Back on the platform

03_179

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I do enjoy a stint at Donny.

I seem to get a few 'cops' but often it mostly 'duds'.
 

The_Train

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I do enjoy a stint at Donny.

I seem to get a few 'cops' but often it mostly 'duds'.
Yeah I enjoy Donny. I think the fact that it's surrounded by yards helps as it ensures there's always something to see
 

Techniquest

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A shame you didn't get to add 43318 to the list, but a good day out overall.

Going for a run, credit where it's due there I can't run far. Got to work a bit more on the lungs, and some wireless earphones, before I try running!
 

The_Train

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Going for a run, credit where it's due there I can't run far. Got to work a bit more on the lungs, and some wireless earphones, before I try running!
Yeah my wireless earphones work a treat for running. Got the sort that sit around the back of my neck and find them really comfortable. Got a good few 'running' playlists saved to my Deezer account as well and I've been helped on many a tough section of a run with a nice upbeat classic.

The best way to get into running is to start small in terms of distances and pace, especially if you've not done it before or haven't done it for a while. Work out a circular route 'around the block' from where you live and do that a few times - can be any distance you feel comfortable in doing. Then when you are completing that with ease just start to add a few extra streets to the run and build up your distance. You'll surprise yourself once you get into it and I find that it's not only good for physical health but helps mentally as well so it's a double whammy for me :)
 

Techniquest

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Good advice on the running there, I did similar with power-walking. Won't be long I suspect until I do the same with running, I've already got tunes set up ready!
 

The_Train

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Wow, it's been a while since I visited this thread. I guess the desire just hasn't been there to spend the time typing these reports up but the fact I haven't been doing is constantly niggling away at the back of my mind as a kind of 'to do' thing :lol:

So, with my mojo back for a bit I thought I would play a bit of catch up starting with some visits to the local at the back end of last year. The 26th November tempted me out for a short stint on the platform as I'd noticed a move from the SVR to Crewe so on a slightly damp afternoon it was off for the short hop to the station in time to see a bit of steam as 46100 "Royal Scot" made an appearance with 47790 (47593) for company. Both duds, but its always nicer to see something other than a Voyager or Pendolino at Stafford
46100 "Royal Scot" by The_Train

Making that mistake of checking RTT, my mind was made up to hang around a bit after the steam had departed and I was duly rewarded with the sight and sounds of duds 37059 and 37259 working light from Basford Hall to Bescot before an even rarer sight appeared in the shape of a Colas locomotive - dud 67027 running from Derby RTC to Crewe
Colas 67027 by The_Train

It wasn't just duds though, as 88002 went north on a Daventry to Mossend working meaning it is just a search for Pandora's box to complete the full set of 88s for sight. As it sometimes does, this winner gave me impotus to hang around.....I mean one winner soon becomes 2 doesn't it? Well not neccessarily as I was inundated with a raft of dud sheds, 67027 made another appearance and even the excitement of a light engine run from Crewe Electric to Wembley became a let down when dud 92033 went by. I'm now also armed with a Freightmaster subscription - one of the main reasons for this was that I felt enough had helped me on the TOPS thread and it would help me to give something in return - and this is proving particularly helpful in allowing me to prepare the phone for a photo of an incoming train that I've yet to get a pic of. Of course, it can also help with sight winners and whilst inspecting incoming movements I caught sight of the reported loco on a Dowlow to Theale cement working which meant I had to stay even longer to see winner 66037 fly by.
66037- 6V11 1000 Dowlow Sidings to Theale Hope Cem by The_Train

At this point, I put my phone away and duly headed home - don't worry I'm not still there as I type this!

A couple of days later, I did return to the local and looking at the 3 locos I recorded that day I have no idea why I visited haha. The only thing that comes to mind is I'd seen a Coton T.C. to Crewe working that had been activated but was cancelled after I had arrived at the station so this could be that day. This same working has been activated every working day for the last 2 months and I've only ever seen it report to a couple of timing points on RTT on a couple of these days before seemingly turning back - no idea what it is but I can guarantee that when it does finally run, I won't be there to see it! Despite this setback, things weren't all bad that day as I recorded 3 sheds and the final one is 66716 on the daily 4L18 Trafford Park to Felixstowe - takes me down to 6 plus 2 of the 3 newbies to clear the GBRf sheds. That was it for the 28th November as I had bigger fish to fry the next day......
 

The_Train

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Going International in the name of Trains - Friday 29th November 2019

Part 1 - Thanks XC!

Ok, International is probably stretching things a little bit but today was the first visit of mine to check out the South Wales rail scene with a visit to Cardiff Central. Thanks to the advice and help of you good people on here, I had journeys planned that were littered with proper trains - it was going to be HST's galore!!!

