway Touring Company
The Great Central
|Locos Used||47245, 47854 & steam: 60800 'Green Arrow'|
1Z47 : London Kings Cross to Market Rasen
1Z48 : Market Rasen to Deepcar
1Z49 : Deepcar to London Kings Cross
|47245 (1)||London Kings Cross Potters Bar - Welwyn Garden City - Stevenage - Peterborough West Yard|
|60800||Peterborough West Yard Grantham Newark North Gate Lincoln - Holmes (Up Goods Loop) Market Rasen Barnetby Habrough Grimsby Marsh Jn Pyewipe Road SB Immingham East Jn Ulceby Barnetby Brigg Gaisnborough Central Doncaster RMT (2)|
|47245||Doncaster RMT - Flyover East Jn - Loversall Carr Jn - (2) Retford Newark North Gate Grantham Peterborough|
|47245 (1)||Peterborough (reverse of outward route) - London Kings Cross|
(1) 47854 on rear.
(2) Onward journey cancelled due to very late running. Booked route & traction was:
(60800 with 47245 on rear) : Doncaster RMT Mexborough Rotherham Central Tinsley South Jn Woodburn Jn Stocksbridge Works, (Deepcar) (reverse).
(47245 with 60800 on rear) : Stocksbridge Works, (Deepcar) Woodburn Jn Woodhouse Jn Worksop - Retford.
Neil Edwards comments ... The train was delayed at Stoke Jn due to trespassing and therefore wrong line working on the ECML. The train then lost its path to Lincoln where the water stop over ran due to low water pressure, At Great Coates No.1 Jn, the ground signal had been vandalised, and as Green Arrow had gone 1/2 a trains length beyond, further investigation was required by Network Rail, to make sure that it was safe for the train to continue. Due to now being nearly 2½ hours down, the steam section was terminated at Doncaster RMT.
Source : Mike Harries (joined/left the train at Grantham) &
Neil Edwards (joined/left the train at Stevenage)
(by Mike Harries)
When I first saw the proposal for this tour, I thought that it was too good to be true. It was then to be hauled by 61264, the B1, and was to happen in October 2006. But first the B1 was replaced by the V2, and then the tour was postponed. However, the route remained unchanged (apart from some confusion as to which way the loop at Immingham was to be traversed).
I arrived on the platform at Grantham rather closer to time than I had hoped, having had difficulty in finding my way into the car park and being delayed by extensive road works; and I then found that the train was (already) late. It seems that there were two GNER service trains running late, and, in addition, all trains were being stopped at Tallington box to warn of trespassers on the line. Many of us guessed that these might be irresponsible photographers on the wrong side of the fence. We eventually left Grantham over half an hour late, and proceeded to lose more time before we reached Newark. It was no surprise to find that the water stop at Lincoln was extended had it not been, we should have been only just ahead of the train which was due to overtake us at Barnetby, after we had had a stop at Market Rasen. So we were now over an hour late. The organisers were already worried about getting to Stocksbridge in the dark, so it was decided to make only a short stop at Market Rasen. The platform there is also short, so most passengers had a long walk through the train before they could get out; probably not many bothered (I was near the back!) We left Market Rasen less than an hour late, and had a good run through Wrawby Junction and Barnetby we no longer needed the pathing stops and ran through Habrough only about 40 minutes late. I reckoned we were 39 minutes late when we took the branch at Marsh Junction and what is clearly very seldom used track, but only a few minutes later we came to a stop. And there we stood.
There were various references to technical SPADs and that in the case the driver must be relieved. This would have caused a major problem. West Coast were operating the train, and this was apparently their only driver who signed for the route; had he been relieved of duty, someone else must rescue us. But this train was vacuum braked so EWS did not want to know.
The explanation received later was that there was a vandalised ground signal, and the driver stopped to report it at Great Coates No 1 Signal Box which was just beyond the destroyed signal, although hidden from it by a road bridge abutment. Given that the signal was barely recognisable, if one had not known what it was supposed to be, I cannot give a signal number! Network Rails Response Unit came out it was clearly felt that they had better check the little used line ahead of us (for the next mile or so, until we reached busier track) in case the vandals had done more serious damage. After an hour and three quarters, we were allowed to proceed, but this added to the earlier delay meant that we were now running about two and a half hours late. Those of us around where I was sitting were already assuming that we would go to Doncaster by one route or another and then straight back towards London, missing the line up to Stocksbridge. This, while a bitter disappointment to some, would mean that we had a chance of not being too late home.
Of course, water had been boiling off while we had been standing; and the planned water stop at Gainsborough Central was about 70 miles after the previous one at Lincoln. So it was decided that we needed an emergency water stop at Barnetby. There was no hydrant close to the railway there, so watering was slow, but at the cost of yet more delay we took enough water to see us safely to Gainsborough, where we had a slightly shorter stop than planned. It had been announced before Gainsborough that we would indeed be heading back towards London from Doncaster.
