It began in when the British Transport Commission BTC announced the Modernisation Programme which outlined the BTC's plan to replace old-fashioned steam power with modern diesel and electric traction.
How many remember the book's heady aroma of freshly printed ink? Ian Allan should've bottled it; they'd have made a fortune! Worse still, when it came to underlining the new diesels I had 'copped' on visits to Swindon, Derby and Crewe Works, they didn't enter the equation because Ian Allan had published the new combined edition before the diesels were built.
Call it a dereliction of duty, if you like, but the discrepancies creeping into the hobby were totally at odds with the orderliness that spotters expected, and I ended up joining the legion of disenchanted youngsters who turned their attention to something more rewarding like railway photography - a natural adjunct to train spotting.
So, combining both interests from old spotting days, the purpose of this page is to list as many different steam locomotive classes numbered from to which were listed in Ian Allan's abc Locospotters Book covering the London Midland Region in After nationalisation in , the newly-formed British Railways tried out a number of liveries with a view to adopting a future standard for its express-passenger engines of Class 8 power classification dark blue and for its fleet of express-passenger locomotives with a lower tractive effort light green.
A total of 70 were built for use primarily on local passenger services, four on the Western Region, the rest on the London Midland Region. Above The class was most easily identifiable from other Ts by their parallel boiler and smokebox curving down to meet the frames, which can be seen in this ER Morten shot of No entering Shrewsbury station with a local passenger train.
Visible in the background is Saddleworth station closed 5th October However, a distinguishing feature of the Stanier design was the pronounced slope to the top of their side-tanks and tapered boiler in contrast to the parallel boiler of the Fowler Ts.
Above No departs from Millersdale on the push-pull shuttle service to Buxton on 16th August No was among only a few survivors of this once extensive class totalling - only thirty six engines were still listed in my winter abc; No was withdrawn in October The majority of the 2Ps were allocated to sheds on the old MR system, chiefly in the Midlands.
Out of the original members built, no fewer than were still listed in my abc, but only just The class was adopted by the LMS as a standard light passenger engine and many went to Scotland for service on the Glasgow and South West routes. Some tenty years after its introduction in September , No heads a local train at Ayr on 27th July The loco was withdrawn in October Note the Fowler flat sided tender which differed from the earlier Midland tender with coal rails as seen attached to above.
By the summer of only four remained in BR stock: Inset The class was developed from the original five 7ft 'Compound' s introduced in by Samuel W. The 3-cylinder compound arrangement comprised one high pressure cylinder inside the frames, and two low pressure cylinders outside.
From onwards, Johnson's successor at Derby, Richard M Deeley, built a simpler version based on Johnson's original design which made the engines more straightforward to drive. The Johnson locomotives were subsequently rebuilt as Deeley Compounds and outshopped with smaller 6ft 9in couple wheels and superheater, including the now-preserved in The doyen of the class was destined for preservation after withdrawal in and restored in Midland maroon livery for display at Clapham Transport Museum. However, with the onset of dieselisation and the introduction of more modern BR Standard steam classes they were early candidates for withdrawal.
Here, No is seen on its home shed at Bank Hall 27A This system had its origins back in the Thirties when the LMS carried out a reorganisation of locomotive operation and maintenance, and henceforth all sheds were grouped into districts with the main depot being allocated the code letter A, followed by a number of subsidiary sheds listed in alphabetical order.
An extension of this system was adopted by BR in before it was replaced by an alphabetic code for BR's diesel fleet in In this shot an assortment of locomotives are lined up in front of the road running shed at Willesden depot on 16th June A little over three years later the shed was closed on September 27th and the site cleared to make way for a Freightliner depot. Built at Crew in , she ended up at Stockport Edgeley and was withdrawn in December Built in at the Vulcan Foundry works and a Willesden based locomotive 1A at the time she was photographed, she ended her life at Rose Grove 24B and withdrawn in October On 29 April No , the first of the class, permanently swapped identities with which had been named 'Silver Jubilee' on 19th April in recognition of the Silver Jubilee of King George V on 6th May of that year.
This change gave the name to the rest of the class. Below A general view of of locos stabled around the turntable. Above-Below Another major contributor to this site is retired railway signalman, Keith Long, who has his own Rail Cameraman page. Here he captures the light and shade inside the steam roundhouse at Willesden 1A on a bright summer's day on July 2nd By comparison No D is a jumped-up whippersnapper!
Withdrawn in October she was scrapped at Swindon Works in December Keth comments on his 'Cabsaab' Flickr Photostream - 'At the time this photo was taken No was just a week short of her 13th birthday almost a teenager and D is a week past her second barely out of nappies and there isn't a yellow warning panel to be seen anywhere! It would have been better to have saved something like this rather than say eleven out of the thirty 'Merchant Navy' class. It's not that I have anything against the MNs, or steam in general; it's just that the preservation scene is so unbalanced.
