Class 165

165118 Shrivenham (Ashbury Crossing) 26 March 1999

165118 passes the site of Ashbury Crossing, near Shrivenham, on 26 March 1999 with the 12:40 Oxford to Bristol Temple Meads service, during the brief period when Thames Trains operated direct trains between the two cities. Since the service finished in 2003, there have been various stories in the local press calling for its reinstatement.

165118 Brimpton 19 October 2000

165118 just manages to clear the autumn shadows, as it passes Brimpton on 19 October 2000 with the 2K17 08:58 Newbury to Reading First Great Western service. Colthrop Paper Mill, which can be seen in the background, closed shortly after this picture was taken.

165118 Culham 10 July 2002

The first train of the morning (unless you count the one just after midnight) prepares to call at Culham on 10 July 2002. Didcot Power Station dominates the background as 165118 slows down for the Culham stop whilst working the 2C08 06:00 Reading to Oxford Thames Trains service. A deliberately more side on view was used here to include all the cooling towers, a ploy that will obviously only work with a short train such as this, especially with a short telephoto lens.

165118 Yarnton 7 January 2008

165118 passes Yarnton in the rain on 7 January 2008 with the 11:23 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service. The footbridge in the background replaced the former foot crossing, which can still be seen beneath the bridge. The bridge seems mainly to have been constructed for me, as a photographer, because only once I have seen anyone else using it!

165118 Moreton-in-Marsh 15 August 2009

165118 arrives at Moreton-in-Marsh on 15 August 2009 with the 10:21 First Great Western service from Paddington. Ordinarily this would continue through to Hereford, but as the line between here and Evesham is being prepared for redoubling, buses would ferry passengers from here onwards. This would explain the high number of First Great Western employees who can be seen wandering about the station. Unfortunately the litter on the track is an all too common problem nowadays, as presumably nobody has done a risk assessment on the dangers of somebody going down onto the track to remove it!

165118 Moreton-in-Marsh 15 August 2009

165118 leaves Moreton-in-Marsh heading empty stock to Oxford on 15 August 2009, after arriving earlier with the 10:21 First Great Western service from Paddington. As the line from here to Evesham was closed for engineering works in connection with redoubling the line, it gave the opportunity to photograph trains using the little used crossover at Moreton. The Turbo is seen here about to regain the up line after leaving 'wrong line' from the down platform. Normally I would be glad of this brief burst of sunshine on a generally cloudy day, but due to the time of day the side of the train is virtually completely in shadow - never satisfied!

165118 Islip (Mill Lane) 5 September 2009

Mill Lane Level Crossing in Islip has been threatened with closure at various times, with the proposal for just the retention of the footpath crossing. Islip already has two road bridges and this user operated crossing is little used. 165118 approaches with the 09:27 Oxford to Bicester Town First Great Western service on 5 September 2009. Although difficult to see at this angle, note the small blue Islip sign on the gate in the foreground.

165118 Ascott-under-Wychwood 1 May 2018

165118 arrives at Ascott-under-Wychwood on 1 May 2018 with the only up train of the day to call at the station - the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. It is passing the 135 year old Great Western Railway signal box, which controls not only the level crossing in the foreground, but also via CCTV, the one at Bruern, two miles to the north.

165118 Fiddington 16 July 2018

165118 passes Fiddington on 16 July 2018 with the 5Z65 09:11 Bristol St Philips Marsh to Bristol St Philips Marsh (via Long Marston) ECS. The masts in the background are next to the level crossing on the Tredington to Gotherington road.

165118 Little Haresfield 9 January 2019

165118 passes Little Haresfield on 9 January 2019 with the 2F97 08:50 Great Malvern to Westbury GWR service. The cast iron bridge in the background is a surprising, and very welcome survivor, as it is a lot more photogenic than most modern structures.

165118 Bredon 10 July 2019

Superb, but unfortunately very brief, lighting at Bredon 10 July 2019, as 165118 heads south with the 2F97 08:50 Great Malvern to Westbury GWR service. After over two decades working local trains out of Paddington, it is now the turn of the Gloucester area to get some Turbo action!

165118 Up Hatherley 18 September 2019

The driver of 165118 has obviously just used the windscreen washers, as he passes Up Hatherley on 18 September 2019 with the 2B94 13:20 Cheltenham Spa to Swindon GWR service. Unfortunately the onset of autumn colours at this location corresponds with the lengthening shadows from the trees and bushes at the op of the cutting on the right!

165119 & 58047 Culham 27 June 2002

Freight nearly spoils perfect DMU picture! Unfortunately there were no booked northbound freight trains at Culham at 06:30 on 27 June 2002, but there was the 7V25 04:16 Bescot to Didcot departmental working due from the other direction. Just as 165119 slowly approaches Culham with the 2C08 06:00 Reading to Oxford Thames Trains service, 58047 intrudes into the foreground!

165119 Ascott-under-Wychwood 22 February 2003

Viewed from Ascott-under-Wychwood signal box, 165119 comes off the double track section of the Cotswold Line on 22 February 2003 with the 09:43 Worcester Shrub Hill to Oxford Thames Trains service. Ignore the Moreton-in-Marsh destination blind, as the train has already passed through that station! Ahead is 14 miles of single track all the way to Wolvercote Junction. 165119 retained its Network SouthEast livery until very near the end of the Thames Trains franchise and ironically once repainted into that company's colour scheme spent longer being operated by the successor company (First Great Western) again in the wrong livery. Always one step behind in terms of livery!

165119 Heyford 16 December 2003

In freezing cold weather, with frost on the trees and tracks, and the sun barely struggling to burn through the mist, 165119 slows down for its stop at Heyford station with the 06:38 Paddington to Banbury Thames Trains all stations service on 16 December 2003. This location (like so many) has become progressively more grown up over the years.

165119 Tackley 23 May 2009

In superb late evening light, 165119 slows down for the stop at Tackley whilst working the 19:16 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service on 23 May 2009. I had only visited this location two days previously. I don't normally return to a location quite so quickly, but for a late evening northbound shot on what is now termed the 'Oxford Canal Line', this takes some beating.

165119 Chilson 24 June 2009

A final look at one of my formerly most frequented Cotswold Line locations prior to the redoubling of the track. 165119 passes Chilson on 24 June 2009 with the 2E92 06:50 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford First Great Western service. The village of Ascott-under-Wychwood can just be seen in the distance, with Ascott Mill alone in the fields on the right. This train is the only up service to call at Ascott-under-Wychwood station, but because it runs so early in the morning it is only in mid summer than shadow free pictures can be taken from most locations.

165119 Banbury 19 September 2009

Just before dawn on 19 September 2009, 165119 heads north out of Banbury station after arriving with the 06:16 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service, FGW's first train of the day on the route. A short distance north of the station it will cross over and return to the station in order to work the 07:02 train back to Oxford, the company's first southbound service. A pair of Chiltern Railways Class 165 units (165024 nearest) are parked in the bay platform, while in the background a Loram rail grinder can be seen parked in the yard.

165119 Oddington 24 May 2010

165119 approaches the ungated level crossing at Oddington on 24 May 2010 with the 07:09 Didcot Parkway to Bicester Town First Great Western service. This quiet backwater will soon be completely transformed, with the single track vintage bullhead rails replaced by a double track of continuously welded rail, and the level crossing replaced by a bridge. All this work is in connection with Chiltern Railway's ambitious project to create an alternative Oxford to London service via Bicester. This of course will also see FGW Turbos replaced on the route by Chiltern Railway units.

165119 Heyford 20 June 2010

165119 runs alongside the Oxford Canal as it rounds the curve into Heyford station with the 16:00 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service on 20 June 2010. This was running a little late, as 168217 had stolen its path down the Cherwell Valley line with the diverted 1V50 15:10 Birmingham Snow Hill to Oxford Chiltern Railways service!

165119 Didcot North Junction 8 March 2011

165119 approaches Didcot North Junction on 8 March 2011 with the 2P42 10:07 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. The houses in the village of Appleford in the background are barely visible due to the haze caused by settled high pressure.

165119 Wolvercote 4 May 2011

165119 passes Wolvercote on 4 May 2011 with the 2L45 12:42 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. The bridge in the background (which is surprisingly free of traffic) is the A34 Oxford ring road. Wolvercote Junction is just around the corner.

165119 Yarnton 4 May 2011

Perfectly framed between an ash tree and a blossom covered hawthorn bush, 165119 speeds past Yarnton on 4 May 2011 with the 2L47 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. This is one of the local stopping services on the route, which has now acquired the branding 'The Oxford Canal Line'. Surprisingly, the forecast cloudy afternoon had not materalised, although the perfect blue sky here is a little deceptive, as some thin high cloud was staring to appear to my left.

165119 & 165131 Tackley 11 July 2013

165119 & 165131 slow down on the approach to Tackley, as they prepare to call at the village's station with the 2M56 17:24 Paddington to Banbury First Great Western service on 11 July 2013. A convenient footpath leads south from the station, and where it branches off into the fields, there is this excellent viewpoint.

165119 South Moreton (Didcot East) 19 December 2014

165119 runs along the up relief line at South Moreton (Didcot East) on 19 December 2014 with the 2P48 11:37 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. The soon to be demolished chimney of Didcot Power Station dominates the background.

165119 Kennington 3 April 2017

A fine spring morning at Kennington on 3 April 2017. 165119 is three minutes into its journey with the 2P40 09:37 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. Kennington Junction, where the freight only Morris Cowley branch diverges, is situated by the signals in the background.

165119 Stonesfield 24 April 2018

165119 passes through the deep cutting near Stonesfield, on the Cotswold Line, on 24 April 2018. This is not a run of the mill passenger working, but the 5Z94 09:25 St Philips Marsh HST Depot to Long Marston ECS. The normal route from Bristol to Long Marston would be via Worcester, so I'm not quite sure why this came the long way round via Oxford, especially as this section of single line severely limits capacity.

165119 Ashchurch 17 July 2018

165119 accelerates away from Ashchurch (for Tewkesbury) station on 17 July 2018 with the 2G80 07:15 Gloucester to Great Malvern GWR service. This train's sorry story highlights the appalling level of service everyone has come to expect from the completely misnamed Great Western Railway in 2018. The train left Gloucester 14 minutes late, lost more time en-route, and was then cancelled at Worcester Shrub Hill, apparently due to crew problems. Note the recently restored water tower in the background, the last surviving remnant of the original Ashchurch station.

165119 Ashchurch 30 November 2018

165119 is slowing down for the station stop, as it approaches Ashchurch on 30 November 2018 with the 2F97 08:50 Great Malvern to Westbury GWR service. After over two decades of doing nothing but working Thames Valley and Cotswold Line services out of Paddington, these Class 165s are now widening their sphere of operation considerably.

165119 Gossington 17 December 2018

165119 passes the 106 milepost near Gossington, as it works the 2M97 08:23 Southampton Central to Great Malvern GWR service on 17 December 2018. It will shortly be slowing down to call at Cam & Dursley station. A sunny morning, but always the threat of the cloud fading out into the milky high cloud visible in the background.

165119 Thingley Junction 21 September 2019

165119 takes the Melksham line at Thingley Junction on 21 September 2019 with the 2M54 10:36 Swindon to Westbury GWR service. The main London to Bristol line is behind the bushes in the background, its location given away by the line of masts on the right, part of the abandoned electfrication project.

165119 Grove 7 November 2019

165119 passes Grove on 7 November 2019 with the 3Z60 10:37 Bristol Temple Meads to Reading West Junction GWR ECS. Two car Class 165s haven't been used on revenue earning trains on this route since the ill fated Oxford to Bristol direct trains stopped running in 2003. However, since the electfrication of the Paddington to Oxford local services, and consequent widening of the Class 165's sphere of operations, empty stock workings now appear sporadically on the line. The impressive cloud effect in this picture was a mixed blessing, as while it certainly adds to the picture, the rapidly increasing cloud (there was virtually none when I left home), soon led to some challenging photographic conditions.

165120 Didcot 26 October 1992

Brand new 165120 leaves Didcot station on 26 October 1992 with the 11:00 Reading to Oxford Network SouthEast service. Although the main buildings on the right are modern, there is plenty of surviving Great Western Railway infrastructure on the island platforms.

165120 Churchill Heath 27 June 1993

On a fine summer's evening, a remarkably clean 165120 speeds past the public footpath crossing at Churchill Heath, on the Cotswold Line between Bruern and Kingham. The date is 27 June 1993 and it is working the 17:35 Oxford to Great Malvern Network SouthEast service. This is one of the few occasions prior to First Great Western taking over services on the Cotswold Line that I have photographed a late running train (20 minutes late in this case). Unfortunately late running has now become the norm. Note the pre war bullhead track that was still in place on the down line at this location. The rails may vintage but 165120 was less than a year old at this time.

165120 Wolvercote Junction 17 June 2000

A close up view of 165120, as it approaches Wolvercote Junction on 17 June 2000 with the 17:12 Oxford to Great Malvern Thames Trains service. Obviously rebranding wasn't as important in the early privatisation days as it is now, as over three years after acquiring the franchise, there is no indication whatsoever that Thames Trains operates this service, in fact the unit still retains its original Network SouthEast and Turbo Express insignia.

165120 Heyford 9 June 2008

165120 arrives at Heyford with the 15:05 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service on 9 June 2008. The boats on the Oxford Canal form a perfect background to this picture, which is taken from the station's footbridge. The houses in the background are in the village of Lower Heyford. The village of Upper Heyford (once synonymous with the now closed USAF airfield) lies a mile away to the north. This picture has subsequently been used in the North Oxford Canal Partnership's leaflet about what is now branded the 'Oxford Canal Line'.

165120 Moreton-in-Marsh 20 April 2009

In lovely soft evening light, 165120 approaches Moreton-in-Marsh with the 17:31 Oxford to Worcester Foregate Street First Great Western service on 20 April 2009. A bit of an oddity this one, as it is the only Cotswold Line service that starts from Oxford rather than Paddington.

165120 Kings Sutton 24 November 2010

With the spire of the parish church of St Peter & St Paul dominating the background, 165120 accelerates away from Kings Sutton on 24 November 2010 with the 2L46 14:24 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service. Photo taken from a public footpath crossing.

