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March 2014. No. 1,356. Vol 160. A journal of record since 1897

Headline News

On the cover

MAIN IMAGE: With water about to lap over the main line south of Bridgwater, an FGW HST makes a bizarre sight surrounded by floods. SWNS.COM

INSET 1: The wrecked sea wall and washed out track that has severed the line at Dawlish. SWNS.COM A4s steal the show at Shildon. See p8

Dawlish sea wall wrecked by storms; 120,000 visit the‘Great Farewell’; Bombardier wins Crossrail stock contract; First part made for Gresley P2; Passengers unaware of refund rights; GB Railfreight ups Class 66 order to 21; DB suspends London plans.

INSET 2: A computer generated image of the Class 345 Crossrail EMU, an order for 65 trains has been won by Bombardier.

Track Record The Railway Magazine’s monthly news digest 80 Traction & Stock

First UK Class 68 under test; New look for Merseyrail EMUs; Technical details of Class 700 EMUs revealed; “Bubbles”move.

83 Traction Update

Scrapped, sold, renumbered, repainted? Full details here.

84 Traction Portfolio 87 Railtours

Concern as Network Rail bans A4 at Carlisle; DB Schenker to limit steam operations; A1Trust to promote own trains.

91 Network

Wadebridge visits the Churnet Valley. See page 70.

64 Steam & Heritage

Council will sell West Somerset line; Station for Mountsorrel; Black for Dinmore Manor; Main line test for King Edward II.

72 Steam Portfolio 74 Freight 76 Classic Traction

Bluebell to hold diesel gala; Ecclesbourne wins DMU restoration award; Double-headed hydraulics for WSR gala.

Cambrian repairs cost £10million; Forth Bridge experience plans outlined; Western link to Heathrow to open by 2021.

95 Narrow Gauge

Douglas goes green; New loco for Blenheim Palace line.

98 World

Class 407 ICE now three years late; Indian DC locos fade.

101 Metro

Edinburgh steps up tram testing; NET lines open in December.

102 Operations

News from the train and freight operating companies.


The Railway Magazine’s audited circulation of 37,853 copies per month makes it by far the

16 Multiple Aspects

16 Railways in Parliament. 40 Subscriptions Offer 49 Readers’Platform


52 Reviews

A selection of the latest book reviews.

55 100Years Ago What The RM was reporting 20, 50 and 100 years ago.

56 Panorama

Our regular showcase for creative railway imagery, that also includes this month the winning entries in Gresley Society’s annual photographic competition. Plus fold-out poster.

108 Meetings

Details of railway society meetings near you.

The massive hole in the sea wall at Dawlish the day after the February 4 storm and before containers were installed in a bid to reduce further damage. The sea has washed away the ballast, the soil, part of a road and the foundations of a house. See pages 12-14. STEWART ARMSTRONG

Panorama - the best in railway photography. See page 56.

109 Heritage Diary

A comprehensive listing of dates when heritage railways and steam centres will be open.

113 Reader Services 114 Prize Crossword and Where Is It?

Subscribe today and save money on every issue. Call 01507 529529 or see page 40 for our latest offers

Features 18 East Midlands 125

28 Back-to-front locomotives

42 Lineside at Doncaster

Photographer Brian Morrison recalls the first time he visited Doncaster, just six years after Nationalisation.

In this month’s Practice & Performance, John Heaton samples the Midland Main Line at 125mph – a line once considered a ‘Cinderella’ route.

Robert Humm unearths rare material and illustrations to explain the unusual subject of ‘cab forward’ locos’

23 Four-track heaven!

36 Britain’s biggest steam sheds

Steve Knight puts the spotlight on ex-East Coast chief Elaine Holt.

Fifty steam sheds had allocations of more than 100 locomotives. Ian Richardson takes a nostalgic look back.

62 What exactly is...

Steve Evans describes the unique project that has created a four-track main line controlled by a 55-lever signalbox at Swithland on the Great Central Railway.

55 Ten questions, ten minutes

The Institution of Railway Operators explained.


So large was Stratford maintenance depot that it was difficult to convey the full extent of the rambling complex yard in the 1950s gives an indication in a single photograph. This view showing of the wide variety of motive power part of the shed to be found on the shed at almost any hour of the day or night. All illustrations:

36 • The Railway Magazine • March

COMING OR GOING?: Thestoryof‘cabforward’locos-p28



(Based on BR official allocations 1950)

Stratford (London) St Margaret’s (Edinburgh) New England (Peterborough) Colwick (Nottingham) Old Oak Common (London) Saltley (Birmingham) Doncaster York Newton Heath (Manchester) March Gorton (Manchester) Polmadie (Glasgow) Eastfield (Glasgow) King’s Cross (London) Toton Dairycoates (Hull) Nottingham Kingmoor (Carlisle) Eastleigh Ebbw Junction (Newport) St Philip’s Marsh (Bristol) Bricklayers Arms (London) Derby Perth Willesden (London) Norwich Thorpe Longsight (Manchester) Swindon Exmouth Junction Wakefield Immingham Shrewsbury Mexborough Heaton (Newcastle) Tyseley (Birmingham) Kentish Town (London) Motherwell Thornton Junction Edge Hill (Liverpool) Darlington Stewart’s Lane (London) Thornaby Burton Laira (Plymouth) Canton (Cardiff) Crewe South Cambridge Dundee Tay Bridge Stoke Bristol Bath Road


383 221 213 199 193 180 180 174 167 167 166 166 164 160 155 145 HE building of the Olympic stadium 144 on the site of what had been Britain’s 142 largest locomotive depot encouraged 142 me to analyse the relative sizes of shed 141 allocations. I decided to take 1950 – the first 141 year of British Railways shed allocations – as the 140 benchmark as it gives a picture of the system 138 soon after Nationalisation, but before the arrival 138 of Standard locomotives. 135 In his book Steam Locomotive Depots, 130 Beavor states that a depot with an allocation Eric of 129 around 100 was the largest that could be 125 handled efficiently. A lot depended, of course, 123 on the size and nature of shed buildings as the 122 120 120 119 119 118 117 116 113 112 112 112 109 108 108 105 103 101 100 100 100 Ranked fifth in the chart is Old

By a strange quirk, the number of motive power with an allocation of more than 100 locomotivesdepots at the onset of the British Railways era was exactly half that figure. Ian Richardson reflects on that magical ‘Top 50’.



layout could have an effect on the efficiency of operation. In the case of straight sheds, considerable shunting often had to take place to extract or insert engines. Roundhouses were more accessible, but could easily be blocked if a problem arose with their turntables. They were also considerably more land-hungry than straight sheds. Examples of both types could be huge; Newton Heath, for example, had 23 through roads, while Dairycoates had no fewer than six linked roundhouses in addition to a straight shed! There are quite a few surprises in the list –

Oak Common, the largest depot on the Western Region. Inside one of its roundhouses on May 16, 1964 were four Nos. 7008 Swansea Castle, 7013 Bristol Castle and 7020 Gloucester Castle.

