a) Pacer, 143617 with 150216 working ecs Exeter to Bristol,
b) 70807 on Moorswater cement empties,
c) IET 802016 heading West with its 'mouth' open, clearly showing the coupling gear.
Trusting they are of interest, Stay safe, Bill
All the Best
I hope you and your family are managing to keep well despite all the current problems.
Now, onto railway matters… Most of the Main Line through Maidenhead is on a long embankment with only one single overbridge on the extreme edge of the town on the Reading side and the only place where it would have once been possible to look down on the railway has long since been built on, whilst opposite on the other side of the tracks, a band of thick vegetation (to which the public do not have access) also blocks the view. I think this is the main reason why we see so few pictures of trains running through Maidenhead (almost all of Paddington’s traffic).
I normally go out for my daily walk and try to pick a different route for a bit of variation. Well, as usual yesterday morning I went for my walk and, purely by chance, at about a quarter to twelve I happened to be in a residential area on rising ground walking down a street towards the railway which gives one a very narrow view of the tracks. Much to my amazement what do I see going past than none other than the new Midland Pullman on the Up Relief heading to London! It’s certainly very striking in it’s smart blue and white uniform. At the time I presumed it was on a crew training trip with a view to running in & out of Paddington but now it seems more likely that it was simply in transit (via Reading) from Eastleigh to it’s base in the midlands.
I think the new owners have made a smart move and that once the Covid problems have receded it will prove very popular. There can’t be any shortage of drivers and others who are familiar with the old HST and a good set must still have many years of life left if it is not flogged hard. The other thing is that they were built for speed and, like aircraft, great attention was paid to avoid unnecessary weight. This means that they have quite low axle loading, with the consequence that they can go almost anywhere on the network. Indeed, now that that rickety old bridge over what was the A3074 at Griggs Forge has been replaced (it even looked in urgent need of replacement when I lived in St Ives during the 50s) it could probably even visit St Ives where it not for today’s short platform. If only they had left the line running down along the sea-side wall instead, there could have been a much longer platform. Indeed, I suppose even now it could still be done, at vast cost.
Anyway, because it will be so easy to deal with, I am sure it is only a matter of time before it visits Penzance.
The Devonian Pullman on Monday 3rd May is from Peterborough to Kingswear and return.
The Cornish Coastal Pullman on Saturday 29th May is from Eastleigh to Penzance and return.
The Cornish Coastal Pullman again runs on Saturday 25th September this time from Swansea to Penzance and return.
These will be subject to any Covid restrictions I expect. I hope that this is of interest to you and your readers.
Best wishes to all,