165120 Heyford 10 December 2011

165120 slows down for the Heyford stop, as it works the 2L43 11:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service on 10 December 2011. The train is just about to cross over the River Cherwell, which it does no less than eleven times in its short journey.

165120 Kennington 3 April 2017

165120 passes Kennington on 3 April 2017 with the 5P34 08:06 Oxford Down Carriage Sidings to Didcot Parkway ECS. It would then start its day's passenger workings by forming the 2P34 08:34 Didcot Parkway to Paddington GWR service.

165120 Moreton-in-Marsh (Dunstall Bridge) 18 May 2018

165120 heads south from Moreton-in-Marsh on 18 May 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. It has just passed underneath the recently rebuilt Dunstall Bridge. The harmonious appearance of this bridge just shows that Network Rail can design a bridge rebuild that doesn't look hideous!

165120 Chilson 17 August 2018

165120 passes Chilson on 17 August 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. Unfortunately by late summer 2018 the chances of photographing one of the few Class 165s in First Great Western blue were diminishing by the week, as more units gets painted green. Here the low early morning sunshine compensates for the drabness of the livery.

165120 Up Hatherley 3 June 2019

165120 passes Up Hatherley on 3 June 2019 with the 2G83 11:36 Swindon to Cheltenham Spa GWR service. Unfortunately early June, when everything in the landscape is green, is not the ideal time to photograph a green liveried unit!

165121 Aynho 20 July 2000

165121 has just passed underneath Aynho Flyover, as it heads south on 20 July 2000 with the 09:18 Banbury to Bristol Temple Meads service. This train was operated by Thames Trains as far as Oxford, from where First Great Western took control.

165121 Hampton Gay 5 April 2002

165121 passes Hampton Gay on 5 April 2002 with the 17:27 Banbury to Oxford Thames Trains service. This is the site of one of the Great Western Railway's worst accidents. 34 people lost their lives when an overloaded train derailed on Christmas Eve 1874.

165121 Kings Sutton 28 May 2010

165121 calls at Kings Sutton station with the 2L47 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service on 28 May 2010. Although this train was running to time, having only originated a few miles up the line, all trains from further north were running approximately half an hour late due to signaling problems.

165121 Thrupp 7 March 2011

If the plans to reopen Kidlington station had to fruition, this unit would be slowing down to stop there as part of the 'Oxford Canal Line' local service. As it hasn't been reopened, 165121 is in fact heading south past Thrupp at the full line speed of 90mph on 7 March 2011 with the 2L47 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service.

165121 Ascott-under-Wychwood 6 June 2011

165121 arrives at Ascott-under-Wychwood on 6 June 2011 with the first train to call at the brand new up platform. It is the 2E92 06:51 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford First Great Western service - the only train of the day to use the station. This was the inaugural day for the section of reinstated double track between here and Charlbury. The commencement of the new trackwork can clearly be seen by the transition from old to clean ballast in the background. In addition to the new platform, the level crossing barriers have been replaced and better access has been provided to the original platform (on which I am standing to take this picture). Also, for the first time a proper car park is being provided.

165121 Wargrave 1 May 2013

165121 arrives at Wargrave station on 1 May 2013 with the 2H21 09:01 Henley-on-Thames to Twyford First Great Western service. I have very few pictures of the Henley branch, partly because it is so unphotogenic. However, I wanted a record of Wargrave before the wires go up, and with what has now almost become 'heritage' stock!

165121 Tackley 18 June 2015

165121 leaves Tackley on 18 June 2015 with the 2V65 20:01 Banbury to Paddington First Great Western service. Although this a going away shot, I couldn't resist it, as the summer evening light is just about perfect.

165121 Goring 6 July 2015

At least a local wood pigeon has found a new use for the recently installed electrification mast at Goring! 165121 runs along the down relief line with the 2N08 05:57 Paddington to Oxford First Great Western 'all stations' service on 6 July 2015.

165121 Didcot North Junction 25 April 2017

165121 approaches Didcot North Junction on 25 April 2017 with the 2N08 05:56 Paddington to Oxford GWR service. I would imagine that most commuters are heading in the opposite direction at this time of the morning, so a two car unit is probably more than adequate.

165121 & 166209 Kennington 9 September 2017

165121 & 166209 pass Kennington on 9 September 2017 with the 1P27 09:01 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. With hindsight I should have visited this location many years ago, before the lineside vegetation became so invasive.

165121 Culham 28 March 2018

My first picture of a two car Class 165/1 in GWR's green livery. With all the three car units now wearing this drab colour scheme, a start has been made on spoiling the look of the two car units! 165121 slowly approaches Culham in the rain on 28 March 2018 with the 2L38 13:29 Didcot Parkway to Oxford service. This is one of the local shuttle services that have angered local residents by replacing direct London trains. This is the result of the electfrication between London and Didcot.

165121 Cassington 18 April 2018

165121 passes Cassington on 18 April 2018 with the 1P27 10:59 Great Malvern to Paddington GWR service. There was no problem with standing in the middle of the road to take this picture, as the road only leads to a sewage works. However, between about 12:30 and 13:30 there was a surprising number of people casually walking up to the works and back again. Presumably this was workers from the nearby Worton Park Business Centre getting some exercise during their lunch break!

165121 Didcot North Junction 20 April 2018

165121 approaches Didcot North Junction on 20 April 2018 with the 2L49 16:37 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service. Note the ominous signs that this viewpoint will soon disappear under the hugely delayed electfrication programme.

165121 Wolvercote 10 August 2019

165121 passes Wolvercote on 10 August 2019 with the 2M58 19:30 Didcot Parkway to Banbury GWR service. The spire in the background belongs to the former church of St Philip and St James, now the Oxford Centre for Mission Studies. The modern building to its right is Oxford University's Department of Engineering Science.

165121 Didcot North Junction 12 August 2019

Just the right length train to fit in the gap in front of the signal! 165121 approaches Didcot North Junction on 12 August 2019 with the 2L31 12:07 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This is one of the frequent local shuttle services that replaced the direct trains to Paddington from the Thames Valley stations when the line to Didcot was electrified.

165122 Basingstoke 30 August 1998

165122 leaves Basingstoke on 30 August 1998 with the 09:40 Basingstoke to Reading Thames Trains service. An EMU can be seen waiting in the station in the background. The electrified former Southern Railway route to London passes behind the trees on the left.

165122 Wolvercote Tunnel 10 April 2010

165122 passes Wolvercote on 10 April 2010 with the 09:57 Bicester Town to Oxford First Great Western service. It has just emerged from the 155 yard long Wolvercote Tunnel, which is a cut and cover construction to accommodate the Oxford ring-road roundabout. FGW's purely local Bicester to Oxford shuttles is set to be replaced by a frequent Oxford to London service operated by Chiltern Railways. Although Wolvercote Tunnel is clearly built for double track (as indeed the line was originally), the reinstatement of double track on the route is set to end on the other side of the tunnel, leaving this short section towards Oxford single. However, pictures of FGW Class 165s at this location will soon be history, being replaced by Chiltern Railways Class 168s.

154122 Upper Heyford 23 March 2011

165122 heads south through the Oxfordshire countryside near Upper Heyford on 23 March 2011 with the 2L47 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. These two car units provide the 'all stations' service on this route, calling at Kings Sutton, Heyford and Tackley. Longer distance trains are provided by CrossCountry.

165122 Culham 27 April 2011

165122 approaches Culham on 27 April 2011 with the 1P57 16:01 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. As well as the inevitable hawthorn, this location has a surprising amount of lineside gorse bushes, which are not generally that abundant in this part of Oxfordshire.

165122 Didcot North Junction 20 October 2011

165122 approaches Didcot North Junction on 20 October 2011 with the 2P36 08:36 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. It looks like the unit's front end has suffered a recent graffiti attack. A Red Kite can be seen in the background scanning the trackside for breakfast. Once rare, these birds of prey are now widespread in the Thames Valley.

165122 Yarnton 14 January 2012

The early morning sun is just beginning to burn off the freezing fog as 165122 passes Yarnton on 14 January 2012 with the 2L39 09:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. The bizarre shape reflected in the windscreen is the nearby footbridge. The A44 roadbridge can just be seen in the background.

165122 Radley 19 April 2013

Under a darkening sky, that would soon put an end to this excellent lighting, 165122 slowly approaches Radley station on 19 April 2013 with the 2P74 17:06 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. Two generations of communications mast now spoil this view!

165122 Sonning 16 August 2016

Viewed from one of the lofty bridges spanning the cutting, 165122 passes Sonning on 16 August 2016 with the 2R44 14:42 Paddington to Reading GWR service. The milepost in the background indicates 33 miles from Paddington.

165122 Charlbury 2 January 2018

Twenty minutes before sunrise on a cloudy day at Charlbury station on 2 January 2018. The guard of 165122 prepares to get back into the rear cab of the unit, after checking that all the passengers are on board. The train is the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service.

165122 Wolvercote Junction 19 January 2018

165122 passes Wolvercote Junction on 19 January 2018 with the 2V35 12:34 Banbury to Didcot Parkway GWR service. In the background a signal engineer is working on the signal that controls entry to the goods loop, which starts a few yards south of the junction.

165122 Evenlode 16 April 2018

165122 passes Evenlode on 16 April 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. It is no longer possible to take a decent picture from the bridge on the Evenlode to Broadwell road, so this is a long lens shot from further up the road towards Evenlode village.

165122 Norton Junction 2 June 2018

165122 approaches Norton Junction on 2 June 2018 with the late running 1P43 10:45 Great Malvern to Paddington GWR service. Time was when a two car Class 165 only normally turned up on the Cotswold Line on the early morning all stations stopper, now we get one in the middle of the day!

165122 Uffington 29 October 2018

After waiting at a red signal just east of here for ten minutes, 165122 gets underway again at Uffington on 29 October 2018 with the 5Z81 10:13 Reading Traincare Depot to Swindon crew training run. Although it was running 13 minutes early at Challow, it seemed a little odd that it was stopped at a red on the mainline until right time, especially as this held up the following HST. Even stranger was it getting looped just before Swindon, and eventually arriving at Swindon 49 minutes late. For this reason, I didn't wait for the 5Z84 return working.

165122 Standish Junction 26 March 2019

165122 passes Standish Junction on 26 March 2019 with the 2C20 14:41 Gloucester to Westbury GWR service. Note the non-standard blue panel underneath the windscreen, presumably a temporary replacement for the damaged original.

165122 Chalford 6 April 2019

165122 passes Chalford on 6 April 2019 with the 2B90 10:01 Cheltenham Spa to Swindon GWR service. St Mary's Crossing signal box can be seen in the background. The sunshine was very welcome, but slightly unexpected, as the Met Office had predicted a largely cloudy day.

165123 Heyford 19 May 2007

165123 accelerates away from its stop at Heyford station on 19 May 2007 whilst working the 09:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. This spot is just a short walk along the canal towpath from the station, and although ideal for a southbound train, there is no chance of taking picture if anything of interest comes the other way!

165123 Little Bedwyn 25 June 2010

Not far off the longest day, and the sun is already fairly high at 08:00, as the 07:56 Bedwyn to Newbury First Great Western service passes Little Bedwyn on 25 June 2010. This crisp sunny light was most unexpected, as the weather forecast was for a cloudy morning!

165123 Bletchingdon 14 March 2011

The site of Bletchingdon station continues to see industrial use and on 14 March 2011 the site is crammed full of loaded pallets. Obviously the contents are all the same, as I hate to think the boss would say to one of the fork lift operators "I want the one out from the back"! 165123 passes by with the 2L47 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service.

165123 & 165128 Cholsey 15 November 2013

165123 & 165128 accelerate away from Cholsey station on 15 November 2013 with the 2N38 12:57 Paddington to Oxford First Great Western service. Just visible on the left is the trackbed of the Cholsey & Wallingford Railway.

165123 Oxford North Junction 4 July 2015

165123 approaches Oxford North Junction on 4 July 2015 with the 2M44 16:16 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service. Note the preparatory work behind the train to reinstate a fourth track, principally for the use by the new Chiltern Railways service to Marylebone.

165123 Banbury 22 August 2015

165123 passes Banbury North Signal Box, as it runs into the station prior to working the 2L39 09:08 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service on 22 August 2015. A little earlier it had arrived at Banbury with the 2L38 07:53 from Oxford, before proceeding ECS to the crossover in the background in order to change platforms.

165123 Hinksey 2 November 2016

Golden autumn tints at Hinksey on 2 November 2015. 165123 heads south with the late running 2P52 12:37 Oxford to Paddington GWR service, passing between Hinksey Yard, and the lake that was formed by gravel diggings when the railway was built.

165123 & 165127 Appleford 29 March 2017

165123 & 165127 approach Appleford on 29 March 2017 with the 2P56 13:36 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. The bridge in the background carries the line over the River Thames. This is not a very pleasant place to take from pictures from, as there is hardly anywhere to stand on the bridge, without getting in the way of the road traffic.

165123 Heyford 8 April 2017

With the early morning mist still hanging over the Oxford Canal, 165123 rolls into Heyford station on 8 April 2017 with the 2L33 07:03 Banbury to Oxford GWR service. Note the distorted view of the station's footbridge in the unit's windscreen.

165123 Upper Heyford 8 April 2017

165123 crosses over the Oxford Canal near Upper Heyford on 8 April 2017, as it heads north with the 2L38 07:53 Oxford to Banbury GWR service. This is the fifth time the railway has crossed the canal, since leaving Oxford.

165123 Upper Heyford 8 April 2017

165123 passes Upper Heyford on 8 April 2017 with the 2L39 09:08 Banbury to Oxford GWR service. The X45 sign is a wrong line maximum speed indication for Somerton level crossing, situated approximately half a mile to the north.

165123 Wolvercote 8 April 2017

165123 passes milepost 65 at Wolvercote on 8 April 2017 with the 2L50 18:19 Oxford to Banbury GWR service. The Oxford Canal is behind the bushes, running parallel with the railway. The towpath from here to Oxford is very popular with walkers.

165123 Oxford North Junction 20 May 2017

Not long after sunrise on 20 May 2017, 165123 heads north at Oxford North Junction with the 2M02 05:57 Didcot Parkway to Banbury GWR service. In the background 70007 waits to follow it (half an hour later) with the 4M62 04:31 Southampton Maritime to Lawley Street freightliner.

