On the “Mid”, late July 1983

Midland Railtourer 4, late July 83

Thanks to Guy Kendrick for the memories

Well Lockdown week three,..possibly. I Lose count. Working on a Notepad with an operating system firmly entrenched in 1992 I’ve decided to try and release the fog from my brain by typing up some more stuff from nearly 37 years ago. It means nothing to my wife or kids, or the cats, but hopefully will stir some memories from those of you who enjoy some time travel.

Headcodes are I believe correct, although in hindsight some of the start / finish destinations of recorded trains will be incorrect, any errors are mine. Please feel free to let me know through NR so I can amend accordingly! Some have been amended courtesy of a gen check through railgenarchive.co.uk

90% of these leaps were done with no gen, or that picked up along the grapevine whilst out and about. Some of the gen was duff, but I guess we took that chance. Some of it was pure gold. No internet and not having any mates “in the know” was, I guess, all of the game. Randomness produced some hellfire stuff, but also some less than appreciated odds and sods! Wouldnt change it for the world, other than to have a time machine and that ain’t gonna happen any time soon.

Sunday 24 July

Sunday drags between Nuneaton and BNS. Overcast to my memory. As usual half the week starting from Elmdon with a bus journey to Birmingham International. My first Grids.

09.25 starts with a Tyseley bog-cart on the 0927 BINT-BNS to New Street.

Met up with my mate from Brum, and the first winner was;

56055 (TO)BNS – Nuneaton dragging 87008 on 1A08 1000 Wolves – Euston. This subsequently did two further drags that day.

Followed up by;

56071 (TO) Nuneaton – BNSdragging 87010 on 1G24 1000 Euston – Wolves.

Smoky Grid action. Loved it.

The following was a nice addition, one of Healey Mills allocation of MGR duffs;

47220 (HM) on what I recorded as 1F24 1305 BNS-Liverpool. BNS – Stafford and a rake of MK2s. By all accounts this came off at Crewe and worked the return 1V61 overnight between Crewe and Bristol.

Sundays perennial favourite in 83 was 1G06 1425 Manchester – Padd, bashers delight, producing today;

40126 (KD) split box magic, the Great Train Robbery loco Stafford – BNS

Thanks to Trev Rolfe for this classic image of 40126 arriving at Wolves with 1G06 on July 24th 1983

A leap back to Coventry required for what consistently produced NB double peds on the Padd – Manchester;

50040 (LA) 1V18 0920 Glasgow -Padd. BNS – Coventry

1M15 1548 Padd – Manchester did indeed produce a decent pair of dirty vac-only peds;

31133 (vb MR) and 31160 (vb SF)which produced some proper dirty EE thrash betweenCoventry – BNS

47299 (IM) was another great Eastern NB duff and produced on 1O25 1531 York – Poole, BNS – Coventry It had earlier worked up on 1M03 1159 Portsmouth – Liverpool

Final move back to International;

86210 (WN) on 1G43 1848 Euston – Wolves Coventry – BINT

In conclusion not too bad a day!

Monday 25th July

Standard first move of the day;

50022 (LA) 1S61 0645 Padd – Glasgow BINT – BNS

A couple of pedestrian moves to Leicester and back, but the second one producing a vac boileredped on the return;

31422 (MR) on 1E64 1015 BNS – Norwich. BNS – Leicester.

These turns were turning over to 31/4 power but a lack of them until the big conversion drive meant that there was not a lack of NB machines on these services in 1983.

31102 (vb MR) old school skinhead action on 1M66 0903 Cambridge – BNS taken Leicester – BNS

A splendid looking 45049 (TO) still looking pretty box-fresh after her March overhaul produced on 1E72 0913 Paignton – Leeds and was taken BNS – Derby but not before it did some shunting in New Street (with us on board) to release a defective coach. From Platform 8 she took three or four MK1s down into the tunnel, before reversing us back up into the centre road of platform 10. Coach hooked off, and back into the tunnel before reversing and coupling back up.

45122 (TO) 1V88 1250 Leeds – Cardiff was taken Derby – BNS. However, it expired nearSaltley MPD (Landore Street Junction).

Cue a proper railway in action!

25322 (KD) was subsequently summoned from somewhere close by (possibly it was the allocated banker) and was pressed into action. She took the task in hand and what a noise! Dead peak plus ten in hand was dragged into New Street. Brilliant.