Imagine wandering into Eastleigh shed and finding this lot on parade! There are at least 40 steam locos in view and buildings and in the yards on the other that doesn’t include those inside the side. The photo was taken in May 1955, extensive shed at which time Eastleigh was a ‘Top 20’ depot in allocation terms. S C TOWNROE/COLOUR-RAIL

Almost a full house at Newton Heath on May 7, 1966, with examples of 8Fs, 9Fs and ‘Jinties’ on shed. This Manchester ‘mecca’ had 23 through roads and qualifies as a ‘Top 10’ entry in the charts.

many would not expect Peterborough’s New reach Newton Heath in ninth place England shed to be in the top three, that we find for a very large traction depot still being example, or the likes of Mexborough, used for its Burton original purpose of servicing motive and Cambridge to be in the top 50, power. We while much then have to drop to Toton in 15th more famous and glamorous locations position to such as find the first one maintaining a large Nine Elms, Gateshead, Haymarket, fleet of Holbeck, locomotives, as opposed to multiple Crewe North and Carlisle Upperby units. failed to The massive allocation of Stratford make it. reflected its varying duties; it was the Great Eastern Only one depot topped the 300 mark. That was Stratford, with 382 – an astonishing 162 more than second-placed St Margaret’s, although the figure was partly due to its high number of sub-sheds. There were only two sites with allocations of more than 200, although Colwick missed out by a mere one. It is a sign of just how much Britain’s railway network has changed in the intervening six decades that not one of the top four sites is section’s top shed and so had to provide for today a significant name. All four have been Liverpool Street expresses (61 4-6-0s wiped off the face of the map, and although of classes B1, B12 and B17), suburban trains fifth-placed Old Oak Common is still (129 N7 an and L1 tanks), freight workings (64 operational location, the steam shed 0-6-0s of is not, five classes) and east London shunting having also been demolished. duties (89 locos of various classes) In fact, with Doncaster being in the throes Until completion of the Shenfield of closure in 2014, and York being a relatively electrification the year previously, the minor location these days, it is not tank until we engine allocation would have been even larger.

‘Stratford was the only depot to top the 300 mark’

Stratford in those days was a rambling and somewhat old-fashioned site and Beavor felt that it “would have worked much better if a separate depot had been provided at Temple Mills for freight and shunting locomotives”. Edinburgh’s remarkable St Margaret’s depot (it consisted of two sites separated by the East Coast Main Line!) had been the original location for the North British Railway’s works before the building of Cowlairs in Glasgow, but by BR days it had become inadequate for its large allocation. Old Oak Common, with 193 locos, was a more glamorous location than most, as it housed many of the Great Western’s crack express passenger locomotives. Its four interlinked roundhouses were home in 1950 to no fewer than 89 “namers”, of which 13 were ‘Kings’ and 30 were ‘Castles’. Freight was the prime reason why New England had such a large fleet. Lying a mile north of Peterborough station, this former Great Northern Railway shed helped provide locos not only for the ECML but for the busy Joint lines in the area and for the vast coal traffic between the East Midlands and London. Its March 2014 • The Railway Magazine • 37

ALL LINED UP: Big steam shed allocations - p36

A DAY ROVER : Lineside at Doncaster - p42

March 2014 • The Railway Magazine • 5

HeadlineNews Court throws out NR’s appeal over level crossing accident

THE Court of Appeal has upheld a £500,000 fine imposed on Network Rail by Lowestoft Crown Court last year following an incident on an occupation crossing near Beccles, Suffolk, in 2010, in which a train struck a car, causing ‘life-changing injuries’ to a 10-year-old passenger.

Appeal to save MGR wagons

WITH only 20 or so Merry-go-Round coal wagons left in existence and only two (the first and last built) in preservation, the Class 56 and 58 groups are attempting to save as many of the survivors as possible in order to re-create an MGR train. Contact MGR Appeal, 61 Tyersal Park, Bradford BD4 8EY.

Three Bridges ROC opens

THE first of Network Rail’s 12 Rail Operating Centres (ROCs) to be purpose-built was brought into use at Three Bridges, Sussex, during January, resulting in the closure of several mechanical signalboxes in the area. The next ROC due to open, at York, was nearing completion of external construction work in February.

Neville Hill still going strong

EAST Midlands Trains maintenance staff in Leeds held a small ceremony on January 21 to mark the fact that HST power car No. 43049 has carried the name Neville Hill for exactly 30 years.

Cairngorm funicular in new hands

A NEW operator has been named as preferred bidder for the Cairngorm funicular railway. Natural Retreats UK has been selected by the board of Highlands & Islands Enterprise, which owns the line.

East Coast ‘uncertainty’

FORMER Labour Transport Secretary Lord Adonis has raised the possibility of the East Coast franchise remaining in State control if the Conservative Government fails in what he calls its “ideological” bid to get it let to a private-sector bidder before next year’s General Election.

Class 37 ‘super shunters’

TWO Class 37s have been deployed as ‘super-shunters’ at Daventry freight terminal. Direct Rail Services’ Nos. 37703 and 37714 are equipped with ballast weights to enable them to move heavier rakes of wagons than Class 08s. They are not passed for main line operation.

