Marches and Malvern moves, 1978-1984

Not many of us leapt at the Leominster’s or Malverns of the bashing world, this was despite regular hauled services for many years. Here’s a selection of moves and memories from moves perhaps a little off the beaten track. 

Saturday 130178

After a low sleep overnight on the Cardiff-Bristol-Newport circuit a compo was bagged on the 0532 Cardiff-Crewe. We asked the guard to “wake us up” at Hereford to which he agreed chuckling to himself! So not far past Tremorfa we were sound asleep with “big Sulzer” 46025 providing the amps and steam heat. Just before Hereford, we were awoken and were soon shivering on Herefords platforms. A rather dull 47513 was joined on the first Hereford-Padd and we dozed as best we could in the chilly, bright “rancid coffin stock”. We stirred clattering over the Severn Bridge at Worcester and baled at Foregate Street. A quick descent of the stairs saw us join a Hereford bound DMU back to Malvern Link. In the still morning air trapped by the “big hill” we could hear the big Sulzer restarting from Great Malvern before, with much steam 47121 came into sight and was joined for the short run to Worcester. This Marches/Malvern move had raked in 3 reasonable locos, happy days!

46025  0532 Cardiff-Crewe               Cardiff-Hereford

47513  0712 Hereford-Padd               Hereford-Worcester FS

DMU   xxxx Worcester-Hereford       Worcester FS-Malvern Link

47121  0808 Hereford-Padd               Malvern Link-Worcester SH

Tuesday 040581-when “rats” and steam heat still ruled the Marches – thanks to DS.

DMU   1520 Worcester SH-Hereford Worcester SH-Hereford

25221  1510 Cardiff-Crewe                           Hereford-Ludlow

25245  1602 Crewe-Cardiff                           Ludlow-Hereford

25224  1710 Cardiff-Crewe                           Hereford-Shrewsbury

 “Rats” still produced occasionally on the Marches after the May 81 diagram changes, 25034 is seen here at Shrewsbury with the Sunday 1335 Crewe-Cardiff service on 240684.

Friday 280881after the “Crompton’s” had taken over the Marches – thanks to DS

33004 1150 Cardiff-Crewe                            Newport-Leominster

33010  1225 Crewe-Cardiff                           Leominster-Newport

33030  1510 Cardiff-Crewe                           Newport-Craven Arms

33004 1602 Crewe-Cardiff                            Craven Arms-Hereford

33027  1710 Cardiff-Crewe                           Hereford-Crewe

Saturday 171283 – The Christmas Cracker II

On the face of it a straightforward railtour from Leeds to Cardiff via the Marches and returning via the Oxford-Worcester line. For those on that classic CFPS tour I hope you remember the Hereford photo stop where 40028 was joined by the “big man” himself! On the return run at Worcester Shrub Hill the allocated Salvation Army produced and tour participants happily joined in singing various Christmas carols. The festive fun finished with a noisy rendition of “Jingle Bells”, something I hope we’ll never forget, magic!

  2 festive views of 40028 “Samaria” at Hereford with the Christmas Cracker tour, 171283

 In later years Marches and Malvern moves were still possible but with mainly 37’4/47’4/50 power. Even in late 2010 HST’s still reach Malvern and Hereford whilst a 57 had a booked Monday-Friday “Marches” turn, plus the occasional weekend “rug-ex”, even in 2022 class 67’s still work (subject to train crew)!.

The Marches class 25 list, 134 on passenger!

The Marches class 33 list, 77 on passenger!

Any more Malvern/Marches moves memories to share?


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