I then spent the rest of the afternoon pottering between BNS and Coventry on a series of dull moves;

47134 (BR)1V17 1639 BNS-PaddBNS – Coventry

47545 (BS) 1M07 1349 Brighton – Manchester Coventry – BINT

47284 (BR) 1O23 1520 Liverpool – Poole BINT – Coventry

86216 (WN) 1D64 1540 Euston – Wolves Coventry – BINT

86218 (WN) 1G37 1610 Euston – Manchester BINT – BNS

47446 (CD) 1V18 1320 Glasgow – PaddBNS – Coventry

2 x 310 emu (BY) 2G01 2006 Cov – BNS Coventry – Canley

Tuesday 26th July 1983

Odd day. Late start, had to replenish clothing at home before setting off, so on the back foot. Dropped off at International by the old dear in the car I think as she took my stuff to my nans for me.

310 emu (BY) on an unrecorded Coventry -BNS service BINT – BNS

45009 (TI) produced on 1E72 0913 Paignton – Leeds and was taken BNS – Derby.

An unrecorded HST took me across to Leicester on the 1230 Sheffield – St. Pancras Derby – Leicester.

31309 (BS) 1M67 1115 Norwich – BNS was taken Leicester -BNS

I then took a move International, when some Gen came down the grapevine regarding another working from the North Wales coast which *may* produce 40126 again on an additional Llandudno – Birmingham. It had worked that mornings 1D990942 BNS – Llandudno additional but no-one knew if there would be a return for the 40. For someone (me) who was bored at this point it was worth a punt!

86325 (WN) 1A20 1400 Wolves – Euston BNS – BINT

Long move up to Crewe;

87024 (WN) 1P70 1440 Euston – Blackpool BINT – Crewe

47428 (GD) 1D63 1734 Crewe – Holyhead Crewe – Chester

A fester for an hour or so at Chester on a lovely August evening in some good company was well worth it as 40126 whistled into the station!

40126 (KD) 1G99 1843 Llandudno – BNS additional Chester – BNS via Wolverhampton, BushburyJct, Bescot, Aston.

Bonus was the train was barely populated and consisted of Oxleys mint MK1 FO rake which was used on the SAGA specials usually. Declassified as second class for this train (I did have one of the window stickers but this has been lost in the midst of time). Everyone had a window and a very comfortable seat, and the front coach was full and that was the bashers that had travelled up for it! This rake was as follows at the beginning of May 83 3131, 3098, 3115, 3107, 14019, 3134, 3117, 3119 and 3133.

A fantastic run back to BNS, with the driver opening it full in the tunnel towards the platforms at BNS. A few open mouths from them stood on the platforms as it pulled in. Hellfire!

Wednesday 27th July 1983

Somewhat refreshed from the previous evening thrash I looked forward to another day out, although until Saturday 30th it was all a bit pedestrian power-wise, with just the odd exception. Of course, with hindsight, every day was thrash-central and Id pay good money to relive those memories!

50032 (LA) 1M10 0550 Padd – Manchester BINT- BNS

31401 (MR) 1E64 1015 BNS – Norwich BNS – Hinckley

Stratford VB skinhead 31125 (SF) 1M66 0903 Cambridge – BNS Hinckley – BNS. Not a winner by any stretch as it seemed to be out every day back in 1982, with 31214, but what Id give to have em again! Fond memory.

45131 (TO) 1E72 0913 Paignton – Leeds. Always worth a look in, my recollection of E72 was the variety it could produce. No spin, no win. BNS – Derby

Unrecorded HST 1355 Derby – St. Pancras Derby – Leicester

31412 (MR) 1M67 1115 Norwich – BNS Leicester – BNS

86252 (WN) 1A57 1400 Blackpool – Euston BNS – BINT

310 emu (BY) 1420 Rugby – BNS BINT – BNS

The last two were a quick fill in in order to bide time for;

31210 (BR) 1V17 BNS – Padd, couldnt resist a solo pedon a decent load. BNS – Leamington Spa.

47486 (SF) 1M23 1440 Poole – Liverpool Leamington Spa – BNS

Looking at the mileage recorded both the above were via Solihull not Coventry.

