Tag Archives: LMS

What a pretty pigture

No.43106 aka the “Flying Pig”, in lovely late autumn light, wends her way to the summit of Eardington Bank on the Severn Valley Railway. The freshly repainted coach really does put the other three to shame – very ‘last days of steam’ on BR.  And these are the very last days of Steam Age Daydreams so don’t forget to check out the archive section, there are also lots of photos from pre-BR, even pre-Grouping right through to the present day. In the Trains for thought drop down there are photos and musings on the nature of life the universe and everything – from Aristotle to ‘arry Hill!

I know from my stats that these blogs have been viewed in over 130 countries and that over a ten day period, last month, every single one of them was seen by someone, or some group, in South Korea, which was odd. I will still be taking photographs and my portfolio can be seen here:  https://www.picfair.com/users/dropgrate

I will still be continuing to write; the last three parts of “In Memory”, my footplate memoire, will be appearing in 2019, with Part III planned for February and Parts IV and V at roughly 2 or 3 month intervals. Part II is available now, in print or as an ebook, at:  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Memory-Part-II-David-Wilson/dp/1731324022/

The book about my lifetime of involvement with matters railway is still  available on Amazon – Below, is the link to that work. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gricing-Real-story-Railway-Children/dp/1514885751

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Time running and time passing

In less than two weeks Steam Age Daydreams will close – there are over 600 blogs and even more photographs on the web site – check them out before they all disappear into the ether. However, before they do I’m hoping to get to the GCR’s Last Hurrah event this weekend, so there may be a few fresh posts next week.

Part II of “In Memory”, the memoire of my  footplate days, is now available to download as an ebook – the paper back version will be available very shortly. The link to Part II is below. And below that is a link to Part I in case you haven’t read it yet.

I will still be passing my time photographing steam locomotives and for those of you who have enjoyed reading the Blog – I will be continuing to write, Part II of ‘In Memory’ is available now and parts III, IV and V will follow at intervals in the New Year.

Above is the link to Part I of my memories of footplate life in the 1960s. The book about my lifetime of involvement with matters railway is still  available on Amazon – Below, is the link to that work. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gricing-Real-story-Railway-Children/dp/1514885751

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Double 5

There seemed to be a good number of folk out and about to see the Black 5s, No. 45212 piloting and No.45407, with the “Citadel”, Manchester – Carlisle – Manchester tour, seen here crossing Lunds viaduct with the north bound run.

In just over two weeks Steam Age Daydreams will cease. On the website there is an archive of over 600 articles, and even more photographs in them – you might want to check out before they go too.

I will still be passing my time photographing steam locomotives and for those of you who have enjoyed reading the Blog – I will be continuing to write, Part II of ‘In Memory’ will be available before the end of the month with parts III, IV and V to follow at intervals in the New Year. If you’ve enjoyed my photographs the Steam Age Daydreams 2019 Calendar is now on sale on eBay – here’s the link: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/302936132284

Above is the link to Part I of my memories of footplate life in the 1960s. The book about my lifetime of involvement with matters railway is still  available on Amazon – Below, is the link to that work. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gricing-Real-story-Railway-Children/dp/1514885751

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Chillin’ with Thomas?

A ‘Jinty’ with express lamps – it could almost be a Thomas the Tank Engine story –  Gordon throws a wobbler and Thomas comes to the rescue. One thing is certain, over the years, Thomas the Tank has helped to fill the coffers of many a heritage railway and possibly encouraged a few new enthusiasts and volunteers along the way. In recent days however, there have been one of two little snippets which could be a cause for concern.

First came the news that the West Somerset Railway had ‘appointed a trouble shooter’ and that there had been a decline in passenger numbers; which was followed days later by the rather sad news that the line would close from January to April and that the popular Spring Gala had been axed too. Even more worrying was the news that the Office of the Rail Regulator had expressed concerns over record keeping and other issues. The odd thing was that it was only a few days earlier I had been reading something about the WSR running a service in and out of Taunton. I’m sure it must be a worrying time for those folk who are full time employees on the WSR.

