7th December 1997
Hertfordshire Rail Tours
The Lindum Fayre
|D9000||London Kings Cross - Alexandra Palace - Cuffley - Hertford North - Stevenage - Peterborough - Newark North Gate - Swinderby - Lincoln Central|
|D9000||Lincoln Central - (reverse of outward route) - London Kings Cross|
Source : Ralph Barrett
(on the train throughout)
(by Ralph Barrett)
The 'Lindum Fayre' is a 'Christmas Street Market' held every year in early December. It is also a regular Hertfordshire Rail Tours merrymaker run each year from King's Cross to Lincoln, for people wanting to visit the street fair.
Last year HRT intended to use D9000 'unannounced' on the Lindum Fayre railtour. However, the infamous Deltic BBQ fire at Berwick ensured that last year's Lindum Fayre was hauled by a class 47. This year D9000 was the booked locomotive.
Deltic 22 departed from King's Cross a little late at around 11:15 (scheduled 11:05), with a large load of 13 Mk 1 coaches in tow. No less than seven coaches were allocated to the 'Gold Class' dining section, with five FOs being used to seat diners. At £80 per head for dining, this is very good business for HRT. Dining section appeared to be full, and the five TSOs were approx. 80-90% full (including a good complement of Deltic Basher types).
As this was a Sunday, all trains were being routed via the Hertford loop. Train called to pick up at Cuffley and Stevenage, and then was scheduled for a crew change at Peterborough, before arriving in Lincoln at 13:52. Due to the late departure from King's Cross, Stevenage departure was 7 minutes late.
After departure from Stevenage, it became clear that the driver was keen to regain any time lost, and we accelerated up the 102mph down the grades around Three Counties and Arlesey. A 10mph pws slack was rigorously observed near Sandy, and then we really flew all the way to Newark where we changed crews. Driver was obviously out to show Deltics are still capable of impressive performances on the gently undulating ECML banks. Hope the crew had as much fun as the Deltic Bashers.
Storming through Peterborough on the down fast on full power was one of the highlights of the trip, and would have made an impressive sight from the platforms.
For the record here is a copy of the log that I made for the section from Stevenage to Newark :
|70.02||Holme Lode LC||pass||12:36:50||98/100|
|99.70||Stoke Xover||pass||13:01||12:55:12||90/87.3 minimum|
|109.7||Barkestone S Jn||pass||13:11||13:01:21||99/103|
|117.0||Milepost 117||pass||13:05:50||95 coasting|
Average of 97.5mph Huntingdon to MP117 (pass). 82.2mph start to stop. Slow start from Stevenage, and a fairly slow approach to Newark. Climb up Stoke bank was pretty good going too, with the summit being passed at 87mph.
After the crew change at Newark Northgate, I congratulated the driver on the standard of his driving, as he walked back down the platform. It was interesting to note that he was a youngish man, and probably not old enough to have driven Deltics in their last service days on BR.
Arrival at Lincoln Central was early, giving the punters on the train more time in Lincoln. Platforms at Central are quite short, our driver stopped the train so that the front coaches were on the platforms. Despite having the 'draw forward' signal 'off' to allow the train to clear the level crossing on the High street, the last six or seven coaches were not on the platform, and the last but one coach had stopped on the level crossing. This caused utter chaos on one of Britain's busiest level crossings, especially as Lincoln was so busy with the street fair. Crossing was finally cleared 15-20 minutes later, after all of the passengers had detrained from the 'posh-nosh' section of the train.
Return journey was uneventful, with our driver keeping to the lax schedule of 75-80mph maximum most of the way. We still arrived early at Stevenage with no delays en route. On arrival at King's Cross D9000's engines were shut down, to complete a grand day out, and probably her last run for 1997.
Timings (Booked and Actual)
|London Kings Cross||11.05d||11.15||20.35a||20.30|
|Stevenage||11.53a ~ 11.55d||11.59 ~ 12.03||19.45a ~ 19.47d||19.42 ~ 19.45|
|Peterborough||12.38a ~ 12.40d||12.41 ~ 12.41||18/48½||19/03|
|Barkston South Junction||13/11||13/01||18/22||18/35|
|Newark North Gate||13/18||13/11||18.10a ~ 18.14d||18.19 ~ 18.22|
|Newark Crossing East Jn||13/20||13/14||18/08||18/16|
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