(NEW CONTRIBUTORS ALWAYS WELCOME). Click on any pic and all of them appear to view.

Friday, 30 April 2010

Along Other Lines (18) - In and around Arpley

In today's post we welcome another first-time contributor but experienced Winwick visitor, Jeff Nicholls. His three pics were all taken around the Arpley Yard area.

Pictures one and two are both of the same train but taken on different dates. The first shows EWS class 67, 67002 Special Delivery, on a limestone hopper train on the lower Mersey Bridge approaching Arpley Yard. The date was 28th February 2008.

The same working was photographed on 24th September 2009 with D.B. Schenker, red-liveried class 37, 37670 St Blazey T&RS Depot, at the head.

Jeff's final pic is of the famous Fertis class 56, 56018 which has been stabled at Arpley Yard for many months. In the backgound is the DBS class 37, 37670, the same loco that features in Jeff's previous pic. The date for the pic was 16th Sptember 2009.

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Winwick Hospital Branch Line

More pictures of historical significance are presented in this post (28th April 2010) - those of a class 2MT 2-6-2 locomotive heading a supply wagon and guards van on the Winwick Hospital branch line in the 1960's. The two pictures were supplied by Ray Whitfield, the photographer was first-time blog contributor, Gerry Drought.


When a World War II ambulance train, with wounded soldiers from the front line on board, travelled to Winwick, it was shunted into a dead-end spur with a run-around loop. The train was then hauled tail first into the hospital's reception yard where the wounded were offloaded.Following the war the branch line reverted to a peace time role, facilitating the deliveries of coal and stores to the hospital and the return of empties. Trains were commonly hauled by GER, Holden 4-6-0s (later LNER B17s). During World War II and later, native LNWR/LMS locomotives were in use.
The branch line was kept in use until the 1960's; in the final years Ivatt push 'n' pull, class 2MT 2-6-2 tank locomotives from Sutton Oak or Dallam were seen heading the hospital trains, as in Gerry's pictures. The line could be clearly observed just yards from our current group's vantage points on Old Alder Lane Bridge. The hospital closed its doors for good, in 1998.

I am indebted to Eddie Bellass for these notes and for others that he has kindly forwarded. I am also grateful for his map showing the route of the line. If you are interested in Eddie's complete set of Winwick Hospital branch line notes, I will forward them to you if you email me.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Along Other Lines (17) - Archive Pictures

I didn't believe it when the blog counter hit 2,000 towards the end of March; now it's hit 3,000 before the end of April - incredible. Thank you all, contributors and viewers alike, for making the blog a success; it's all down to you.

I can't think of any better way to celebrate 3000 hits than by posting more of Eddie Bellass's magnificent archive shots. Eddie has beeen suffering from ill-health recently but he has found the time to send me several shots covering four decades in the last century. Three of them form the basis of this post (27th April 2010) and others will be posted in the near future - don't miss them. Full details of each shot are appended by Eddie as a legend to his photographs - they are easily read when you enlarge the pics on your monitor.

The first pic shows class 9F, 2-10-0, 92014 taken whilst passing through Warrington Bank Quay Low Level in December 1965.

Eddies second shot shows a fine piece of local history; double-heading class 20s working the very last coal train out of Parkside Colliery in October 1992.

The third pic features the BR Eastern Region General Manager's 2-car saloon passing through Earlestown Station inspecting the route from York to Aintree Racecourse Station on 31st March 1979.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Four from Four

Yet another set of four pics in this post (25th April 2010) and, again, from four different contributors.
The first pic, taken on 9th April 2010, is from Glenn Oakley. A northbound Freightliner class 66, 66561, heading empty coal hoppers, is shown passing a track machine heading south on the slow line.
The second pic is from Andy Appleton and features EWS class 37, 37406 The Saltire Society hauling cargo vans on a Arpley - Gladstone Dock working. The pic was taken on 25th May 2007.

Bob McClellan is next with his pic of a Railfreight Distribution class 92, 92022 Charles Dickens, on a Mossend - Arpley logs train, taken on 14th March 2003.

Finally, David Wood has sent in a recent pic (actual date unknown) of Freightliner class 66, 66624, on an empty, Departmental ballast train heading south.

