Photo 1) D600 'Active' (or should that be 'Inactive'?) Into service 24.01.1958 Withdrawn 30.12.1967. Arrived in Woodham's yard 01.11.1968 and being broken up on 05.03.1970, gone by 01.04.1970. The loco behind D600 is NBL class 21 diesel electric No D6122. This loco was new in September 1959 and was based on the Scottish Region until withdrawal in late 1967. It amazingly moved from Inverurie Works to Hither Green for re-railing exercises. In June 1968 it was sold to Woodham Brothers and moved to Barry via a long stop-over in Cadoxton Goods Yard lasting from 26.06.to 01.11.1968. Heavily stripped and derelict, D6122 was broken up in June 1980.
Photos 2 and 3)
The North British class 22 diesel hydraulics were built in Glasgow between 1958 and 1962. Like the earlier class 21 diesel-electrics built by the same company they suffered from serious engine problems and in addition NBL went out of business in 1962. This led to early storage of many locos for long periods and the first withdrawals took place in December 1967. The whole class was eliminated by the end of 1971, mass withdrawal occurring that October with long lines of redundant locos formed up at Bristol Marsh Junction and Swindon Works.
According to Volume 5 of Roger Harris's 'The Allocation History of BR Diesels and Electrics', Third and Final Edition, the Newport scrapyard of J Cashmore disposed of a number of the Western Region's class 22 diesel hydraulics. These were: D6300 6302 6303 6304 6305 6306 6311 6313 6314 6316 6317 6321 6324 6325 6329 6335 6341 6342 6344 6345 6346 6347 6350 6351 6353 6355 and 6357 so almost half of the class (27 of 58 locos) ended their short lives here.
The single loco in Ken's small collection is actually D6306 which still carries the headcode 2C22 presumably from one of its final workings. According to the above book D6306 was new to Newton Abbot (83D) on 12-10-1959. It was withdrawn on 21-12-1968 and stored at Laira (84A) until around 29-04-1969 when it moved to Bristol Bath Road. Sometime in May it went on to Newport, arriving in Cashmore's yard on 28-05-1969. Disposal was undertaken on an unknown date during June 1969.
Of the group of six locos in the second Cashmore's photo the first one ends with a 7 so I have worked out this is D6317 which arrived on 28th May 1969 with D6306 (above) and D6311. D6324 6329 and 6342 entered the yard on 29.05.1969, D6341 and 6344 went in on 30.05.1969 with four more, D6321 6350 6351 6355 arriving on 04.06.1969. All were swiftly disposed of as were subsequent arrivals from July onwards.
These small engines saw use (when they were available!) across the entire West Country and will no doubt be familiar to those who knew the Western Region in the 1960s and early 70s. What a scandal that a) they were authorised, being of unproven reliability, and b) that they had such a short life. Obviously the Beeching cuts must take some of the blame for their demise as traffic they were designed to handle quickly disappeared as a result of closures and reductions in traffic.
Sadly none of the class made it into preservation. One loco, recently ex-works D6319, was provisionally sold from Swindon Works but was then cut up in error. As compensation the disappointed would-be buyers were offered and accepted 'Warship' D821 Greyhound instead which happily survives to this day.
There is a Flickr photo group for this class, ''Western Region Class 22North British Diesel Hydraulics'' which is well worth exploring.
Attached: D6314 with D1039 'Western King' at Westbury steam shed on 23rd April 1965. Photo the late Bob Taylor (Westbury). Somewhere I also have a photo showing one of the class leaving Wanstrow (Somerset) with a Witham-Yatton via Wells 'Strawberry Line' local stopping train in 1963.
Barnstaple Branch 3