Bicester-Oxford line shuts for upgrade – and Bicester-Bletchley line freed from overgrowth THE last services between Bicester Town and Oxford ran on February 14 as work began to upgrade the route for Chiltern Railway’s Oxford-Marylebone service. The upgrade, called Evergreen 3, will see large sections of double-track restored and new platforms built at Bicester Town and Islip to accommodate eight-car trains. There will also be a new station – Water Eaton Parkway – to serve Kidlington and Oxford’s suburbs, plus extra platforms at Oxford’s main station. At Bicester, a chord is to be built to connect the Oxford-Bletchley line to the Marylebone-Banbury line. Once complete in 2015/16, two services an hour are planned. As part of wider network expansion, the upgraded section will eventually form part of the reinstated East-West Link from Oxford through Bletchley to Bedford. The first steps in that renaissance took place in January and February when the mothballed Claydon Junction-Bletchley section of the Bicester-Bletchley line emerged from beneath many years’ of overgrowth following an extensive vegetation

Emerging from beneath years of bushes and overgrowth... the future East-West Line west of Winslow, looking east, on February 18. PHIL MARSH

clearance operation. The track was found to be in extremely poor condition and will be ripped up in readiness for relaying as a double-track passenger

SouthTynedale Railway nets £4.2m lottery windfall THE South Tynedale Railway has been awarded a £4.2million Heritage Lottery Fund grant, writes Cliff Thomas. This is the biggest investment in the STR’s history and enables it to execute a £5.5million development, including a mile-and-a-half extension from Lintley to Slaggyford. Projects covered by the award include repair of buildings at Slaggyford, erection of a replica NER signalbox (using frames salvaged from Battersby) and reinstatement of level crossing gates. A second platform will be added at Alston, where an overall roof – incorporating solar electricity generation panels – will span the platforms and tracks. A cafe will be built and a railway manager appointed. The grant will also be used to rebuild (to 2ft gauge) two standard gauge Clayton battery-electric locos, donated to the STR by Transport for London (RM March 2013). They will be used

during the extension construction and be powerful enough to occasionally pull passenger coaches. Hunslet 0-4-2T 1859/1937 will be sent to a contractor for overhaul. Plans include adding a tender as part of its conversion to burning processed waste wood briquettes. The railway’s ultimate ambition remains extension to Haltwhistle, on the Carlisle-Newcastle line. Concerns that this could be thwarted by the sale of spare land at Haltwhistle station for housing (RM March 2013) were allayed after negotiations with BRB (Residuary) Ltd resulted in agreement for a seven-metre strip on the south side of the main line station (enough for a platform and run-round) to be sold to STR for a nominal sum. A solution will still need to be found for crossing the A69 Haltwhistle bypass, which was built after the 1976 closure of the old standard gauge branch.

Strathspey Railway bridges river

Changes at Cricklewood

WORK has started to convert the former Class 319 depot and sidings at Cricklewood into a stabling and servicing facility for new Class 700 ‘Thameslink’ EMUs.

Winston at Frinton

A GIANT mural of wartime Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill has been created at Frinton station in Essex.

ATOC merges with RDG

THE Rail Delivery Group (featured in our October issue) has merged with the Association of Train Operating Companies.

10 • The Railway Magazine • March 2014

ON February 14, a giant Colas Rail Kirow crane positioned the main girders of a new bridge across the River Dulnain that will carry the Strathspey Railway’s extension to Grantown-on-Spey. The 80ft span utilises components from the Merry Street, Motherwell, bridge acquired in 2008. HENDY POLLOCK

route. (The Bicester Town closure has meant a re-routing for a Ministry of Defence freight service – see picture and story on page 74).

‘Builders who pierced tunnel didn’t know it was there’ THE Rail Accident Investigation Branch has made five recommendations after the roof of a tunnel near Old Street station was penetrated by an auger machine while a non-railway construction company was drilling holes on March 8, 2013. An accident involving a train was narrowly avoided. It emerged that the builders were unaware that they were working above a tunnel because its alignment was not shown on the site plan, or on any map available to the design team, developer or local planning authority. As a consequence, Network Rail had not been consulted and was unaware of the construction. RAIB has determined that about half of the 39 proposed piles would have penetrated the tunnel. It recommends that railway infrastructure managers inform developers and local authorities about the location of tunnels and associated subterranean structures if they are not shown on OS mapping. Also that Network Rail takes proactive steps to identify new developments above tunnels (a process already implemented by London Underground).

Select committee takes evidence on rail resilience THE Transport Select Committee took a one-off evidence session on February 25 in relation to the recent flooding and damage that has disrupted rail services to Devon and Cornwall. Those giving evidence included Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin, FGW m.d. Mark Hopwood, Network Rail chief executive Mark Carne and route director Patrick Hallgate. The findings of the committee will be published later in the year.

Have you got a story for us? Email:

Only a quarter of passengers aware of refund rights

A STUDY by the Office of Rail Regulation has found that 75% of passengers are unaware of their compensation and refunds rights when trains are delayed or cancelled. The‘Delay Repay’scheme pays a 50% refund of a single fare if a train is delayed by 30 minutes and a full 100% refund for delays of two hours or more – yet few passengers know of this right. One of the reasons, says ORR, is that train operators do not do enough to promote the schemes.‘Delay Repay’is operated by several companies, including Virgin, London Midland, East Midlands and Southeastern. In the survey, passengers said there needs to be information on the back of tickets, more posters and an automated claims processes. One of the big drawbacks of the system is that refunds are made in the form of travel vouchers, which can only be exchanged at manned ticket offices. This can prove inconvenient for passengers who book on line and has led to a situation in which even vouchers issued are only redeemed by 55% of complainants. ORR feels that train operators need to offer cash refunds or online vouchers, as well as making more use of social media. It is now working on a code of practice for ticket sales, which will be in place by the end of the year.