Friday, 23 April 2010

Along Other Lines (16) - Red Bank and Golborne

For this post we are using pics from John Smith and Glenn Oakley.

John's shot was taken at Red Bank on 14th April 2010. He pressed the shutter at the vital moment two freight trains were about to pass. One train, on a Crewe - Carlisle working, was double-headed by Freightliner class 66, 66520 and Freightliner/Shanks class 66, 66522 - the wagons were the yellow, ballast (Departmental) types. The approaching train was headed by Freightliner class 66, 66525, heading another Departmental train.
Glenn's pic was taken on 8th April 2010 and features Stanier class 5, 44871 double-heading with BR 'Standard' class 7, 70013 Oliver Cromwell on the 'Great Britain III' steam 'Special'. The shot was taken at Golborne.

Class 70 on a Pathfinder Tour

Four more pics are included in this post (23rd April 2010), all from previous contributors.

The first pic is a video 'still' from Neil Ebsworth. Neil videoed the Pathfinder Tour of 17th April 2010 involving the use of a class 70 locomotive for the first time on such a charter. Freightliner class 70, 70003 was double-headed with EWS (DBS) class 66, 66154 on the Swindon - Crewe - Carnforth - Leeds, 'Yorkshire Dalesman'. Neil's videos are excellent and can be seen on YouTube under 'neil 87008'.

The second pic is from Andy Appleton and features double-heading DRS class 20s, 20305 and 20301 working refurbished DRS coaching stock, Oxley-Carlisle, on 5th July 2007.

Bulleid 'West Country/Battle of Britain' class 'Pacific', 34067 Tangmere, complete with support coach, is the subject of Alan Rigby's shot taken on 12th December 2007.
The final pic is from Geoff Monks. Geoff photographed EWS (DBS) class 59, 59201 Vale of York, (unfortunately running in reverse, obscuring the front-end bell) working empty coal hoppers from Fiddlers Ferry Power Station to Liverpool Bulk Terminal.

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Classes 37, 60 and 4 x 66s

Four new pics for today's post, one from a newcomer to our blog and the others from three different contributors.

The first pic is from Andy Appleton showing a treble-headed Carlisle - Arpley Yard freight working on 17th March 2008. EWS class 66s, 66221 and 66186 and EWS class 37, 37401 storm through Winwick on a sunny day.

The second pic is from Bob McClellan and features EWS class 60, 60012, heading loaded blue hoppers on a Gladstone Dock - Fiddlers Ferry Power Station working.

Number three is from Geoff Monks and features the popular Carlisle - Chirk logs train. The locomotive is Colas Rail class 66/8, 66843 and the pic was taken on 8th April 2010.

The final pic is from first time contributor David Wood. It features DRS class 66/4, 66415 heading the 'Russell' container train on 14th April 2010.

Monday, 19 April 2010

Along Other Lines (15) - Red Bank and Lowton

Just to remind viewers, 'Along Other Lines' is an extension to our main blog title and involves pics taken on lines in proximity to the Winwick stretch of the WCML.

This post (19th April 2010) comprises three pics from three regular contributors, Alan Rigby, John Smith and Ken Young.

Alan's pic was taken at Red Bank on 5th June 2006 and shows Freightliner class 90, 90016 heading an intermodal container train.

John's pic was also taken at Red Bank when the 'Cumbrian Coast Tornado' stormed up the bank on 14th April 2010. The magnificent Peppercorn class 'A1', 4-6-2, 60163 Tornado was, unfortunately, heading a missmash of coaching
stock, comprising five different liveries.

Another steam charter was photographed at Lowton by Ken Young on 23rd March 2010. Stanier class 8, 48151 and BR 'Standard' class 7, 70048, The Territorial Army (in reality 70013, Oliver Cromwell) were double-heading the 'Help for Heroes' steam 'Special' - Lancaster - Manchester Victoria - York.

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Four Different Classes.

Four different locomotive classes are featured in our post today (17th April 2010). Classes 33, 37, 47 and 90 in pics from three contributors.

Two, DRS class 33s, double-headed, were photographed by Bob McClellan on 14th March 2003. Locomotives 33030 and 33025 were heading south on a Sellafield - Sandbach empty acid tank train. These are the first, class 33s on our blog.... what a picture.

