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Thursday, 30 September 2010

1980's revisited

This final September post (30th) is meant to stir the memory banks once again. Three contributors have each sent in a pic, taken in the 1980's - scanned from slides/prints with corresponding quality.

The first is from Jeff Nicholls. The old Thames Board Works in Warrington acts as a backdrop as class 56, 56085 ambles by. The pic is dated 25th August 1982.

Pic two, taken in 1987, is from Dave Harris. A class 47, heading possibly a Blackpool - Euston passenger working, is pictured at Winwick Junction. Can you name the classic 80's cars at the popular photographers spot by the level crossing gate?

The final shot is from the old picture album of Ken Saunders. A class 56, 56025, is shown heading a coal working, by a busy Arpley Yard. The pic is dated 3rd September 1985.

I have more 'golden oldies' to show you in the near future thanks to several enthusiasts who have sent in older material. If you have any pics or scans from old pics/slides, originally photographed on 'our patch', please send them in by email (scans) or hand them to me at Winwick (pics).

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Four Pics; Six Locos

Todays post (29th September 2010) comprises four pics, from four different contributors, and features two class 37s, three class 66s and a class 92.

Pic number 1 is from Jeff Nicholls. Pictured are double heading DRS class 37s, 37610 T.S. (Ted) Cassady 14.5.61 - 6.4.08 and 37608 on a Spitfire Railtours charter 'The Highlander'. Taken at Winwick on 18th June 2010.

Pic two is from Ken Young. Metronet liveried, GBRf class 66, 66722 Sir Edward Watkin is shown on a gypsum working on the low level line near Slutchers Lane, Warrington. An empty coal hopper train is passing headed by a freightliner class 66. The pic is dated 19th August 2010.

John Smith has sent in the third pic - a EWS (DBS) class 66, 66142 working empty tank wagons through Earlestown Station on 4th August 2010. John adds that the train was a diverted Preston Docks - Lindsey working.

The final pic is of a class 92, 92042 Honegger (this one has appeared a few times lately) on an empty logs wagon working through Bank Quay. The photographer was Andy Appleton; the date was 15th May 2006.

Monday, 27 September 2010


In previous posts I have concentrated on special workings such as gypsum, the 'logs' and china clay. Today (27th September 2010) I am concentrating on a slightly less interesting, although important working, coal. I have used many coal trains in previous posts but this is the first post dedicated to this important working


The first pic is from Jeff Nicholls. Freightliner class 66, 66595, is shown heading heavy haul, HHA/HXA bogie hopper wagons. Jeff adds that the loco had just run round its load of wagons in Walton Yard and was crossing the Mersey at 12 Arches. The pic is dated 22nd September 2010.

Pic number two is from Alan Rigby. Freightliner class 70, 70004, is pictured heading similar coal hoppers on the low level line past Arpley Yard. The pic is dated 22nd February 2010.

The third pic was taken on 9th September 2005 by Andy Appleton. Mainline liveried class 60, 60086, Schiehallion, is shown heading blue JMA coal hopper wagons through Winwick.

The final pic is from myself and depicts EWS (DBS) double heading pair of class 60s, 60049 and 60039, heading (HTA?) coal hoppers through Winwick on 21st October 2009.

Coal hopper wagons are difficult to id and a good site to attempt to classify them is For intance the difference between Freightliner HHA and HXA hoppers is length - the capacity is the same but the HXA is shorter, allowing one extra wagon per train. Having said, that I may have got them wrong, but I'm sure that you will let me know.

Saturday, 25 September 2010

China Clay

One of the more interesting workings through Winwick these days is the china clay train that runs on Wednesday mornings. The working is Antwerp - Dollands Moor - Irvine, servicing the Caledonian Paper Mill in the Scottish town. The photographic attraction is the unique ICA wagons used to transport the clay, known affecctionately as 'silver bullets'. However, they are rarely clean, more often dirty brown than silver. This post (25th September 2010) features three pics covering the china clay working, from three different contributors.

The first shot is from Geoff Monks. EWS (DBS) class 92, 92042 Honegger, is pictured at Froghall Lane, near Warrington Bank Quay, heading the tank wagons on 25th August 2010.

Pic number two features EWS (DBS) class 92, 92005 Mozart, travelling north from the Winwick Quay direction, on 22nd September 2010. The pic is by John Smith.

