6th August 1962
Windermere Day Excursion
|Locos Used||Class 5MT 4-6-0 no 44888 & Jubilee 4-6-0 no 45696 'Arethusa'|
|44888||Birmingham New Street - Wolverhampton - Stafford - Crewe - Preston - Lancaster - Carnforth|
|45696||Carnforth - Oxenholme - Kendal - Windermere|
|45696||Lakeside - Ulverston|
|45696||Ulverston - Grange over Sands - Carnforth|
|44888||Carnforth - (reverse of outward route) - Birmingham New Street|
Source : Brian Basterfield
(from Brian Basterfield)
A family day out to Lake Windermere. Amazingly for a Sunday, there were virtually no p.w. restrictions, and so we had an almost clear run. With an 11 coach train, 44888 was away from New Street on time at 8.35am. We picked up at Smethwick 8.43/8.44am, Dudley Port 8.51/8.52am, Wolverhampton High Level 9.02/9.07am, Stafford 9.30/9.34am, and were into Crewe at 10.12am. Leaving at 10.20am, we next called at Lancaster 11.49/11.50am, and stopped at Carnforth at 12.02pm. Things were going nicely, but they were to get a great deal better when Jubilee no 45696 Arethusa replaced our Black 5. Now my views on Jubilees, and particularly the sounds they make, are probably well known. But Arethusa, despite her bedraggled appearance and being well past her best, was about to give us a 23 minute thrash up to Oxenholme, followed by 20 minutes of even greater thrash up the grades to Windermere. I have written elsewhere that the finest sound that I have ever heard was 45733 Novelty storming the Lickey one Sunday evening. Well this was certainly the second finest. Up the 1 in 80 beyond Staveley we held a steady 26 mph. Then followed a most enjoyable six hours exploring Windermere and Ambleside, and eventually ending up at Lakeside, at the southern end of lake in time to catch our return train, which departed at 7.35pm.
Meanwhile 45696 had worked the empty stock from Windermere southbound round the coast and up the Lakeside branch. Whether the working had been back to Carnforth and out again, or via the Hincaster Jc to Arnside line, I do not know, but at Lakeside, the loco was tender first. We departed on time at 7.35pm, took the right curve at Plumpton Junction and ran into Ulverston station. The loco ran round, and, chimney first, was away again at 8.04pm. A memorable run around the coast with the sun low in the sky, and we were into Carnforth at 8.32pm. A commendably quick loco change, saw 44888 up front once again, departing at 8.37pm. We called at Lancaster 8.48/8.49pm, ran through Preston at 9.17pm, but then suffered delays at Warrington. This time we ran through Crewe at 10.34pm and were into Stafford at 11.06pm. I then slept for the rest of the journey, so I have no times. We would have stopped to set down at Wolverhampton, Dudley Port, and Smethwick. I guess our arrival back at Birmingham New Street would have been shortly before midnight. These days I tend to look back rather than forward. And the day excursion to Lake Windermere would rate very highly in a listing of my most enjoyable days out ever.
Back to "The Railtour Files - 1962"