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Old 22nd January 2011, 20:17   #1
truckman060473
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Default Loco in Great Train Robbery

The Class 40 type loco D326 was apparently the loco heading the train involved in this notorious robbery, but I was wondering what actual loco featured in the film "Buster" starring Phil Collins?
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Old 22nd January 2011, 20:21   #2
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The Class 40 type loco D326 was apparently the loco heading the train involved in this notorious robbery, but I was wondering what actual loco featured in the film "Buster" starring Phil Collins?
D306 with split head code boxes added for the film
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Old 22nd January 2011, 20:24   #3
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The scenes in the film depicting the robbery were filmed on the Great Central Railway and used D306.
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Old 22nd January 2011, 20:43   #4
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Was it a preserved loco at the time the film was made (1988)?
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Old 22nd January 2011, 20:48   #5
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Yes it was. It was based at the great central.
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Old 23rd January 2011, 00:30   #6
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The Class 40 type loco D326 was apparently the loco heading the train involved in this notorious robbery, but I was wondering what actual loco featured in the film "Buster" starring Phil Collins?
D326/40126 was indeed the loco involved in the Great Train Robbery - when the loco was finally withdrawn in around 1983, BR took the highly commendable decision to send the loco to the scrapyard immediately, with no chance of reprieve for preservation. This was due to driver Jack Mills sustaining serious injuries inflicted by the robbers, & which led to his untimely death, given that he never recovered from those injuries, & the loco was thus scrapped as a mark of respect to this long serving railwayman.
As a matter of interest, another film was made - "Robbery" - which starred Stanley Baker in the lead role. On that occasion, D318/40118 was the loco used (without added split headcode boxes) - like D306, this loco is also preserved, & may be found at Tyseley Loco Museum, although it is a very long way from being an operational loco, sadly,
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Old 23rd January 2011, 08:38   #7
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D326/40126 was indeed the loco involved in the Great Train Robbery - when the loco was finally withdrawn in around 1983, BR took the highly commendable decision to send the loco to the scrapyard immediately, with no chance of reprieve for preservation. This was due to driver Jack Mills sustaining serious injuries inflicted by the robbers, & which led to his untimely death, given that he never recovered from those injuries, & the loco was thus scrapped as a mark of respect to this long serving railwayman.
As a matter of interest, another film was made - "Robbery" - which starred Stanley Baker in the lead role. On that occasion, D318/40118 was the loco used (without added split headcode boxes) - like D306, this loco is also preserved, & may be found at Tyseley Loco Museum, although it is a very long way from being an operational loco, sadly,
While Mr Mills never fully recovered from his injuries, the terrifying experience and never returned to work, Mr mills died of Leukemia. I believe he suffered from terrbile trauma head aches for the rest of his life, but many people could argue that his original injuries in no way led to his unfortunate passing. Either way, Im glad the loco was scrapped and not preserved, i never knew myself what had happened to it, so thanks for that info I hope Mr Mills has finaly found the peace he so richly deserved.

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Old 23rd January 2011, 10:13   #8
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Last Summer I was conducting a Railgrinder on the WCML down to Watford, as we passed the site of the robbery near Ledburn Junction (it was called Seers Crossing back in '63) the conversation between myself and the driver turned to the fate of Jack Mills. It turned out the driver went to school with his grandson, who told him all Jack's life after the ordeal, he was never the same man after that.

As for D326, it was involved in two other serious incidents back in the 60s. A young secondman lost his life whilst cleaning the front windscreens of the loco under the OHLE, he'd gained access by opening the doors on top of the nose, coming into contact with the overhead wires. The other incident happened at Monument Lane in Birmingham, when the loco was left standing with no parking brake on and ran away.
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Old 23rd January 2011, 12:17   #9
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Indeed - D326/40126 was forever regarded as a "jinxed" loco. I will have to check up elsewhere, but if I recall correctly, I believe that it was also involved in a very serious collision at some point in the 60's on the WCML.
Our paths crossed many times in the early 80's, but I never did work a train with this somewhat chequered loco.
BR quite rightly always took a very stern attitude as regards to the robbery & subsequent events, & this is also why the loco was scrapped so soon after withdrawal (a matter of weeks) - there was absolute determination that the loco would never be "glorified" as a permanent visual reminder of that night.
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Old 23rd January 2011, 13:49   #10
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The incident in question was when it was hauling the up Midday Scot on Boxing Day 1962, when it collided with the rear of a Liverpool to Birmingham express due to driver error, killing 18 passengers and injuring 33.
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Old 24th January 2011, 09:04   #11
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Lots of folk seem certain that it was D326, but is there a published source anywhere that says D326 was involved in the Coppenhall accident? The accident report doesn't say which loco it was, other than it was an EE type 4.
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Old 24th January 2011, 16:27   #12
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The nearest thing that I can find to official confirmation at present is on the CFPS website
http://www.cfps.co.uk/class40story.htm - here may be found a brief paragraph dedicated to D326/40126
I have also looked at various enquiry reports + the excellent "Red For Danger" by LTC Rolt, but none have so far yielded the actual loco involved - I shall keep digging, as I do know that the loco has been associated with this tragedy in some publication or other - quite possibly the "Rail" magazine at the time of its withdrawal, which gave a potted history of the loco's somewhat tarnished career.
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Old 6th March 2011, 17:04   #13
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Quoted excerpts from an article by C H Wrate, formerly of New Scotland Yard, in "Rail Enthusiast", - November, 1983.
"Even before the Great train Robbery, D326 had started to gain its reputation as a "rogue engine". On Boxing Day 1962, the locomotive (then just 2 years old) was hauling the "Mid-Day Scot" when it ran into the back of the 1645 Liverpool-Birmingham express between Winsford station & Coppenhall Jct, Cheshire. 18 passengers were killed & some 33 injured on the Birmingham bound train.
A year after the robbery - in August 1964 - a secondman was standing on the roof of the loco at Crewe when he came into contact with the overhead power cable & was electrocuted.
In August 1965, there was yet another incident. The loco was heading towards Birmingham New St station when the brakes failed. D326 was fast approaching 50 mph as it sped towards the station. However, the quick action by some of the signalling staff, realising what was happening, diverted the loco onto another line, where it smashed into the back of a goods train, injuring the guard".
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Old 6th March 2011, 17:09   #14
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Well found!
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