7th December 2002

(Special to Monschau Christmas Market)

Locos Used PFT (ex-SNCB) 6077 & 6106

Z18475 : Brussels Midi to Eupen
Z18476 : Eupen to Brussels Midi

Loco(s) Route
6077 + 6106 Brussels Midi - Leuven - Liege Guillemins - Verviers Central - Eupen
6077 (1) Eupen - (reverse of outward route) - Brussels Midi

(1) 6106 on rear - provided assistance up the gradient between Liege and Ans after the train came to a stand on the bank owing to the driver not controlling the DSD.

Sources : Ted Slee

Tour Review
(by Ted Slee)

Saturday 7th December 2002 was the day that PFT / TSP ran their annual trip to the Christmas markets in Monschau. Unfortunately, due to the closure of the Vennbahn, the final part of the trip, from Eupen to Monschau, was by coach.

The train was formed of PFT / TSP owned (ex SNCB/NMBS) 6077 and 6106 of 1965 vintage hauling the PFT / TSP owned buffet car and three or four 1935 built 1st class coaches, which form part of the SNCB/NMBS historic fleet.

The tour left Bruxelles Midi / Brussel Zuid on time hauled by 6077 and 6106, working in multiple utilising an external cable for the multiple working. An uneventful journey resulted in an on time arrival at Eupen. At Eupen, 6077 ran round and took the empty stock back to Welkenraedt for stabling during the day. Your correspondent took the unit to Welkenraedt, and caught IC 419, 09.44 Oostende to Köln Hbf, which was hauled by 1603. One of the last chances to catch a Type 16 over the border to Aachen.

Your correspondent rejoined the train at Liège Guillemins / Luik Guillemins, where the train arrived 15 minutes late due to engineering works between Verviers Central and Welkenraedt. The big surprise was that 6077 was at the head of the train by itself. 6106 was still coupled to the rear. The departure from platform 4 was very slow due to the number of tracks to be crossed before attacking the infamous bank up to Ans. The bank is known as Plans Inclinés d’Ans and has a gradient of 3.2% (1 in 31¼). 6077 made a spirited assault up the bank, but part way up the bank, the driver lost control of the DSD and the train came to an abrupt halt. After a prolonged exchange of horns, 6077 started up again, this time with 6106 pushing at the rear. The thrash up the bank was worth the fare of 27 Euro by itself.

The remainder of the trip was uneventful until the train arrived at Bruxelles Nord. The driver decided to enjoy himself by thrashing 6077 through the tunnels at Bruxelles Congrès / Brussel Congres. Just before the train arrived at Bruxelles Central / Brussel Centraal, the train ground to a halt for the customary thrash through the station. We were not disappointed when the driver opened up 6077 at the end of the platform and thrashed through the station. The eventual arrival at Bruxelles Midi / Brussel Zuid was about 15 minutes late, but nobody seemed worried by this. With Belgian licensing laws, 15 minutes does not matter.

Ted Slee

Timings : (Booked Only)
(from Ted Slee)

Location Booked (out) Booked (rtn)
Brussels Midi 08.24d 21.03a
Brussels Nord 08.31a ~ 08.39d 20.52a ~ 20.56d
Leuven 09.08a ~ 09.10d 20.24a ~ 20.26d
Landen 09.36a ~ 09.49d 20.01a ~ 20.02d
Liège Guillemins 10.18a ~ 10.23d 19.21a ~ 19.24d
Eupen 11.20a 18.40d

a : arrival time
d : departure time
/ : passing time

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