It was also going to be my final 2 journeys aboard a Virgin Train and after an early alarm call, I was aboard dud for all 390011 for my penultimate VTWC journey as far as Tamworth. My arrival at Tamworth was met with confusion as I checked the departure screens for my 0750 departure to Bristol aboard a glorious HST. The concern started when I could only see that the 0750 service heading to Birmingham New Street and no further - the concern rose considerably when I realised that it was reporting the train to be 4 coaches only. So not only was I making an unscheduled change in the bat cave, I was going there in the 'comfort' of a Voyager. Before this joyous occasion, duds 66511 and 66504 went by but the inevitable soon occurred and 220010 crawled in meaning the number of passengers usually afforded a 7 car set were having to wedge into a 4 car unit. And wedge is an understatement - it was standing through the aisles and in the vestibules so instead of enjoying a quiet, comfortable journey aboard a Mk 3 carriage being powered by a power car up front, I was stood in a vestibule with my head in some guys armpit - thanks XC! I mean, they could have at least sent me a Voyager I required for haulage....

Fortunately, the short hop to Birmingham didn't seem to take too long - probably because I shoved my earphones in to drown out the noise of the college students aboard. I had around 30 minutes to kill at Birmingham so I headed down on to the platforms to see what was around and after checking out a number of dud units, my mood was improved considerably thanks to the sight of 323214 - my final 323 for sight so before 9am and at a station I wasn't even supposed to visit that day, the class klaxon was ringing around the UK's second city. Maybe I should thank XC for this......then again I still had another journey to make aboard one of their trains. Maybe the HST set had only made it to Birmingham the previous night and was starting from here?!?!?!? It wasn't.....in fact, it was required for haulage 221122 and amazingly I managed to get to a door first - I was going to get a seat on a Voyager!!!! In fact, it was very lightly loaded and everyone got a seat but not before I was laughed at by the woman behind me on the platform as everytime I put my foot on the step another person appeared to alight - seriously, where do they pack these people on Voyagers? Anyway, I took my seat and it actually wasn't too bad of a journey with it never really getting too busy. There wasn't too much to see on the way to Bristol until Bristol Parkway nearly caught me out, but I was able to ID 3 dud FLR sheds stabled there (is this Stoke Gifford FLT?).

Bristol Temple Meads was a popular jaunt with my dad in my younger days so I always enjoy returning there and the old place hasn't really changed except back then, there was more fun things to see than IETs and 166s. However, needs must and my arrival into the South West was met by a winning IET, 800027 and a winning 166, 166215. Maybe I shouldn't moan too much about them after all! I had a quick roam of the station to get my bearings and made it 3 in a row as 158767 was sat parked up at the south end of the station. I decided to take my place at the North end where I nailed more winners in the form of 800013, 158951, 166220, 166218, 166219 and 158776. Can't complain too much at a start like this! This was also my first chance to see the slightly bizarre looking reformed 3-car 158 units - can't say I'm a fan of the look. Anyway, my good start continued thanks to 166205 before I was treated to my first sighting of a short HST set
43122 by The_Train

Unfortunately, 43122 and 43097 were both duds but the coaching stock was a requirement (I regret not taking coaching stock numbers from the start now) so I did get something from this sighting. Having watched this arrive and depart I headed back to my chosen spot in time to see 166202 and also DR75406 which passed through - we all love a track machine don't we? 158956 quickly followed into the book as well before I hit my worst run of duds today - 3 units arriving and all failing to trouble the book of sights. That didn't last long though and 150249 was soon chalked off - I must say, I do like the GWR livery on the sprinters
150249 by The_Train

It was certainly a cold day in the South West, but there was still plenty of sunshine in the sky which made for a nice day to be out and about and lady luck was also shining down as the winners continued. 166207 was next into the book, before I got to see a RHTT working that I'd not previously seen and it was Colas 66846 and winner 66850 to become only my 2nd winner for sight from the Colas 66 fleet. A pair of 158s, in the form of 765 and 745, became the next winners with 166217 quickly following. To be honest, I'd expected Cardiff to throw up winners but Bristol was already exceeding expectations and it continued to do so when 800030 turned up from the capital. I did finally endure a dud 166 as 166218 appeared, having previously been chalked off at Reading
GWR 166218 by The_Train

It was back to a proper, slightly reduced, train next though as another HST set rolled in and this time it was 2 required power cars as 43156 and 43162 both went into the book along with all 4 of the coaching stock. It wasn't all about HST's though and 158958 and 158798 reminded me of that by heading into the book but I knew that the next HST set to arrive would be the one I would end up travelling on - surely this would be a HST set after the debacle I'd endured earlier in the morning? Thankfully, it was! Dud for sight but required for haulage 43192 was leading the set and it was the same at the rear with 43094. The coaching stock was all required for sight as was 158769 and 150246 which I was able to nab as I made my way across to my steed for the journey to the Welsh capital
43192 by The_Train

I took my seat in the rear carriage (I never actually checked but assumed 1st class to be at the front) and at the rear of the carriage to listen to that delicious hum made by the power car. Although these short sets will never be the same as the full sets operating across the Western region, it was still fantastically comfortable and the HST's still performed admirably. 158749 was spied during the journey as we passed Filton Abbey Wood before things became a little more Welsh at Newport as 175115 became my first TfW winner of the day. After a slight delay heading into Cardiff, we were soon pulling in and I was off in search of the Welsh pacers.

