12th May 1979

S.R.P.S. Railtours
The Buchan Line

Locos Used 25008?, 25034, 25035, 40061 & 47207
Stock Used see tour review

Route :

Loco(s) Route
40061 Falkirk Grahamston - Stirling - Kincardine Jn - Oakley - Dunfermline Upper - Townhill Jn - Cardenden - Ladybank - Dundee - Aberdeen
25034 + 25035 Aberdeen - Dyce Jn - Maud Jn - Fraserburgh
25034 + 25035 Fraserburgh - Maud Jn - Dyce Jn - Aberdeen
47207 Aberdeen - Dundee - Markinch - Cardenden - Dunfermline Lower - Inverkeithing - Dalmeny - Haymarket - Edinburgh Waverley
25008? Edinburgh Waverley - Haymarket - Falkirk Grahamston - Stirling

Notes :
(1) Andy Pullar comments : I seem to recall that on arrival at Fraserburgh one of the rats was detached so the train could be drawn into the siding by the other. The detached rat then performed a shunt release move with the train as there was no run round available.

Sources : Stewart Robertson, Andy Pullar & Brian Knights

Tour Review
 (by Stewart Robertson)

Fellow gricer Peter Hudson and myself decided that this SRPS tour was too good to miss even if it meant travelling from Bristol to Falkirk out and back by the overnight service on a day return ticket.  A yes, those were the good old days when you could get a day return anywhere, although I seem to remember that we had some dubious (but legal) method of cutting down the cost of the day return.

We arrived in Falkirk in plenty of time but there was some concern about making the return overnight.  First glance of the timing sheet showed that the train had been diverted back via Edinburgh Waverley due to engineering work between Dalmeny and Linlithgow.  Great, plenty of time now to eat before the overnight.

40061 and stock arrived from the SRPS depot and departed from Falkirk Grahamston on time.  We were allocated seats in coach F, LMS Third No 27389 next to the buffet.  First problem was the vast amount of steam coming from our seats but a man with a spanner and some brute force stopped the fog.  Second problem was the smell of bacon emanating from the buffet. Several bacon rolls later we were travelling on our first piece of required track, Stirling to Townhill Junction via Oakley.

We then had a nice run behind 40061 arriving Aberdeen at 1325.  Rats 25034 & 25035 backed on and we were off on the highlight to the day, the run to Fraserburgh.  I wasn't into haulage at the time, but looking back it would have made a good traction tour.  The allowance of two hours for the journey was necessary due to the speed restrictions but run was extremely enjoyable.  At Fraserburgh we went into the former sidings as the track at the station had been lifted. I took some photos during the run-round then settled down for the return journey which I have to admit 20 years on is a bit vague.  According to the itinerary, the lines from Kincardine Junction to Oakley and Dyce Junction to Fraserburgh were due to close that weekend so we were the last train over those branches.

No problem making the overnight at Waverley, I think it was still compartment stock in 1979 but we crashed out straight away. Having left Bristol at 2125 on Friday evening, we returned at approx 1030 on Sunday morning. Only problem now was the complaints from my cats at being left on their own over the weekend.

Stock :

Great North of Scotland Royal Saloon No 1
Caledonian Corridor Third No 1375
Caledonian Brake Corridor Composite No 7369
London Midland & Scottish Corridor Composite No 24725
London & North East  Buffet Car No 644
London Midland & Scottish Open Third  No 27389
London Midland & Scottish Open Third No 27407
London & North East Brake Composite No 80417
British Railways  First Saloon No 14901
+ 2 or 3 BR second class, numbers unknown

Timings :

Location Booked Actual
Falkirk Grahamston 08.45d 0845
Stirling 0903 0907
Dunfermline Upper 1016 1016
Markinch 1100 1100
Dundee 1140 1142
Aberdeen 13.10a ~ 13.18d 1325 ~ 13.27
Fraserburgh 15.24a ~ 16.25d 15.25 ~ 16.27
Aberdeen 18.32a ~ 18.40d 18.17 ~ 18.41
Dundee 2010 2013
Markinch 2050 2049
Dunfermline Lower 2134 2142
Edinburgh Waverley 2206a ~ 22.25d 2224
Falkirk Grahamston 2258 ?
Stirling 23.26a ?

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