Vintage LMS

We had a handful of these engines on the allocation at 55C Farnley Jct., at the start of the 1960s, when I was a cleaner / passed cleaner there; it wasn’t often we cleaned them though. There was a pecking order when it came to keeping the depot’s engines clean, first the Jubilees, followed by the Black 5s and the Ivatt 2-6-2Ts on station pilot duties and then, if there was nothing else, the Crabs would get a quick flick round with a paraffin soaked rag and some waste.

Despite its size, Farnley, at the beginning 1962, had just  two cleaners, myself and a lad called John Turner, there was also a small compliment of passed cleaners.The passed cleaners hated being back on the shed with a rag in their hands, and on cleaners pay, unless they’d got their turns in. It was rare for there to be more than four or five of us. The Jubilees worked forward the Newcastle – Liverpool and York  – Swansea services, taking over at Leeds City station from the V2s and A3s which worked the trains in from the North. The Black 5s regularly double-headed the Red Bank vans.

Much of the work performed by the Crabs was freight and parcels work and my first firing turn on one was with a goods, from Copley Hill Goods to Hillhouse Yard, in Huddersfield, in the wee small hours. There’s a nearly, might have been, in this tale too. The loco in the photo is No.13065 / 42765 and,  of the Crabs allocated to Farnley Jct, when I was there, one was No. 42766 and another was No. 42865, neither of them made it, sadly.

No.13065 is pictured, with a train of 1930s vintage LMS stock, climbing Eardington Bank on the Severn Valley Railway during the ‘Season Finale Gala’

If you have enjoyed my blogs – I have written a book about my 60 years involvement with railways, from trainspotter, via steam age footplateman, to railway author and photographer, this is a link to it:

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