Crewe station and the Steamy Affairs charter to Holyhead "The Irish Mail" had arrived behind class 50 diesels number 50049 "Defiance", owned by The Class 50 Society and 50031 "Hood" owned by The 50 Fund. Waiting in the wings with its support coach was 71000 "Duke of Gloucester", looking magnificent as ever. The steam locomotive had been held on the LNWR carriage sheds before running light engine into the station. 7/5/2005

 The 50's were uncoupled and taken off to park adjacent to the WCML. 7/5/2005

 71000 then ran out onto the Chester line before reversing onto the train. 7/5/2005

 While waiting to leave, 71000 was joined by a Virgin Pendolino. This shot is reminiscent of a picture on the front of a 1960's railway annual which depicted 71000 with, I think, an AL6, AC electric. 7/5/2005

 It was a chilly day and, as 7100 started to haul its 13 coach train out of platform 12, there was steam just about everywhere. Very dramatic. 7/5/2005

 Crossing over the complex pointwork, the engine appeared to move with extreme ease while leaving a trail of exhaust to drift around the station. The smell brought back the memories of Crewe station in the days of steam traction. Pure magic! 7/5/2005

 The steam created its own shadow which made photography somewhat difficult. 7/5/2005

 The two diesels later returned to head off to wait for the return of 71000. 7/5/2005

 During the years that I have been compiling I have received several hundred e-mails in various guises but never have any been abusive. I have never set out to insult any individual or cause distress - that approach is not my character and certainly not not the purpose of this site. I was therefore somewhat surprised and not unconcerned to receive the following e-mail from a reader who clearly has an issue with the site. I haven't responded to his disgraceful outburst to enquire but I believe that he is upset by the eighth image at CREWE_HOLYHEAD 31st May 2004

I have taken much worse abuse in my time on this Earth and am fully aware that there are some strange people about but what I find disturbing is that someone who purports to be in a responsible occupation can respond in such a violent and abusive way to what was an innocent and factual comment - the people on the platform were in training on that day and were watching how the locomotive was coupled to the DVT, that was the information I was given at the time.

The chap with his back to the group was the driver of the 47 and was merely watching the proceedings and therefore not involved apart from the fact that it was his train. If he is the Father of this gentleman it would be interesting to see what he thinks of his apparent son.

Maybe it is a wind-up I don't know but we do not need these people on the net so I have forwarded the e-mail to AOL's monitoring department requesting that this person's account is closed. Maybe an ASBO would be suitable here.

I have reproduced this illiterate piece of abuse below, censored for the sake of decency and will make sure I don't travel by rail in the Tram Inn district of Herefordshire.

 Dear Sir
Ive just viewed your web site where you describe training day at Holyhead.My father is the individual who is driving the class 47 concerned.A man of 30 years plus experiance.A man of great knowledge intellect and professionalism.I myself am a signaller who carries out my daily work with the same due diligence.My signalbox is at Tram Inn in Herefordshire.I would welcome a visit from you so that I can show you exactly where to stick your camera.You sarcastic moronic a******e.
Phil Higgins aka

 With the imposing shape of the Great Orme and its fascinating tramway as a backdrop, Super Voyager 221135 "Donald Campbell" left Deganwy and headed for Llandudno - golf anyone? 3/5/2006

 The return trip to London as 135 entered Deganwy station with the unmistakable shape of The Castle Hotel in the background. 3/5/2005

 Deganwy has a smart little station with a view across the Conwy estuary that most people would die for. With Conwy Castle nestling in the background it is no wonder that the development on Deganwy Quay is not the cheapest property on the market. 3/5/2005

 An unidentified Hippo trundled across the golf course en route for Llandudno Junction and beyond. Why didn't I use this spot when 37's were hauling the Manchester-Llandudno service? 3/5/2005