The “Knotty Northern Circular tour” 070484
Tour itinerary part 1, click for larger image
Tour itinerary part 2, click for larger image
April 7th 1984 saw a clash of tours with requested 25’s, 40122 and a 46 incl the S and C or a high mileage Euston – Dundee Hertfordshire tour expected to get 26’s and 40’s. We opted for the former, “rats” were our merry bands premier diesel power by then.
Awaiting the tour at a cold, damp Stafford after a particularly rancid Crewe overnight we were all questioning our wisdom. 25042 and 25224 both steaming nicely and a leading compo for just the 3 of us saw us happier. The grip came soon after leaving and 2 young females from the volleyball club did the grip with a warm smile which was very different to the usual gruff stewarding on Hertfordshire or more especially RESL tours .
Doss followed but we all stirred by Stalybridge for the thrash over Standedge which was OK with a steady climb over the Pennines before the rapid descent into Huddersfield. However the “rats” wouldnt multi properly, so were driven in tandem, with us losing time. At Leeds 40122 the “green machine” was waiting to back on the other end of the stock and this 40 was a scratch for me! A good run us over the S n C but the grey, dampness never lifted shrouding the hills in mist.
A half hour at Carlisle saw the usual rushed chippie move for many aboard before a steady run along the always boring Tyne Valley line and we began to loose more time.
At Newcastle the expected loco change became a long impasse and we eventually left 50 late with 40122 still at the helm. 46047 (also 46045) had been quoted but due apparent boiler failure, the 46, which were in serious decline by 1984 didnt even appear. To be fair it was a cold day, though 100 “nb” miles wouldnt have bothered us, but there were a lot of normals on this tour…
40122 was opened up nicely on the Darlington – York racetrack reaching 87 mph, if not more, for several miles South of Thirsk. Leeds saw our “rats” replace 40122 and a steady run back over Pennines followed. We bailed at Stockport for a quicker run home with 86258 as power. Obviously we bailed at Crewe for a much more rateable 87005 screaming down the Trent.
The end not really, drags out of Euston the next morning!
Tour phot spot, all April 7th 1984
25224 and 25042 at Leeds with the tour, the pair had been driven in tandem over Standedge as they wouldnt work in multiple, a common problem with “rats” by 1984
25042 and 25224 at Leeds with the 10 coach Mk I tour rake.
The “green machine” 40122 waits to take the tour forward from Leeds
40122 approaches Hellifield with the tour
Thanks to Keith Jackson for this superb Blea Moor portrait of 40122 on the tour
40122 at Carlisle, a Tony Ewer phot
The known gen from April 7th 1984.
25042} 0730 Stafford-Carlisle Railtour Stafford – Leeds (via
40122 0730 Stafford-Carlisle-Railtour Leeds – Leeds (via Settle, Carlisle, Newcasttle 280 miles)
25042} Carlisle-Stafford Return Railtour Leeds – Stockport (via
25224} Stalybridge/Guide Bridge)
86258 1945 Manchester-Euston Stockport – Crewe
87005 1710 Glasgow-Euston Crewe – Euston
47522 0850 Scarborough-Bangor
47217 Leeds-Cambridge Footex
47406 ECS for Bradford-Sheffield Footex
47523 0905 Liverpool-Scarborough
40009} Euston – Dundee “Leuchars Aide” Railtour
47413 1450 Carlisle-Edinburgh
47573 Yarmouth-Carlisle Charter