Euston drags on April 8th 1984 remembered
April 7th Sat late pm
Screaming South from Crewe on 87005 came “gen” that the Down Splitter “should roar”.I wasnt sure what to do, I had an All line Rover burning a hole in my pocket but i was desperately tired after the rancid Crewe overnight the night before. I opted to stay on to Euston and was pleased with 85025 on the famous down “splitter.”
I joined the Liverpool portion as the Manchester would get a mystery loco from Stafford.A few words with a Preston “roarer” basher up front, then reasonable doss on an empty train and next, my Travel alarm was waking me near Crewe.
April 8th Su am
At Crewe my Preston colleague was happy with 85016 his next move on the 0232 Preston which included a through coach and vans off the down Splitter (from memory). 47424 arrived with the 0115 Holyhead – Euston “Irish Mail” and i was suprised how busy some of the train was. The buffet was full of singing Irish “bhoys” complete with a guitar player, fiddler and many cans of beer! A quieter rear coach was found once the hovering 85002 was confirmed as power South.
More doss and my alarm woke me near Watford where i peered into the gloom and felt even more gloom with a 31 being attached for the first “Euston” drag of the day at Willesden (milepost 5.75). Various “rats” were hovering and importantly to me 25256 was on Stonebridge Pk. 25256 had withered us all a week before by not doing her final booked Euston drag after the isolation was lifted early. Hitlisted 25256 was long out of works, a faded blue high on engine hours and very much required!
31170 was detached at the foot of Camden Bank, a time consuming process when we all wanted to get off at Euston. After sustenance at “Casey Jones” a long, frustrating wait for 25256 or any other required “Rat” followed….A hugely impressive list of “rats” departed Euston that morning….All worked to opposite Willesden Power Box approx 6 miles, including the thrash climbing Camden Bank.
Down Trains dragged: (Drag loco worked Euston – Opp Willesden Power box)
25236} 1D58 0850 Euston-Holyhead
25209} 1H30 0950 Euston-Manchester
25057} 1G24 1000 Euston-Wolverhampton
31283} 1F19 1040 Euston-Liverpool
31213} 1G26 1100 Euston-Wolverhampton
Thanks to Trev Rolfe for this view of 31213 prior to dragging 1G26 1100 Euston – Wolves
25218} 1H32 1150 Euston-Manchester
Thanks to Trev Rolfe for this view of 25218 dragging 87031 on 1H32 1150 Euston – Manchester
25209} 1G28 1200 Euston – Wolverhampton
25057 } 1S63 1245 Euston – Glasgow
25236} 1P31 1300 Euston – Blackpool
Up trains dragged (Willesden – Camden bank, drag loco removed just outside Euston)
31170} 1A04 0115 Holyhead-Euston
25057} 1M10 2210 (7/4) Glasgow C – Euston
25209} 1M11 2315 (7/4) Glasgow C – Euston
25209} 1M16 1930 (7/4) Inverness-Euston
25209} 1A05 0800 Wolverhampton – Euston
25236} 1A06 0900 Wolverhampton – Euston
25218} 1A11 0900 Manchester – Euston
However all were flagged by me as not required, in the increasingly forlorn hope of 25256 producing, and by 11 am i gave up…Hindsight is a wonderful thing! For the riot value i joined 501 units set numbers 35 and 59 for a limited stop rattle, growl and DC line bounce to Wembley Central. These were “express runners” with just a solitary Queens Park and much hooting flying through the likes of Stonebridge Park non stop! The “DC” power had remained on throughout the ole isolation.
A 310 under back home for a few hours followed.
Still ridiculously tired i was back out late afternoon, an “All line” is an all line! Euston was back to normal by then with my 310 unit going in as booked. 47447 from Padd then an enjoyable jaunt on the Sunday only loco hauled Reading – Portsmouth booked 33’1(and TC)
33107, 33111 and 33114 were raked in on the turns as far South as Winchester before a REP unit whisked me back to Waterloo. Back at Euston 87023 was at the head of my sleeper service, i was alseep before departure time …Scotland beckoned
Saturday Apr 7th 1984.
87005 1710 Glasgow-Euston Crewe – Euston
85025 2350 Euston-Man/Liverpool Euston – Crewe (via Bir)
Sunday Apr 8th 1984
85002 0115 Holyhead – Euston Crewe – WN, Camden Bank-Euston
31170} 0115 Holyhead – Euston Willesden PSB -Camden bank
Set 59} 1113 Euston-Wembley Euston – Wembley C
054 1130 Wembley-Rugby Wembley C – L.Buzzard
046 1436 Rugby-Euston L.Buzzard – Euston
47447 1710 Padd-Liverpool Paddington – Reading
33114 1800 Reading-Portsmouth Reading – Basingstoke
33107 1900 Reading-Portsmouth Basingstoke – Winchester
33111 1908 Portsmouth-Reading Winchester – Basingstoke
3004} 1958 Bournemouth-Waterloo Basingstoke – Waterloo