Bob's second shot is of Railfreight Distribution class 90, 90022 hauling mail vans, southbound, (Motherwell - Willesden) on the same day, 14th March 2003. Bob has a couple of other shots (a class 92 and a class 60) taken on the same day which will be featured soon. That was a good day for pics, Bob.

Glenn Oakley has sent in the next pic of WCRC class 47, 47826 on an empty coaching stock move (for a charter 'Special'), southbound, on 2nd April 2010. The loco looks freshly painted, complete with its obstacle deflectors.

The final pic is from Andy Appleton. EWS class 37, 37401 is pictured, northbound, (Arpley - Clitheroe) heading fifteen, 8-wheeled JPA cement tank wagons. The latter are gleaming and look new. Andy's shot was taken on 18th March 2008.

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Recent and Older

In this post I am using two recent pics and two older pics, although there is no distinct difference between them.

For the recent part of this post Geoff Monks has sent in two pics taken on the day of the 'Great Britain III' steam 'Special' (pic in previous post) - 8th April 2010. The first pic features double-heading Freightliner class 86s, 86639 and 86605 working a Coatbridge - Crewe Basford Hall freight train.

An EWS (DBS)class 60, 60085 MINI Pride of Oxford on a Tuebrook - Crewe B.H. working, is shown in Geoff's second pic.

Two more pics from Andy Appleton comprise the older part of this post. His first pic of 'Pocket Rocket', BR 2-6-0 Standard class 4MT, 76079 with support coach, was taken on 3rd September 2007.

Andy's second pic shows double-heading class 47s, 47843 Vulcan and 47805 Talisman working loaded acid tanks on 6th October 2006.

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

'The Great Britain III'

I am getting so many photographs sent in at the present time that I am including four in this post; two of the pics are from first time contributors.
The first two feature the recent 'Great Britain III' steam 'Special' which ran through Winwick on 8th April 2010. The pics are from regular contributor Geoff Monks and newcomer Neil Ebsworth. Neil is seen at Winwick quite often with his camcorder and his pic is a 'still' taken from video footage. He has videos posted on 'YouTube'. Neil's shot is taken from the opposite side of Old Alder Lane bridge to that of Geoff's. The 'Special' train was double-headed by Stanier class 5, 44871 and BR 'Standard' class 7, 70013 Oliver Cromwell.
The next two pics are from our second, first time contributor, Andy Appleton. Andy was a regular at Winwick until about a year ago and has many of his pics reproduced on the 'fotopic' website. His first pic shows a quadruple-headed, nuclear waste flask train passing through Winwick on 19th July 2006. The four locomotives are DRS class 20s, 20308, 20309 and 20314 and DRS class 37, 37069. His second pic features EWS class 60, 60015 Bow Fell working a 'Departmental' freight train on 6th October 2010. There are more of Andy's pics to follow in future posts.

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Along Other Lines (14) - Warrington Central

I have been sent plenty of subject matter for our blog recently hence the quick turnaround in posts.
For this post I am using a super pic from Dave Harris featuring an unusual set of DMUs from East Midland Trains. The flashy red, white, blue, orange and yellow livery of 'Meridian' class 220, 220005, stands out against the somewhat dreary Warrington townscape. The Grand National was the reason why these DMUs were noted on our patch; this one was taken on the day of the race - 10th April 2010. The train was a Norwich-Liverpool working.

Many railway enthusiasts, spotters or photographers list model railways among their hobbies and I would like to draw your attention to a local model shop - Penketh Model Rail Centre. Paul Boyland is the proprietor and he has offered all contributors to our blog a discount on purchases from his shop or his stand at model railway fairs. The discount will be relative to purchase price but will be worthwhile. I will send Paul a list of all blog contributors so if you see Paul tell him if you are on the list. Paul's shop is at 99, Maple Crescent, Penketh, Warrington, WA5 2LQ, and his web site is linked at the right hand side of the blog.

Saturday, 10 April 2010

POLICE Locomotive

In today's post (10th April 2010) I am including two pics from familiar contributors featuring a class 57 and a rather special class 47.

The pic of Virgin class 57, 57316 FAB 1, is from Alan Rigby and dates from 25th January 2006. The locomotive is seen heading Virgin-liveried passenger stock through Winwick. The same locomotive now carries the Arriva Trains Wales blue livery and the name has been removed.