165123 Chilson 10 May 2018

Cow Parsley is in full bloom on the roadside at Chilson on 10 May 2018, as 165123 passes by with the Cotswold Line's early morning local stopping train - the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This has just called at Ascott-under-Wychwood station.

165123 Ascott-under-Wychwood 6 September 2018

165123 calls at Ascott-under-Wychwood station on 6 September 2018 with the only up train of the day to call there - the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. Despite this infrequent service, my short wait on the station was punctuated by pointless repeated announcements inviting passengers to report suspicious activity to the non-existent staff!

165124 Radley 25 June 2003

The crossing of the Turbos at Radley on 25 June 2003. 165124 arrives with the 17:31 Oxford to Reading service, just as 165134 departs with the 16:59 Reading to Bicester Town train. Note the equipment enclosure on the left, which indicates the presence of a very tall radio mast, which ruins pictures taken from the bridge in the background.

165124 Aldermaston 8 May 2008

165124 calls at Aldermaston with the 2K47 10:13 Newbury to Reading First Great Western service on 8 May 2008. Aldermaston station, along with nearby Theale, Midgham and Thatcham survived the Beeching closures and now have a frequent local service operating as far as Newbury. This is in addition to the services that operate to Bedwyn, which generally only call at Theale and Thatcham. Judging by the full car park the service is well patronised.

165124 Shorthampton 9 June 2008

With the long lens compressing the perspective and bringing up the houses of Charlbury in the distance, 165124 approaches Shorthampton with the 17:31 Oxford to Worcester Foregate Street First Great Western service on 9 June 2008. This is the only down train to call at all stations on the Cotswold Line. The bridge, which forms an ideal photographic frame for this short train is a farm occupation bridge linking fields on either side of the line.

165124 Steeple Aston 27 November 2010

A damp autumn day near Steeple Aston on 27 November 2010. 165124 is still accelerating away from the Heyford stop, as it heads north along the Cherwell Valley towards Banbury. Presumably this is the very late running 08:53 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service, in which case it is 1 hour 25 minutes late! The next rain is the 11:24 Oxford to Banbury, so it can't be that!

165124 Oddington 7 March 2011

165124 passes over the ungated level crossing at Oddington on 7 March 2011 with the 2L09 10:30 Bicester Town to Oxford First Great Western service. Note the clear light displayed to train drivers to indicate that the automatic lights at the crossing have operated correctly. This crossing will be replaced by a bridge a little further along the line when the line is upgraded for through running to London via Bicester. As a prelude to this, Chiltern Railways will soon take over these local workings.

165124 Oddington 7 March 2011

On 7 March 2011, during the final months of First Great Western operations on the Oxford to Bicester route, 165124 approaches Oddington with the 2L11 11:30 Bicester Town to Oxford service. Chiltern Railways will acquire the route and after extensive modifications it will become part of their through route from Oxford to London.

165124 Charlbury 3 May 2011

The pre-assembled point that will mark the end of the Ascott-under-Wychwood to Charlbury redoubling of the Cotswold Line was delivered to site over the 2011 Spring Bank Holiday weekend. It is seen here just to the south of Charlbury station waiting to be installed during the line's total shutdown from 28 May. 165124 passes by and prepares to stop at Charlbury station with the only down 'all stations' train on the route - the 2E95 17:31 Oxford to Worcester Foregate Street First Great Western service. This is usually the only train that relies on a two car Class 165, rather than a three car Turbo or HST. This is one of the few occasions that I have had to resort to adding a x1.4 converter to my Canon 200mm f2.8L lens. It's lucky that the heat haze of the previous week has given way to some much clearer air!

165124 Wendlebury 4 May 2011

The Oxford to Bicester line reopened to passengers in 1987 (after closing in 1968) and was initially operated by Network SouthEast. This naturally morphed into Thames Trains and then First Great Western. However, from 28 May 2011 Chiltern Railways will take over the route. On a cloudless 4 May 2011, 165124 passes the oilseed rape fields at Wendlebury with the 2L08 10:00 Oxford to Bicester Town service.

165124 Wendlebury 4 May 2011

165124 passes underneath the M40 motorway at Wendlebury whilst working the 2L09 10:30 Bicester Town to Oxford First Great Western service on 4 May 2011, just a few weeks away from the takeover of the route by Chiltern Railways. Although Chiltern eventually hope to upgrade the line with reinstated double track and a chord to link it to the Marylebone Line at Bicester, there will however be one slight downside. Note the yellow band above the windows at the front of 165124. This of course indicates the first class section, a facility not available on Chiltern Railway's Class 165/0 units. Photo taken from a public footpath crossing.

165124 Water Eaton (Northfield Farm) 4 May 2011

165124 trundles past Northfield Farm, Water Eaton on 4 May 2011 with the 2L11 11:30 Bicester Town to Oxford First Great Western service, just a few weeks before the route is taken over by Chiltern Railways. The bridge just behind the train carries the line over the River Cherwell.

165124 & 165114 South Moreton 7 May 2013

Running over thirty minutes late, 165124 & 165114 pass South Moreton on 7 May 2013 with the 2N44 14:27 Paddington to Oxford First Great Western service. This train is formed from the units that work the 1K61 12:38 Bedwyn to Paddington, and the 2P51 13:18 Reading to Paddington. This obviously could give rise to late running, although it was not the cause in this case.

165124 South Moreton 19 August 2013

165124 runs along the up main line at South Moreton on 19 August 2013 with the 1P41 12:01 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service, which is more usually the preserve of a three car Class 166. Obviously at around noon a two car should easily suffice.

165124 Hinksey 10 May 2014

Just as the sun starts to come out, after a rainy start to the day, 165124 passes Hinksey on 10 May 2014 with the 2P36 08:37 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. Photo taken from the A423 Oxford bypass.

165124 & 166213 Cholsey 2 January 2015

165124 & 166213 approach Cholsey on 2 January 2015 with the 2P46 11:07 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service, while the 4M28 09:32 Southampton Maritime to Ditton freightliner heads in the opposite direction.

165124 Lower Basildon 30 March 2015

Signs of the forthcoming electrification at Lower Basildon on 30 March 2015. 165124 runs along the up relief line with the 2P52 12:37 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service, while a track worker walks along the signal troughing in the foreground. The electrification masts have seemingly been randomly erected, the mast on the right just lying next to its mounting position, yet masts on either side have been installed.

165124 South Moreton 10 September 2015

165124 passes South Moreton on 10 September 2015 with the 2N44 14:27 Paddington to Oxford First Great Western service. A once photographically excellent location already ruined by a photographer unfriendly bridge, and now by the encroaching electfrication.

165124 & 165116 Culham 4 May 2016

Not much room for error here! A very tight crop gives a good clear view of 165124 & 165116, as they approach Culham on 4 May 2016 with the 2N06 05:17 Paddington to Oxford GWR service. The gaunt remains of Didcot Power Station dominate the background.

165124 Moreton-in-Marsh 6 June 2016

165124, the first train of the day over the Cotswold Line - the 2E90 05:14 Oxford to Worcester Foregate Street GWR service, approaches Moreton-in-Marsh just after sunrise on 6 June 2016. Despite leaving Oxford at the correct time, this train was now running 14 minutes late due to signalling problems, a delay that was to more than double by the time it got to Worcester. Although there is a clear enough gap to allow this two car unit to be fully lit by the early morning sun, the lineside tree causes problems for anything longer. Naturally this was not always the case!

165124 Moreton-in-Marsh 6 June 2016

165124 leaves Moreton-in-Marsh station on 6 June 2016 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford GWR service. Ten days later this unit sustained serious damage in a derailment at Paddington, after passing a signal at danger, running through trap points, and striking an overhead electfrication gantry.

165124 Chilson 25 August 2017

165124 passes Chilson in superb early morning light on 25 August 2017 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This is the Cotswold's Line's only up local train that calls at all the minor stations. It has just called at Ascott-under-Wychwood, which is just behind the trees in the background.

165124 Chilson 6 October 2017

Running exactly half an hour late, 165124 (which seems to be a regular on this working) passes Chilson on 10 October 2017 with the 2E92 06:56 Worcester Shrub Hill to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This should have started from Worcester Foregate Street at 06:53, but was altered due to a late running northbound service. On this morning there was severe leaf fall problems on Campden Bank, with no trains calling at Honeybourne. This resulted in the bizarre situated of Honeybourne passengers being bused to other stations to make their connections, while their trains speed through non-stop!

165124 Combe 11 June 2018

165124 slowly approaches Combe station on 11 June 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This is the only up train of the day to call at the station. Unfortunately the dark green livery and unflattering lighting angle (not helped by some typical Cotswold Line late running) have not improved the picture, but the gap between the bushes is just the right size for a two car unit, so it was worth a record shot.

165124 Kings Sutton 11 June 2018

High summer at Kings Sutton on 11 June 2018. 165124 heads north with the 2M48 16:00 Didcot Parkway to Banbury GWR service. Unfortunately the dark green livery does tend to blend in with the countryside at this time of year.

165124 Tackley 15 February 2019

165124 approaches Tackley on 15 February 2019 with the 2V45 15:07 Banbury to Didcot Parkway GWR service. To compensate for the short train, I decided to add some foreground interest to the picture by including the lineside tree, whose lichen encrusted branches show up really well in the winter afternoon light.

165125 Wolvercote Junction 30 June 1995

Immaculately clean 165125 approaches Wolvercote Junction on 30 June 1995 with the 2F16 17:41 Oxford to Moreton-in-Marsh service. This, along with a similar early morning up working, are the only Cotswold Line trains that regularly employ two car Class 165s, this being considered sufficient for this 'all stations' local train, calling at Combe, Finstock, Ascott-under-Wychwood, etc.

165125 Oxford 27 June 1998

165125 passes the partly completed new car park at Oxford station on 27 June 1998, as it works the 09:43 Oxford to Didcot Parkway Thames Trains service. Just visible in the background is the approaching Worksop Open Day Committee 1Z58 06:05 Worksop to Weymouth 'Wessex Wanderer' railtour, led by 58047 & 58039. You can tell this is the era of Railtrack, as even the main running lines are home to various weeds, whilst the 'West Midlands' sidings on the left are completely submerged in a forest of buddleia!

165125 Water Eaton (Banbury Road) 6 August 1998

165125 passes the semi-derelict Banbury Road Sidings site at Water Eaton on 6 August 1998 with the 15:40 Bicester Town to Oxford Thames Trains service. Although still used as a stone terminal, a lot of the infrastructure was built in connection with the former Second World War grain silo (just out of view to the right). This whole area could soon be dramatically transformed with the construction by Chiltern Railways of Water Eaton station. This would form a traffic interchange with the nearby Water Eaton park and ride, and would result in the purely local train pictured above, being replaced by a fast and frequent Oxford to London service, that will connect with the Chiltern mainline at Bicester.

165125 Hampton Gay 20 August 2001

165125 crosses the bridge over the River Cherwell at Hampton Gay on 20 August 2001, with the 17:27 Banbury to Oxford Thames Trains service. In the foreground is the disused bridge that formerly carried the single track Woodstock Branch. This line ran alongside the mainline from Kidlington station, only diverging to the west just after this bridge. The line closed in 1954, nearly a decade before the famous Beeching report. The track was lifted in 1958.

165125 Aldermaston 23 November 2007

165125 passes Aldermaston on 23 November 2007 with the 10:11 Reading to Newbury First Great Western service. This is a good location for photography, with clear views in both directions, but is unfortunately situated on a very narrow and busy road.

165125 Brimpton 23 November 2007

The use of a long lens compresses the perspective and makes Colthrop signal box appear much closer, as 165125 approaches Brimpton on 23 November 2007 with the 11:13 Newbury to Reading First Great Western 'all stations' service. The unit is just about to cross one of the culverts that drains nearby Midgham Marsh.

165125 Brimpton 23 November 2007

165125 scuttles along the West of England Mainline near Brimpton on 23 November 2007 with the 12:11 Reading to Newbury First Great Western service. These purely local 'all stations' trains are interspersed with semi-fast services which continue past Newbury to terminate at Bedwyn.

165125 Tackley 19 March 2009

Against a backdrop of dead trees, 165125 heads south near Tackley on 19 March 2009 with the 2L47 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. The use of a very long lens has compressed the perspective, bringing up the hedgerows in the background. What appears to be a hedge just above the unit is in fact the line of the Oxford Canal.

165125 Rousham 2 April 2009

Neatly framed by a pair of lineside trees, 165125 passes Rousham on 2 April 2009 with the 2L47 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. This view clearly shows how much the track is canted at this point, as the line traverses the curves south of Heyford station.

165125 Chineham 1 August 2009

165125 heads north through the densely wooded cutting at Chineham with the 2J22 10:07 Basingstoke to Reading First Great Western service on 1 August 2009. A dull day with intermittent drizzle, which is probably just as well considering how much shade this lot would cast if the sun was out!

165125 Chilson 6 May 2011

165125 rounds the curve between Shorthampton and Chilson on 6 May 2011 with the 2E95 17:31 Oxford to Worcester Foregate Street 'all stations' First Great Western service. A very convenient gap in the tall lineside hawthorn bushes has allowed this viewpoint of Ascott-under-Wychwood's newly installed down distant signal. This and the recently re-laid up line in the foreground have yet to be commissioned. I had hoped that there was just enough of a gap here to fit a two car unit in without obscuring the trackside tree or All Saints Church, Spelsbury, which can just be seen in the distance. As the church is visible right behind the rear of the train, I obviously guessed correctly!

165125 & 165129 Moulsford 4 September 2013

165125 & 165129 pass Moulsford on 4 September 2013 with the 2P62 15:07 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. It looks like one of the now very numerous Red Kite birds of prey has succumbed to a passing train, judging by the bundle of plumage lying by the line just in front of the train.

165125 Kidlington (Sandy Lane) 21 June 2014

The 2014 Summer Solstice (21 June) sees 165125 approaching Sandy Lane level crossing, near Kidlington, with the 2L32 06:16 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service. This is FGW's first northbound train of the day on the Cherwell Valley route. Very early in the morning during high summer is the only time when it is possible to get a decently lit view of northbound trains here.