The photo is of  ‘Jinty’ No.47406 when she made her first gala appearance, after overhaul, at the GCR, where is a resident.

The WSR isn’t the only thing shutting down, in just over two weeks Steam Age Daydreams will cease. On the website there is an archive of over 600 articles, and even more photographs in them – you might want to check out befor they go too.

I will still be passing my time photographing steam locomotives and for those of you who have enjoyed reading the Blog – I will be continuing to write, Part II of ‘In Memory’ will be available before the end of the month with parts III, IV and V to follow at intervals in the New Year. If you’ve enjoyed my photographs the Steam Age Daydreams 2019 Calendar is now on sale on eBay – here’s the link: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/302936132284

Above is the link to Part I of my memories of footplate life in the 1960s. The book about my lifetime of involvement with matters railway is still  available on Amazon – Below, is the link to that work. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gricing-Real-story-Railway-Children/dp/1514885751

 

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Up ‘ill ‘n’ darn dale

In the 1960s, as a 15 year old, I learned how to fire steam locomotives working on Black 5s going from Leeds to Manchester and back.  This was very much an uphill and down dale route – which ever way you went you climbed the Pennines and then ran down the other side. A favourite turn, to take a ride out on, was the Red Bank vans, always double-headed, and often two of Farnley’s Black 5s.

There are two main line runs coming up which both remind me of my time on the footplate. The first, this Saturday, is the ‘Citadel’ booked for double-headed Black 5s and working from Manchester to Carlisle via the S&C, crossing and recrossing the Pennines. The second run is next month’s ‘Pennine Moors Explorer’ which reminds me of my time at Wakefield in the final days of steam and working over Copy Pit with wheezing clanking Dubdees and train loads of coal, returning whence we came with the empties.

The Pennine Moors Explorer might even be hauled by an engine I actually worked on whilst I was a fireman at Nine Elms – No.34046 Braunton, which would be wonderful to see, and hear, it’s quite a pull from Todmorden through Cornholme and Portsmouth and on up to Copy Pit summit where, with the coal trains, we would have to stop and pin down wagon brakes for the long roll down to Gannow Junction.

Just as the lights went out on my railway career they will very soon be going out on Steam Age Daydreams too.

I will still be passing my time photographing steam locomotives and for those of you who have enjoyed reading the Blog – I will be continuing to write, Part II of ‘In Memory’ will be available before the end of the month with parts III, IV and V to follow at intervals in the New Year. If you’ve enjoyed my photographs the Steam Age Daydreams 2019 Calendar is now on sale on eBay – here’s the link: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/302936132284

Above is the link to Part I of my memories of footplate life in the 1960s. The book about my lifetime of involvement with matters railway is still  available on Amazon – Below, is the link to that work.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gricing-Real-story-Railway-Children/dp/1514885751

Steam Age Daydreams 2019 Calendar is now on sale here’s the link:  https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/302936132284

Steam Age Daydreams began in 2014 and since then over 600 blogs have appeared on all manner of railway topics.  They are all still available to read in the ‘Archive’ section. I am writing this to let you all know that when the existing webhosting contract expires in December there are, currently, no plans to renew it – Steam Age Daydreams will cease.

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Moorland Landscape

I’ve been coming here, to the North Yorkshire Moors, for over 35 years now. I’ve seen an awful lot of engines come and go, some I even worked on when they were still in BR stock; engines like the soon to return 34101 Hartland and the S15 No. (30)825 and the not so lucky 30841, which is gone but not forgotten.

There’s also the possibilty I worked on the engine in the picture too, No.(4)5428 was a Holbeck engine at one time and I had a couple of months at the depot after moving back North from Nine Elms.  I did a variety of turns during those few weeks including some passenger work and my first,  last, and only turn  on a B1. My first shed, Farnley Jct., had already closed and so had Copley Hill with work from both depots now being done from Holbeck. My trip with the B1 was a former Copley Hill turn – Cleethorpes and back with a stopper.

