7th December 1997

Hertfordshire Rail Tours
The Lindum Fayre

Loco Used D9000

Route :

Loco Route
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)

Tour Review
(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 :

 

Mileage     Sched Act Speeds
27.56 Stevenage dep 11:53 12:02:10  
31.90 Hitchin pass 11:59 12:08:49 101/95/102/br
41.15 Biggleswade pass   12:14:12 10*trs/48
44.15 Sandy pass 12:14 12:19:47 70/101
58.85 Huntingdon pass 12:22 12:30:02 102/96/103/97
70.02 Holme Lode LC pass   12:36:50 98/100
76.35 Peterborough pass 12:40 12:40:01 99/97/101
79.50 Werrington Jn pass   12:42:32 102
84.85 Tallington pass 12:49 12:45:41 101/102
88.65 Essendine pass   12:48:00 101/100
92.25 Little Bytham pass   12:50:10 99/95
97.10 Corby Glen pass   12:53:25 95/90
99.70 Stoke Xover pass 13:01 12:55:12 90/87.3 minimum
105.5 Grantham pass 13:05 12:58:44 106/96/99
109.7 Barkestone S Jn pass 13:11 13:01:21 99/103
117.0 Milepost 117 pass   13:05:50 95 coasting
120.1 Newark arr 13:18 13:09:52?  

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.

Ralph Barrett.

Timings (Booked and Actual)

 

Location Booked Actual   Booked Actual
London Kings Cross 11.05d 11.15   20.35a 20.30
Finsbury Park 11/14 11/20   20/26 20/24
Alexandra Palace 11/19 11/24   20/18 20/21
Gordon Hill 11/26 11/32   20/12 20/13
Hertford North 11/42 11/49   19/58 19/56
Stevenage 11.53a ~ 11.55d 11.59 ~ 12.03   19.45a ~ 19.47d 19.42 ~ 19.45
Hitchin 11/58 12/09   19/37 19/36
Sandy 12/14 12/20   19/16 19/27
Huntingdon 12/22 12/30   19/06 19/16
Holme LC 12/30 12/36  
Peterborough 12.38a ~ 12.40d 12.41 ~ 12.41   18/48 19/03
Tallington Jn 12/49 12/45   18/41 18/56
Stoke Tunnnel 13/01 12/55   18/31 18/42
Grantham 13/05 12/58   18/26 18/38
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
Lincoln Central 13.45a 13.37   17.48d 17.56

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