165125 Cholsey 28 April 2015

165125 passes a field of oilseed rape at Cholsey on 28 April 2015 with the 2P34 08:34 Didcot Parkway to Paddington First Great Western service. Didcot Power Station's tall redundant chimney and cooling towers dominate the background.

165125 Wolvercote 23 May 2015

165125 passes Wolvercote on 23 May 2015 with the 2L48 16:19 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service. The unfinished, and seemingly temporarily abandoned, reinstatement of the former down relief line shows up clearly against the green of Port Meadow.

165125 & 165120 Culham 11 June 2015

165125 & 165120 approach Culham on 11 June 2015 with the 2M56 17:25 Paddington to Banbury First Great Western service. The lineside bushes may have been cut down, but that doesn't stop the cow parsley getting in the way!

165125 Somerton 28 November 2015

The weak autumnal sun is just starting to come out, as 165125 passes Somerton on 28 November 2015 with the 2L39 09:08 Banbury to Oxford GWR service. This location is near an occupation level crossing, down a very rough road.

165125, 165131 & 165126 Hinksey 20 January 2016

If you need a six coach train in the Oxford area, the answer is obviously two three car Class 165s or 166s. The other less used option is three two car Class 165s, as seen here. 165125, 165131 & 165126 pass Hinksey Yard on 20 January 2016 with the 2P58 14:07 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. On this occasion a serious trespass incident at Royal Oak closed all lines into Paddington, therefore this train, along with many others, was terminated at Reading.

165125 Culham 4 May 2016

With the chimney, cooling towers, and partially collapsed turbine hall of the disused Didcot Power Station dominating the background, 165125 approaches Culham on 4 May 2016 with the 1D09 07:25 Reading to Oxford GWR service.

165125 Chilson 17 May 2016

165125 passes Chilson on 17 May 2016 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford GWR service. This is the only up train of the day that calls at the minor stations on the Cotswold Line (Ascott-under-Wychwood, Finstock and Combe), and is generally the only train on the line worked by a two car Class 165. In the days when these local trains were operated by Pressed Steel Class 117s, this all stations service only operated from Moreton-in-Marsh.

165125 Hinksey 30 March 2017

165125 passes Hinksey Yard on 30 March 2017 with the 2P58 14:07 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. The cranes in the background are being used for the redevelopment of Oxford's Westgate Shopping Centre. An enlarged shopping facility with a smaller car park, we will have to see how that works out!

165125 Kings Sutton 27 August 2017

165125 accelerates away from Kings Sutton on 27 August 2017 with the late running 2M50 17:19 Oxford to Banbury GWR service. This being a Sunday, there are only three such trains in each direction, instead of the usual twelve.

165125 Finstock 19 December 2017

165125 passes through Finstock station on 19 December 2017 with the 1P43 10:59 Great Malvern to Paddington GWR service. I'm not sure whether this is permanent alteration, but this train was formerly a three car Class 166. Although the morning sunshine had by now completely disappeared, I waited for this as the area of the station that would have been in shade was still covered with a surprising amount of snow, seen to advantage in this moderate wideangle view.

165125 Hinksey 23 July 2018

Running very slowly due to problems with the newly laid track a little further to the north, 165125 passes Hinksey Yard on 23 July 2018 with the 2M48 16:00 Didcot Parkway to Banbury GWR service. This was running half an hour late, but it least it was running, as numerous other trains were cancelled because of the track problems. The 4L40 16:42 Morris Cowley to Purfleet BMW Mini car carrier train rather dominates this picture, the loco for which can just be seen running round in the background.

165125 Appleford 15 August 2019

A wave from the driver of 165125, as his train passes Appleford on 15 August 2019 with the 2L27 11:07 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service. Notice the recent lineside tree clearance, which did not extend to the spot immediately of front of where I was standing!

165126 Compton Beauchamp 29 May 2002

"What do you mean we shouldn't have turned right at Didcot?" During the brief period when First Great Western used Class 165 Turbo units to operate an Oxford to Bristol Temple Meads service, 165126 encounters problems at Compton Beauchamp whilst working the 17:58 train from Oxford on 29 May 2002. The fault was not with the unit, but some unexplained (presumably signaling) fault further towards Swindon that was causing all westbound services to be held at this signal and then allowed to proceed at reduced speed.

165126 Tackley 16 February 2008

A frosty morning at Tackley on 16 February 2008. 165126 accelerates away from the station with the 07:53 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service. Just ten minutes behind it was something much more interesting, and much noisier - D1015 Western Champion with the Pathfinder Tours 1Z15 06:00 Ealing Broadway to Holyhead 'Irish Mail' railtour.

165126 Rousham 16 February 2008

A location I had been meaning to visit for sometime is Rousham, on the Banbury to Oxford line. It does however require rather a long walk, but I was near the spot on 16 February 2008, and I realised that the 09:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service would be the ideal short train not to obscure Rousham church visible in the distance on the right. 165126 passes a field of long grass covered in frost in perfect low winter early morning light.

165126 Kings Sutton 23 April 2009

165126 leaves Kings Sutton station on 23 April 2009 with the 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. At this location it also possible to see the other Class 165 sub-class (165/0), working trains for Chiltern Railways. Shortly before, 165013 had called en-route between Stratford-upon-Avon and Marylebone.

165126 Thrupp 7 May 2009

165126 is just the right size to fit in the gap between the bushes near Thrupp, as it heads south with the 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service on 7 May 2009. May blossom and a super abundance of fresh green vegetation immediately indicate the time of year.

165126 Oxford (Walton Well Road) 13 June 2010

How many Turbo units can you get in one picture? Answer - eight, plus an interloper Class 168 Clubman! This is Oxford on Sunday 13 June 2010. On the right, 165126 heads north along the bi-directional relief line with the 10:56 Oxford to Bicester Town First Great Western service. It is passing the carriage sidings which as usual for a Sunday contain a full compliment of trains. The units nearest the camera are (from left to right) 166215, 165127, 165104 & 166213. In the background can be seen a most unusual visitor to Oxford - Chiltern Railways 168216, which has just moved into platform 2, after a brief wait in the down carriage sidings. It had worked in with the diverted 1V26 09:10 Birmingham Snow Hill to Oxford service, and would shortly be heading back north with the 1G22 10:58 Oxford to Birmingham Snow Hill train.

165126 Tackley 2 January 2012

The rooks in field are undisturbed by the passing of 165126 near Tackley on 2 January 2012, as it heads south with the 2L45 13:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. The unit is crossing over the River Cherwell. This is the fifth time this train has crossed the river since leaving Banbury, with another six crossings to go before it reaches Oxford!

165126 Ascott-under-Wychwood 25 July 2012

A few passengers (and a Golden Retriever!) wait to board 165126, as it arrives at Ascott-under-Wychwood station on 25 July 2012 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford First Great Western service. As this is the only up train of the day to call at Ascott-under-Wychwood, the recent construction of a new platform is purely for a handful of passengers each day. Note that after just one year, weeds have already started to colonise the ballast at the foot of the platform.

165126 Hinksey 1 January 2013

New Year's Day 1 January 2013 saw a modified service in operation in the Thames Valley. 165126 passes Hinksey Yard with the 2Z20 12:06 Oxford to Didcot Parkway First Great Western service, which is replacing the normal 2P50 12:07 Oxford to Paddington. These hourly Z headcode shuttle services operated throughout the day, resulting in the much more frequent appearance of lone two car Class 165/1s on the line than would normally be the case.

165126 Ruscombe 1 May 2013

The driver of 165126 gives the windscreen a good clean, as he accelerates away from Twyford station, and passes Ruscombe on 1 May 2013 with the 2P40 09:37 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. This side view clearly shows the small first class section at the leading end of the unit.

165126 Hinksey 2 November 2016

The bright red DB Cargo livery of the MXA ballast wagons in the foreground certainly catch the eye, as 165126 passes Hinksey Yard on 2 November 2016, as it gets into its stride with the 2P52 12:37 Oxford to Paddington GWR service.

165126 & 165103 Kennington 9 September 2017

165126 leads green liveried 165103 past Kennington on 9 September 2017 with the late running 1P35 10:01 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. This is a limited stop service, which is booked to leave Oxford six minutes ahead of the local service, but for some reason on this occasion it left afterwards. After being held up while the local called at Appleford, it finally overtook it while the slow train called at Didcot Parkway. Note the dark clouds in the background. The sunny morning wasn't going to last much longer!

165126 Cookham 25 February 2018

165126 approaches Cookham on 25 February 2018 with the 2B25 09:04 Marlow to Maidenhead GWR service. The line between Bourne End and Marlow does not have many good photographic vantage points, but this one is relatively clear of winter shadows, although it does require a long lens to shoot between the level crossing signal, and a lineside hut.

165126 Little Marlow 25 February 2018

165126 passes Little Marlow on 25 February 2018 with the 2B26 09:36 Maidenhead to Marlow GWR service. The train has just reversed at Bourne End, and is now passing the meadows next to the River Thames. Although the field was a little muddy in places, at this time of year this area can often be completely under water, when the nearby River Thames bursts its banks.

165126 Little Marlow 25 February 2018

165126 passes Little Marlow on 25 February 2018 with the 2B27 10:02 Marlow to Maidenhead GWR service. The train is approaching a public footpath crossing that connects the village of Little Marlow with the River Thames. Note the missing section of trim underneath the left windscreen.

165126 Chilson 21 March 2018

165126 passes Chilson on 21 March 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This is my favourite Cotswold Line train, not just because it runs at an ideal time for photography (albeit requiring an early start!), but because it is the only truly local southbound train of the day, serving all the minor stations. It has just called at Ascott-under-Wychwood, and will later call at Finstock and Combe. Another incentive to photograph this train in 2018, is that normally it is the only one on the route worked by a two car Class 165, most of which are still in the much more photogenic First Great Western blue livery, rather than the three car units, which sport GWR's drab green colour scheme.

165126 Chilson 21 June 2018

A symphony in green? Not quite, more like a visual eyesore! Even in the early morning light, GWR's drab green livery on 165126 does not photograph well. It is passing Chilson on 21 June 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway service.

165127 Shottesbrooke 15 May 1993

A Class 165 and 166 meeting at Shottesbrooke on 15 May 1993. 165127 heads towards London with the 2A47 12:42 Reading to Paddington Network SouthEast service, while 166204 recedes into the distance with the 2F35 12:20 Paddington to Oxford. Both units look pristine, as indeed they should, both being virtually new. 165127 had been in traffic for just six months, while 166204 was just a month old when this picture was taken. Judging by the streaks coming down from the dark clouds in the background, it looks like the residents of Twyford are getting a soaking!

165127 Bicester Town 24 August 1994

165127 leaves Bicester Town station on 24 August 1994 with the 2C25 09:08 Network SouthEast departure for Oxford. Bicester Town station was completely rebuilt when the line was upgraded in 2015, and incorrectly renamed Bicester Village.

165127 Tackley 17 December 2008

165127 passes the flooded fields near Tackley as it crosses the River Cherwell bridge with the 12:38 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service on 17 December 2008. First Great Western provide the local stopping service on this route, calling at Heyford and Tackley.

165127 Steeple Aston 18 April 2009

165127 passes through the recently trimmed cutting near Steeple Aston on 18 April 2009 with the 10:16 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service. With the trees bursting into leaf, it won't be long before the vegetation has reverted to its former dense state at this location!

165127 Yarnton 7 January 2012

Competing forms of transport at Yarnton on 7 January 2012. 165127 speeds past the RH Transport bus storage yard, as it heads south with the 2L39 09:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. Yarnton Lane Level Crossing can be seen in the background. Close inspection of the full size image reveals an unintentional self portrait in 165127's windscreen. The dark area is a reflection of the A44 roadbridge, whilst the little spike visible above the driver's head is me!

165127 Culham 9 August 2012

Culham station still retains an Isambard Kingdom Brunel designed station building. Although no longer in railway use (or any use at all judging by the sign), its future seems assured, as it is grade II listed. A slightly more modern footbridge completes the scene here, as 165127 races through with the 2P40 09:36 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service on 9 August 2012.

165127 Kidlington (Sandy Lane) 22 September 2012

Locations between Banbury and Oxford that are free of shadows for an early morning southbound picture are at a premium. On 22 September 2012, I investigated a spot between Sandy Lane and Yarnton Lane Crossings at Kidlington. Amazingly I had never visited this location before, and although nothing spectacular, it does offer an unobstructed view. 165127 passes by with the 2L39 09:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. Sandy Lane Crossing can just be seen in the background.

165127 Wolvercote 19 July 2013

165127 passes the worksite the reinstate the former down relief line at Wolvercote on 19 July 2013. The former line of trees has been replaced by a trackbed of fresh ballast, enabling a clear view of trains from nearby Port Meadow. This train is the 2E95 17:15 Didcot Parkway to Great Malvern First Great Western service, which serves all the minor Cotswold Line stations.

165127 Oxford 30 January 2015

The driver of 165127 reaches for her coffee, as she accelerates out of Oxford station on 30 January 2015 with the 2P40 09:37 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. The 1M30 07:30 Bournemouth to Manchester Piccadilly CrossCountry service has just arrived at platform 2.

165127 Culham 2 July 2016

Looking a little lost in the landscape, 165127 approaches Culham on 2 July 2016 with the 1D15 07:52 Paddington to Oxford GWR service. The gaunt remains of Didcot Power Station can be seen in the background, clearly showing the effects of the recent building collapse, resulting from bungled demolition work.

165127 Hinksey 7 February 2018

Perfect winter lighting at Hinksey on 7 February 2018, although despite the sun it was bitterly cold! 165127 passes the yard with the 2V35 12:34 Banbury to Didcot Parkway GWR service. Note the new signal gantry in the background, and the new ramps and trackside posts in the foreground.

165127 Shipton 29 March 2018

165127 approaches Shipton in the rain on 29 March 2018 with the 5Q66 09:00 Reading Traincare Depot to Long Marston ECS. In addition to their now declining use on passenger trains on the route, in early 2018 the Cotswold Line is seeing numerous Class 165 and 166 empty stock moves, as they travel to and from Long Marston for modifications.