The final pic is from yours truly, taken on 21st October 2009. The locomotive is one of the two class 92s (the other is 92001 Victor Hugo), that retain the old EWS livery - 92031, The Institute of Logistics and Transport. The working was northbound, through Winwick.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Leander at Winwick

For today (23rd September 2010), because you are keeping me very busy, I am using four pics from four different photographers. Included is a shot of a 'Jubilee' class locomotive, the first on the blog, I think.

The 'Jubilee' class of Sir William Stanier was built at the same time as the 'Black 5s' - both have the 4-6-0 wheel configuration. The latter reflected Stanier's service on the GWR before joining the LMS. The class of 'Jubs' reached 191 between 1934 and 1936 and John Smith's picture shows a preserved example, LMS No. 5690 Leander, with support coach. The shot was taken at Winwick on 20th September 2010.

Pic number two is from Bob McClellan and features Riviera Trains liveried class 47, 47839, travelling north through Winwick heading a Holyhead-Manchester express. The pic is dated 13th September 2004. This working was for Arriva Trains Wales who hired the locomotive from RT until 2005. The loco was the first painted in the corporate (Oxford) blue livery of RT. She was named Pegasus at a special ceremony at Crewe in September 2006.

The third shot is from Jeff Nicholls. Pictured is DRS class 47, 47802 Pride of Cumbria, heading a Compass Tours charter through Winwick on 22nd September 2010.The 'Snowdon Mountain Ranger' ran Burnley - Blaenau Ffestiniog. Although it can't be seen in this shot, DRS class 47, 47712, Pride of Carlisle, was on the rear of the train.

The final pic is from Andy Appleton. Andy shot EWS class 60, 60076, light engine as it travelled southbound through Winwick. Note the 'clag'. The pic is dated 17th March 2008. The 100, class 60 locomotives were the last diesels built by BR; the first 'tug' entered service on 30th June 1989. However, the latest 'Rail' magazine gives details of twenty 'tugs' being released by DBS, for sale or scrap, and no less that 69 in storage.

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Class 92s, Class 66s and a Class 37

In today's, 135th post (21st September 2010) I am using three pics from regular contributors, each pic showing at least three locomotives/trains.

The first pic was taken on 13th August 2010, at Bank Quay, by Ken Young. In a bay at the station stands EWS (DBS) class 92, 92009 Elgar, fronting Stobart liveried class 92, 92017 Bart the Engine. Entering the station is Freightliner class 66, 66507, on a loaded coal hopper working.

Pic number two is from Alan Rigby. In his picture, a northbound Pendolino is overtaking a double-heading pair of Freightliner class 66s - the first is 66602. On the slow line, southbound, an EWS class 92, 92034 Kipling, is heading an Imerys mineral wagon working. Imerys is an International company owning 115 mines, supplying 29 different minerals including china clay (kaolin), alumina and aggregates. A British base is in Cornwall. The pic was taken at Winwick on 12th June 2006.

The final pic is from John Smith. Depicted is a DRS treble-header of class 37, 37667, class 66, 66420 and class 66, 66417. The pic was taken at Winwick on 3rd September 2010.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

'The Logs'

One of the popular workings through Winwick is 'the logs', the 5pm (approx) working from a railhead near Carlisle to the Kronospan factory at Chirk. These days a Colas class 66 or 47 and occasionally a DRS class 57 (hired to Colas) heads the train. Today's post (19th September 2010) compares the logs traffic from the present day to that of just four years ago.

Beginning in 2006, the pics from Andy Appleton each show a class 92 locomotive heading the working. Shot number one depicts EWS class 92, 92036 Bertol Brecht, heading a short load of timber, southbound, through Winwick on 15th September 2006.

Andy's second pic from the same year shows EWS class 92, 92042 Honegger, dragging an EWS class 90, 90028 'dead in train' and heading six empty wagons, northbound, through Winwick. The pic is dated 4th September 2006.

For comparison the present day pic, number three, was taken at Bank Quay by Ken Young on 12th August 2010. Colas class 66, 66841 is shown heading the logs working (in close up, but with a large number of wagons behind) out of Bank Quay.

Friday, 17 September 2010

More from 1986/87

Two 'Peaks' (class 45) and a class 40 feature in today's post (17th September 2010). The pics are from Dave Harris and Jeff Nicholls. They were taken in 1986 and 1987 and, as a result, are of historic interest - scanned from old slides with commensurate picture quality.