IanAllanhonouredinHRAawards THE annual awards ceremony of the Heritage Railway Association was held in the Guildhall at Bath on February 8. The Bluebell Railway won the Large Groups prize for its remarkable reopening of the East Grinstead line and Ian Allan OBE won The Railway Magazine lifetime achievement award for services to railway preservation and publishing. Mr Allan, now aged 91, was

Railway Magazine editor Nick Pigott shakes hands with ian Allan oBe after presenting him with the Heritage Railway Association/RM lifetime Achievement Award for services to preservation and transport publishing. on the wall is a painting by George Heiron of class 91 No. 91007 Ian Allan. left: A Highly commended certificate was made in the HRA/Railway Magazine lifetime Achievement Award category to eileen clayton MBe for instigating and helping to run, for more than 21 years, a week of activities for young people on the Ffestiniog Railway, thereby helping them to become interested in railway heritage and providing a valuable example that other steam railways are starting to follow

Re-think leads to cancellation of Watford blockade A PLANNED 16-day closure of the West Coast Main Line at Watford in August and a further nine-day shutdown in February 2015 have been cancelled. Following feedback from passengers and discussions with train operators, Network Rail has decided it can do the work during weekend possessions instead of total blockades. The work – which is required to relay 10 miles of track and renew all signalling between King’s Langley and Bushey – will now be carried out over eight weekends between May and April 2015, considerably reducing disruption to passengers. News of the blockades last July brought howls of protest from passenger groups and other operators who would have had to carry passengers on different routes. The WCML will now be closed at Watford on the weekends of May 3-5, August 9-11/16-18 and 23-26 as well as December 24-29. In 2015 the dates are February 14-16/21-23 and April 3-7.

unable to travel to Bath, so RM editor Nick Pigott took the specially made awards (featuring his first and last combined volumes) to his Thames-side home a few days earlier to make the presentation (below). The awards at Bath were presented by Lord Faulkner of Worcester. Full details of categories and winners were published in our January issue.

lord Faulkner (second right) presents Bluebell representatives with the HRA’s large Groups Award.

london transport’s sam Mullins (centre) receives the Peter Manisty Award for an exceptional heritage contribution.

HRA DiRectoR cAlls it A DAy

David Madden has retired after more than 40 years as the longestserving director of the Heritage Railway Association. For half that time he was also general manager of the North Norfolk Railway before moving to the rail museum at Bressingham. He will remain on the HRA awards committee.

‘Suicide fences’installed on platforms ‘SUICIDE-deterrent’ fencing is being installed on a number of stations along the Great Eastern main line and is expected to spread to other parts of the country soon. In this scene at Brentwood on February 2, the Metro service platform 3 is in the process of being isolated from main line platform 2, which is not normally used. Greater Anglia is undertaking this work at all Metro stations between Liverpool Street and Shenfield except Stratford, Romford, Gidea Park and Shenfield. Sliding gates in the barrier fencing, which can be unlocked by staff, will be used when slow line trains use fast lines in the event of diversions or

engineering. An increasingly held view within the rail industry now is that members of the public have no right to be on a fast line platform on which no train is due to arrive for some time. On

some stations, ‘trespass bollards’ are being installed, which sound an alarm when an infra-red beam is broken. Other activities include monitored CCTV, enhanced lighting, platform-end barriers and Samaritans posters and free phone lines. NR is working with BT Police and Samaritans on training station staff to spot troubled individuals and those “acting oddly”. Although only 4% of suicides in the UK take place on the railway, NR says the emotional, human and financial costs are disproportionately high as they can take place in view of passengers, station staff and drivers and can result in considerable disruption to services. Picture: Dr IAIN SCOTCHMAN

Willesden depot to be extended...

…. but Doncaster shed closes

AN extension is to be built onto Willesden depot, north London, to accommodate London Overground Class 378‘Capitalstar’ EMUs that are being lengthened from four to five cars. As part of a £20million contract awarded by Transport for London, outdoor stabling sidings will also be lengthened. Overground’s capacity improvement programme – made necessary by the astonishing success of the service since completion of the London Orbital route in

THE signing-on point at the former steam shed of Doncaster Carr (36A) closed on February 23. The shed, which had been used as a diesel loco depot since closing to steam in 1966, is due to shut in March. The building stands in the way of a proposed ‘super depot’ for Intercity Express trains’. DBS, which operates the shed, is moving to a new facility at Carr Hill, near Doncaster Belmont. TOM O’DONNELL

December 2012 – will also see platform extensions or upgrades at 32 stations along the orbital route. At stations where platforms cannot be lengthened without reconstruction of station buildings, selective door-opening will be deployed on five-car trains instead. The fifth carriages, which are being built by Bombardier at its Derby Litchurch Lane plant, will begin entering service at the end of this year and are due to be fully introduced by the end of 2015.

March 2014 • The Railway Magazine • 11



In the latest in our occasional series on unconventional aspects of railways, Robert Humm unearths rare material to tell the little-known story of ‘cab-forward’ steam locos


ANY readers of The Railway Magazine will associate the term ‘cab-forward’ with the magnificent Southern Pacific oil-fired ‘Mallets’, which hauled passenger and freight trains across the sierras of California and Nevada for nearly half a century. Yet, although that railroad owned about three-quarters of all cab-forwards built worldwide, there were many other examples, both experimental and operational, in North America and in Europe. The advantage of placing the driver’s cab at the front, as in all modern diesel and electric locos and multiple units, now seems obvious: a superior view of the road ahead free from drifting smoke and steam, plus the avoidance of possible crew asphyxiation while working hard in tunnels. Yet, success in reaping those benefits seemed to elude most steam locomotive designers. The cab-forward type fell into two main categories. Most were essentially conventional engines running permanently in reverse, with the firebox, cab and crew at the leading end. Of necessity, they had to be fuelled with something other than lump-coal. Those of the remaining type had a

28 • The Railway Magazine • March 2014

conventional chimney-first arrangement, but with the driver’s cab ahead of the smokebox, the fireman being located either on a normal footplate at the rear or, as in the case of two British proposals, somewhere amidships. With this type of loco, the driver’s controls were normally connected to the firebox backhead and boiler fittings by a series of rods and chains, and there was usually a rudimentary

“e type fell into two categories: Cab ahead of the firebox, or cab ahead of the smokebox” means of communication – such as a speaking tube or bell code – between him and his fireman. It is a matter of debate as to whether the wheel arrangement of cab-forwards should start at the chimney-end or the cab-end. Both methods have been used in the past, but the latter appears to predominate, so that is the system that will be used here. To keep this account to a manageable

PART 1 Introduction and European examples. length, we will exclude steam-tramway locos, steam railcars of the Sentinel-Cammell type, and small tank engines (such as the London & South Western B4 dock tanks) that had no significant bunker behind the cab and worked equally well in both directions. The subject is a large one and so this month’s article will deal with cab-forwards in Europe. The first example of the genre was conceived by Alfred Belpaire shortly after he was appointed locomotive superintendant of the Belgian State Railways in 1860. Delivered in 1862 by builder Société de Couillet, this experimental high-speed locomotive, named Le Dragon Belge, was a 2-4-0 with driving wheels 2.1 metres (6ft 11in) diameter, outside Walschaerts valve-gear, and a four-wheel water-cart tender attached to the smokebox end. Fuel was carried in small bunkers both sides of the footplate. Le Dragon Belge was not a success. It was rough-riding and tended to spread the track. In 1865 it was converted to a conventional 22-2 and in that form hauled light express trains between Brussels and Ghent until withdrawal in 1902. No more European cab-forwards appeared until a proliferation of designs in France, Germany and Italy in the late 19th and early

The first successful cab-forward design: The Rete Adriatica four-cylinder Plancher compound 4-6-0 express locomotive, 44 of which were built between 1900 and 1906, some lasting until 1940. This one, No. 5010, is shown at speed on the Italian Southern Railway, but artistic licence depicts it running without its water cart. AUTHOR’S COLLECTION.