165127 Hinksey 23 July 2018

Golden evening light at Hinksey Yard on 23 July 2018. 165127 passes the lines of wagons that had been used during the previous two week's engineering blockade of Oxford. It is working the late running 2L58 18:08 Reading to Oxford GWR service.

165127 Hinksey 24 October 2018

165127 passes Hinksey Yard on 24 October 2018 with the 2L43 15:07 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This makes an interesting comparison with the same unit, pictured at the same location, earlier in the year. In addition to an unwelcome livery change, the two new signs in the foreground hardy enhance the picture!

165127 Oaksey 13 August 2019

165127 passes Oaksey on 13 August 2019 with the 5B97 16:24 Swindon to Cheltenham Spa GWR ECS. As is often the case, this was running nearly an hour early, as it tends to just return straightaway after working the 2B96 15:20 Cheltenham Spa to Swindon service, rather than wait at Swindon for an hour.

165127 Claydon (Gloucestershire) 10 October 2019

Having just called at Ashchurch for Tewkesbury station (just beyond the bridge in the background), 165127 gets up to speed again at Claydon on 10 October 2019 with the 2F97 08:50 Great Malvern to Westbury GWR service.

165128 Wendlebury 27 November 1993

165128 has just passed under the M40 motorway near Wendlebury on 27 November 1993, whilst working the 13:48 Bicester to Oxford Network SouthEast service. Either there was a lot less traffic on the motorway in those days, or I was exceedingly lucky not to have a lorry growing out of the top of the train. Therefore I have not had to resort to Photoshop to remove any vehicles from the view! The picture is taken from a farm occupation crossing.

165128 Oxford 9 September 1995

165128 has obviously been through the washer recently, as hardly a trace of exhaust soot can be seen on its white roof, as it leaves Oxford station on 9 September 1995 with the 2C23 09:00 'all stations' service to Reading. Note the redundant Oxford Goods Ground Frame cabinet in the foreground, standing guard over the disused and weed choked sidings.

165128 Bourton 29 December 2000

165128 passes the snowy fields at Bourton with the 10:00 Bristol Temple Meads to Oxford service on 29 December 2000. This short lived service was very poorly patronised principally because apart from the novelty of being able to travel from Bristol and Swindon to Oxford without changing trains it was of little practical use, as it merely duplicated other trains on the same route. If some local stations in the Vale of White Horse had been reopened it would have been of more benefit. There was a campaign to reopen Wantage Road which would have helped enormously, but the sheer inertia and difficulty of getting anything positive done on the railways delayed that plan either indefinitely or certainly until after these trains had stopped running!

165128 Oxford (Walton Well Road) 23 May 2009

Complete with headboard to announce the new enhanced Oxford to Bicester Town service, 165128 leaves Oxford with the 09:27 train to Bicester on 23 May 2009. A fair chunk of First Great Western's Turbo fleet can be seen stabled in the background, along with a couple of HSTs. The train on the up main is the 1P31 07:10 Hereford to Paddington, with 43021 at the rear.

165128 Oxford (Walton Well Road) 23 May 2009

Now this is something you don't see very often - a Turbo unit with a headboard. 165128 approaches Oxford on 23 May 2009 with the 09:57 Bicester Town to Oxford First Great Western service. The headboard is advertising a new enhanced service which has been introduced by FGW, which is very commendable. Hhowever a little proof reading of the timetable would have helped, as the Saturday Bicester to Oxford times are shown as Oxford to Bicester! 165136 can be seen in the background working the 10:16 Oxford to Banbury train.

165128 Wolvercote 10 April 2010

165128 passes Wolvercote on 10 April 2010 with the 2L23 09:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. Note the recently upgraded up relief line on the right, which had until recently to make do with track that was last relaid in 1942!

165128 Mickleton 26 March 2012

165128 passes Mickleton on 26 March 2012 with the 1W32 12:21 Paddington to Great Malvern First Great Western service. Rapid tree growth on the recently cleared cutting side is likely to see this viewpoint disappear again shortly.

165128 Dorn 26 March 2012

More by luck than judgment, 165128 is perfectly framed beneath the farm occupation bridge at Dorn as it heads south on 26 March 2012 with the 2Y84 15:22 Great Malvern to Didcot First Great Western service. I had set up this shot with exactly this result in mind, but without a trial run, I could only guess that the back of the unit would be visible.

165128 & 166220 Ruscombe 22 July 2012

165128 & 166220 pass Ruscombe at speed on 22 July 2012. This is not quite what it might appear at first sight, as it is in fact the 1Z50 09:25 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western special service, booked to run non-stop throughout. Although running with a 1Zxx headcode, it is shown as an ECS working, so I'm not quite sure what is going on here. Slightly out of the ordinary, but not as interesting as the previous day's train running under the 1Z50 headcode, although in infinitely better light!

165128 Hinksey 1 January 2013

165128 passes Hinksey Yard on 1 January 2013 with the 2Z21 13:06 Oxford to Didcot Parkway First Great Western service, which is replacing the normal 2P54 13:07 Oxford to Paddington. The tower of Nuffield College can be seen in the background.

165128 South Moreton 28 April 2015

165128 passes South Moreton on 28 April 2015 with the 2P40 09:37 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. The ultra short train allows an unimpeded view of the electfrication depot on the site of Moreton Sidings. A sad sight, as it means the end of this view as far as photography is concerned.

165128 & 166220 Hinksey 20 January 2016

This is definitely an unusual Class 165/166 combination! Two car 165128 has been strengthened by the addition of centre coach 58609 from 166209, made all the more obvious by the interloper's different livery. It is pictured passing Hinksey on 20 January 2016 with the 2P60 14:37 Oxford to Paddington GWR service, running with 166220. Interestingly, I also have a photo of this same pair in a more conventional guise, taken a few years earlier.

165128 Kings Sutton 4 May 2016

When is a two car Class 165 not a two car unit? When its a Class 165/166 hybrid! 165128 has been strengthened by the addition of centre coach 58609 from 166209. This might go unnoticed, but for the fact that the centre coach is in GWR's later simplified livery, with a darker roof. The oddball unit accelerates away from Kings Sutton station (just out of sight around the corner) on 4 May 2016 with the 2L48 16:18 Oxford to Banbury service.

165128 Kennington 3 April 2017

165128 passes Kennington on 3 April 2017 with the 2L19 09:07 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service. Considering there are trees lining the railway for a fair distance, it is very fortunate that there are none next to this footbridge, certainly as far as photography is concerned!

165128 Oxford 12 December 2017

165128 leaves a snowy Oxford station on 12 December 2017 with the 2P52 12:37 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. For once the Met Office had got the weather forecast spot on. Freezing temperatures and full sun until the early afternoon, and then thin cloud would approach from the west, which was just starting to happen as this passed.

165128 Shorthampton 9 April 2018

Class 165s are common on the Cotswold Line, but this one is a little different, as instead of the usual Paddington to Moreton-in-Marsh, Great Malvern or Worcester services, this is something altogether different. 165128 passes Shorthampton in the rain on 9 April 2018 with the 5Q94 12:49 Wolverton Centre Sidings to Long Marston ECS. This Rail Operations Group working had presumably travelled via London due to gauging issues, as the loco hauled EMU stock moves from either Wolverton or Bedford travel via Birmingham. The sound of chainsaws could be heard in the distance here, as track workers (some of whom can just be seen underneath the bridge in the background) were carrying out some long overdue vegetation clearance.

165128 Fawler 22 June 2018

With the houses of Finstock crowning the hillside in the background, 165128 passes Fawler on 22 June 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. The train has just called at Finstock station. I shouldn't really have left it until 2018 to take this picture, as previously GWR's two car Class 165/1s were in the much more attractive blue livery, which would have contrasted nicely with the green landscape.

165128 Didcot North Junction 30 March 2019

With the masts of the abandoned Oxford line electfrication project dominating the background, 165128 approaches Didcot North Junction on 30 March 2019 with the 2L27 11:09 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service.

165129 Hinksey 8 December 1992

Having only entered traffic a few weeks earlier, 165129 passes Hinksey Yard on 8 December 1992 with crew training special. By this time all the three car Class 165/1s were in service, and consequently the borrowed Chiltern Line Class 165/0s had been returned to their rightful line. The final two car Class 165/1 entered service in March 1993.

165129 Radley 12 June 1994

No this is not the normal level of patronage at Radley station! 165129 arrives with the 15:25 Bicester Town to Reading service on 12 June 1994, whilst spectators throng the down platform waiting to see GWR 4-6-0 5029 Nunney Castle with a special train to mark the 150th anniversary of the Didcot to Oxford line.

165129 Shipton 13 May 1996

In perfect evening lighting, 165129 arrives at Shipton on the Cotswold Line with the 17:00 Reading to Moreton-in-Marsh service on 13 May 1996. This was one of only a handful of trains to call Shipton at this time, and even then it was a request stop! Note the combination of materials used in the former Oxford, Worcester & Wolverhampton Railway bridge, with stone being used for the arch and parapet, and brick being used for the retaining wing walls.

165129 Bruern 10 August 2007

165129 ambles through the Oxfordshire countryside near Bruern with the 06:50 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford First Great Western service on 10 August 2007. This was the only up service to call at all stations on the Cotswold Line at the time, hence the use of a 2 car Class 165, rather than a more usual Class 180, which would be too long for some of the platforms. This train was running to 'Cotswold Line Standard Time' (in other words, late!)

165129 Kings Sutton 28 April 2008

Running thirty minutes late, 165129 gathers speed after calling at Kings Sutton station with the 05:57 Reading to Banbury First Great Western service on 28 April 2008. The majority of FGW's trains to Banbury originate from Oxford, and so are purely local shuttle services. Obviously the longer journey for this train has given it amble opportunity to incur some delays.

165129 Chilson 12 September 2011

A lucky patch of sunshine on the Cotswold Line on 12 September 2011, as 165129 rounds the gentle curve between Shorthampton and Chilson with the late running 1W21 12:21 Paddington to Great Malvern First Great Western service. The signal on the left was added when the track was redoubled, earlier in the year.

165129 Oxford (Walton Well Road) 5 May 2012

Strange hand gestures from the driver of 165129 at Walton Well Road, Oxford, on 5 May 2012. The unit is working the 2L39 09:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. Note the green signal and feathers on the right for 165014 with the 2L08 09:28 Oxford to Bicester Town Chiltern Railways service.

165129 Lyneham 28 June 2012

The sheep in the field at Lyneham pay no attention to 165129 as it passes by with the 2E94 15:22 Great Malvern to Oxford First Great Western service on 28 June 2012. Unfortunately this location now suffers from that photographer's curse - lineside bushes. However, there is a sufficient gap for a two car unit.

165129 & 165135 Kennington 6 June 2013

A pair of two car Class 165/1s join forces to work the 2M56 17:24 Paddington to Banbury First Great Western service on 6 June 2013. 165129 & 165135 pass Kennington in superb evening light. These units would still have one more visit to the capital, before finally completing their day's work on arrival at Oxford Carriage Sidings at midnight.

165129 & 165130 Didcot North Junction 26 November 2017

With the masts of the forthcoming electfrication scheme disfiguring the background, 165129 & 165130 approach Didcot North Junction on 26 November 2017 with the 2P39 09:34 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. The line is going to be electrified as far as Appleford in the short term, so that the Didcot triangle is completely wired. Eventually the wires will then continue on to Oxford.

165129 & 165133 Oxford (Walton Well Road) 12 December 2017

12 December 2017 was not a good day for trains on the Cotswold Line, with several trains cancelled, for various reasons, presumably to do with the weather. This resulted in a couple of short notice empty stock workings. 165129 & 165133 approach Walton Well Road, Oxford, with the 5Z71 10:14 Worcester Shrub Hill to Reading Traincare Depot GWR ECS. The causes of the various cancellations according to Realtime Trains were: traction equipment failure, points failure, and high winds. This latter excuse was clearly a lie, as there wasn't a breath of wind all day!

165129 Didcot North Junction 16 February 2018

165129 approaches Didcot North Junction on 16 February 2018 with the 2L19 09:07 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service. The electrification of the Great Western Mainline from London to Didcot has not improved the lot of anyone travelling from Radley, Culham or Appleford towards London. Previously they just got on a local stopping train, now they have to change trains at Didcot.

165129 Bledington Heath 16 June 2018

165129 passes milepost 86, near Bledington Heath, on 16 June 2018 with the 5Q66 09:25 Long Marston to Reading Traincare Depot ECS. Although common enough on the Cotswold Line, what was not so common was watching this speed non-stop through Kingham station just to the south of this location, as apart from a pathing requirement stop at Charlbury, and another brief pause at Oxford, this empty stock working was booked to run without stopping from Honeybourne to Reading.

165129 Broughton Gifford 6 July 2018

The Melksham line has received a DMU upgrade, with Turbo units displaced from the Thames Valley taking over from Class 153s. 165129 passes Broughton Gifford on 6 July 2018 with the 2M09 12:49 Swindon to Frome GWR service.

165129 Gossington 17 December 2018

165129 passes Gossington on 17 December 2018 with the 2F97 08:50 Great Malvern to Westbury GWR service. After over two decades of photographing these units on Paddington to Oxford services, I am now photographing them in Gloucestershire, not only because they have moved their sphere of operations, but to a large extent so have I, because of the ugly electfrication infrastructure in the Thames Valley!

165130 Shottesbrooke 15 May 1993

165130 passes Shottesbrooke on 15 May 1993 with the 2F33 11:47 Paddington to Reading Network SouthEast service. 165130 had only been in traffic a few months when this picture was taken, and with deliveries of the class now complete, the long reign of the Pressed Steel Class 117s on these duties had come to an end. As can be seen from the dark menacing clouds in the background, this was a day of very sporadic sunshine, and I was very lucky to get this picture in the sun. Coincidentally, just over a year earlier I had photographed one of the hired in Chiltern Line units at this location in very similar lighting conditions.

165130 Radley 4 July 2002

165130 calls at Radley station on 4 July 2002 with the 06:48 Reading to Oxford 'all stations' Thames Trains service. Despite appearances, the unit is not showing an uncharacteristically smoky exhaust. Hidden behind the train, the cooling towers of Didcot Power Station are responsible for spoiling the otherwise completely blue sky.

