North Wales Coast
September 2000-1

47786 "Roy Castle OBE" arrived in Crewe's platform 11 with coaching stock for a Pathfinder charter train. The locomotive was uncoupled and then ran onto the Chester line where it stopped and reversed to run round its train. The train later left heading back South. 15/9/2000

47786 "Roy Castle OBE" running round its train at Crewe. 15/9/2000

Not a N.W.Coast topic but interesting all the same. 87028(R) "Lord President" sits quietly alongside 87035(L) but a glance at the first two coaches reveal that they are very shiny and indeed covered in oil. The 87 was taking the train to Liverpool but had suffered a major internal failure which had released what looked and smelled like transformer oil into the bodywork. The train had been terminated at Crewe. 14/9/2000

The oil was leaking out from two drain holes (see arrow) in the loco body and had trailed over the wheels and suspension and covered the first two coaches. 14/9/2000

There was much discussion while another locomotive was being sought and passengers were walking about the platform looking bemused. 14/9/2000

A replacement was found in the shape of 90006 "High Sheriff" which was attached behind 87028 and pushed the train to London. The shunter told me that the affected carriages had been isolated and would be removed at London for decontamination. With oil still leaking from the coaches as it left, I wonder what state the Class 90 was in at the journey's end? 14/9/2000

Visiting Crewe station on 12th September 2000 to photograph the usual 37/4 on the 13.19 Crewe-Holyhead, I was surprised to see 175 005 standing in platform 12. Thus the march of progress continues and the 37/4's life on the North Wales Coast continues to fade into history.

Even more surprising was the sight of Deltic D9000 "Royal Scots Grey" standing in the middle road with five maroon coaches attached. The loco waited for the 175 to leave and then pulled forward to the signal where it waited until it received a green. It took off along the Coast Line almost in silence, to deliver the stock to the IETD. 12/9/2000

A short stay at Bangor station on 9th September witnessed the reversing procedures carried out every day by the Crewe-Bangor-Crewe shuttle. After arriving at Bangor with the 10.19 from Crewe, 37421 deposits its passengers and runs the stock forward into the tunnel

It then reverses the whole train into platform 2 with the shunter in the leading compartment signalling to the driver. 9/9/2000

The locomotive is then uncoupled and runs back towards the tunnel where it stops. 9/9/2000

It then reverses down the centre road towards the front of the train now at the Eastern end of the station. 9/9/2000

Finally the engine couples up to the stock ready to depart for Crewe. 9/9/2000

A few minutes up the road from Bangor, across on the Isle of Anglesey, is the village of Llanfair PG which has a request-stop station. This train, the 10.07 Birmingham-Holyhead, was pulled by 37429 "Eisteddfod Genedlaethol" and did not stop. 9/9/2000

Later, the 12.19 from Crewe to Holyhead came through behind 37401 "Mary Queen of Scots". The driver was concerned about something at the rear of the locomotive and pulled slowly into the station looking backwards before opening the throttle and taking off for Holyhead. 9/9/2000

37421 later returned to Anglesey on the 14.15 Crewe-Holyhead where it formed the 16.46 to Birmingham seen here entering Rhosneigr station - also a request stop. 9/9/2000

37421 collected about six passengers and then left complete with the almost mandatory video camera. 9/9/2000

37401 "Mary Queen of Scots" arriving at Crewe on the 07.49 train from Holyhead. This locomotive will now perform a runround procedure to take the train back to Holyhead as the the 10.19 from Crewe. 02/09/2000

37401 runs to the South end of the station and out into the yard where it stops and reverses. It then takes the centre road and runs out onto the Chester/North Wales line where it, again, stops and reverses back onto its train. 02/09/2000

It is unusual to be able to take a shot from above the loco as it waits to depart from platform 12, usually it parks under the road bridge where shadows make it difficult to photograph. Today I was lucky and 37401 left with train 1D65 for Holyhead. 02/09/2000