Dave's pics are of two class 45s or 'Peaks', built between 1960-1963 at Derby Works. The class emerged as D11 - D137 but after August 1968 the 'D' prefix was removed. From 1973 the class was renumbered 45001-45077 and 45101 - 45150. From 1966 the livery changed from green to BR blue. An interesting point about the 'Peaks' is that several of them carried 'unofficial' names.

The first pic shows class 45, 45103, (previously D116) on platform 4 at Earlestown Station in 1987 the year before she was withdrawn from service (2nd August 1988). She was unofficially named Griffon and faced the cutter's torch in 1990.

Pic number two of Dave's is of another class 45 (number not known). The loco is shown approaching Old Alder Lane bridge at Winwick heading a mixed rake of passenger coaches in the same year, 1987. Dave adds that the the train would have been a Provincial Sector Holyhead working from Manchester Victoria.

The final pic is from Jeff Nicholls. A class 40, 40122, is depicted on a line just east of Warrington, sporting a 'Train Tours Travel Club' headboard. Interestingly, Jeff adds that the steam heating can be seen working, even though the date of the pic was Bank Holiday Monday, 30th August 1986.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Four from Four

Four more locomotive classes are represented in todays post (15th September 2010). The pics have been sent in by four different photographers.
The first pic is from Geoff Monks. Freightliner class 70, 70005, is about to cross the Mersey bridge heading into Latchford loop on an Ellesmere Port - Fiddlers Ferry coal working. The pic is dated 1st September 2010.
Andy Appleton has sent in the second pic. Featured is Virgin class 57, 57313 Tracy Island, working a Virgin passenger train through Bank Quay on 15th May 2006.
An EWS class 67, 67015, is next. The pic is one of Bob McClellan's and the 'skip' is heading an empty Virgin passenger stock movement through Winwick on 9th July 2004.
The fourth pic is from Jeff Nicholls. DRS class 66, 66427, is depicted heading an intermodal container working through Red Bank on 9th September 2010. The view is one that has not been used (I think) on the blog previously.

Monday, 13 September 2010

Two Class 92s and Two Class 37s

I've included three pics from three contributors in today's post (13th September 2010). Four locomotives are featured.
The first two pics show class 92 locomotives. The first, taken at Winwick on 21st August 2006, is from Andy Appleton. The popular logs working is depicted, southbound, headed by 92025, Oscar Wilde, in EWS livery.
The second pic, from Ken Young, was taken at Bank Quay on 6th July 2010. An intermodal container working, headed by 92037, Sullivan, is shown approaching the station. The loco is in EWS (DBS) livery.
The third and final pic is from Bob McClellan. Featured is a double heading, light engine pair of DRS class 37s, 37218 and 37611. They are pictured heading north at Winwick on 9th July 2004.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

'Rocket 150' Celebrations - 1980

For today's post (11th September 2010) I am delighted that Jeff Nicholls has sent in a piece of local nostalgia; a reminder of yesteryear - 1980 to be precise. The 'Rocket 150' celebrations, commemorating the opening of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway in 1830, attracted a gathering of locomotives to Rainhill and other stations along the line. The locos were housed at Bold Colliery for the duration of the celebrations.
Jeff's two pics show three locos from the National Collection which took part and were photographed as they passed through 'our patch'. In the first, Richard Deeley's Midland Compound 4-4-0, No.1000, is shown towed by class 47, 47522, through Parkside on 17th May 1980. In the second, two of Sir Nigel Gresley's finest, LNER class 'V2', 2-6-2, No. 4771 Green Arrow, and LNER class 'A3' (previously 'A1'), 4-6-2, No. 4472 Flying Scotsman, are pictured at Earlestown on 20th May 1980.

If anyone else has nostagic material like this please send it in.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Four 'Tugs'

The class 60 locomotive is quite a rare sight these days at Winwick so, to remind us of what we may be missing, here (9th September 2010) are four pics from three of our group - Bob McClellan, Jeff Nicholls and Andy Appleton. Three pics were taken at Winwick, one at Bank Quay.

The first pic is from Bob. It depicts EWS class 60, 60025 Caledonian Paper, heading empty steel wagons to Immingham on 22nd June 2004.

Jeff Nicholls has supplied the second pic - EWS (DBS) class 60, 60096, is shown heading loaded coal hoppers, southbound, on 16th September 2009.