165130 South Moreton (Didcot East) 28 October 2003

Looking smart in its freshly applied Thames Trains livery, 165130 crosses over from the up relief to the up main at South Moreton (Didcot East) on 28 October 2003 with the 10:45 Oxford to Paddington Thames Train service. They could have saved the cost of the paint though, as the following March the company was taken over by the First Group!

165130 Bletchingdon 23 April 2011

165130 passes the site of Bletchingdon station on 23 April 2011 with the 2L49 17:23 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. The bridge just behind the unit spans both the Oxford Canal and the River Cherwell, which at that point are just a few yards apart.

165130 Tackley 3 October 2011

165130 pulls away from Tackley station on 3 October 2011, after calling with the 2L47 15:08 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. Despite appearances, the car on the left is not waiting to cross the line, but is merely parked. The crossing was in fact closed as a vehicle crossing several years ago.

165130 Lower Basildon 30 March 2015

The electfrication is coming at Lower Basildon on 30 March 2015, but at least the fact that the masts adjacent to the bridge have yet to be installed, allows this reasonably uninterrupted view. 165130 runs along the up relief line with the 2P48 11:37 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service.

165130 Sonning 16 August 2016

Viewed from the lofty Bath Road bridge, 165130 runs through Sonning cutting on 16 August 2016 with the 2R41 13:42 Paddington to Reading GWR service, passing Network Rail's carefully maintained buddleia and sycamore nature reserve!

165130 Culham 25 February 2018

165130 approaches Culham in superb late afternoon light on 25 February 2018 with the 2L61 15:30 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service. The flat area in the foreground is the site of Culham's small goods yard, while dominating the background are a couple of hangars from the former Culham Airfield. The airfield was built in 1944, and opened as an aircraft receipt and dispatch unit for the Royal Navy, consequently it was bizarrely known as HMS Hornbill. The airfield closed in 1953, and after being used for storage for a number of years, was converted for use by the Atomic Energy Authority in 1960. It is now a world leading fusion energy research centre.

165130 Stonesfield 2 July 2018

Differing shades of green on the Cotswold Line. 165130 runs along the Evenlode Valley near Stonesfield on 2 July 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This is the line's only up 'all stations' stopper.

165130 Chilson 7 September 2018

Running 50 minutes early, 165130 passes Chilson on 7 September 2018 with the 5Q66 08:20 Reading Traincare Depot to Long Marston ECS. Just 23 seconds earlier, 165101 had passed by in the other direction with the 1P23 09:50 Moreton-in-Marsh to Paddington GWR service.

165130 Oxford 2 February 2019

165130 leaves Oxford station on 2 February 2019 with the late running 2L33 12:37 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service. The return trip on this train would cost you 6.80, but it would cost over three times that to park your car in the car park seen here!

165130 Didcot North Junction 19 April 2019

Shortly after sunrise on 19 April 2019, 165130 approaches Didcot North Junction with the 2L12 07:30 Didcot Parkway to Oxford GWR service. Since the electfrication of the Great Western Mainline, and the introduction of EMUs on local service from London to Didcot, passengers for Culham and Radley have had to change at Didcot into one of these shuttle services, whereas previously they had a through service. That's progress!

165130 Didcot North Junction 29 July 2019

165130 approaches Didcot North Junction in crisp early morning light on 29 July 2019 with the 2L12 07:30 Didcot Parkway to Oxford GWR service. This makes an interesting comparison to the picture that I took three months earlier of the same unit, working the same train. The vegetation looks a lot different, but the VGA vans in the background haven't moved!

165130 Appleford 15 August 2019

165130 approaches Appleford station at speed on 15 August 2019 with the 2L25 10:48 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This train runs non-stop, and therefore covers the ten miles between Oxford and Didcot in 12 minutes.

165130 Yarnton 29 October 2019

Viewed from the footbridge in the fields near Yarnton, 165130 heads northwards on 29 October 2019 with the 2M18 08:44 Didcot Parkway to Banbury GWR service. The lineside trees had recently been cleared, but only on the east side of the line.

165131 Wendlebury 13 March 1995

165131 passes under the M40 motorway at Wendlebury on 13 March 1995 with the 10:19 Bicester to Oxford service. This was during the transitionary period between the demise of Network SouthEast and the formation of Thames Trains. Although still running in NSE colours, this service was being operated by First Great Western Link. The motorway (which had been open for less than five years when this picture was taken) obviously carried less traffic in those days, or else I was very lucky not to have some brightly coloured vehicle spoiling the picture!

165131 South Moreton 29 February 1996

A meeting of Thames Valley local stopping trains at South Moreton on 29 February 1996. 165131 accelerates away from Didcot with the 2C23 09:04 Oxford to Reading service, while 165137 recedes into the distance with the balancing 2C22 09:03 Reading to Oxford working. There are plenty of Class 165 operated trains on this stretch of the line, but it is less easy to get a passing shot of a pair of two car units on the Reading to Oxfords, rather than the much more numerous three car workings on Paddington to Oxford, Banbury or Worcester trains.

165131 Denchworth (Circourt Bridge) 29 July 1999

165131 ambles along the down relief line at Circourt Bridge, Denchworth, on 29 July 1999 with the 17:58 Oxford to Bristol Temple Meads First Great Western service. Perhaps if some 'track bashers' had used this service to get some goods loop mileage, then it might have survived for more than a few years!

165131 Tackley 21 May 2009

165131 pulls away from Tackley station with the 17:22 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service on 21 May 2009. There is a dispenser on the station with leaflets for what is now branded the 'Oxford Canal Line' (a rather odd back handed compliment to a an earlier form of transport). I'm not sure if it will increase patronage, but I was quite pleased to see my picture of 165120 at Heyford in this North Oxford Canal Partnership publication!

165131 Wolvercote 2 August 2011

165131 passes Wolvercote on 2 August 2011 with the 2L45 12:42 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. Still no air conditioning on FGW's 165s (except for the driver), hence the open hopper windows on this hot summers day.

165131 Steeple Aston 2 May 2012

165131 passes through the tree lined cutting near Steeple Aston on 2 May 2012 with the 12:42 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. Not a very well known photographic location, as it requires a long walk from the nearest road!

165131 Charlbury 24 May 2016

165131 arrives at Charlbury on 24 May 2016 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford GWR service. This is the Cotswold Line's up morning local stopping train. Having just called at Ascott-under-Wychwood, after Charlbury it will call at Finstock and Combe, the only up train to do so. There is no sign of any modern palisade lineside fencing here. Note the ancient wooden fence visible in front of the large flowering hawthorn bush.

165131 Hinksey 6 February 2017

165131 passes Hinksey Yard on 6 February 2017 with the 2N30 10:57 Paddington to Oxford GWR service. A very gloomy day, but it does allow a picture to be taken from what would otherwise be a very backlit location.

165131 & 165135 Hinksey 30 March 2017

With a fleet of both two car, and three car Class 165/1s, it is easy for Thames Valley local services to be either two, three, four, five, or six coach trains. The four coach option is illustrated here, as 165131 & 165135 pass Hinksey Yard on 30 March 2017 with the 2P56 13:36 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. Heading in the opposite direction is 220006 with the 1M46 11:45 Bournemouth to Manchester Piccadilly CrossCountry service.

165131 Kennington 9 September 2017

165131 heads away from the camera at Kennington on 9 September 2017 with the 2N12 06:57 Paddington to Oxford GWR service. Not only is there a bit more width to a picture of a train on the northbound line, but also at this time of the morning the shadows are less of a problem.

165131 Hinksey 7 February 2018

165131 passes a rake of loaded DB Schenker MXA ballast wagons in Hinksey Yard, as it heads south on 7 February 2018 with the 2L31 12:07 Oxford to Didcot Parkway GWR service. The two car Class 165s are thankfully last in the pecking order for repainting into GWR's awful dark green livery, with the Class 166s being done first (mostly), followed by the three car Class 165s.

165131 Didcot North Junction 16 February 2018

Selected Recycled Materials! How long will it be before 165131 becomes what is being advertised on the side of J. Mould's lorry, seen crossing the bridge in the background? The unit has just passed its quarter of century in traffic, and despite electfrication changing its regular workings, looks set for many more years in service. It is pictured here passing Didcot North Junction with the 2V23 09:37 Banbury to Didcot Parkway GWR service on 16 February 2018.

165131 Up Hatherley 4 December 2018

165131 passes Up Hatherley on 4 December 2018 with the 2M97 08:23 Southampton Central to Great Malvern GWR service. Despite the absence of sunshine, I prefer this time of year for photography, as the various shades of yellow, red and brown look far better than the monotonous green of mid summer.

165131 Standish Junction 11 April 2019

165131 approaches Standish Junction on 11 April 2019 with the 2E18 08:45 Westbury to Gloucester GWR service. Although this unit returned shortly afterwards with the 2O89 10:42 Gloucester to Weymouth, this going away picture is much better, as the train is not partly in shadow, and hard up against the railings where the lines diverge. Furthermore, as the red LED tail lights have been caught in their 'off' cycle, only the line it is travelling on gives a clue to the direction of travel.

165131 Chalford 3 September 2019

165131 descends Sapperton Bank, and approaches Chalford, on 3 September 2019 with the 2G87 15:36 Swindon to Cheltenham Spa GWR service. Some recent tree clearance has opened up this view somewhat, but it is still massively overgrown compared with steam days, when this area was very popular with local photographers.

165132 Tackley 27 March 1993

165132 approaches Tackley on 27 March 1993 with the 2C45 14:15 Banbury to Oxford Network SouthEast service. In the 1990s this viewpoint was still relatively open, but in recent years the encroaching vegetation, caused by Network Rail's neglect has resulted in a severely compromised view of the sweeping curves.

165132 Honeybourne 2 May 1993

Honeybourne station in its minimalist phase. With the removal of the former shed just leaving a concrete base, a solitary 'bus shelter' is the only significant infrastructure visible in this 2 May 1993 view. 165132 calls with the 14:10 Hereford to Oxford Network SouthEast service.

165132 Aldermaston 6 November 1994

165132 rounds the curve near Aldermaston on 6 November 1994 with the 2K09 10:15 Paddington to Newbury Network SouthEast service. This was long before an ugly radio mast ruined the view. However, it is not a location I used very much, owing to the narrow road, with lots of traffic.

165132 Islip 2 December 1994

In a surprising patch of weak sunshine on an otherwise dull day, 165132 arrives at Islip station on 2 December 1994 with the 11:51 Bicester Town to Oxford Network SouthEast service. This route is shortly to be dramatically transformed from what is effectively a branch line from Oxford (as far a passengers services go), into part of a through route to London, courtesy of Chiltern Railways. While it does seem a little perverse to leave Oxford in a northerly direction to go to the capital, the timings to Marylebone via a new curve at Bicester are promised to be comparable with the more conventional route via Didcot. Islip station, which was re-opened in 1989 will be rebuilt with two platforms.

165132 Islip 8 April 1995

The old order at Islip, long before Chiltern Railways upgraded the route, and reinstated the double track. 165132 approaches the station on 8 April 1995 with the 2C37 11:51 Bicester Town to Oxford service, one of just a handful of trains on the line at this time. The track was still laid with vintage 95lb per yard bullhead rail, and the connection to the oil depot was still in situ. Latterly the oil depot supplied aviation fuel to nearby USAF Upper Heyford, but that had closed the previous year. Unfortunately I never did see an oil train at this location.

165132 Finstock 19 August 1996

The only train in the up direction to call at Finstock on the Cotswold Line during the 1990s was the 07:02 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford service. On 19 August 1996 165132 calls to pick up two passengers, one of whom is going to test the Turbo unit's limited storage capacity for bikes. It is hard to believe now that until the mid 1980s, Finstock's [platform was on the other side of the track, underneath the bushes on the right. Although Network SouthEast was defunct by this time, not only does the unit still carry the livery, but the lamposts have had a fresh coat of red paint!

165132 Hinksey 28 April 1999

165132 passes Hinksey Yard on 28 April 1999 with the 17:00 Reading to Moreton-in-Marsh Thames Trains service. This was the Cotswold Line's evening local service, calling at all the stations, including the little used Combe, Finstock and Ascott-under-Wychwood stations.

165132 Kings Sutton 3 March 2010

165132 passes Kings Sutton on 3 March 2010 with the 12:39 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. This local service, which in addition to calling at nearby Kings Sutton (also served by Chiltern Railways trains), serves Heyford and Tackley stations, runs every three hours. The majority of the passengers trains on the route being operated by CrossCountry.

165132 Bruern 23 June 2010

There is a fine crop of beans in the field next to the line at Bruern, as 165132 passes by on 23 June 2010 with the 06:51 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford First Great Western service. This is the only up train of the day to call at all the smaller stations (Shipton, Ascott-under-Wychwood, Finstock & Combe) and consequently is usually the only train on the Cotswold Line to utilise a two car Class 165. Shipton alone out of these stations has the luxury of one additional service, but platform length at the other stations precludes the use of a three car set.

165132 Chilson 25 May 2012

Weak early morning sunshine at Chilson on 25 May 2012. 165132 runs over the recently reinstated double track with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford First Great Western service. This train is the only up train of the day to call at Ascott-under-Wychwood (the village behind the trees in the background).

165132 Radley 31 August 2012

165132 approaches Radley on 31 August 2012 with the 2P40 09:36 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. This train will not be stopping at Radley, but will call at the next small station on the Thames Valley route - Appleford.

165132 Radley 30 January 2013

165132 is probably travelling at or near its top speed of 90 mph, as it speeds past Radley on 30 January 2013 with the 2P56 13:37 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. This location is unfortunately compromised by the ash tree on the left, which despite Network Rail's vegetation clearance, still intrudes into the picture for a slightly wider view such as this. However, I guessed that there would be just enough room to fit this two car unit in the available gap.

165132 Hinksey 4 June 2013

Two car 165132 leads an unidentified three car classmate towards Hinksey on 4 June 2013 with the 2N52 16:25 Paddington to Oxford First Great Western service. Kennington Junction can be seen in the background, with the freight only branch line to Morris Cowley curving away to the left.

