Photos from around the area.
Our club photo-meister James (Spike) Windows has been out and about again recently – hopefully whilst we were all still allowed to go out! – and has provided us with an intereting variety of photos from around the Stafford area.
Photo 1 – DRS Large Logo-liveried Class 37/4s No. 37401 ‘Mary Queen of Scots’ and No. 37402 ‘Stephen Middlemore’ Pass Stafford on 8th January Top and Tailing 2 DRS Mk2 coaches No. 9521 and No. 5937 on the 09:30 Crewe to Derby RTC ECS working. The locos and coaches had previously been used on the Norwich short set which was used as a DMU substitute set in east Anglia which is now no longer need since the introduction of new trains in the area.
Photo 2 – With January being a traditionally quite time for the charter market DBC Class 67 No. 67013 brings a splash of colour to a grey day in Stafford while passing through with UK Railtours The Robert Burns 1Z72, 08.10 London Euston to York Charter on 25th January , one of the first railtours of the year. No. 67002 was on the rear.
Photo 3 – Direct Rail Services bi-mode Class 88 No. 88006 ‘Juno’ passes centre road through Stafford on a Mossend to Daventry intermodal service on 25th January.
Photo 4 – Now over 50 years old and still in front line service on heavy intermodal train Freightliner Class 86/6s Nos. 86604 and 86613 head south through Stafford, with the 0500 Trafford Park to Felixstowe North working on the 5th February
Photo 5 – A regular visitor to Stafford on a Thursday is Network Rails New Measurement Train Headed by ex HST power car Class 43’s Nos. 43013 & 43014 and is seen heading south through Platform 4 on the 6th February. The diagram starts at its home base in Derby and heads first to Stockport then on to Northampton returning to Stoke before heading home to Derby. Running both ways on the WCML via Birmingham the track recording train usually passes Stafford mid-morning (south) and again mid-afternoon (north).
Photo 6 – On a bright but bitterly cold and windy afternoon LNER class A3 No.60103 Flying Scotsman rounds Queensville Curve just south of Stafford while working 5Z78, 10.00 Bury East Lancs railway to Alton Mid Hants railway engine and coach move on 11th February.
Photo 7 – LMS Royal Scot class 4-6-0 No. 46100 Royal Scot, races through Stafford on a loaded test run from Crewe to Crewe, via Chester and Shrewsbury on 12th February 2020. The run was in readiness for the new year of charter trains run by Saphos which have been understandably postponed presently.
Photo 8 – Surprisingly, with lots of more modern traction on its books, Freightliner still operates one Class 47/4 No. 47830 which it uses occasionally for staff training duties and is seen arriving at Stafford on one such duty working 4Z48, 13.39 Northampton to Crewe Basford Hall yard on 12th February with a rake of intermodal flats in tow.
Photo 9 – Locomotive Services class 47 Pair No. 47501 & 47805, both wearing an approximation of the 1960s BR green livery tow recently acquired 87002 Royal Sovereign, out shopped in 1980s intercity livery, through Stafford on the 28th February working 5Z36, 10:50 from Eastleigh Works to Crewe HS which also conveyed a rake of 10 statesmen rail Mk2 coaching stock back up to Crewe in readiness for this years series of charters, now all on hold.
Photo 10 – Not the real No.45562 Alberta but recently repaint LMS Jubilee No.45699 Galatea running as its scrapped classmate pauses for a water stop at Sowerby Bridge on the Calder valley line on the 29th February while working the Railway Touring Company Cotton Mill Express charter. I am led to believe that one reason for the renumbering is that Galatea is currently running with several parts of its motion that were acquired from its scrap classmate as spares.
Photo 11 – LMS Jubilee No.45699 Galatea running as scrapped classmate 45562 Alberta waits departure from Preston on the evening of the 29th February while working the Railway Touring Company Cotton Mill Express 1Z11, 14.10 Blackburn to Lancaster leg of the charter which had run as a circular tour of Lancashire and West Yorkshire including climbs of Miles Platting, Standedge and Copy Pit.
Photo 12 – Rebuilt Merchant Navy No. 35018 British India Line is seen having just arrived at Preston on 29th February, with the Railway Touring Company’s Winter Cumbrian Mountain Express railtour. The charter arrived back into Preston two hours late after having brake problems in the Hellifield and Blackburn areas and only minutes after Galatea had departed. That day Preston saw three steam hauled charter trains as well as 35018 and 45699, No.46115 Scots Gaurdsman had taken over a third charter that morning in the city.
Photo 13 – With the remains of the disused Rugeley power station seen behind the loco and trees West Coast Railways class 33 No.33029 has just left the west coast main line at Rugeley Trent Valley and climbs towards Rugeley Town station on the Cannock chase line with the Branch Line Society Fenny Crompton Charter 1Z36 07.10 Lancaster to London Paddington on the 7th March. Class 47 No.47746 was assisting on the rear.
Photo 14 – Two day later and returning the loco and stock back to base West coast class 33 No.33029 pauses at Stafford while hauling 1Z40, 12.27 London Paddington to Lancaster Branch Line Society, The Park Royal Parkinson Charter, on the 9th March. Class 47 No. 47746 was still on the rear.
Photo 15 – DBC class 90 No.90026 pauses briefly at Stafford on the 18th March 2020 for the crew to change ends while taking part in a test run, 0Z90 round trip from Crewe TMD (E) after a refurbishment and repaint into Grand Central livery in readiness for the upcoming new service to Blackpool from London.
Photo 16 – Just before the country went into lockdown Black 5 No.45212 passes Rugeley Trent Valley working 5Z60, 10.37 Southall to Carnforth loco and coach move on 21st March. The loco had been in the south to work a couple of charters but was returning north to be closer to home with the cancellation/postponement of all future tours for the time being.