Andy's first pic is of EWS class 60, 60076 heading a single wagon (load?), southbound, on 17th March 2008.

His second pic shows EWS class 60, 60069 Slioch, at Warrington Bank Quay, heading blue coal hoppers, on 19th October 2006.

For the latest information on the class go to Seven, class 60 locomotives are operational currently, including 60096, above; seventy three are stored.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Four Classes; Five Locos.

You are keeping me busy so here are another four pics in today's post (7th September 2010).
The first is from regular contributor Alan Rigby. Virgin class 57, 57313 Tracy Island, is depicted powering northbound, through Winwick, heading Virgin passenger stock. The pic is dated 12th May 2006.

An older pic, from 2004, has been sent in by Bob McClellan, another regular. Virgin class 87, 87010 King Arthur, is shown heading more Virgin passenger stock through Winwick; the date was 23rd June.

Geoff Monks, yet another regular, has sent in his second pic taken from the north side of Froghall Lane in Warrington. EWS (DBS) class 92, 92007 Schubert, is pictured heading a Mossend - Hams Hall intermodal container working on 31st August 2010.

The fouth pic is from John Smith, yet another regular contributor. Two class 66s of GBRf (now Europorte) are shown double heading, light engine through Winwick on 30th August 2010. The locos are 66722, Sir Edward Watkin, in Metronet branding and 66706, Nene Valley.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Four from Four

Todays post (5th September 2010) comprises four pics from four different contributors.
The first is a Winwick shot taken on 22nd June 2004 by Bob McClellan. A class 158, 158486, is shown in Central Trains livery - the class is quite uncommon these days on the Winwick line.
Our second pic is from Geoff Monks. It was taken on 31st August 2010 from the north side of Froghall Lane in Warrington, which makes it a first for the blog. The working is a Fiddlers Ferry bound coal train headed by Freightliner class 66, 66509 (another class 66 can be seen disappearing into the distance). The overbridge in the pic is the
Cheshire Lines Bridge carrying the Warrington Central line.

Pic number three is from Ken Young. Bank Quay is the location for passing class 66 locos. The loco heading towards the station is DRS liveried 66401, leased to GBRf (now Europorte), working a gypsum load. The loco passing through the station is an unknown DRS class 66, heading an intermodal container load.

The final pic is from Jeff Nicholls, taken on 4th September 2010. 'The Lune Rivers Trust' Special ran Carnforth - Hellifield - Chester and return, and was hauled by rebuilt 'Royal Scot' class locomotive 46115 Scots Guardsman. The pic was taken in the evening at Winwick.

Friday, 3 September 2010

Super Voyager; Joint Branding

In this post, (3rd September 2010) I am using a pic by yours truly, taken today at Winwick, but significantly different from the 'norm' to warrant its place on the blog.
To celebrate the excellent working partnership between Virgin Trains and Bombardier, who built and maintain the Super Voyager units, a press release appeared yesterday, part of which read as follows:- "Bombardier and Virgin Trains have revealed a Super Voyager train jointly branded and with the theme "more trains, fewer cars, greener planet". At a ceremony at one of the train's maintenance facilities, the unit was also named Polmadie Depot".

The unit, 221 115, appeared at Winwick this afternoon, northbound, displaying the new joint branding.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Huskisson Memorial

Since I started the blog in January I have been an advocate of educational and historic contributions in addition to more modern, photography-based content. We have included several posts depicting the demise of steam in the 1960's and many examples covering dieselisation, electrification and preserved locos up to the present day. In this first September post (2nd September 2010) I am using pictures sent in by Dave Harris showing the Liverpool & Manchester Railway Huskisson Memorial, which of course, is on 'our patch'.
2010 is the 180th anniversary year of the opening of the L&MR, the first, twin line passenger railway in the world. At its opening in September 1830, William Huskisson, the M.P. for Liverpool was knocked down at Parkside (Newton-le-Willows) by the 'Rocket' locomotive; he died as a result of his injuries. The site of the Memorial (many of you may have seen it) is close to where the original Parkside Station (1831 - 1839) was situated.

Dave's picture of the Memorial was taken ten years ago. A commemorative tablet which was vandalised and replaced with a copy, was included in the memorial. Another copy is on display at Newton-le-Willows Station - Dave's picture of this copy tablet is a recent one. The memorial has recently been tidied up and much vegetation removed to coincide with the anniversary.