One evening during the summer of I had booked on duty at 9. My driver that night was Maz, and as we prepared the Jubilee, I oiled the big and small ends for him I always had a spare pair of overalls in my locker for 3 cylinder engines and filled the firebox slowly during preparation. Then before we left the shed we topped up the tender and trimmed the coal for safety, which is more than can be said for the Newton Heath men that hooked onto us at Manchester Victoria…but I'll come to that later.
We hooked on to the train at The reason for double heading this turn was to tackle Pendlebury Bank, especially with 16 bogies on; it was a very heavy train filled mostly with mail and papers plus parcels.
The timings to Preston was 43 minutes, but as usual our departure was held up by the paper guys, never the Post Office, and this delay could be anything up to eight minutes before we got away. The advantage of this job was that after starting from platform 11 we passed through platform 3, then across a series of crossings to get onto the Lanky, the fireman could drop the steam pressure to just above lbs then have his pressure up to lbs psi before Salford Station.
Having got the right of way at From then on it was all systems go and both engines were soon pounding through Salford Station, the 5x roaring and the black 5 blasting. Approaching Pendlebury Bank we had a full 7 minutes to make up, so it was shovel in hand and a few rounds for the climb ahead, but the 5x was in fine fettle so keeping her around the mark was comfortably easy. As we neared the top of the bank I shoveled a few more rounds into the firebox before we leveled out in anticipation of Walkden Water Troughs, serving all four tracks - 'Fast' and 'Slow' Lines.
Ahead we had 14 miles of near straight level track and both engines were flat out, doing over 75mph on the approach to the troughs. At this juncture, it should be explained that the practice for picking up water with a double-headed train was that the leading engine dipped first and as the spray started to dwindle the train engine dipped second. However, this particular night things didn't go quite as smoothly! When the time came for both firemen to prepare for the water troughs, I got off my seat and walked towards the water scoop handle when I heard an almighty crash behind me!
Spinning round I saw a large chunk of coal had smashed through my window and shattered in the cab! So much for trimming the tender on the part of the 26A men!
I dread to think what might have happened to me had it been three seconds earlier! With hindsight, l can only assume the bridge we'd just passed under was lower than the previous bridges, and as a result the coal had been dislodged from the tender of the leading engine, came hurtling along the top of our boiler barrel and smashed through my glass! Make no mistake I was shaken up but somehow managed to drop the scoop and top up the tender.
After removing the broken glass from the window, I could put my head out of my side window at speed, but sitting on my seat in front of the missing glass took my breath away, so I ended up standing between firing, putting the injector on and keeping the footplate clean and dampened down.
My driver Maz blew the whistle to get the attention of the leading engine crew and alert the bobby to wire Preston for a fitter to fix a new glass to the fireman's side. By now we had recovered some time; we passed the 20mph restriction at Hilton House box, but once we were on the West Coast mainline down fast, it was back to sparks flying from both engines, especially the 5x - and, of course, the shovel was being used fast and furious to get us into Preston.
We had a very fast run down to Preston, lurching over Euxton Junction at nearly 90! After such an unusual trip we arrived 1 minute late, but saw no sign of a fitter, the Newton Heath men hooked off and went on their merry way the 26A men were booked to work a train back from Preston, and we at 26F had a Fish train from Law Junction to Oldham Road. When the Preston men relieved us to take the ' Our return trip to Manchester was delayed - the fully-fitted Fish train arrived at Preston more than an hour behind schedule at 2.
When we arrived at Manchester we headed up Platting Bank, then at Miles Platting Station propelled our train back down the bank into Oldham Road Goods Yard, hooked off and headed light engine to Patricroft Shed…the end of a good nights work, signed off, and home James Dave bequeathed his photographic archive to fellow railwayman, Geoff Burch - see pages - who has generously allowed reproduction of a selection of photographs taken on Saturday 8th July during Dave's visit to Motive Power Depots in Lancashire before their closure, followed by a Carlisle Rail Tour on 22nd January in the final year of BR steam.
I am also extremely grateful to Derek Dean - see pages - who has pulled out all the stops in creating the evocative captions…a fitting tribute to steam's final years. Above-Inset From the longest railway platform in Europe, Dave Salmon captures a quiet moment with a restrained unassuming calmness, a short-lived break from the usual humdrum of a very busy main line station.