20th centuries. Most were short-lived experiments, although one class had a considerable service life. Our story resumes in 1893 when a syndicate (led by Swiss Locomotive Works Winterthur, manufacturer Brown-Boveri and French engineer Jean-Jacques Heilmann) produced the first of three locomotives that attempted to combine the benefits of electric transmission with the self-contained characteristics of the steam locomotive, thus avoiding the high capital cost of third-rail or overhead installations. Called La Fusée Electrique (‘The Electric Rocket’), it was a cab-forward 0-8-8-0T with a rear-facing boiler. A two-cylinder compound engine drove a direct-current dynamo, both being located between the fireman and the driver. The dynamo, in turn, powered individual axle-mounted 80hp electric motors. Its appearance was highly unconventional for the 1890s, the whole of the locomotive ahead of the boiler being clad in a streamlined wooden casing. Long water tanks and coal

bunkers extended right to the front of the smokebox. On trial over the Ouest system between Paris and Nantes, La Fusée reached a maximum of 107km/h and this encouraged the Ouest, in 1897/98, to take delivery of two improved preproduction models of 1,250hp, numbered 8001 and 8002. They were massive 0-8-8-0Ts, more workmanlike in appearance and sporting wedgeshaped front cabs. Both were delivered and put in service, but by that time Heilmann’s company was encountering financial difficulties.


Without its essential technical support, and realising belatedly that the design required further development, the Ouest quickly withdrew the locos at a date not recorded, but probably during 1899. No photographs of the original La Fusée seem to exist (only sketches), but a one-fifth scale model built by Heilmann himself can be seen in the Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers in Paris. Another short-lived French cab-forward

design was the Thuile 4-4-6. Promulgated by Henri Thuile, chief engineer of the Egyptian port of Alexandria, this large express locomotive was part of the movement away from the classic passenger 4-4-0s of the previous quarter century, which were rapidly becoming outclassed by the demands of heavier trains. Thuile’s initial schemes were for a 6-4-8 or 6-4-6, with driving wheels of 3m (9ft 10in) – very much in keeping with the Gallic predeliction for gigantic driving wheels in experimental locomotives. The ideas were unrealised, but were adopted in a less extreme form by the French locomotive manufacturer Schneider & Co, of Le Creusot, and a 4-4-6 prototype was completed in late 1899 and exhibited at the Paris International Exposition of 1900. It was a two-cylinder machine with 2.5m (8ft 3½in) driving wheels, outside Walschaerts valve gear and a Belpaire boiler of curious ‘double-lobe’ cross section. A wedge cab was located over the front bogie ahead of the smokebox, while the fireman was located in a conventional cab at the rear. Tractive effort was 15,650lbs. Trials were conducted on the Chemin de Fer de l’État when a maximum speed of 117km/h (73mph) was recorded hauling a train of 186 tonnes, a modest achievement for an engine of more than 80 tonnes. The tests were, however, terminated when the designer was killed, apparently striking a lineside post when leaning too far out of the cab (which cab is unrecorded). The Thuile locomotive was returned to Schneider’s, which dismantled it in 1904. In 1900, there appeared in Italy the prototype of what was destined to be the first truly successful cab-forward design. This was a 4-6-0 express locomotive – No. 3701 – designed for the Rete Adriatica Co (soon to become one of the chief components of the Left: The 4-4-6 Thuile prototype built by Schneider & Co for the Paris International Exposition of 1900. Boasting huge driving wheels of 8ft 3½in, it achieved a speed of 73mph in trials but was dismantled in 1904 after its designer was killed while travelling on it.

March 2014 • The Railway Magazine • 29

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Classic Traction Track Record March 8-9 East Lancs Railway, diesel gala 15 East Lancs Railway, DMU day 21 Bluebell Railway, diesel gala 22 Dean Forest Railway, multiple unit festival 22 Llangollen Railway, diesel day 22-23 Ecclesbourne Valley Railway, diesel gala 29 Bo’ness & Kinneil Railway, 6lDA group charter 29-30 Chasewater Railway, industrial gala 29-30 Great Central Railway, diesel gala April 4-6 Mid-Norfolk Railway, diesel gala 5-6 Ribble Steam Railway, diesel weekend 6 Colne Valley Railway, diesel gala, 6 North Tyneside Railway, Engine Power! day 12 Chinnor &PRR, Chinnor Blues 12-13 Avon Valley Railway, diesel gala 18 Dean Forest Railway, Class 14 50th anniversary 26-27 Epping Ongar Railway, diesel gala 27 Chinnor &PRR, diesel gala May 8 Swanage Railway, Day on The Mule event 9-11 Swanage Railway, diesel gala 10-11 Electric Railway Museum, gala 17-18 Fawley Hill Railway, open weekend 24-25 Royal Deeside Railway, Wickham weekend 31-June 1 Bo’ness & Kinneil Railway, mixed traction gala 31-June 2 Crewe Heritage Centre, diesel weekend June 6-8 KWVR, diesel gala 6-8 West Somerset Railway, mixed traction gala 7-8 Middleton Railway, diesel gala 13-15 North Norfolk Railway, diesel gala 14 Chinnor & PRR, open day 21-22 Dean Forest Railway, mixed traction gala 22 Chasewater Railway, coal train day 29 GCR(N), English Electric running day July 4-6 East Lancs Railway, diesel gala 5-6 Tyseley Loco Works, open days 12-13 GCRN, diesel extravaganza 19 Severn Valley Railway, Peep behind the scenes 20 Chasewater Railway, Burton Brewery day 25-27 East Lancs Railway, Class 14 gala 25-27 Gloucs/Warks Railway diesel gala