The second pic is from John Smith and was taken at Winwick on 16th September 2003. The quality has suffered a little as it was scanned from a photograph but the historical interest in the locomotive far surpasses the photographic quality. The 47/8 locomotives on Virgin Cross Country services were removed in August 2002. British Transport Police and Virgin then combined in a joint exercise to support a TV advertisement aimed at promoting a safer railway and deterring trespass and vandalism. Class 47, 47829, was painted in Police livery, (known affectionately as the 'jam sandwich' livery) and carried the POLICE name on the side. The locomotive passed to at least one subsequent operator and is now owned by the Harry Needle Railroad Company - it is stored at the ex MOD depot at Long Marston in Warwickshire.

Did anyone photograph the 'Great Britain III' Special through Winwick on Thursday evening 8th april 2010? I only have a single contribution to date and the shot was not at Winwick. Please send something in if you were there.

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Along Other Lines (13) - Latchford and Bank Quay

Two more pics are attached today, (8th April, 2010), both from regular contributor Ken Young.

Ken's first pic is a superb shot from Latchford sidings taken on 16th March 2010. The Metronet liveried, GBRf class 66, 66719 METRO-LAND, is pictured heading gypsum wagons, a very popular freight train with Winwick's photographers. To the right is Freightliner class 70, 70004 heading coal hoppers for Fiddlers Ferry Power Station.

The second pic shows a stationary DBS class 59, 59201, (EWS livery) complete with the bell attached by its Canadian builders, in 1990. The 59/1s were built by the Diesel Division of the American company, General Motors, in Canada. The pic was taken in February 2010 in a bay at Bank Quay Station.

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Four Locomotives from 2006

Attached are two more pics from the huge photographic collection of Alan Rigby, both bringing back memories from 2006. Each pic shows two locomotives in different circumstances.

The first pic is from 12th May 2006 and depicts a nuclear waste flask train passing through Winwick double-headed by DRS class 37, 37605 and DRS class 20, 20306

Alan's second pic features a DRS class 66, 66407 hauling yellow coal wagons south through Winwick passing class 92, 92029 Dante, working north. This pic dates from 12th June 2006.

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Teenage Spirit and Western Champion

Two excellent nostalgic pics are attached today (4th April 2010) both from John Smith's extensive collection of railway photographs.

The first depicts the superb, blue liveried class 60, 60074 bearing the name Teenage Spirit and the logo of 'The Teenage Cancer Trust'. The livery and name were unveiled at a ceremony at York's NRM on 1st March 2008. Emmerdale's Eric Pollard, real name Chris Chittel, performed the unveiling of the DB Schenker-owned locomotive. Since November 2009, 60074 has been stored at Toton. John's pic was taken at Winwick on 28th July 2008.

The second pic is of class 52, D1015 Western Champion, hauling mixed passenger stock through Winwick on a leg of the 'Western Chieftain', 3-day 'Railtour' on 19th - 21st June 2009. The workings - Bristol to Bescot; Bescot to Inverness; Inverness to Kyle of Lochalsh to Inverness; Inverness to Birmingham; Birmingham to Bristol - were split between a DBS class 67 and D1015, with the latter involved in all but the first and last runs. John's pic was taken on 19th June 2009.

Friday, 2 April 2010

5 x 47

This first April post comprises an old pic from 2006 and a more recent pic from 2010, both featuring class 47 locomotives - five in all.

DRS double heading 47501 and 47802 are shown working tank wagons through Winwick on 29th March 2006 . Pic is by Alan Rigby

The second pic is from Dave Harris and shows 47787 Windsor Castle, 47826 and 47804 (all WCRC) moving empty WCRC passenger stock, Southwell - Carnforth, on 13th March 2010. Note the advert for the 'Scarborough Spa Express' carried by 47826. The pic was taken from Hollins Lane Bridge, at Winwick, in miserable weather.

If you are interested in railway nostalgia, including 1950's - 60's trainspotting days, steam railway pics, diesels and electrics pics, info, stories and everything else connected with the subject, have a look at David Hey's website. It is one of the best on the Internet. A link is provided at the right hand side of the blog.