The turn I might well have worked with No.(4)5428 was a teatime departure from Leeds City to Morecambe calling at, if memory serves, Keighley, Skipton, and then all stations on the little North Western. We travelled home passenger after beign relieved at, as I recall, Bare Lane, so we could make the last DMU back to Leeds.

No.(4)5428 is pictured at Moorgates during the recent NYMR autumn gala event.

Above is the link to Part I of my memories of footplate life in the 1960s. The book about my lifetime of involvement with matters railway is still  available on Amazon – Below, is the link to that  work.  http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gricing-Real-story-Railway-Children/dp/1514885751

Part II of In Memory is now available and here’s the link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Memory-Part-II-C-Wilson-ebook/dp/B07KJQ94BD/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1542361240&sr=8-1&keywords=in+memory+part+II

Steam Age Daydreams began in 2014 and since then over 600 blogs have appeared on all manner of railway topics.  They are all still available to read in the ‘Archive’ section. I am writing this to let you all know that when the existing webhosting contract expires at the beginning of December there are, currently, no plans to renew it – Steam Age Daydreams will cease.

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What a difference 5 miles makes

Woke up this morning, like you usually do,  all around was covered in the white stuff and there was steam on the main line, over the S&C, whoopee!! Thermals on, a flask of coffee and one of soup, just in case, and it’s time to hit the road.  The first few miles, up hill out of the village, were a bit iffy and the gritters hadn’t been near nor by.

O’er the moor, past the wind farm, and on into Tow Law and I was beginning to wonder if I’d allowed myself enough time and what would the B road up to Aisgill would be like.  Another two miles and not a snowflake in sight, not even a touch of frost to make it look like it snowed  – nothing, nada. And, as can be seen, there wasn’t even the whiff of a hint of  snow at Shotlock Tunnel.

And if that wasn’t disappointing enough, moments before the train was due some bloke in a bright blue Citroen Piccaso parked right on top of the tunnel and right in my shot. I shouted, he turned his head in my direction, shut the car door, and walked away. I should have done what any sane person would have done when waking up to several inches of snow – turned over and gone back to sleep.

The forecast for Tuesday’s run on the S&C looks dreadful – I might just turn over and pull the covers up!!

Above is the link to Part I of my memories of footplate life in the 1960s. The book about my lifetime of involvement with matters railway is still  available on Amazon – Below, is the link to that work.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gricing-Real-story-Railway-Children/dp/1514885751

Steam Age Daydreams 2019 Calendar is now on sale here’s the link:  https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/302929843008

Steam Age Daydreams began in 2014 and since then over 600 blogs have appeared on all manner of railway topics.  They are all still available to read in the ‘Archive’ section. I am writing this to let you all know that when the existing webhosting contract expires in December there are, currently, no plans to renew it – Steam Age Daydreams will cease.

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Gasworks Tunnel?

Teak coaches, GNR locomotive but, sadly not Kings Cross in the pre-grouping era. There is, at the moment, a trend towards painting engines in the livery of their original company owners and it does make things more colourful than a mix of lined Black or lined Brunswick Green. However, being able to run them with a train of appropriately liveried coaching stock from the same period would be even better.

I know the Severn Valley Railway have a very nice set of 1930s LMS stock along with a selection of old GWR stock – the 1930s LMS set would look great with the new build Patriot. And both the SVR and the North Yorksire Moors Railway have nice teak sets but, what of the others? A couple of Caley coaches at Bo’ness, the Quad art set at NNR, there are some nice old 4 and 6 wheel wooden bodied stock at the Bluebell and the Isle of Wight line has a nice vintage set. The Vintage Carriage Trust, at their museum in Ingrow, have a small assortment of vintage and pre-grouping stock.  However, very few lines would be able to assemble a truly representative train of pre-grouping stock to match the locomotive liveries.

I know huge sums have been raised to fund new build locomotives, I even support one of them myself, the 82045 Locomotive Trust. I wonder if similar sums could be raised for new build rolling stock; and if they could what should they build and how many – clerestory roof, wooden framed, non-corridor, suburban, there are so many styles, railways and liveries  to chose from.  How about a new build of the ‘Coronation’ articulated set –  if memory serves there is one of the beaver tail observation cars, from this train, still in service.