THE East Midlands Railway Photographic Society held a night-shoot at the Epping Ongar Railway on January 25, with Class 31 No. 31438 posed by the beautifully restored footbridge and signalbox at North Weald station. STUART CHAPMAN

Colliery site displays Ruston Double-head‘Westerns’and ‘Warships’forWSR June gala FOUR-wheel diesel Ruston & Hornsby 215755 of 1942 is plinthed at Pensnett Trading Estate, near Kingswinford, West Midlands. The estate occupies part of the old Shutt End collieries site, once connected with the Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal by the Shutt End Railway, which opened with steam traction in June 1829. The collieries were later operated by Lunt, Comley & Pitt Ltd and, after closure, the sidings were

developed by LCP Fuels Ltd, becoming a concentration depot in May 1964. The location became noted in the 1970s for its use of ex-BR Class 02 0-4-0DHs. The 88DS Ruston – the first diesel shunter to work there – is the last loco to remain on site and is still in the care of LCP (London & Cambridge Properties). The place name is now spelt Shut End rather than Shutt End. Picture: PETER NICHOLSON

THE West Somerset Railway’s mixed traction gala on June 6-8 features two diesel-hydraulics from the Diesel Traction Group, based on the Severn Valley Railway. ‘Warship’ No. D821 Greyhound was due to move to the Diesel & Electric Preservation Group’s Williton diesel depot in midFebruary, where DTG and DEPG engineers will undertake a light topside overhaul of the defective Maybach MD650 engine. It will be delivered by ‘Western’ No. D1015 Western Champion, which will return to the WSR for the gala. During the event they will be working with resident ‘Warship’ No. D832 Onslaught – the only

other surviving member of this iconic class – and ‘Western’ No. D1010 Western Campaigner. Two other Western Region diesel-hydraulics are due to be in operation that weekend: ‘Hymek’ No. D7017 and Class 14 “Teddy Bear” No. D9526, making six diesel-hydraulics in total. The operation of doublehead ‘Warships’ and ‘Westerns’ on BR chocolate & cream carriages among the semaphore signals will re-create the West Country BR scene of the late 1960s. Rover tickets are available at reduced rates in advance through the railway’s website or by calling 01643 704996.

VintageCarriagesTrustbuysWorth Valley-basedGermanrailbus

First Gloucester-Parkend through trip since 1929!

THE Dean Forest Railway’s Multiple Unit Festival on March 22 will see its two Class 108 sets in operation as well as locos and a First Great Western Class 150 ‘Sprinter’. The ‘Sprinter’ will be running non-stop from Gloucester through to Parkend via Lydney Junction, departing at about 10.00. It will remain on the DFR before returning at about 16.25.

78 • The Railway Magazine • March 2014

There is a limited number of tickets at £25 for the return journey, including travel on the DFR, for which advance booking is required. This is the first time a ticket for this journey has been available since 1929. Festival rover tickets are £13 adult, £12 senior, £6 child and £36 family. Tel. 01594 845840 or see the railway’s website for booking details.

THE Vintage Carriages Trust, which runs the Museum of Rail Travel at Ingrow on the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway, has bought one of the line’s two Waggon und Maschinenbau railbuses – No. E79962. The German-built vehicle has been out of action for more than 25 years, but will now be restored to operational condition and original appearance, after which it will see occasional use at KWVR events and be available for hire to other railways. It requires dismantling for body repairs, so the opportunity is being taken to remove residual asbestos. The wheelsets need attention before it can be moved to the VCT workshops for full restoration, which should take about four years.

Unlike sister vehicle No. E79964, it is fitted with its original Buessing engine. This was problematic when in BR service, but has already been fully overhauled for further use. No. E79964 received a replacement AEC engine in the 1960s and is still in regular use on the KWVR. Both vehicles have been based at the Worth Valley since 1967. No. E79962 was taken out of service in the late 1980s with engine problems and has been kept in Haworth yard, sheeted over and not seen by the public for many years There are two other ex-BR examples of the type in Britain. The North Norfolk Railway’s No. E79960 is currently on loan to the Ribble Steam Railway, and No. E79963 is at the East Anglian Railway Museum.

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Veteran Canadian Alco locos still working – in the USA

SNCF breaks record for longestfreight inwestEurope FRENCH railways (SNCF) operated the longest freight train in Western Europe on January 18. The 1,476 metre-long, 3,309.5-tonne intermodal train ran from Sibelin marshalling yard, near Lyon, in central France, to Nîmes, in the south of the country. It was operated using two Alstom‘Prima’electric locos – one at the head of the train, the other in the middle – as part of a European Union-funded trial named Marathon. Further tests with long freights are planned this year using Vossloh 4000 diesel locos.

Pesa DMUs in Belarus

POLISH train builder Pesa is supplying three DMUs, designated Class DP3, to Belarus Railways. The first of the 140km/h, three-car trains was delivered in February and the remaining two will be delivered by May.

New York & Lake Erie Railroad (NYLE) MLW-built FPA-4 No. 6764 ready to depart at South Dayton on September 8, 2013. The NYLE is a ‘short line’ in New York State, consisting of the ex-Erie Railroad Buffalo & Southwestern branch, between Gowanda and Conewango, and has resurrected occasional passenger train rides between Gowanda and South Dayton, usually at holiday times. The most recent trips operated on September 7-8, 2013 to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the filming at South Dayton of a movie entitled The Natural. The NYLE was utilised for the railroad scenes in both that film as well as the more famous Planes, Trains and Automobiles. VIC LINES

CANADIAN National was the only operator to buy the FPA-4/FPB-4 model of the American Locomotive Company’s FA cab loco in the 1950s. To replace its steam locos, the company bought 36 of the FPA-4 cab units, plus 14 cabless booster ‘B’units from the MLW factory in Montreal, between October 1958 and March 1959. The locos utilised the then new 1,800hp, 12-cylinder Alco 251 engine and were the only cab units built with that engine, although others were rebuilt with it in later years. CN used the new locos for passenger services and this continued once VIA Rail assumed operation of Canadian passenger trains from CN and Canadian Pacific in 1978. The locos continued to be employed on express trains at speeds of up to 90mph until their replacement by EMD F40s in the late 1980s.