86211 (WN) 1A74 1848 BNS – Euston BNS – Coventry

Thursday 28th July 1983

86246 (WN) 1G20 0721 Euston – Liverpool taken Coventry – BNS

31415 (MR) 1E64 1015 BNS – Norwich BNS – Leicester

31246 (vb MR) 1M66 0903 Cambridge – BNS Leicester – BNS

86250 (WN) 1M50 0847 Brighton – Manchester BNS – Wolves

*Unknown 86* if anyone out there has knowledge of 1A46 1327 off Wolves – Euston Id be obliged! Wolves – B;ham International to pick up the Weymouth;

47109 (ED) 1E270958 Weymouth – Leeds BINT – BNS

85008 (CE) 1F33 1430 Euston – Liverpool BNS – Wolves

86212 (WN) 1A63 1630 Wolves – Euston Wolves – BNS

47323 (TO) 1O23 1520 Liverpool – Poole BNS – BINT

Jumped here anticipating a roarer on the following Hemel commuter. Bowled!

86219 (WN) 1A76 1730 BNS – Hemel Hempstead BINT- Coventry

Friday 29th July 1983

86259 (WN) 1J20 0745 Euston – Shrewsbury Cov – BNS

31414 (MR) 1E64 1015 BNS – Norwich BNS – Nuneaton

31401 (MR) 1M30 0740 Norwich – BNS Nuneaton – BNS

45077 (TO) 1E23 1217 (FO) BNS – York BNS – Derby

47492 (OC) 0950 Newcastle – Poole Derby – BNS

An unusual additional followed, but a great run nonetheless!

46032 (GD) 1Z16 1400 Coventry – Crewe additional BNS – Wolves

87008 (WN) 1M57 0920 Glasgow – BNS Wolves – BNS

86210 (WN) 1A76 1730 BNS – Hemel Hempstead BNS – Coventry

Saturday 30th July 1983

Rat day nwith a little something rather special thrown in later that afternoon;

86251 (WN)1J20 0745 Euston – Aberystwyth Coventry – Wolves

25119 (vo TO) and 25202 (xo KD) took the train forward which I took Wolves -Wellington. 25119 was later to disgrace herself by expiring at Machynlleth on the return being replaced by 25249.

Unknown and frankly dreadful bog cart taken Wellington -Wolves I Think the intention was to make it back to Coventry for 1J20 but plans changed at BNS!

86240 (WN) 1130 Wolves – Euston Wolves – BNS

A rare bit of gen available at BNS suggested that a pair of 40s would be out of Holyhead on the Euston portion of 1A56 which of course for Mid bashers meant it was available Chester – Crewe if it produced. Any port in a storm.

86211 (WN) on a useful 1Z36 1204 BNS – Glasgow additional BNS – Crewe

47442 (CD) 1310 Crewe – Holyhead Crewe – Chester

A wait at Chester found a lot of frothing bashers anticipating 1A56, and boy did it produce! I believe it was the last pair of 40s to produce on a North Wales service train;

40196 (LO) and 40080 (HM) 1A56 1310 Holyhead – Euston Chester – Crewe

The train was rammed, front coach was a MK2 BSO with heads out of every window. I actually managed to share a window on the correct side in the guards compartment of the BSO. I think the gripper was probably hiding way back in the train! My personal memory is that 40196 wasnt very well, later confirmed by photos of the train as she had oil running down her side by the rad on our side. As the pair opened up everyone in the front coach started to be splattered by oil. One way to keep heads in! Like being behind a bloody Deltic! Bit of a party atmosphere on the platform at Crewe as they took the pair off and replaced them with a can. Only a short journey for me but one that will live in my head forever.

40080 only had a couple of months to live so it turned out, withdrawn in September 1983 and dispatched quickly in early 1984 at Doncaster.

Thanks to Trev Rolfe for this superb image of 40080 and 40196 approaching Llandudno Jn with the 1310 Holyhead – Euston on July 30th 1983

Thanks to Trev Rolfe for this classic image of 40080 and 40196 with the 1310 Holyhead – Euston at Chester on July 30th 1983

Thanks to Tony Ewer for some of the bashing hordes who sampled 40080 and 40196 to Crewe on 300783

Thanks to Tony Ewer for some of the bashing hordes who sampled 40080 and 40196 to Crewe on 300783

A run back to BNS with 85028 (CE) 1O23 1520 Liverpool Poole Crewe – BNS

.to pick up the SO Paignton – Nottingham that sometimes produced.

45140 (TO) 1M28 1420 Paignton – Nottingham BNS – Leicester

Great thrash to finish off the day;

31231 (BR) and 31422 (MR) 1645 Norwich – BNS Leicester – BNS. Storming run unusually in a rocking and rolling MK1 compo which seemed more the exception than the rule on the Anglia trains as they started to change over to MK2 vac stock at this time, or MK1 TSOs. They had worked out on the 1010 from BNS that morning.

More to follow soon…!

Thanks to Guy Kendrick for the memories


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