Above is the link to Part I of my memories of footplate life in the 1960s. The book about my lifetime of involvement with matters railway is still  available on Amazon – Below, is the link to that work.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gricing-Real-story-Railway-Children/dp/1514885751

Steam Age Daydreams Calendar is now on sale here’s the link:  https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/302929843008

Steam Age Daydreams began in 2014 and since then over 600 blogs have appeared on all manner of railway topics.  They are all still available to read in the ‘Archive’ section. I am writing this to let you all know that when the existing webhosting contract expires in December there are, currently, no plans to renew it – Steam Age Daydreams will cease.

 

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Blue Fish

Blue Fish isn’t some new internet business it’s the third van back, the one framed neatly by the lineside TPO apperatus.  Insulfish vans came in blue or  a grey white and fish trains were run ‘fast fitted’. On the East Coast the fish trains out of Aberdeen became the stuff of ‘legend’ and the Robinson Class 8 4-6-0s of the GCR were known throughout their working lives as ‘fish engines’. In the last days of steam on the WCML it was not unheard of to see the fish train in the hands of a Duchess.

My own experience of fish train working, circa 1966, was from Hull Docks to Healy Mills and our ‘Duchess’ was one of Wakefields finest Dubdees. My experience with the class 5 BR standards, like the one pictured, was mostly with passenger workings between Waterloo and points West. However, I did work several van trains from Southampton docks to Nine Elms goods with them, usually when the Union Castle line boats came in loaded with bananas.

Several years ago now I wrote a piece for the magazine Steam Days, all about working one of these ‘banana’ trains and, rather foolishly, eating green bananas. There’s a shortend version in the archives – ‘Bananas to the Beat’, if you want to read more.

Above is the link to Part I of my memories of footplate life in the 1960s. The book about my lifetime of involvement with matters railway is still  available on Amazon – Below, is the link to that work.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gricing-Real-story-Railway-Children/dp/1514885751

Steam Age Daydreams began in 2014 and since then over 600 blogs have appeared on all manner of railway topics.  They are all still available to read in the ‘Archive’ section. I am writing this to let you all know that when the existing webhosting contract expires in December there are, currently, no plans to renew it – Steam Age Daydreams will cease.

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Lanky Duchess

This is the last time I saw a Duchess on the East Lancashire Railway, No.46229 Duchess of Hamilton, in green and before they put the streamlining back on. It was so long ago this is a scan from a 35mm slide, not a digital shot. Hopefully, this weekend I will be seeing her class mate, No.46233 Duchess of Sutherland, at this very spot or somewhere close by.

I fired on Class 8P Pacifics on the Southern, including, on one occasion, a Waterloo – Exeter – Waterloo trip with No.35022 Holland America Line, on the RCTS’ East Devon Rail Tour, in February 1965. This is a not too disimilar milage to that worked by the crews on the Non-stop Euston – Glasgow runs, made by LMS men in the 1930s, with Stanier’s Pacifics. At least on my Exeter and back trip I had a break, the Camden / Polmadie men had no such luxury.

Having said all that I would have loved to have a go firing one of the ‘Duchesses’ on a Crewe – Perth or Euston – Carlisle. Generally speaking it is the engine driver who receives all the kudos, especially on fast or special runs; however, it is the fireman who makes these fast or special runs possible. ‘No steam – No show!!

Above is the link to Part I of my memories of footplate life in the 1960s. The book about my lifetime of involvement with matters railway is still  available on Amazon – Below, is the link to that work.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Gricing-Real-story-Railway-Children/dp/1514885751

Steam Age Daydreams began in 2014 and since then over 600 blogs have appeared on all manner of railway topics.  They are all still available to read in the ‘Archive’ section. I am writing this to let you all know that when the existing webhosting contract expires in December there are, currently, no plans to renew it – Steam Age Daydreams will cease.

 

 

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