However if we were able to close our eyes and concentrate for just a moment, we could be seated in the local symphony hall listening to music from composer Ralph Vaughan Williams; the gentle hiss of steam mimicking the soft sounds of orchestral strings, the distant movement of passengers akin to piano play, the circulatory movement of water in the boiler echoing cello, with the distant rhythms of a hard-working loco reflecting the kettle drums.
But our vivid imagination is brought to an abrupt halt via a loud shrill whistle calling for attention as an approaching train enters the vast auditorium of Manchester Victoria Station. The two Stanier Class 5 engines stand as if on a stage before a large audience, the quiet before the storm, the lull before the crescendo when the engines move forward to bank a train up Miles Platting Bank, a mile-long incline that varied between 1 in 47 and 1 in 59, a decidedly hard task for a loaded express setting out from Manchester Exchange station.
Meanwhile these two engines survived another near 12 months of service, though regular passenger work was not forthcoming as steam's decline continued without abatement. It is very useful to have two very similar engines for comparison, as here, for we can observe that the top-feed on No is further forward to that of No ; also the chimneys are of different heights, as are the domes over their relative boilers. No anoraks in view here, no scruffy oiks with their fish paste sandwiches to lessen the tone, only smartly turned out young lads off to do some serious shed 'bashing' as the realisation has dawned that the end of steam was now a racing certainty.
No more saving your pocket monies to buy the latest ABC volume; no more bike rides to the local shed to seek out the denizens therein on the lookout for any 'foreigners' that may have come from faraway yards, eager to please grateful eyes. Above-Below The Stanier-designed engines gave rise to 1, locomotives of configuration, of which by and large the renowned 'Black Five' was the most universally accepted by crews and running sheds.
What is little known, however, is there were in fact five 5MTs sporting titles, as No also carried the nameplate The Queens Edinburgh from to , all five bearing monikers of Regiments concerned. However the scene captured here by Dave Salmon is a far cry from its days hauling 'The Saint Mungo' express service from Glasgow to Aberdeen, a duty for which the shed staff would clean the engine regularly in order to display a good impression to the general public.
Obviously no such exertions have been bothered with here, now typically bereft of dignity and devoid of any colour, unless you call a 'muddy grey' or 'coal dust' as an accepted hue! No was built with a dome-less boiler at Armstrong Whitworth of Newcastle, an outside contractor who completed examples of the class.
The engine was fortunately selected for the Lancastrian Rail Tour in April and as such was prepared by the staff at Edge Hill depot and was therefore immaculately turned out. Allocated initially to St Rollox along with three other named members of the class, the locomotive spent most of its BR days allocated to Edge Hill.
Withdrawal came at Rose Grove on the final day of steam in August Below The ex-LNWR shed at Stockport housed only 25 locos in the s, but this increased to 35 during the twilight years of steam in the s.
The shed's most famous resident was undoubtedly the double-chimneyed 'Jubilee' Class No Bahamas which arrived at Stockport in July The engine was unusually fitted with the double blastpipe and chimney in ; unusual because discounting the two rebuilt engines Nos and in , only four 'Jubilee' locomotives had been modified for service, with the last one altered way back in , so this was the only change under BR ownership.
Built by the North British Locomotive Company and numbered , the loco went new to Crewe in January and during BR ownership the engine was only allocated for any duration to Edge Hill 8A and Carlisle Upperby 12B , later finding favour at Stockport Edgeley 9B ; mainly due to the Shedmaster, TR Smith, who asked for the engine to be released back to him following an accident at Farnley Junction which caused the separation of the tender from its chassis and had prompted the withdrawal of the locomotive around August Thus, in October , the engine was saved from oblivion and subsequently finished up in the right place at the right time.
The loco was withdrawn from traffic in July , said to be due to suffering a 'hot box' in service, and this photo at Stockport Edgeley shows the piston rods removed and stowed on the framing while the locomotive awaits a decision on its future.
Late in the engine moved to the old steam shed at Dinting in Derbyshire where she remained for the next 21 years. Following the expiry of its boiler certificate the locomotive was committed to Oxenhope Exhibition shed as a static exhibit, then in a successful application was made to the Heritage Lottery Fund for the overhaul of 'Bahamas' and by December work had commenced on the boiler, wheels and frames at the Tyseley Locomotive Works whilst work on the tender and small parts were carried out at Ingrow Loco.
A solitary EE Type 3 Class 37 dominates the rows of engines standing beneath a pall of smoke, awakening youthful expectations among the group of young lads eager to 'cop' their numbers; for them the view ahead strikes a close affinity for this is an official visit; no ducking and diving or fearing ejection; they head along the cinder path alongside Corporation Yard to infiltrate the guarded lines, take their pictures and scribble numbers, revelling in the moment.
Ah happy days indeed!