If you can assist with any information for this project then please e-mail Chris Coates direct.

This project aims to identify, as fully as possible, locomotives (steam & diesel) working actual trains on the West Coast Main Line in the BRITISH RAILWAYS era. We have now been collating information for over eight years and, since our group of researchers started on this mammoth task, we have made amazing progress. We stated that we wish to identify all engines on actual trains on the West Coast route and, quite rightly, this is impossible, but progress has shown we should, with your help, be able to identify virtually all Summer Saturday trains and a good proportion of weekday trains too. Over 500 enthusiasts have now contributed and on Summer Saturdays, for instance, we have already identified 75% of the locos working trains, but still need more sightings to solve queries. Schooldays and overnights are, understandably, the hardest to locate. We know there is still a mass of information out there….please dig out those old notebooks and give us a ring and share it with us so we can share it with others?

 To progress we need to view old spotting notebooks or photographic records. Obviously the more detailed the sighting the better, but even a list of numbers can be of much assistance to confirm if a particular loco was noted passing/at a known site on a given day. Shed logs are also very useful (any LMS shed excluding Midland lines can give valuable sightings) Additionally we record locos on the ex L&Y lines from Manchester to Liverpool Ex, Southport & Blackpool as this helps with excursion traffic. See reverse for the coverage area.  All workings are noted with the exception of DMU’s on normal trains. All excursions are noted.

 We also need to locate other good sources of information… drivers, firemen and guards logs and diaries, enginemen’s arrangements or other shed documents, special traffic notices, etc.

 There is no work required by yourself unless you wish to do so. We will gladly reimburse any photocopying/postal costs. A recent development has been the photographing of notebooks (using digital cameras), which means no work for you other than allowing us access to the records. Simply contact us.

 From the data we have collated so far we have already produced 10 booklets with at least four others currently being created. As more information becomes available we will expand this range as well as creating other types of reports such as engine or class locations for the year. Additionally we intend to make update sheets available thus keeping the records as accurate as possible. Our only obstacle is access to suitable spotting notes. The sooner we get the information, the sooner we can share it so please try to assist us with whatever you may have.

 It is unlikely that a project like this could be entertained in 10 years time due to the age situation so please allow us to record this information now whilst we who remember those days can still enjoy it.


 EUSTON to GLASGOW/PERTH/ABERDEEN where through services are relevant.




 CREWE to HOLYHEAD but not local trains within N.Wales




 Normal WCML services that are DIVERTED via ANY ROUTE

 Also trains from Manchester Victoria to Liverpool Ex/Southport/Blackpool

 Individual engines tracked at any location

 The purpose of this is to identify where these locos where and therefore eliminate them from subsequent investigations:- 

  1. All named LMS locos except Midland lines engines unless these are working on LNW lines.

  2. All Britannias & Clans allocated to LMR/SCR Sheds.

  3. Any LMR based EE4 diesels (Class 40,s)

  4. DMU/EMU’s not included but may be shown as “DMU” if working special or excursion train to identify this was a DMU worked train.

  5. Electrics. Are input if sightings received. The moral being if its noted it may be relevant one day.



Shed logs:-

Any LNW shed plus any Manchester/Liverpool/Preston division shed.

Less obvious ones are Aston, Llandudno Jn, Springs Branch, Blackpool and Stirling.

Again named LMS/BR locos are tracked as are unusual or visiting locos.

If you can assist with any information for this project then please e-mail Chris Coates direct.