165132 Oxford (Walton Well Road) 13 July 2013

165132 approaches Walton Well Road, Oxford, on 13 July 2013 with the 2L39 09:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. Very unusually, the 1W00 08:21 Paddington to Hereford HST, led by 43161, has been routed along the down relief line, and is seen here stopped at a red signal. This was because of the failure of an axle counter on the Cotswold Line.

165132 Chilson 15 April 2014

Fine early morning lighting at Chilson on 15 April 2014, as 165132 accelerates away from Ascott-under-Wychwood with the Cotswold Line's only truly local up train - the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford First Great Western service. It is the only train in this direction to call at Ascott-under-Wychwood (behind the trees in the distance), and is complimented by the 2E95 17:15 Didcot Parkway to Great Malvern for returning passengers. The building on the right is Ascott Mill, while the spire of Shipton-under-Wychwood can just be seen in the distance.

165132 Sonning 16 August 2016

Two competing forms of transport at Sonning. As the ornate Warren Road bridge only carries a minor road over the railway, there isn't generally much traffic. However, a solitary car crosses the bridge on 16 August 2016, just as 165132 passes underneath with the 2N44 14:27 Paddington to Oxford GWR 'all stations' service.

165132 Moreton-in-Marsh 19 April 2018

165132 passes Moreton-in-Marsh's down home signal on 19 April 2018, as it accelerates away from the station with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR local stopping service. I was very glad to see that this was one of the diminishing number of Class 165s still in First Great Western's blue livery, a colour scheme that looks so much better than GWR's drab green. Photo taken from a farm occupation crossing, the view from which has been improved recently with the removal of some trees, although the two new signal cabinets in the foreground, replacing the single one behind, are now slightly intrusive.

165132 Fiddington 16 July 2018

Previously restricted to suburban services out of Paddington, including Oxford and Newbury area and Cotswold Line local services, the Class 165/1 fleet started to spread further afield from late 2017, with the arrival in the London area of the Class 387 25kV EMUs. 165132 passes Fiddington on 16 July 2018 with the 2F97 08:50 Great Malvern to Westbury GWR service.

165132 Standish Junction 24 July 2018

165132 takes the 'Golden Valley' route at Standish Junction on 24 July 2018 with the 2B92 11:20 Cheltenham Spa to Swindon GWR service. Some tree clearance work on the right has opened up this view a little, but it's still nothing like it was in the 1980s!

165132 Kemble 3 January 2019

165132 approaches Kemble station on 3 January 2019 with the 2G85 13:36 Swindon to Cheltenham Spa GWR service, while something much more unusual was approaching from the opposite direction. Note the new overspill car park in what was a field in the background.

165132 Chalford 21 June 2019

As well as the Class 800/2 and Turbo operated passenger trains on the Cheltenham to Swindon line, there are also a couple of daily empty stock movements. Here we see 165132 passing Chalford on 21 June 2019 with the 5B90 09:06 Cheltenham Spa to Swindon ECS. Note that the lush green vegetation even extends over the track near St Mary's Crossing signal box in the background!

165133 Islip 30 April 1993

Islip station pictured when it was a sleepy backwater on what was effectively a branch line. 165133 arrives with the 2C28 10:30 Reading to Bicester Town Network SouthEast service on 20 April 1993. The only thing that survives from this picture is the bridge in the background, although 165133 is still in service, but not on this route now, since the line's transfer to Chiltern Railways.

165133 Bicester Town 30 April 1993

165133 accelerates away from Bicester Town station (just visible in the background) on 30 April 1993 with the 2C37 11:44 Network SouthEast service to Oxford. Lurking in the mist behind the level crossing is 56033, waiting to follow it down the single line to Oxford with the 4C13 11:21 Calvert to Bristol binliner empties.

165133 Culham 30 June 1994

The fields to the south of the A415 at Culham could usually be guaranteed to produce a superb show of poppies in the 1990s. 165133 passes the colourful scene on 30 June 1994 with the 2C60 18:20 Didcot Parkway to Oxford Network SouthEast service.

165133 Heyford 13 March 1995

165133 arrives at Heyford station on 13 March 1995 with the 2C27 09:20 Banbury to Reading service. Plenty of evidence of Network SouthEast ownership here, with red lampposts and NSE stock. However, that organisation had officially ceased to exist the previous year, and the privatisation process was in full swing, although it would be the following year before the short lived Thames Trains franchise would take over these Oxford area local trains.

165133 Souldern 15 August 2008

165133 passes Souldern with the 09:38 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service on 15 August 2008. To get to this remote location requires a walk of nearly a mile along the towpath of the Oxford Canal, and then involves crossing one of the distinctive lifting bridges. Ironically I arrived at this bridge just as a narrowboat with just one person on board was negotiating the bridge, which naturally took some time. I only saw one other boat on the move on this quiet section of canal during my walk both there and back!

165133 Wolvercote 15 August 2008

165133 passes Wolvercote on 15 August 2008 with the 12:38 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. The up relief line is gradually getting separated from the main line by an impromptu hedge, thanks to Network Rail's negligence!

165133 Oxford North Junction 13 June 2010

165133 approaches Oxford North Junction on 13 June 2010 with the 10:00 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service. A brief sunny interlude on an otherwise generally dull day. The line of willow trees hides Port Meadow from view. Both the Aristotle Lane footbridge that this picture is taken from and Walton Well Road bridge in the background are popular access points to this large area of common land.

165133 Tackley 19 November 2010

In the very last light of a fine autumnal afternoon, 165133 approaches Tackley on 19 November 2010 with the 2L47 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. The late autumn colours are mainly provided by red hawthorn berries, but there are still a surprising amount of leaves on some of the trees (especially the oaks). The shadows were rapidly advancing across the field in the foreground, and just a few minutes after I took this picture the track itself had been engulfed in shadow. 

165133 Upper Heyford 23 March 2011

Watched by a couple of rabbits in the field, 165133 heads south past Upper Heyford on 23 March 2011 with 2L49 17:22 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. The farm buildings on the horizon are actually near the village of Somerton. The long lens needed at the end of the day to avoid the advancing shadows has compressed the perspective somewhat.

165133 & 165137 Tackley 29 June 2015

165133 & 165137 slowly approach Tackley with the 2M56 17:25 Paddington to Banbury First Great Western service on 29 June 2015. This was a mere nine minutes late. However, the following day, when temperatures reached 29c, it didn't even get this far, terminating at Oxford at staggering 72 minutes late! Its a good job Network Rail doesn't run the railways in Australia or India!

165133 & 165122 Appleford 30 June 2015

165133 & 165122 approach Appleford on 30 June 2015 with the 2P68 16:37 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. The bridge in the background carries the line over the River Thames. This view has recently been opened up considerably by the removal of lineside vegetation.

165133 Oxford North Junction 25 March 2017

A close up view of 165133, as it passes Oxford North Junction on 25 March 2017 with the 2L47 15:08 Banbury to Oxford GWR service. The portakabins, and general clutter in the background is left over from the reconstruction of the Oxford to Bicester line, and associated track improvements approaching Oxford.

165133 Charlbury 14 June 2017

165133 arrives at Charlbury on 14 June 2017 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This is the only train on the Cotswold Line that is normally operated by a two car Class 165. It is the line's early morning local stopping service, calling at all the stations between Moreton-in-Marsh and Oxford.

165133 Shorthampton 7 September 2018

165133 passes Shorthampton on 7 September 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. This picture should really have been taken the previous year, when the Class 165 would have been in First Great Western blue, and would therefore have stood out much better against the browns and greens of the Cotswold landscape.

165134 Ascott-under-Wychwood 25 July 1995

A solitary passenger waits to board 165134 as it arrives at Ascott-under-Wychwood with the 07:00 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford service on 25 July 1995. This was one of only two up passengers services to call at this station at the time. The low morning sun and the inclusion of the solitary figure makes this one of my favourite Cotswold Line pictures. The train has just joined the long single track section to Wolvercote Junction, the end of the double track section can just be seen in the background. A siding was retained at Ascott until the 1980s, surprisingly surviving the track singling in 1971. It was principally used for the infrequent coal deliveries to the small yard, but I only ever saw it used once for the storage of a tamper unit. The remains of the end loading dock can be seen on the left.

165134 Castle Bar Park 20 April 2002

165134 emerges from Drayton Green Tunnel, and approaches Castle Bar Park on 20 April 2002 with the 11:31 Paddington to Greenford Thames Trains service. Drayton Green Tunnel is a 'cut and cover' construction, allowing Copley Close, with its associated blocks of flats to be built directly over the railway line.

165134 Aynho 27 March 2012

The sheep at Aynho (with one exception!) gather round the feeding trough, and ignore 165134, as it passes by in the background with the 2P42 09:39 Banbury to Paddington First Great Western service on 27 March 2012 . Note the Chiltern Line flyover in the background.

165134 Bramley 22 July 2012

Definitely not the most photogenic of locations! 165134 rolls into Bramley station on 22 July 2912 with the 2J25 10:39 Reading to Basingstoke First Great Western service. A reasonably busy station, even in the middle of the day, as the station is in the centre of the village, with the level crossing splitting the village in half.

165134 Shorthampton 4 March 2013

165134 passes Shorthampton in hazy spring sunshine on 4 March 2013. This is not quite the everyday scene that it appears to be, as this train is a last minute substitution for a train that failed earlier on its journey. The errant train was the 1W32 12:21 Paddington to Great Malvern First Great Western service, which failed at Reading. Presumably this was one of the still not totally reliable Class 180s. Showing commendable quick thinking and surprising initiative given the lack of flexibility on today's railway, someone managed to arrange for this two car Class 165 to form the special 1Z32 13:25 Oxford to Worcester Foregate Street. Given the circumstances it is hardly surprising that it was running 20 minutes behind time when it passed me.

165134 & 166201 Moulsford 4 September 2013

165134 & 166201 pass Moulsford on 4 September 2013 with the 2N52 16:25 Paddington to Oxford First Great Western service. Note the difference in roof profiles, with the Class 166 having more clutter caused by the air conditioning units, which 165134 lacks.

165134 & 165104 Cholsey 2 January 2015

165134 & 165104 run along the up relief line at Cholsey on 2 January 2015 with the 1P41 12:01 Oxford to Paddington First Great Western service. Although I did visit this location a number of times, the impending destruction of the viewpoint by the 25kV catenary reminds me that I should have visited more often.

165134 Hinksey 11 February 2016

165134 passes the lines of ballast wagons in Hinksey Yard on 11 February 2016, as it heads south with the 2P52 12:37 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. In the background both the new and old footbridges than span the north end of the yard can be seen, and just visible behind, the yellow front indicates the presence of 31452, waiting in the loop, running as the 0Y57 09:00 Derby to Eastleigh light engine.

165134 Radley 5 May 2016

165134 approaches Radley on 5 May 2016 with the 2P48 11:37 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. How much longer will the vintage concrete post lineside fence, with its decades growth of lichen survive? As this is not too far from the village of Radley, surely the Network Rail vandals will want to install their dreaded palisade fencing!

165134 & 165120 Didcot North Junction 28 August 2017

165134 & 165120 approach Didcot North Junction on 28 August 2017 with the 1P37 10:31 Oxford to London Paddington GWR service. This location has been transformed by the removal of the high voltage wires that effectively prevented this view from the roadbridge. This is just as well, as the alternative lower viewpoint has been become increasingly overgrown.

165134 Oxford 12 December 2017

165134 leaves Oxford station on 12 December 2017 with the 2P50 12:07 GWR local service to Reading. In the background, 66025 slowly approaches a red signal on the up through line, with the 6C58 11:55 Oxford Banbury Road to Whatley Quarry Mendip Rail stone empties. This is booked to wait there for a few minutes, but unfortunately on this occasion its departure corresponded with the 6M50 07:55 Westbury to Bescot engineers train heading in the opposite direction!

165134 Adlestrop 5 April 2018

The Mute Swan takes no notice of either me, or the train, as 165134 passes Adlestrop on 5 April 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. I hadn't intended to photograph this here, but seeing the swan sat in the partly flooded field, I thought it might be worth a look.

165134 Didcot North Junction 20 April 2018

165134 cautiously approaches Didcot North Junction on 20 April 2018 with the 1P34 16:01 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. The signal on the right will be displaying the 'feathers' to route the unit off the direct line, and into the station.

165134 Moreton-in-Marsh (Dunstall Bridge) 6 August 2018

165134 accelerates away from Moreton-in-Marsh station on 6 August 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. I wonder how many years it will be before the two maize fields behind the train are covered in houses, just like the ones in the background?

165134 Cam & Dursley 26 March 2019

165134 calls at Cam & Dursley station on 26 March 2019 with the 2E18 08:45 Westbury to Gloucester GWR service. Since my last visit here, the field in the background has sprouted that most modern of rural crops - the field of photovoltaic panels, normally marketed as a solar farm.

165134 Cashes Green 11 April 2019

165134 passes Cashes Green on 11 April 2019 with the 2B90 09:18 Cheltenham Spa to Swindon GWR service. Although it looks like a cloudless day, there was in fact a lot of cloud building up behind me, and I was fairly lucky to get this in the sun. The Met Office had predicted a sunny morning, followed by more cloud in the afternoon. In reality, the reverse happened.

165134 Bowbridge 11 April 2019

165134 passes Bowbridge on 11 April 2019 with the 2B94 13:20 Cheltenham Spa to Swindon GWR service. It is accelerating away from Stroud station, and has just crossed the viaduct over the River Frome and the main road into Stroud.

165134 Chalford 6 July 2019

165134 passes Chalford on 6 July 2019 with the 2B92 12:01 Cheltenham Spa to Swindon GWR service. This picture graphically illustrates the appalling state that Network Rail have let the track get into at this location. Total lack of maintenance has seen the down line become just two rails in a verdant carpet of greenery! Apart from the gauge, it reminds me of pictures of the Talyllyn Railway, when the present society took over in 1951. What is not particularly obvious from this angle, is that there is a short retaining wall next to the down line, the vegetation on the left being at a higher level. Recent tree clearance has opened up this view considerably, but still nothing has been dome to the nature reserve on the tracks. Old time gangers would have a fit if they saw this!

165134 Oaksey 22 October 2019

165134 passes Oaksey on 22 October 2019 with the 2G87 15:36 Swindon to Cheltenham Spa GWR service. I haven't Photshopped out the red tail lights, the flickering nature of the LEDs means I have caught them in the 'off' position. The frames before and after (at ten frames per second) both showed red lights.

