23rd May 1959

Stephenson Locomotive Society
Stephenson Locomotive Society Golden Jubilee Tour

Loco Used 60007 'Sir Nigel Gresley'
Stock Used 8 coaches (271 tons tare, 295 tons gross)

Route :

Loco Route
60007 Kings Cross - Peterborough - Grantham - Barkston South Jn - Navenby - Sincil Jn - Lincoln Central - Gainsborough Lea Road - Misterton - Bessacarr Jn - Black Carr Jn - Doncaster
60007 Doncaster - (via ECML) - London Kings Cross

Notes :
To celebrate 50 years of the Stephenson Locomotive Society a basic out-and-back Kings Cross - Doncaster tour was arranged. However with A4 60007 and veteran footplatemen Bill Hoole & Alf Hancox (originally uploaded as Burt Hancocks) in charge, and with permission to exceed the normal 90mph limit the potential existed for some fine running. A breezy but dry day contributed to a minimum of 81mph up Stoke Bank on the outward leg. On the return a minimum of 73mph up Stoke Bank was achieved, but it was on the descent that 110mph was attained beyond Little Bytham.

Terry Jackson comments : The story of this tour has been documented many times and in so much detail that it seems unnecessary to say anything other than that it has to rank as one of the finest tours ever run. The tour was recorded by Peter Handford of Argo Transacord fame including the run down Stoke bank at 112 mph. You can even check the speed for your self with a stopwatch, something that you couldn't do on one of today's tours. The running also included maxima of 100 mph between Hitchin and Huntingdon in both directions. The max of 112 mph was I believe the highest authenticated post-war speed with steam in the UK although there were unconfirmed reports that the driver, Bill Hoole of Kings Cross, reached a speed of 117mph with the same engine just after the tour on one of the up Pullman services to London (the speed, not confirmed as 117mph but certainly very high speed is confirmed by David Whittaker as achieved whilst hauling the Tees-Tyne Pullman in November 1955 - 60007 was Bill Hoole's regular A4).

Sources : David Hills (compiled from contemporary reports) & John Debens

Photo Review


60007 at Doncaster (photo: The John Debens Collection)


(From Andrew Fairholm's ticket collection)


Timings (Booked & Actual)
(from Terry Jackson &
John Debens)

Location Booked Actual Speed (mph)
Kings Cross 09.48d 09.48:40 -
Greenwood 10/02 10/01:56 59
Hatfield 10/10 10/08:42 73
Hitchin 10/23 10/20:49 88
Huntingdon North 10/43 10/40:30 71
Peterborough North 10/58 10/58:01 20
Grantham 11.25a ~ 11.27d 11.25:41 ~ 11.26:48 -
Barkston South Jn 11/34 11/33:58 ?
Honington 11/37 11/38:40 ?
Lincoln Central 12/00 12/04:21 ?
Sykes Jn 12/10 12/15:48 ?
Gainsborough Lea Road 12/21 12/25:18 ?
Doncaster 12.53a ~ 17.46d 12.52:30 ~ 17.48:02 -
Retford 18/05 18/06:05 64
Newark North Gate 18/21 18/20:58 30
Barkston South Jn 18/30 18/33:13 66
Grantham 18/34 18/36:42 80
Peterborough North 18/58 19/00:08 20
Huntingdon North 19/16 19/16:10 90
Hitchin 19/37 19/35:17 80
Knebworth 19/44 19/40:38 75
Hatfield 19/50 19/46:51 70
Potters Bar 19/55 19/51:04 72
Kings Cross 20.10a 20.05:50 -


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