So with 29 winners in the bag already, it was over to Cardiff to see if it could match or even better what Bristol had offered me. I shall return later to get this one completed.
 

xotGD

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Good to see you reporting again Mr Train. Always an enjoyable read.

Your 'Freightmaster' subscription explains why you are now a font of knowledge over on the TOPS thread! I was wondering how you had become a "Gen Merchant" all of a sudden!
 

The_Train

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Good to see you reporting again Mr Train. Always an enjoyable read.
Thanks mate

Your 'Freightmaster' subscription explains why you are now a font of knowledge over on the TOPS thread! I was wondering how you had become a "Gen Merchant" all of a sudden!
Haha yeah as I said in the report, it's obviously a handy tool to have for my own needs but also gives me that chance to offer something back. I quite enjoy the tracing of locos, especially when it takes some investigative work to find the right one. I think it was @palmersears who first put the thought in my mind but then pre Xmas I got chatting with a guy who was using it and it made my mind up to give it a go. Very much worth it for me as it provides loco information that I can use for my own needs (not just numbers).

The only thing that I've been disappointed with is the fact that a Freightmaster subscription on its own doesn't allow me to contribute gen if I'm out and see something that hasn't been reported. Having asked the question on this I've found out I'd have to pay a subscription to both Freightmaster and Railcam to be able to contribute in this way. Seems very daft to me as surely they'd want more people contributing to ensure the maximum number of services have details of the traction but eh ho, it's their business and they can do as they wish haha.

Hope you are keeping well anyway mate? :)
 

xotGD

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Hope you are keeping well anyway mate? :)
Yes, thanks. Enjoying the TPE 68s on the occasional work trip to Manchester, and planning on a visit to the East Lancs diesel event in a couple of weeks.

And I even won the December photo competition!

Right, I'm ready to find out what happened in Cardiff...
 

The_Train

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Yes, thanks. Enjoying the TPE 68s on the occasional work trip to Manchester, and planning on a visit to the East Lancs diesel event in a couple of weeks.

And I even won the December photo competition!

Right, I'm ready to find out what happened in Cardiff...
Good to hear mate. Not bad traction to have for work either - I've actually yet to sample the TPE 68s so maybe a summer excursion to Scarborough is required. I'm also plotting the East Lancs in a couple of weeks but I will do the Friday if I go and I think I saw you put somewhere else that you're looking at going on the Saturday.

Good work on the POTM comp. I usually check those out but don't think I saw the December one so I will have to check out what impressed everyone so much :) What did you win?

Part 2 incoming.......
 

The_Train

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Going International in the name of Trains - Friday 29th November 2019

Part 2 - Capital Gains

I arrived in the Welsh capital at around 20 past 1 in the afternoon meaning I had over 4 hours to chase down those Welsh pacers but it wasn't the squeal of a pacer that welcomed me, it was the sound of duds as a couple of 800s and a 175 headed into the dud book for the day. However, once I'd positioned myself at the Canton end amongst a gaggle of spotters (what is the correct term for a group of train geeks?), the winners soon started to find me. 150280 was first to be chalked off before the glorious sight of pacers started with 142085 and 142083. My TfW sightings had been restricted to the Crewe and Manchester areas previously so I was a little light on these so it wasn't too much of a shock to be hitting winners straight away but nevertheless it still a nice feeling to be ticking off more and more with each unit that arrives and that was the case with 150241 and 143604 which were next to be marked off. I'd been told that Cardiff could be a bit of a hotbed for DB sheds and this interested me considering the DB fleet is probably where most of my shed reuquirements lie but the first one to appear for me was dud 66076. There was no way I was letting this drag me down though and neither were the TfW pacers as 142072 soon got my winners back up and running and this was soon followed by 150284, 143616 and 143605 as the units flooded into Cardiff from all over the place. The 175s have generally been the TfW units I've had most success with outside of Wales so it was no surprise that these were the ones to throw up the most duds and a couple more were added to that list before 142069 and 142010 brought those required pacer numbers down even further. Something a bit different showed next though as Cardiff was treated to a couple of posh sprinters and I was treated to more winners, this time in the form of 158763 and 158747 before we were graced with a locomotive that isn't a shed - always a pleasure these days. Unfortunately it was dud 60062 working a Westerleigh Puma to Robeston Sidings tank train through the goods lines
DB 60062 by The_Train

