With reference to the article today on your website concerning a working to and from Barnstaple on 26th August 2023.
In the current Modern Railways there is an article on GWR and Devon County Councils aspirations for a faster train service between Barnstaple and Exeter.
The working was the 1110 5Z76 Exeter St David's to Barnstaple and 1232 5Z76 Barnstaple to Exeter St David's operated with Class 165/1 165102. Timing as shown on Realtime Trains:-
Realtime Trains | 5Z76 1110 Exeter St Davids to Barnstaple | 26/08/2023
Realtime Trains | 5Z76 1232 Barnstaple to Exeter St Davids Prem Tran | 26/08/2023
Looking at one trip today from Exeter to Barnstaple the journey time takes some one hour and eighteen minutes. With five minutes waiting time at Crediton and eleven minutes at Eggesford. Likewise a Barnstaple to Exeter trip take one hour and twelve minutes with three minutes at Eggesford and two minutes at Crediton.
Looking at the outward trip on 26th August this was completed in sixty two minutes with three minutes waiting time at Crediton and seven minutes at Eggesford. The return trip was completed in fifty seven minutes with two minutes at Eggesford and less than a minute at Crediton. With no signal box at Eggesford the driver has to undertake opening the gates crossing the road and token exchange.
Clearly with modern signalling a reduction in times between Exeter and Barnstaple can be achieved. The reason for the 5Z76 is just me speculating.
Recently visited the delightful Chapelton station which is the least used station in Devon. On the day of our visit (Saturday 26 August) there would have been no passengers because it was a strike day. After setting off for a walk from the station (having arrived by car) we were therefore surprised to hear a train in the distance rumbling over the bridge spanning the River Taw.
On Realtraintimes this train was shown as being 165102 running empty from Exeter to Barnstaple and back. Does anybody know the purpose of this? Please see the item immediatley above by David Tozer - 'The Barnstaple Line',
Chapelton has recently been featured on Geoff Marshall's youtube channel when Geoff is lucky enough to visit the old station.
Regards. Andrew Hickson.
This is the train approaching Luxuylan with 6G09 Goonbarrow - Fowey consisting of 14 loaded JIA wagons.
All the best, Jon Contrary to my earlier email which stated ‘just the one today’, I couldn’t resist an after work trip to see 66190 returning the empties to Goonbarrow.
Please find attached some photos of 66190 and 16 JIA’s (a correction to my earlier email when I stated 14) seen at Shirehall Moor, running around and departing Lostwithiel and then running along (a horribly overgrown) Rundles Walk at St. Blazey.
(By coincidence, Mark Lynam joined me at Lostwithiel, he may also send you his photos, if this is the case I will take no offence if you wish to leave out any of my images which are duplicates of his, there’s no point filling the website with photos taken shoulder-to-shoulder with one another!)
All the best, Jon