Railway Miscellany

Barry Scrapyard 25 March 1987

The unmistakable sight of steam locomotives rusting away in Dai Woodham's scrapyard at Barry. I had visited the yard in 1973, and took some very poor B&W Instamatic photos, but it wasn't until 1987, when the number of locos in the yard had reduced considerably, that I returned to the yard armed with a proper camera and some Kodachrome 64. This is the scene on 25 March 1987, with Southern Railway rebuilt West Country Class 4-6-2 34046 Braunton prominent in the foreground, next to LMS 8F 2-8-0 48173. In the distance, between these two, is Merchant Navy 4-6-2 35011 General Steam Navigation. On the left is Stanier Black Five 4-6-0 44901, and completing this diverse line up, the two locos on the right are GWR 42xx 2-8-0Ts 4253 & 5227.

Barry Scrapyard 25 March 1987

Dai Woodham's scrapyard at Barry, pictured on 25 March 1987. The tenderless loco in the centre of the picture is LMS Black Five 4-6-0 44901. It is surrounded by GWR 2-6-2 tanks, with 'Small Prairie' 45xx 2-6-2T 5539 alongside, and 'Large Prairie' 5101 2-6-2T 4115 in front. In the background is Southern Merchant Navy 4-6-2 35011 General Steam Navigation.

Barry Scrapyard 25 March 1987

A melancholy scene at Dai Woodham's scrapyard at Barry, photographed on 25 March 1987. LMS Class 8F 2-8-0 48173 is marked up for sale to the Bitton Railway 8F Group. In the foreground is GWR 45xx 2-6-2T 5539, with LMS 'Black Five' 4-6-0 44901 just behind. This was in particularly poor condition (note the sections cut out of the smokebox), and although saved from the yard, has still not yet been restored.

Bedwyn Derailment 7 May 1983

Bedwyn station pictured on 7 May 1983, the day after a stone train derailed whist passing through, partly demolishing the platform. The errant MSV open wagon that caused the accident can be seen dumped in the old bay platform on the left. The rails have already been removed, and work is about to start to clear up the mess, with a train of Grampus wagons waiting to receive the spoil.

Bedwyn Derailment 7 May 1983

Clearance work at Bedwyn station on 7 May 1983, the day after a stone train derailed, damaged the up line. With both lines closed, a digger gets to work loading a train of Grampus wagons with ballast and damaged sleepers.

Bedwyn Derailment 7 May 1983

The damaged MSV wagon that caused the derailment at Bedwyn station on 6 May 1983, pictured the following day unceremoniously dumped upside down in the old bay platform. Note that one axle has been completely ripped away in the accident.

Bedwyn Derailment 7 May 1983

Grampus wagon DB991769 receives another shovel full of ballast, as work proceeds to clear the site of a stone train derailment at Bedwyn station on 7 May 1983. The accident, which happened the previous day, was caused when an old MSV open wagon became derailed whilst passing through the station, damaging both the track and the platform.

6163 Crowle 28 November 2016

Ex Virgin Railways Mk 2 coach 6163 has found a very different use in retirement, being mounted on a short section of track in a field next to the 7 Lakes Country Park, Crowle, for use as a safety demonstration vehicle. It is pictured here on 28 November 2016. Note the pseudo HST nose. Various emergency services exercises take place, demonstrating level crossing safety, etc.

D80104 Cabside Number 13 May 2012

Due to the non arrival of most of the visiting locomotives for the Swanage Railway's 2012 Diesel Gala, resident BR 4MT 2-6-4T steam locomotive 80104 was 'upgraded' to a diesel in order to help out. A spot of renumbering was in order, so it acquired a 'D' prefix for the event. Its new cabside number is pictured here at Harmans Cross on 13 May 2012.

Cotswold Line 150 Headboard 8 June 2003

The Cotswold Line Promotion Group's homemade 'Cotswold Line 150' headboard fixed to the front of 166212 on 8 June 2003. Pictured at Kingham on the return working of the CLPG's Oxford to Evesham special, commemorating the line's opening in 1853.

HAA Wagon 359473 Moira West Junction 23 October 1989

The HAA coal hopper was one of the most successful wagon types of the 1960s, completely revolutionising the movement of coal between collieries and power stations, using what became known as the 'merry-go-round' principle. Over 11,000 of these wagons were built between 1964 and 1982. 359473 is pictured at Moira West Junction on 23 October 1989.

Moreton-in-Marsh Wagons 5 April 1984

An interesting and now historic view of the former Shipston-on-Stour branch at Moreton-in-Marsh station, photographed on 5 April 1984. The Shipston-on-Stour branch  started life as the Stratford and Moreton Tramway, opening as early as 1826. The branch to Shipston followed ten years later, and the line was later converted to a conventional railway, with the tramway section to Stratford-upon-Avon being lifted in 1918. This view shows the truncated remains of the line at Moreton, with the branch's route now blocked by a modern silo. This remained as a siding for many tears, and is here playing host to a ballast train waiting for the following weekend's engineering works. I cannot quite read the number of the ZFV Dogfish wagons against the buffer stop, but the ZUV Shark plough brake van is DB993904, and the loaded YGH Sealion hopper in the foreground is DB982630.