That may well not have been a winner but my next sighting, 150229 most definitely was. I'd got chatting to a couple of guys who were also about and they'd got onto the subject of ex GA class 170s heading for TfW. This was news to me but they also said that there was one roaming around on test and was due into Cardiff at some point but would be arriving at the opposite end of the station and returning back out the same way after a swift change of ends. I made a quick check on the maps to check for it in the vicinity and it turned out that if I'd just looked along the platform, I would have seen it as it was already in Cardiff. A quick turn of pace (I've still got it) allowed me to make it to the other end in time to see it was 170207, which I'd already seen previously during my stint around Norfolk/Suffolk. Ah well, always a novelty to see liveries in areas you wouldn't necessarily expect
Ex GA 170207 @ Cardiff Central by The_Train

A slow stroll back to my position - it needed to be slow as I can only turn up the pace once a day - enabled me to chalk off 143607 which had arrived into the 'Valley platforms' and this was soon followed by 143601. My first sighting of a dogbox had been a dud, mainly thanks to the few I've seen at Crewe over the last 18 months but 153329 was anything but dud before it was time for more shed action as a Llanwern to Margam working transpired to be dud PD Ports 66109
PD Ports liveried 66109 by The_Train

I'm a fan of DB turning out locos in new liveries but someone does need to tell their design team that there are other colours than blue! After the excitement of some loco action, it was back to the units and more importantly back to the pacers as 143614 was chalked off but 142072 made a return appearance to remind me that repeats would hit me with a vengeance as time ticked on
142072 by The_Train

153353 was next in the book and those eagled eyed of you will have noticed the GWR HST in the picture of the PD Ports shed but these were definite duds 43097 and 43122. It was a HST replacement that would be my next winner as 800312 appeared and the soon to be replaced 142080, 143623 and 143608 also went into the book. I thought I might get to see a few more required IETs but not with the next pairing as 800032 and 800023 added to the growing number of duds for the day so I was becoming more and more reliant on the pacers to keep my winner numbers up - 142077, 142006, 142002 and 142074 all received the treatment in the space of 10 minutes before 143607 ended that run by making a duplicate appearance
143607 by The_Train

166203 and 165132 made an appearance on the Taunton working and 150237 was also added to the winners list before 43122 and 43097 returned to the station, having had a brief rest, to get their next working underway. A raft of dud units came and went, although not all duds as 150251 broke that cycle, before it was time for a bit more locomotion but yet another dud DB trundled by as 66094 ventured off to Llanwern. 150253 was clearly not happy about me enduring these duds so it made an appearance before nearly 10 minutes went by with dud unit after dud unit - not helped, of course, by the fact that I was re-recording units that terminated at Cardiff and then went off to reverse and return to the station :lol: One of the duds that did come by in this 10 minute period, however, was not a returning unit but yet another dud DB shed, this time 66158 not helping me at all. Whoever it was who said about Cardiff being fairly DB heavy was definitely not lying - just a shame that DB seem to enjoy leaving their fleet cluttering up the Toton depot :E Not to worry too much about DB and their fleet, I was soon back to the winning units as 175011 started a run of winners whilst also bringing my 175 requirements down to just 4. 143606, 142082 and 143624 followed in a manic 2 minute period before 800303 was also chalked off. These were swiftly followed by 150264 and 150240 before another short run of duds followed whilst one of the local fellas whipped up the crowd with his excitement regarding a move from Crewe to Cardiff Canton. I started to picture steam or some classic diesel traction so I was slightly underwhelmed when one of the TfW LHCS sets appeared having failed earlier that morning and, having been fixed, was returning home ready for its evening outing. It wasn't all bad though, as the DVT 82306 was required as were all of the coaching stock but 67020, powering at the rear was a dud
82306 by The_Train

With time approaching 4pm, the darkness was starting to set in and opportunities for pictures were dwindling. On top of this, lots of units were repeating by now - in fact I think I'd seen some of them 3 or 4 times by now. That said, winners were still showing themselves as 142075 was chalked off before 150262 and 150257 followed suit. 142081 also kept those pacer winners coming before 175004 further reduced my needs on the 175 class as I headed down to just 3 required. By now, the cold was setting in and this was not helped by the fact that I had a 30 minute spell where only 158766 was ticked off amongst many a dud but I was kept alive by the thought of those 37s which were still yet to come - not that a local had filled me with much confidence with his horror stories of units coming out on these 37 turns. Before that though, I did manage to nab a few more winners as 150255 and 150285 followed one another into the book as did 166201 and 165127 right before the main event as I heard that very familiar growl from Canton. Indeed, it was required 37418 hauling a rake of required coaching stock - unfortunately as I'd already used my turn of pace for today, I only managed to make it to the other end in time to grab a pretty naff pic as it launched itself out of Cardiff. Never mind, it was a nice one to see, hear and add to the list of winners and I knew there was still the possibility of the 2nd set coming out to play just before I headed home. Before that though, 66094 made another appearance as it headed back to Margam from Llanwern before 158962 was marked off. 153327 and 158821 headed into the book as did 142076 but it was the sight of dud 166220 arriving into Cardiff that caused me some alarm. The reason this concerned me so much was because it arrived on a working that I'd followed on RTT as I was sure it was the incoming working that would then become my steed back to Bristol - maybe I'd just followed the wrong service.......

