East Somerset Junction blocks
The West of England Main Line
Seven wagons have been partially derailed causing extensive track damage. It is estimated that the line will be closed until Friday, with diversions in place for London bound services via Bristol and Bus replacement services are in operation from Bruton and Frome.
For pictures try clicking here
I was very interested to read Neil Phillips' piece on the restoration of D7017 and especially the picture of the three withdrawn 'Westerns' making their final journey from Laira to Swindon Works for scrapping. On arrival at the works the three locos concerned, D1033 D1058 and D1070, were not taken into the scrapyard but instead went to some sidings at the back of the works where they joined D1056 and D1071. Here, tarpaulins were secured over the cabs and these remained until final disposal took place. I read once that following the end of BR's use of the 52's in early 1977 quarry owners Foster Yeoman were seriously considering taking on a small number of the class to work their trains from Merehead as even at that time they were unhappy with the performance of the diesel electric locos that had been brought in as replacements. Whether BR would have retained ownership or sold them to FY I am not sure. At the same time Yeomans purchased D1010 Western Campaigner and it was delivered to Merehead where it remained until the D&EPG took over custodianship in 1986 and moved the loco to Didcot for restoration. The five locos chosen (above) sadly didn't return to traffic and were disposed of as follows:
D1033 Western Trooper withdrawn 16.09.1976 (thin tyres) Moved to Swindon March 1977 Scrapped April 1979
D1056 Western Sultan withdrawn 15.12.1976 (failed ultrasonic axle test) Moved to Swindon ?? 1977 Scrapped June 1979
D1058 Western Nobleman withdrawn 21.01.1977(failed ultrasonic axle test) Moved to Swindon March 1977 Scrapped July 1979
D1070 Western Gauntlet withdrawn 30.12.1976 (engine defect & minor collision damage) Moved to Swindon March 1977 Scrapped May 1979
D1071 Western Renown withdrawn 07.12.1976 (broken cardan drive shaft) Moved to Swindon ?? 1977 Scrapped November 1978
Looking at the withdrawal dates of the above locos and the late scrapping does indeed suggest that there was a plan in hand for possible further use and it would be good if anyone is able to add to the limited information I have. A picture on Smug Mug by 'WobbleWinterWanderings' taken on 14th May 1977 shows Neil's Taunton trio at the back of Swindon Works, all securely sheeted.
With best regards
Attached: Poor quality 'Instamatic' shot I took of D1058 on a works visit on 07th August 1978 showing tarpaulins.
Many thanks Guy, any more information out there please.