Otherton Sidings 2 November 1985

Littleton Colliery was served by a short branch line that diverged from the West Coast Mainline just to the south of Penkridge station. Unfortunately I never did manage to photograph a train on the line, but on 2 November 1985, I took this picture of a rake of HAA MGR wagons at Otherton Sidings, at the point, approximately a third of the way along the branch, where the line changes direction. I presume the three wagons on their own are cripples, that have been detached from various trains. The M6 motorway can be seen in the background. I particularly like the lighting in this picture, and the composition is certainly helped by the inclusion of the silver birch tree. The colliery closed in 1993, and this track has now been lifted.

Raildata Camera 70806 Charlbury 30 November 2016

A close up view of the Fugro Raildata Rail Infrastructure Alignment Acquisition System mounted on the front of 70806, pictured while the locomotive waited in Charlbury station on 30 November 2016, as it worked the 0C08 07:22 Westbury to Westbury (via Worcester Shrub Hill) survey working. Note the purple laser light shining on the track.

Rickerscote Accident Aftermath 10 March 1996

On 8 March 1996 the Mossend to Willesden Transrail freight train derailed at Rickerscote (just south of Stafford), after an axle on one of the liquid carbon dioxide tankers failed. Unfortunately the wreckage was almost immediately struck by 86239 hauling the 1S09 Cardiff to Glasgow TPO. This is the scene two days later, with recovery operations underway. 86239 has jack knifed, and come perilously close to the nearby house. The crane is about to lift one of the TPO vehicles, while one of the CO2 tankers can seen wedged up against one of the catenary masts.

Severn Tunnel Junction Yard 30 June 1985

Severn Tunnel Junction Yard, pictured on 30 June 1985. Note the huge variety of wagons types, and the still healthy level of traffic. At this time the yard was a main Speedlink hub, but two years later the entire site, and the adjacent loco depot, was closed. Gloucester took over a lot of the yard's work, until the Speedlink network was withdrawn in 1991.

Tree growing on track at Shipton 15 June 2016

Weeds growing on railway tracks are commonplace on the national network nowadays due to Network Rail's neglect, but this bonsai conifer happily growing in the ballast at Shipton station is a different order of poor maintenance. Sculpted by the passage of westbound trains, this small tree was photographed (with a long lens) from the down platform on 15 June 2016. The old style GWR gangers would be shocked at the state the track is now allowed to get into.

6B33 Standish Junction 12 October 2016

The one that got away! Despite leaving home in plenty of time to get to Standish Junction to photograph the diverted 6B33 13:00 Theale to Robeston Murco oil empties on 12 October 2016, I was most annoyed to find the train passing underneath the bridge as I arrived! It had managed to become half an hour early since I checked just before leaving home. So here for all wagon enthusiasts is the going away shot, with 60019 Port of Grimsby & Immingham heading off into the distance. The superb light, plus the unusual location (for 6B33) makes the picture worthwhile. Note the 'End' wording that someone has thoughtfully added to the last wagon!

73129 Nameplate 4 November 2006

An ex nameplate! 73129's bodyside clearly shows where the City of Winchester nameplate and crest were affixed. The removed plates also reveal the former BR corporate blue colour scheme underneath the faded Network SouthEast livery. The various patches of bare metal only give a hint of the terrible condition of the loco's bodywork at this time (4 November 2006), when pictured at Toddington station. At several places there were holes where the steel sheet had completely rusted through. After running for several years in the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway in this condition, major bodywork restoration was finally undertaken.

Vic Berry's Scrapyard Leicester 31 May 1987

Class 25 and 40 cabs share Vic Berry's scrapyard at Leicester with assorted coaches and DMU vehicles, including a Class 101 driving trailer. This scene of chaos was captured on 31 May 1987. This is the view from the public footpath that ran alongside the site (note the trespass notice in the foreground). Some of the loco parts were identifiable, but some were not, as the numbers and TOPS panels had been cut out for sale to enthusiasts.

Vic Berry's Scrapyard Leicester 31 May 1987

The mangled remains of Class 40 and 25 cabs litter the foreground of this view of Vic Berry's Scrapyard, Leicester, on 31 May 1987. A still complete Class 25 can be seen amid the coach bodies in the background. Just visible in the far distance on the right is the replica of New York's Statue of Liberty, standing on top of the old Liberty shoe factory in Eastern Boulevard. This building was demolished in 2002, but the statue was saved, and can now be seen at the junction of Upperton Road and Western Boulevard.

Vic Berry's Scrapyard Leicester 31 May 1987

A pile of coaches and DMU vehicles at Vic Berry's scrapyard at Leicester, pictured on 31 May 1987. Class 101 DTCL 54411 sits on top of the pile, next to Class 104 DMBS 54422. Underneath is a Mk 1 sleeper coach, while a line of Class 27 cabs can be seen in the background.

27049, 27053 & 27037 Vic Berry's Leicester 26 September 1987

The famous locomotive stack at Vic Berry's scrapyard, Leicester, pictured on 26 September 1987. The bodies of 27049, 27053 & 27037 form the end of a huge pile of Class 27s and Class 25s waiting for scrapping, following the mass withdrawal of the classes by BR. Being easily viewed from nearby footpaths, this amazing spectacle became a minor tourist attraction in the late 1980s!

M53714 & 25059 Vic Berry's Leicester 26 September 1987

Some Class 120 DMUs had an extended lease of life by being stripped of all seating, and converted into parcels vehicles. One such was DMBC M53714, forming part of set EP (Etches Park) 522. It was withdrawn in April 1987, and is seen here in Vic Berry's scrapyard, Leicester, on 26 September 1987, in the company of 25059, and another unidentified DMU vehicle.