No time to worry about this though as it was getting close to the time that the 2nd set of LHCS should be heading off Canton and I could definitely see lights that resembled those on the front of the beasts that are 37s. Even a group of local scrotes who had obviously enjoyed their first taste of beer weren't going to distract me from this as 37421 appeared with 3 of the 4 coaches being required for sight. Unfortunately the loco was a dud for sight but it didn't make the spectacle any less as it powered out of the station and into the winter night
37421 by The_Train

With time ticking, it was time to dash over (well under) to where my steed home was waiting and my fears were confirmed as 166220 was sat there waiting to head to Taunton via Bristol. It appeared that a Paddington train which usually arrives and departs before the Taunton train was delayed and a lot of the Paddington folk were panicking that the 166 was their train home. It was a very well loaded service pretty much all the way to Bristol so it was earphones in for me as we headed back towards the border. We were soon back in the West Country and I was soon in a Costa for a large vanilla latte to not only warm my hands up but to also warm my insides up. I had a quick roam around after heading back on to the platforms but I was enjoying the coffee far too much to be worrying about trains and with little time left before my next departure I decided to relax a little bit. 4 of my journeys today were planned as HSTs and so far I was out 1 from 3 actually being a HST set of some sort - surely XC weren't going to let me down again? They didn't as 43321 and 43378 became my penultimate haulage of a very long day, both being winners for haulage to boot. A late arrival into Bristol was never really recovered and it seemed to be quite slow progress, particularly around Cheltenham where a quick check on the maps showed us being held whilst GWR conducted an ECS move. By the time we arrived into New Street my final connection at Tamworth was starting to feel a bit pushed but with a quick turnaround that wouldn't be a problem. The quick turnaround never happened, in fact we were notified that we were to be held at New Street awaiting the late arrival of another XC service to allow those on there with connections to Leeds to still board our train. Good for those wanting to connect to Leeds but not so good for those of us with connections before Leeds - to be fair to XC it was announced that anyone with connections at Tamworth for onward journeys up the WCML would have tickets accepted on a train destined for Crewe - I think it is the VTWC one but I decided to stay on to Tamworth knowing I had a back up connection at just after 10pm. I'd have been interested to see whether my split tickets - Cheltenham-Tamworth/Tamworth-Stafford - would have been well received on a train heading from Birmingham to Stafford via Wolverhampton and not going near Tamworth though! We did eventually get moving though and after no more delays, we pulled into Tamworth not so long afterwards meaning I missed my connection by around 10 minutes meaning my penultimate ride on a Virgin Trains Pendolino was now my final ride on one as my back up was a LNWR service. Unfortunately my arrival into Tamworth was met by departure boards showing my backup train as cancelled - it was moving when I'd checked RTT whilst sat at Birmingham but appears that it reached Rugby and no further. LNWR trying their best to become the new Northern again! I was now down to the final train of the day as my only option to get home but that was another hour away and its departure time had come and passed without movement from Euston. I tried my best to get the staff at Tamworth to arrange me some transport home but that fell on deaf ears....

Me - "come on mate, it was meant to leave Euston 10 minutes ago and hasn't moved. It will definitely be cancelled at some point"

Staff - "sorry but until it shows as cancelled we can't do anything"

At least they had left the waiting room on P1 open so I ventured in there to find some warmth and thankfully some food in my bag. As I was munching on that a quick check on RTT showed a bit of freight action incoming so I stepped outside as did the other gent in the waiting room. It was only a dud 70 but I was more surprised to have bumped into another spotter at 10pm on a freezing winter evening. In the end I was glad I did as I suddenly found myself roaming the low and high levels to see quite a good number of freight trains over the next hour or so. I found out he had driven from Derby to spend a few hours until 11pm watching the late evening freight action that Tamworth offers and does so quite regularly on a Friday evening. I definitely commend his dedication to the locomotive hunt. Unfortunately for me all of the locos were duds but I was grateful for the company at a time when I had planned to be in the warmth of home and after he departed I was relieved to see that the final train had departed Euston and was winding its way up the WCML. The member of staff I spoke to earlier walked past me looking smug - no words needed to be exchanged, he knew he'd won that little battle :E It was actually a pair of 350s, 350377 and 350117, that rolled in but neither were required for haulage so I jumped aboard 117 for the jaunt back to Stafford and with the time getting on for midnight and having left my house around 18 hours earlier, I finally found my way home and to my bed after a pretty epic day.