It was getting dark by this time, and we reached Doncaster RMT well over three hours late. Here, instead of merely attaching the Class 47 to the rear, the V2 was detached from the front. In due course, we set out over the flyover, made a brief stop at Retford (to set down passengers), and got away less than an hour late. We had been scheduled to stop, for some reason, at Newark, but the guard blew his whistle as soon as we had stopped, and we were away again smartly, so we reached Grantham about 40 minutes late.
I enjoyed my day; it would have been nice to get Stocksbridge as well, but I saw a lot of new track, the weather was kind, and the company was good. If another tour to Stocksbridge is offered, with that part early on, I might well try again! In spite of my initial thought that it was too good to be true, it would probably have worked had it not been for that vandalised signal.
Timings (Booked & Actual)
(from Mike Harries & Neil Edwards & Richard Rooker)
Note: As 1Z48 Market Rasen to Deepcar was terminated at Doncaster RMT, a revised 1Z49 Doncaster RMT to London Kings Cross was shown in TRUST to replace the 1Z49 Deepcar to London Kings Cross. These revised "booked" times are shown, although they gave very little time between departing Retford to arriving at Newark.
|London Kings Cross||07.13d||07.13||21.34a||20.45||22.47|
|Potters Bar||07.29a ~ 07.34d||07.32 ~ 07.35||21.16a ~ 21.18d||20.27a ~ 20.29d||22.32 ~ 22.32½|
|Welwyn Garden City||07/44||07/43||21/08||20/22||22/26|
|Woolmer Green Jn||07/48||07/46||21/03||20/17||22/22|
|Stevenage||07.53a ~ 07.55d||07.50 ~ 07.56||20.57a ~ 20.59d||20.09a ~ 20.11d||22.16 ~ 22.17|
|Huntingdon||08.25a ~ 08.27d||08.24 ~ 08.26||20.25a ~ 20.27d||19.25a ~ 19.27d||21.32 ~ 21.34|
|Connington South Jn||?||?||20/18||19/18||?|
|Peterborough||08.46a ~ 08.48d||08.44 ~ 08.50||20.06a ~ 20.08d||19.01a ~ 19.11d||20L59 ~ 21L13|
|Peterborough West Yard||08L52 ~ 09L15||08.53 ~ 09.17|
|New England North Jn||09/19||09/23||?||18/51||?|
|Tallington Jn||09/32||09.38 ~ 09.43||19/58||18/40||20/47|
|Stoke Jn||09/48||10.07 ~ 10.12||19/47||18/30||20/33|
|Grantham||09.51a ~ 09.53d||10.25 ~ 10.28||19.43a ~ ?d||18.11a ~ 18.11½||20.25 ~ 20.26|
|Barkston South Jn (site of)||09/57||10/36½||19/40||18/05||20/19|
|Newark North Gate||10/07||10/47||19*11 ~ 19*29||17.55a ~ 17.57d||20.09 ~ 20.09½|
|Retford||18.36a ~ 18.54d||17.53a ~ 17.55d||19.48 ~ 19.52|
|Loversall Carr Jn||DIV||17/41||19/30|
|Doncaster Decoy South Jn||DIV||17/36||?|
|Doncaster Royal Mail Terminal||DIV||17.30d||19.25|
|Newark Crossing South Jn||?||10/49|
|Newark Crossing East Jn||10/09||10/51|
|West Holmes Jn||10/33||11/11|
|East Holmes SB||10w36 ~ 10w57||11.13 ~ 12.02½|
|Pelham St Jn||11/00||12/07½|
|Lissingley Crossing||?||12.26 ~ 12.29|
|Market Rasen||11w20a ~ 12w00d||12.38½ ~ 12.53|
|Holton le Moor SB||12/07||13/03|
|Barnetby||12*26 ~ 12*36||13/13|
|Brocklesby Jn||12/45||13.21 ~ 13.22½|
|Marsh West Jn||12/58||13/37|
|Great Coates No 1 Jn||13/06||13.40 ~ 15.23|
|Pyewipe Road||13/11||15.30 ~ 15.31|
|Immingham East Jn||13/27||15.51 ~ 15.53|
|Humber Road Jn||13/32||16/01|
|Ulceby North Jn||?||16/10|
|Brocklesby Jn||13/42||16.15 ~ 16.30|
|Barnetby||13/48||16w45 ~ 17w22|
|Wrawby Jn||13*53 ~ 14*05||17/27|
|Kirton Lime Sidings||14/26||17/43|
|Gainsborough Central||14w42 ~ 15w10||18.01 ~ 18.22|
|Gainsborough Trent Jns||15/12||18/28|
|Decoy South Jn||15/36||?|
|Doncaster RMT||15L38 ~ 16L00||18.56 ~ 19.25|
|Decoy N Jn||16/02||DIV|
|Tinsley South Jn||16/34||DIV|
|Broughton Lane Jn||16/35||DIV|
|Stocksbridge Works||17.10 ~ 17.25||DIV|
|Branchcliffe East Jn||18/16||DIV|
|Shireoaks East Jn||18/18||DIV|
|Thrumpton West Jn||18/31||DIV|
|Retford||18L36a ~ 18L54d||19.50 ~ 19.51½|
Timings continue in first table.
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