165135 Oddington 27 November 1993

The Oxford to Bicester line when it was still a rural backwater, with just a single line of vintage bullhead track. 165135 passes Oddington on 27 November 1993 with the 2C28 11:27 Oxford to Bicester Town Network SouthEast service.

165135 Kings Sutton 12 September 2003

Not a variation of Network SouthEast livery with a reincarnation of the old style 'whiskers', but the result of driver using the screen washers. 165135 accelerates away from Kings Sutton station on 12 September 2003 with the 15:18 Paddington to Banbury Thames Trains service.

165135 Steeple Aston 27 July 2015

Dappled shade on the Cherwell Valley line near Steeple Aston on 27 July 2015. 165135 heads north through the trees with the 2L44 11:45 Oxford to Banbury First Great Western service. I wasn't expecting sunshine, otherwise I would have chosen a less overgrown location!

165135, 165132 & 165130 South Moreton 10 September 2015

When First Great Western require a six coach train for one of their Thames Valley services, the usual solution is a pair of three car units, either Class 165/1 or 166. However, on 10 September 2015, the 2P60 14:37 Oxford to Paddington service was formed of three two car units instead. 165135, 165132 & 165130 are pictured passing South Moreton. In the background is the electrification depot, which was constructed on the site of the former wartime Moreton Sidings.

165135 & 165137 Sonning 16 August 2016

165135 & 165137 team up to work the 2N38 12:57 Paddington to Oxford GWR service on 16 August 2016, seen here passing through the iconic location of Sonning cutting. There is plenty of evidence of recent tree clearance, unfortunately this is for the forthcoming electrification, which will spoil this view forever.

165135 Ascott-under-Wychwood 7 April 2017

Rush hour at Ascott-under-Wychwood! 165135 arrives with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford GWR service on 7 April 2017. This is the only up train of the day to call at this village station, and also the only Cotswold Line train to routinely use a two car Class 165.

165135 Oxford 12 December 2017

165135 accelerates away from Oxford station on 12 December 2017 with the 1P41 12:01 Oxford to Paddington GWR service. Piles of snow covered sleepers now occupy what was once a pair of sidings, known locally as the 'West Midlands Sidings'.

165135 Combe (Grintleyhill Bridge) 19 January 2018

165135 is almost lost in the landscape, as it runs down the Evenlode Valley on 19 January 2018 with the 1P23 09:50 Moreton-in-Marsh to Paddington GWR service. Grintleyhill Bridge near Combe is the location, a spot that gives an almost aerial view of the line, but which unfortunately no longer allows the wider view that was once possible.

165136 Challow 26 January 2000

The setting sun gives a golden glow to 165136 as it passes through the site of Challow station on 26 January 2000 with the 15:31 Oxford to Bristol Temple Meads First Great Western service. This was a short lived attempt to give a direction connection between the two cities. Ironically, it might have succeeded if stations like Challow had still been open. All the infrequent service did was just save the prospective passenger from changing trains at Didcot.

165136 Radley 30 July 2001

Self portrait at Radley on 30 July 2001. 165136 arrives at the station with the 2C55 17:31 Oxford to Reading Thames Trains service. Visible in the mirror are the then recently installed barriers that fence off part of the platform. This seems a bizarre thing to do when you surely want to ensure people strand well back from passing non-stop trains!

165136 & 165109 Waltham St Lawrence 27 July 2007

For a while during 2006 & 2007, First Great Western Turbo unit 165136 wore 'Back the Bid, London 2012 Olympics' vinyls. It is seen here passing Waltham St Lawrence with conventionally liveried classmate 165109 with the 11:45 Paddington to Reading First Great Western service on 27 July 2007. Unfortunately this is the only picture I managed to get of this unique and quite obviously unrepeatable livery.

165136 Wolvercote Junction 11 February 2008

165136 approaches Wolvercote Junction on 11 February 2008 with the 15:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. It is just about to pass over the bridge spanning Duke's Cut - a short connecting waterway between the River Thames and the Oxford Canal.

165136 Oxford (Walton Well Road) 23 May 2009

165136 slows down on the approach to Oxford station, as it passes Walton Well Road on 23 May 2009 with the 2L39 09:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. Note that both relief lines have recently be relaid and ballasted.

165136 Kidlington 4 June 2009

165136 passes Kidlington on 4 June 2009 with the 15:07 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. Although Kidlington has a population of over 14,000 it does not have a railway station. The original station closed in 1964 and although the village has grown considerably since then, it seems a little odd that this train has called at Kings Sutton, Heyford and Tackley, all of which retained their stations despite being much smaller settlements even in 1964. The bridge in the background carries the Kidlington to Thrupp footpath.

165136 Water Eaton (Banbury Road) 7 October 2010

A scene soon to be transformed beyond all recognition. 165136 passes the Banbury Road stone terminal near Water Eaton on 7 October 2010 with the 2L11 11:30 Bicester Town to Oxford First Great Western service. This will be the site of the new Water Eaton Parkway station, which will be a major calling point on the proposed Chiltern Railways Oxford to London (via Bicester) service. To accommodate this, the stone depot will be shifted, and of course the units that pass this way will be in a different livery!

165136 Kidlington (Sandy Lane) 21 January 2017

165136 has just passed Sandy Lane level crossing (next to the house in the background), near Kidlington, on 21 January 2017, as it works the 2L39 09:08 Banbury to Oxford GWR service. It is obviously the farmer who keeps the lineside hedge neatly trimmed, as Network Rail certainly wouldn't be bothered with such basic trackside maintenance!

165136 Kennington 9 September 2017

Dramatic lighting at Kennington on 9 September 2017. 165136 heads south with the 2P44 10:37 Oxford to Paddington GWR service, just a few minutes before the dark clouds in the background reached the sun, and put and end to this stunning lighting.

165136 Norton 7 July 2018

One of the very last Class 165s to retain First Great Western's blue livery, 165136 passes Norton on 7 July 2018 with the 1Z50 16:00 Moreton-in-Marsh to Great Malvern GWR service. All of the three car 165s had been repainted into GWR's sombre green livery by early 2018, and the two cars units were quickly following them into drabness, with just a handful of blue ones left by early summer. Cotswold Line trains were only working as far south as Moreton-in-Marsh on this occasion, due to extensive engineering works taking place at Oxford. Just visible in the background is 67024, which was held at signals with the Belmond Pullman 1Z96 16:35 Worcester Shrub Hill to Victoria VSOE charter, which was running a little early.

165136 Didcot North Junction 2 August 2018

165136, one of the very last Class 165s to retain First Great Western's 'Dynamic Lines' livery, approaches Didcot North Junction on 2 August 2018 with the 2L14 07:39 Reading to Oxford GWR service. This had been momentarily held at the signal in the background by the late running 1D15 07:21 Paddington to Oxford.

165136 Wolvercote 2 August 2018

A new operating practice can now be witnessed at Wolvercote, after the reinstatement of the down relief line. With passenger trains heading north from Oxford station using the new relief line, and freight trains from the south using the main line, this scenario will now become commonplace. 165136 runs along the down relief on 2 August 2018 with the late running 2M54 17:01 Reading to Banbury GWR service, while in the background 66519 is held at the signal with the 0M28 18:16 Hinksey to Bescot light engine move. Clearly this wide view of the location is not going to last much longer, once the newly planted trees in the foreground get established.

165136 Tackley 7 February 2019

Superb lighting and a dramatic sky at Tackley on 7 February 2019. After calling to pick up a couple of passengers, 165136 gets under way again with the 2V45 15:07 Banbury to Didcot Parkway GWR service. Considering it is only a small village station, Tackley has a very good service, although there are a couple of oddities in the timetable, like a 05:27 departure for Banbury, followed by another at 05:49! I doubt if either of those are very busy!

165137 Shrivenham (Ashbury Crossing) 19 August 1998

165137 catches the evening light as it approaches the site of Ashbury Crossing (near Shrivenham) on 19 August 1998 with the newly introduced 18:23 Bicester Town to Bristol Temple Meads service. This train was operated jointly by Thames Trains and Great Western Trains. Thames operating the Bicester to Oxford section, and Great Western taking over from there. Although the idea of a direct Oxford to Bristol service seemed like a good idea, patronage was low, and the service only lasted for a few years. The site of the old down relief line at this location is often used for the storage of engineering equipment, and on this occasion brand new crossover pointwork is being stored, pending its installation nearby (presumably at Bourton).

165137 Yarnton Junction (site of) 5 May 2007

165137 has just passed the site of Yarnton Junction on 5 May 2007 with the 16:52 Paddington to Hereford First Great Western service. This was a bit of a surprise, as this was booked for a Class 180 unit. The substitution of a Class 166 would not have been too out of place, but a two car Class 165 is usually reserved for the daily 'all stations' local train.

165137 Yarnton 2 February 2008

165137 passes Yarnton with the 09:02 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service on 2 February 2008. This was one of those days when the weather forecasters promised sun virtually all day, instead after a bright start high cloud rapidly developed, so that shortly after this picture was taken the sun disappeared, only to reappear briefly during the rest of the day.

165137 Aldermaston 1 August 2009

In the pouring rain, 165137 pulls away from Aldermaston station with the 09:12 Reading to Newbury First Great Western service on 1 August 2009. This all stations train generally runs hourly, with another hourly train to Bedwyn slotted in to give Theale and Thatcham the luxury of a half hourly service.  Only a couple of passengers wanted to travel to Newbury this particular morning.

165137 Chilson 4 May 2011

165137 passes Chilson on 4 May 2011 with the 2E92 06:51 Worcester Foregate Street to Oxford 'all stations' First Great Western service. This view makes an interesting comparison to the scene two years previously, when 165119 was pictured on the same train. The reinstated, but as yet unballasted track is here on the up side of the current running line, switching to the opposite a little further along at Shorthampton. The building on the right is Ascott-under-Wychwood Mill, situated some way from Ascott village, which can just be seen in the distance behind the train.

165137 Oxford North Junction 12 July 2014

165137 passes Oxford North Junction on 12 July 2014 with the 2L33 07:03 Banbury to Oxford First Great Western service. This picture gives a good view of the works taking place to reinstate the former down relief line. As can be seen by the newly laid aggregate, this line was some distance from the main running lines, separated by a stream. The unit is just crossing the footpath crossing to the Trap Grounds allotments, which Network Rail want to close, when the footbridge from which this picture is taken from is rebuilt.

165137 Oxford 1 April 2015

165137 leaves Oxford station on 1 April 2015 with the 5P34 08:06 Oxford Down Carriage Sidings to Didcot Parkway First Great Western ECS service. Just visible in the background to the right of the Voyager and Turbo is LNER B1 4-6-0 steam loco 61306 Mayflower, which will shortly be pulling into the station to pick up its passengers for a railtour to Kingswear.

165137 Hinksey 20 January 2016

An unusual daily move in the Oxford area is the 5L00 12:49 Oxford Up Carriage Sidings to Oxford Down Carriage Sidings (via Didcot) ECS. This is a route refresher for Oxford drivers, covering Foxhall curve at Didcot. 165137 passes the lake at Hinksey on 20 January 2016. But for the fact that there are clearly no passengers, it doesn't look a lot different to a normal service train. The same could not be said when it returned.

165137 Hinksey 20 January 2016

165137 runs slowly along No.1 reception road, in Hinksey Yard, on 20 January 2016, as it returns from Didcot with the 5L00 12:49 Oxford Up Carriage Sidings to Oxford Down Carriage Sidings driver route refresher. In the background is the tail end of the 4O21 09:15 Trafford Park to Southampton Western Docks intermodal, led by 66120. 70807 is stabled on the right.

165137 & 166219 Hinksey 2 November 2016

Blue liveried two car Class 165/1 165137 was paired with green liveried three car Class 166 166219 on the 1P41 12:01 Oxford to Paddington GWR service on 2 November 2016. The colourful combination is pictured passing Hinksey Yard.

165137 Didcot North Junction 25 April 2017

165137 approaches Didcot North Junction on 25 April 2017 with the 2N10 06:27 Paddington to Oxford GWR service. Chiltern Railways usually keep their 165/0s in immaculate condition, but some of Great Western's 165/1s are looking quite shabby. Note the blotchy and faded front end. It seems the two car units are going to be the last of the Turbo fleet to receive the new dark green livery.

165137 Cassington 11 May 2018

165137 passes Cassington on 11 May 2018 with the 2E92 06:53 Worcester Foregate Street to Didcot Parkway GWR service. I had carefully positioned myself here in order to leave just enough room for the two coach train, whilst also giving an unobstructed view of the picturesque brick arched bridge. I just about got it right!

165137 Wolvercote 25 June 2018

165137 slowly passes a pile of new track panels at Wolvercote on 25 June 2018, as it works the 2M54 17:01 Reading to Banbury GWR service. It was approaching a red signal, as the 1P40 17:38 Moreton-in-Marsh to Paddington HST was crossing over from the Cotswold Line at Wolvercote Junction, a short distance to the north. The HST was 15 minutes late, and the DMU was 20 minutes late, which just about sums up the atrocious timekeeping that we have now come to expect from GWR!

165137 Wolvercote Junction 31 October 2018

165137 passes Wolvercote Junction on 31 October 2018 with the 2V35 12:34 Banbury to Didcot Parkway GWR service. Unfortunately not much autumn colour on the trees, and with all the Class 165 fleet now in this drab green livery, not much colour on the train either!

165137 Kemble Wick 8 August 2019

165137 passes Kemble Wick on 8 August 2019 with the 2B94 13:20 Cheltenham Spa to Swindon GWR service. I expect the residents of the house in the trees are glad of the embankment strengthening that has taken place here recently. At least their house shouldn't be suffering from subsidence cracks!

Class 165 Bath Spa 17 July 1999

A fine panoramic view of Bath Spa, with the Roman Catholic church dominating the centre of the picture. A Class 165/1 unit approaches the station with the 07:51 Oxford to Bristol Temple Meads service. Despite scanning the original slide at 6400dpi, I cannot read the small bodyside numbers, so unless anybody has a record of this train on 17 July 1999, I'm afraid it will remain unidentified.