For Sight

Winners: 84
Coaching Stock Winners: 19
Tram Winners: 0
Classes completed: 323
Sub classes completed: N/A
TOCs completed: N/A

For Haulage

Winners: 6
Total Mileage: 336 miles 72 chains
Classes completed: N/A
Sub classes completed: N/A
 

xotGD

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What did you win
The adulation of the crowd is enough for me :lol:

Plus I got to set the theme for the January competition, which has seen plenty of entries.

Good to see that the 37s came out to play when you were in Cardiff. Both turns were pairs of Pacers when I was there :'(

And I failed to get 37025 for haulage - if only I'd gone a day earlier as originally planned I would have had its last morning run into Cardiff. As I keep saying, it's a sport. If you didn’t get bowled out, it would take away some of the fun.
 

The_Train

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Looks like a good day out :)

37s are a sight and sound to behold.
It was very enjoyable and yeah the 37s are just something else aren't they? Just a shame I couldn't take the risk of having a ride out on one and getting back in time for my departure

Thanks for another very interesting and informative set of reports! Sounds like a marathon day with some really good photos. :D
Thanks mate :) Glad you've enjoyed reading it - my photos will never win awards as a) I use my phone and b) I've never really understood the quirks of photography like those with more expertise. Definitely something I'd like to learn more about in the future but for now my pics do the job I need them to :)

Sounded like a very productive day in Cardiff & Bristol, other than the farce at the end of the day
It certainly was productive. Not quite productive enough though as one thing I forgot to mention at the end of my report was the fact that I managed to see 14 of the 15 TfW 142s - looks like I might be heading back sooner rather than later :lol:

As for the farcical end, it was annoying at the end as I just wanted to get into bed haha. But without these events happening, the hobby could become stale ;)

The adulation of the crowd is enough for me :lol:

Plus I got to set the theme for the January competition, which has seen plenty of entries.

Good to see that the 37s came out to play when you were in Cardiff. Both turns were pairs of Pacers when I was there :'(

And I failed to get 37025 for haulage - if only I'd gone a day earlier as originally planned I would have had its last morning run into Cardiff. As I keep saying, it's a sport. If you didn’t get bowled out, it would take away some of the fun.
Yeah I was definitely worried that I wouldn't get to see the 37s when the local offered up gen that these turns had been units just lately so was happy to hear that growl. Disappointed that I couldn't work a safe plan to have a ride on one of them though but it is what it is I guess.

And yeah, it keeps things interesting knowing that there is bound to be something that happens to throw your plans whilst you're out and about
 

Far north 37

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Thanks mate



Haha yeah as I said in the report, it's obviously a handy tool to have for my own needs but also gives me that chance to offer something back. I quite enjoy the tracing of locos, especially when it takes some investigative work to find the right one. I think it was @palmersears who first put the thought in my mind but then pre Xmas I got chatting with a guy who was using it and it made my mind up to give it a go. Very much worth it for me as it provides loco information that I can use for my own needs (not just numbers).

The only thing that I've been disappointed with is the fact that a Freightmaster subscription on its own doesn't allow me to contribute gen if I'm out and see something that hasn't been reported. Having asked the question on this I've found out I'd have to pay a subscription to both Freightmaster and Railcam to be able to contribute in this way. Seems very daft to me as surely they'd want more people contributing to ensure the maximum number of services have details of the traction but eh ho, it's their business and they can do as they wish haha.

Hope you are keeping well anyway mate? :)
I started using freightmaster when the number of 66s i was after dwindled found it real handy still after twenty after moving back to scotland not had one in six months now.

I imagine it would take a lot of work for lists to be edited maybe putting a comment on the bottom of the list with sightings might be a compromise of sorts.
 
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DavidGrain

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Provided that they don't happen too often. travel problems to me add to the fun. Last Sunday I was on a Chiltern train from Marylebone to Birmingham and thought I was either on the wrong train or somebody had moved Wembley Stadium from the right to the left side of the track without telling me. In the end we did a reverse at Aylesbury and another reverse at Princes Risborough before getting to Birmingham Moor Street about an hour later than I expected only to find that there were no local trains running, not even on the line on which I had come into Birmingham. My final journey home was on a bus and another bus the following day to my local station to collect my car from the car park.
 

The_Train

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Provided that they don't happen too often. travel problems to me add to the fun. Last Sunday I was on a Chiltern train from Marylebone to Birmingham and thought I was either on the wrong train or somebody had moved Wembley Stadium from the right to the left side of the track without telling me. In the end we did a reverse at Aylesbury and another reverse at Princes Risborough before getting to Birmingham Moor Street about an hour later than I expected only to find that there were no local trains running, not even on the line on which I had come into Birmingham. My final journey home was on a bus and another bus the following day to my local station to collect my car from the car park.
Sounds like the sort of run a track basher would love :E
 