A pair of Napa Valley Wine Train FPA-4 locos (numbers 72+73) leave Napa with empty stock on December 13, 2013. The rear loco has been modified to run on compressed natural gas, while the front one still uses diesel oil. KEITH FENDER

Following retirement by VIA Rail, many of the FPA-4s were found to be in excellent condition and were acquired by various tourist railroads across the USA. Still using them are the Grand Canyon Railway, Napa Valley

Last‘IORE’locos start operating between Sweden and Norway

One of the new ‘IORE’ locos on a test run in northern Sweden in 2013. Picture: BOMBARDIER

SWEDISH iron ore mining company LKAB received the last of its 30‘IORE’14,400hp Co-Co+Co-Co twin-unit electric locomotives in December 2013. First delivered in 2000, several batches of these locos have been built by Bombardier at Kassel, Germany, since that time.

They were based on the original Class 145‘Traxx’design, delivered to DB in Germany from 1997, but the IORE units were Co-Co and single ended, formed as permanent pairs. They have replaced all the older electric locos used for iron ore traffic from Kiruna to the

98 • The Railway Magazine • March 2014

Norwegian port of Narvik and to Luleå in Sweden – loaded trains, weighing 8,600 tonnes. Bombardier also sold 500 locos – derived from the‘IORE’ locos as standard Co-Cos – to Chinese Railways (Class HXD3B) and those were assembled in China by CNR between 2008-11.

Wine Train, New York & Lake Erie Railroad, and Cuyahoga Scenic Railroad. The Napa Valley Wine Train converted one of its four FPA-4 locos (No. 73) to run on a 60% natural gas/40% diesel fuel

mixture as an experiment using compressed natural gas (CNG), and since May 2003 the loco has been modified to run only on CNG. We are indebted to Vic Lines for some of the information in this item.

DB’s new Class 407 ICE enters service... three years late

PASSENGER services for Deutsche Bahn’s new Class 407 ICE (Inter City Express) high-speed train were approved the week before Christmas, more than three years later than planned. Approval was given by EBA, the German rail safety body, on December 20, and passenger services using the trains between Cologne and Frankfurt started the next day. In June 2012, EBA approved the trains for use as single eight-car sets, but DB refused to accept them from Siemens until (as a minimum) they could operate in

multiple as two sets – 16 cars in total – working together, as this is how DB operates many ICE trains. Extensive testing in Germany, plus software changes made by Siemens during 2013, was necessary before approval for use as pairs of trains was given. DB will have eight sets in service by spring. The other eight are being used for approval testing in Belgium and France as these trains were bought for international services. A 17th Class 407 is being built by Siemens as part of the compensation to DB for the late delivery of the fleet.

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Leipzig’s new City-Tunnel opens

AC electric WAP4 22801 departs Pune with the Pune to Jaipur ‘Super Fast Express’ on January 19. This was the first AC locomotive working from Pune following the voltage switchover. LALAM MANDAVKAR

Disappearing DC power in India INDIAN Railways’plan to rid the country of 1,500 V DC electrification is now entering its final stages, with the recent conversion to 25kV AC of the Kalyan to Lokmanya Tilak terminus (Mumbai) section. This has led to WAP4 and other AC-only electric locos working passenger trains to the city of Pune, south-east of Mumbai, for the first time. The conversion of lines serving Mumbai (the only remaining area of India electrified at 1,500 V DC) to 25kV AC has been gradual, with the Western Railway lines from Borivali to Mumbai Central and Churchgate stations being completed in early 2012. The conversion of Central Railway lines from Pune to Kalyan in 2013, plus the latest stage plugging the gap from Kalyan

to Lokmanya Tilak terminus, has also allowed AC electric-hauled trains from the north (including Vadodara and Delhi) access to Pune, using the 25kV AC supply. The next stage for conversion will be from Thane (where the Lokmanya Tilak terminus line diverges) to Mumbai’s famous Chhatrapati Shivaji terminus (formerly Victoria terminus). The last line to be converted will be the suburban Harbour Line from Mumbai to Panvel. Ironically, part of this was the first line to be electrified at 1,500 V DC in India in 1925, when the 9.5 mile-long section from Bombay’s Victoria terminus to Kurla, along the Harbour Line, opened to electric trains on February 3, 1925. Our thanks to Mark Torkington for information in this news item.

THE eastern Germany city of Leipzig gained a cross-city rail link in December when the new Leipzig City-Tunnel opened under the city centre, along with five new stations, four of them underground. The main tunnel is 3.6km long and has twin-bore single tracks. New railway connections have been built at both ends in cut-and-cover tunnels, and above ground. In total, about five route kilometres of line have been built. The 10-year construction project cost €960million. The tunnel is electrified at 15kV AC and uses aluminium conductor rail rather than wire for the power supply. A local rail service has been introduced to coincide with the tunnel opening. The Mid-German S-Bahn network (S-Bahn Mitteldeutschland) is operated with 51 new silver-liveried Class 1442 ‘Talent 2’ EMUs, built by Bombardier. DB Regio won the contract to operate the services, which run at 5- to 10-minute frequencies through the tunnel. A small number of longdistance ICE and IC trains also use the tunnel daily. The S-Bahn network will be expanded to include other routes from 2015.

The city centre stations (Markt and Wilhelm Leuschner Platz) have been built as light and airy boxes. Markt station – which lies underneath the city’s main market square – is seen on January 15 with one of the new silver-liveried ‘Talent 2’ EMUs in the platform. KEITH FENDER

Steam on Australia’s Victorian broad gauge Launch ceremony for Amtrak’s new locos

North British-built 4-6-4 R761, one of 70 built in Glasgow between 1950 and 1953, and Australian-built 2-8-0 K190, climb the bank near Sunbury with a Melbourne to Bendigo excursion on October 26, 2013. TONY O’BRIEN

AUSTRALIAN preservation group Steamrail Victoria has a collection of operational steam and diesel locos, which it uses for excursion trains on the former Victorian Railways broad gauge (5ft 3in; (1600mm) network.

