11th November 1978

(Day Excursion)

Loco Used 45042

Route :

Loco Route
45042 Leicester - Alfreton - Sheffield - York - Newcastle - Edinburgh
45042 Edinburgh - (reverse of outward route) - Alfreton - Leicester

Sources : David Hills (on the train to/from Alfreton)
& Kevin Driscoll (from contemporary sources)

Tour Review :
(by David Hills)

Although this trip was running very late in the year which might have persuaded lesser mortals to stay in bed, it was going to take more than a lack of daylight and sub-zero temperatures to deter us from a trip north of the border. And we had a new weapon, excursions were now calling at Alfreton & Mansfield Parkway, a twenty minute drive from Derby could allow a later departure from home and an earlier arrival back home without the grief of touring around the East Midlands in the wee hours, or being tossed off the main train at Nottingham and transferred to a bog for the shuttle to Derby.

With the early morning dash up the A61 done it was left to await what fine heated chariot would be taking us to the northern lights. We were lucky, Toton had provided 45042 complete with a steaming boiler. Alfreton provided some relief whilst we waited, 20040 & 20178, 45117 and 47487 all rolled by. The usual fleet of Tinsley shunters were noted in the Sheffield/Rotherham area, again progress was slowed by slacks due to subsidence from the local coal mining activities. Once passed Church Fenton the Peak was unleashed for the dash up the Vale of York. The runby at York depot produced amongst others 31142, 31215/281, 40051/094 and giant kettles 4771 & 35028. Back on the open road the throttle was notched up and off we sped on this fine Saturday morning. Darlington whizzed by, just a glimpse of 08120, 08445, 31320 and numerous DMU's, Ferryhill witnessed 40107, Tyne Yard 37019/057 before we eased across the Tyne into Newcastle, the diminishing fleet of 03's were represented by 03056/078 whilst shunter-in-training 31418 was lurking elsewhere in the station.

A fine time was had as we romped through the coastal regions of Northumbria, Heaton had produced four 08's, Alnmouth revealed 37161 whilst Berwick found 03061 & 40083 guarding the border regions. On we sped wondering what we were going to do upon arrival at Waverley, would it be a depot bash or a photography day?? Edinburgh had the feel of Kings Cross, with 46029, 47402/428/432 & 55018 present, only close inspection of 08571 & 08711 revealed we were close to Haymarket, not Finsbury Park. It was decided to visit Haymarket, 27202 & 27102 were on hand for the short hop, then it was the long march down to the depot. Forty locomotives on shed, representing nine different classes from many Scottish & English depots. With many photographs taken and 08563 copped it was time to return to Haymarket for 27206 & 27104 to haul us back into Waverley where a further period was spent in photography mode.

All too soon 45042 returned with our stock, we were quickly away into the gathering gloom, the only sightings of any note were at York with 25249 surrounded by many Type 4's. The desolate wilds of Alfreton revealed our motorised transport was still in the parking lot, as 45042 roared off into the night we trundled back down the A61 for an early appointment with the sandman.

David Hills

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