The_Train

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I happen to have an hour spare this morning so thought I would get back to catching up with my reports, starting with a few visits down the road at the local. My first couple of sightings of December were dud sheds which I saw when I happened to be wandering past the station approach but my first outing onto the platform in December was one that I'd actually pencilled into the calendar of my phone to ensure that I didn't miss out. Yes Monday 9th December was the date and with Virgin Trains no more along the West Coast Mainline, I was suddenly interested in Pendolino's again, well more specifically 390156 which was working a special from London Euston to Glasgow Central to show off its brand new Avanti West Coast livery. It attracted quite a crowd as well, probably helped by the fact it was spending a bit of time in P6 at Stafford
Avanti West Coast 390156 by The_Train

Unfortunately a combination of Staffordshire sunshine, people and the location (P6 always seems more awkward to get a decent pic) meant a good pic was hard to come by but I have to say I was, and remain, highly impressed by the livery. I think it looks sleek and suits the Pendo perfectly and is a definite improvement on both the grey and white VTWC liveries. Now I won't go as far as logging this as a winner but it will be nice to have more to look for once Avanti get their arses into gear and get the rest of the fleet in these colours. I'd only planned to go to see this but as ever, I got chatting to a couple of guys on the platform and ended up hanging around to see quite a busy period for freight and although everything was dud it did give me an opportunity to see a pair of 86s working. I also found out that 390155, the first Pendo in Avanti livery out on passenger workings, was also due back into Stafford on a Euston-Liverpool working so I decided to hang around to check that out as well....
A new dawn on the West Coast Mainline by The_Train

Who'd have thought Pendolino's would become the flavour of the month again :)

That was it for that little outing but a few days later I struck lucky as I was wandering into town and caught sight of DR73916 paused in the goods loop. Only a track machine I hear you say, but a winner is a winner ;)

We move a few days on to the 16th December now and as I made a morning check of RTT, I caught sight of an Allerton to Long Marston working which I'd assumed to be a 319 drag and as I still need a few of them for sight I planned to get out and see it just in case. Then I decided it was too cold to go and be disappointed so I decided to do a gen check on here and found out the 319s were duds, but I also found out that 57301 was the loco tasked with the move. Now, I've seen 57301 before but that was when it was operating as part of the DRS fleet but it had recently been transferred (on lease I think) to ROG and my overly complex railway database resets the sighting of a loco/unit if something changes so for the purpose of this I 'needed' to get out and see it once again.....
57301 5Q94 0859 Allerton Depot to Long Marston by The_Train

I didn't hang around long after this but 88007 and 88006 did go past on the Mossend-Daventry as I wandered towards the exit before a triple 325 working went past as I wandered home.

The next day there was another working to catch the eye, albeit a little later in the day so it was across to the local just after 3pm and just in time to 66743, in it's Royal Scotsman livery, working light from Bescot to Garston Car Terminal in readiness to work the empties down to Dagenham later in the day. Always nice to chalk another 66/7 off as I creep ever closer to getting that particular task completed. The reason for my visit, though, was for 1Z91 (which I have failed to note the actual start point and destination of but I'm thinking Chester-Leamington maybe??) which was powered T&T by 57314 and 57601, both duds, and consisted of 10 coaches that were all needed! Unfortunately, I had positioned myself over on P5 as it was pathed through P4 only to see it head through the Up Fast so any photo op was lost, particularly as darkness was setting in. I made a quick check of RTT after watching the special depart and saw a light engine STP move from Bescot to Basford Hall so decided to warm up in the waiting room whilst waiting to see what was on this - turned out to be a slightly dirty 66522 with 66519 and an equally mucky 66507 for company (522 and 507 returning home from their duties on the Chiltern RHTT workings)
A balaclava for the cold by The_Train

My final outing for 2019 came thanks to a Crewe H.S to Wembley working which is usually a 92 move and as I still need some for sight I thought I would chance my luck despite the cold weather. It was a 92 working but only dud 92023 which was a little disappointing but there was better news around the corner as there was a Felixstowe-Basford Hall working sat at the Trent Valley Junction and a quick check on the Freightmaster maps showed me it was 66587. A quick check on my database showed me that it was dud for sight as I'd seen it a number of times previously but it also showed me that it would be my first sighting of it since it turned pink so I made a quick dash over the bridge to P3/P4 just in time to see it roll through....
It's piiiiinnnnkkkkkkk by The_Train

I'd only planned to go for the 92 working but there seemed to be a good number of freight workings due through along with a steamer later in the evening. It would require a few hours of hanging around to see the steam but I'd caught wind that it was a steamer I was yet to see, so I ventured to the warmth of a waiting room and settled in. I was instantly rewarded with another shed winner as 66430 went by on a light working from Daventry to Gresty Bridge but the next batch of locos were duds, including 68034 and 68002 heading to Old Dalby and the usual raft of sheds on various workings from north-south and vice versa. It was actually at a time that I was monitoring the steam working to decide the best location to be for its passing when I struck lucky on the Southampton-Halewood cars/vans working as 66053 was chalked off. It appeared that the steamer was going to get a fast line path through the station so I headed over to the middle island and joined a growing number of folks armed with cameras in readiness for 1Z61 1601 Chester to Stevenage. Unfortunately at the last moment it was sent onto the slows and headed through P4, much to the disappointment of the camera pros who had to deal with a winner for me in the form of 60163 "Tornado" on top of them as it powered through with 47804 in support on the rear.