Currently six steam locos are operational, with two more under restoration. Details and more information on the preserved fleet and planned future trips can be found at:

‘Tango’for Appenzeller Bahnen STADLER is delivering seven six-section‘Tango’light rail vehicles to metre-gauge operator Appenzeller Bahnen, in northeast Switzerland. The trains, which seat 133 passengers in second class, plus 12 in first class, will cost about £41million. They will be used

from 2017 for services via a new 700 metre cross-city tunnel, currently being built under St Gallen. The tunnel will connect the lines to Altstätten and Appenzell with the former Trogenerbahn line to Trogen via a new through station at St Gallen Hbf.

The first revenue service operated by one of the new Amtrak ACS64 locos – No. 600 – was NE Regional service 171, the 08.15 Boston South-Washington Union, seen at BWI Airport station, Maryland, on February 7. JAMES ROGERS

US vice-president Joe Biden launched the first‘Amtrak Cities Sprinter’(ACS) electric loco at a ceremony at Philadelphia’s 30th Street station on February 6. After the high-profile launch the first locos, which are designated ACS64, entered service the next day. Siemens is building 70 locomotives at its factory in Sacramento, California. The $466million contract was awarded in October 2010. Some components for

the first pre-series locos were built in Siemens factories in Europe, although later members of the class will be almost entirely American. The 6,400kW ACS64s are based on Siemens’ ‘Eurosprinter’and‘Vectron’ designs. They are equipped with regenerative braking and are tri-voltage, equipped to operate with the three AC voltages of 25 kV, 12.5 kV and 12 kV currently in use on the Northeast corridor between Washington DC and Boston.

Keolis wins Boston commuter rail contract

THE Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) has awarded SNCF-owned Keolis an eight-year contract to operate a 381-mile commuter rail network centred on Boston. The $2.68billion deal should start in July. Keolis will replace a consortium that includes fellow French operator Veolia and train builder Bombardier.

Omansettojoin therailwaymap

TENDERS have been issued for construction of the first lines on behalf of the Oman Railway Company. A 2,244km-long network is the eventual aim. The first line to be built will run from Sohar, on the Gulf of Oman, for 170km west to Al Buraimi, on the border with the United Arab Emirates.

March 2014 • The Railway Magazine • 99

Prize crossword

£100 worth of Nostalgia Collection books to be won

Sponsored by

The NOSTALGIA Collection Visit us at

The crossword winner and two runners-up can choose books worth £50 and £25 respectively from the extensive Nostalgia Collection.

■ Puzzle compiled by WILL ADAMS Down


Birthplace of the Great Western Railway (7) 2 King ___, BR Standard No. 73111 (5) 3 ___ Valley Light Railway, former line from Layerthorpe, York, to Cliff Common (7) 5 ___ Star, ‘Britannia’ No. 70027 (6) 6 __ ___ Marsh, 1 down steam shed 82B (2,7) 7 ___ Wood, North Warwickshire Line station (7) 8 A1 No. 60125, which might soon be the subject of a referendum? (8,5) 15 Garstang & ___, WCML station that was the junction for the Knott End Railway (9) 17 Name of one of the Crossrail tunnelling machines, and one of the Railway Children (7) 19 ___ Square, Piccadilly Line station south of King’s Cross (7) 20 ___ Junction, where the Wenford branch left the Bodmin-Boscarne line (7) 21 and 24 ‘Jubilee’ No. 45627 (6,5)

___ Green, Piccadilly Line station and ECML maintenance depot (6) 4 ___ Garrett, former Settle & Carlisle line station (6) ___ Halt, station on the Spa 9 and 10 Valley Railway (4,5) 11 ___ Line,‘Merchant Navy’No 35027 (4) 12 BR Standard 4-6-0 No 73114 (6) 13 ___ Railway, preserved line between East ___ and Sunniside, south of Newcastle-upon-Tyne (8) 14 B1 No. 61038 (9) 16 ___ & South London Railway, the world’s first‘tube’, from Bank to Elephant & Castle (4) 17 Planned route and timing of a particular train over specific lines (4) 18 ‘Peak’No. D6 (9) 22 A3 No. 60037 (8) 23 Lee-on-the-___, terminus of an LSWR branch from Fort Brockhurst (6) 25 Terminus of an NBR branch from Cambus (4) 26 ‘Jubilee’No. 45660 (5) 27 ___ Junction, between the GWR’s Ledbury and Lydney lines west of Gloucester (4) 28 ___ viaduct, Caledonian structure between Bowness and Annan (6) 29 ___ Abbey, No. 5091 (6)



March crossword entry form

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Solution to the January issue crossword.

Across: 1 Coppernob 8 Docker 9 Theale 12 Lady 13 Ewell 14 Dewi 17 Dunkery 18 Yarwell 19 Tappets 22 Mumbles 24 Neil 25 Capel 26 Ince 29 St Ives 30 Talbot 31 Friargate Down: 2 Oaks 3 Parkway 4 Rothley 5 Open 6 Golden 7 Fleece 10 Gladstone 11 Willesden 15 Lever 16 Frame 20 Points 21 Swansea 22 Maesteg 23 Lynton 27 Iver 28 Slot January winner: Peter Heaton, Cheltenham, Gloucs. Runners-up: David Young, Didsbury, Manchester; Peter Blood, Gainsborough, Lincs. The closing date for this month’s crossword is April 4, 2014. The Editor’s decision is final and no correspondence can be entered into. No employee (including the immediate families) of Mortons Media Ltd or any subsidiary company, and The Nostalgia Collection or any subsidiary company, or any company associated with the production of The Railway Magazine, may enter this competition. No purchase necessary. No cash alternatives are offered and prizes are not transferable. Responsibility cannot be accepted for delayed, lost or damaged entry forms.

Where is it? Our pictorial quiz, for fun only LAST month’s mystery picture (right) showed the London & South Western Railway station at Grateley, Hampshire, and we also asked what might be happening. The picture was taken on July 31, 1901 – the day that low- pressure pneumatic signalling was inaugurated on the LSWR, hence the many top hats and the marquee in the field on the left.

Next month 114 • The Railway Magazine • March 2014

Now, for this month, can you identify the station at which this Drewry diesel shunter (left) is standing with a short goods train? Answer next month.

The April issue will be on sale on April 2. Thank you for choosing The Railway Magazine

The Railway Magazine March 2014  
The Railway Magazine March 2014  

The Railway Magazine March 2014 preview edition.