And with that, my time on the platform for 2019 was over and it was off home to prepare for Xmas which came and went as quickly as it always does. I'd probably not got out as much as I would have liked through 2019 but still had some decent successes around the country, especially the Northern region. I think 2020 will have to be about the South East area as I continue to neglect that but I also need to see if I can manage a trip back down to South Wales to try and finish those pesky pacers off before they disappear forever
 
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Kite159

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Sounds like the sort of run a track basher would love :E
I've done it for the novelty of going nonstop via Amersham, it isn't the fastest of journeys.

In terms of track it doesn't cover anything unusual other than the crossover at Princes Risborough
 

Techniquest

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Nice to see you back on the forum good sir! :D

A productive December there, it must be said, and I'm looking forward to seeing what you got up to in January. Like you, a clearout in Southeastern territory is much needed here too. There's just too much to go for down there, one day I'll get it sorted but probably not before I clear GWR's fleet. That seems to be my goal at the moment!
 

xotGD

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That piccie of 66522 brought a smile to my face.

Great shot of the 57 too.

When you do head to the London area the number of new sightings could set some kind of record!

Worth checking for cheap Chiltern advances to get there. I did Brum to Marylebone for £8.
 

433N

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Well done on a productive day, Mr The_Train.

I can't really see myself getting down for those Welsh Pacers (unless one unlikely scenario plays out). The thing is that leaving 1 makes it a matter of pride so that you now HAVE to go again. Missing a bunch of Northern ones was very cathartic for me and has allowed me to be philosophical about missing the Welsh ones - still hoping for some to go into preservation, mind.
 

The_Train

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I've done it for the novelty of going nonstop via Amersham, it isn't the fastest of journeys.

In terms of track it doesn't cover anything unusual other than the crossover at Princes Risborough
I don't think track bashing will ever be a thing for me. Got my work cut out just to find everything for sight :lol:

Hope you are keeping well though Kite? I have to admit I've neglected your reports since you stopped posting them on here - need to get back to them

Nice to see you back on the forum good sir! :D

A productive December there, it must be said, and I'm looking forward to seeing what you got up to in January. Like you, a clearout in Southeastern territory is much needed here too. There's just too much to go for down there, one day I'll get it sorted but probably not before I clear GWR's fleet. That seems to be my goal at the moment!
I've been around the forum just neglected this thread. I seem to spend most of my time on here arguing with other members or dealing with sarcastic PMs from mods because I've dared to take a thread a mm off topic :E

My December wasn't too bad actually especially with the winners I've picked up at the local. Whenever I nab a winner at the local I feel like running up and down the platform high fiving anyone in my way :lol:

It certainly seems logical for you to get the GWR stuff out of the way as it's on your doorstep. Northern has taken up much of my time over recent months, mainly thanks to their special offers - still failed with the Pacers in the end though :(

That piccie of 66522 brought a smile to my face.

Great shot of the 57 too.

When you do head to the London area the number of new sightings could set some kind of record!

Worth checking for cheap Chiltern advances to get there. I did Brum to Marylebone for £8.
It took me a while to actually recognise what it was when 522 came by. It's the fact that someone's had to go out and clear the dirt from certain areas that made me chuckle.

Thanks for the advice re London. I will definitely be checking out the Chiltern prices - worth it just for the traction :E

Well done on a productive day, Mr The_Train.

I can't really see myself getting down for those Welsh Pacers (unless one unlikely scenario plays out). The thing is that leaving 1 makes it a matter of pride so that you now HAVE to go again. Missing a bunch of Northern ones was very cathartic for me and has allowed me to be philosophical about missing the Welsh ones - still hoping for some to go into preservation, mind.
I think that the fact I failed to nail all of the Northern ones has made me all the more determined to get the Welsh ones. I also believe the 37s are continuing to work so my current plan is to give myself the time to ride one of those (and just live in hope that it's not a unit on the day I go haha)
 

Kite159

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I don't think track bashing will ever be a thing for me. Got my work cut out just to find everything for sight :lol:

Hope you are keeping well though Kite? I have to admit I've neglected your reports since you stopped posting them on here - need to get back to them
I've been keeping well, being kept busy revisiting some stations for photographs, i.e. the ones first visited in 2015/2016 time when I didn't take pictures. Gives me something to do when the new stock carries on arriving (and if I get any mileage requirements then happy days).

(Mileage hunting has taken a bit of a back-seat as I've got the majority of the stock being replaced [only missed out on one pacer])
 
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