Locos running round their trains

Discussion in 'Traction & Rolling Stock' started by DelW, 5 May 2015.

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  1. DelW

    DelW Member

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    I have a question prompted by reading a short story over the weekend, in which a character was described as regularly taking a train to London, always sitting facing the engine. This struck me as an anachronism, since although there are still loco-hauled trains into London, AFAIK they are all push-pull sets, so "facing the engine" can be either way relative to direction of travel.

    This led me to wondering when the last regularly-timetabled [1] trains ran, that had to run-round at termini, either in London or elsewhere. My guesses for London would be either WCML before the cl90 / DVTs, Midland before the HSTs, or East Anglia mainline pre-electrification (since IIRC post electrification the 86s ran with mk2 DBSOs). I'd guess at late 80s or early 90s for those? Would there have been non-push-pull services elsewhere that ran later? I think that all current loco-hauled trains either use driving trailers or top & tail locos.

    To be fair, I think the story was probably written in the 1990s, so it might not have been much of an anchrionism then.

    [1] i.e. excluding charters, steam specials, etc.
     
  2. LexyBoy

    LexyBoy Established Member Fares Advisor

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    Well I could say that I always face the engine on my (HST) commute - occasionally I take a Turbo and then only face the engine if it's been a particularly good session in the pub.

    Surely you'd still face the engine on a push/pull set too?

    Only the sleepers are loco-only now.
     
  3. steamybrian

    steamybrian Established Member

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    When loco hauled trains reached terminal stations (for example London) then locos did not necessarily have to run round because in many cases crossovers or run round loops were abolished long ago.
    Train services used a "turnover" loco which operated thus....
    A loco hauled train would arrive (with loco A), the loco would detach from the train and would obviously remain stationary. Another loco (loco B) would then attach to the other end of the train and take the train away.
    Loco A would now be able to move out of the platform and either shunt to attach to a train in another platform or go to sidings to wait its next working.
     
  4. sprinterguy

    sprinterguy Established Member

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    The North Wales Coast class 37 workings performed run-rounds right up until their withdrawal in, I think, around 2001.

    Presumably the loco-hauled Crosscountry mark 2 services must have had a run-round upon reaching journeys' end at some locations up until they finished running in 2002. I never saw this operation myself, as at Newcastle, my local station, they generally avoided the necessity of a run round by running terminating Virgin XC loco-hauled services in (or out) via Gateshead and the High Level bridge to perform a 180 degree turn. I seem to recall that there was also a regular shunt release at somewhere like Brighton that avoided the need for a run-round with these trains.

    Not sure what the process was for the handful of class 47 hauled mark 2 daytime trains that operated into Paddington under First Great Western until around the start of the new millennium.
     
    Last edited: 5 May 2015
  5. mph1977

    mph1977 Member

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    also how many of the loco hauled services barring HST services are actually push pull as the 90s on East anglian services and the 91s on the ECML work with DVTs ...
     
  6. sprinterguy

    sprinterguy Established Member

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    Which are both examples of push-pull services unless the terminology has been changed: I didn't think that "push-pull" referred only to services with a loco at both ends of the train - such a formation is known as "top and tail".
     
  7. alexl92

    alexl92 Established Member

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    On an 225 set, facing the engine would always be facing north regardless of direction of travel except in the case of DVT failure... I don't understand what you're getting at?
     
  8. sprinterguy

    sprinterguy Established Member

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    Yes, which could be facing either forwards or backwards depending on whether travelling to or from London. I believe that the suggestion here is that "facing the engine" is taken to mean the same thing as "facing the direction of travel".
     
  9. ac6000cw

    ac6000cw Established Member

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    The class 37 loco-hauled trains to/from Rhymney might have been the last (finished in 2006 ?) - although the run-arounds were actually done in the sidings, not in the station (AFAIK).
     
  10. kjhskj75

    kjhskj75 Member

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    Cross-country trains would run around at Gloucester until the 1990s.
     
  11. RichmondCommu

    RichmondCommu Established Member

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    There was still a loco hauled service into St Pancras around 2002 / 2003. I suspect the class 47 that hauled it would have run round it's train as I can't recall St Pancras having a station pilot at that time and the Cambridge Street stabling point had been closed in the early 1980's. Happy to be corrected though :)
     
    Last edited: 5 May 2015
  12. CC 72100

    CC 72100 Established Member

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    That would have been my guess as well - for example, at Paignton, where after all passengers had got off, the train would proceed to Goodrington sidings and the loco that had brought the train would run around the stock there, before bringing it back into Paignton for the return working back up North.

    A similar situation to that suggested by ac6000cw above.

    At least that's the only way I could think of it happening - I can't see their being enough spare locos on summer saturdays in Paignton to avoid that happening, meaning that the loco that brought a train in would not do that return working, although I stand to be corrected!
     
  13. hairyhandedfool

    hairyhandedfool Established Member

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    "Facing the engine" is often used in place of "facing forwards" or similar, rather than literally facing the engine.

    As for the Ops question of loco hauled trains and run rounds, I believe the last one would technically be Holyhead and the "Pendolino drags", where the 57/3s hauled a Pendolino from Crewe to Holyhead, ran around and hauled the unit back to Crewe.

    Brighton had a loco run-round of sorts until Voyagers came about, with a 47 and stock being hauled into Lovers Walk Depot by an 09, the shunter and loco swapping places and the 09 bringing the stock back into the station for the return working.

    In Manchester, I believe the XC workings had a loco arrive out of Longsight Depot and join the rear (now the front) of the train.

    There was a loco hauled working into St Pancras for a few years until late 2004 (when the old St Pancras closed), but I believe this was also not a true run-round, but rather a new loco coming from Cricklewood sidings, or somewhere like that.
     
  14. RichmondCommu

    RichmondCommu Established Member

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    Thanks for this. The loco could have only come from Cricklewood and whilst I don't doubt what you are suggesting that would have been quite a distance for a light engine to travel, longer than say Willesden to Euston or Old Oak Common to Paddington.
     
    Last edited: 5 May 2015
  15. ac6000cw

    ac6000cw Established Member

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    Same thing happened at Poole for XC workings - the trains were serviced and run-round in the sidings west of the station.

    As others have said, at major termini, if the stock was going out again quickly a new loco would be put on the 'country' end, then when the train departed the incoming loco would follow it out at a safe distance until it got to the first stop signal. Then it might be shuffled across to head the next train out (etc.). So effectively there would be a one loco 'traction float' at the station - or maybe more at somewhere busy like Euston.

    The main reasons for going single-loco push-pull were to avoid the light engine movements across the station throat, and the (dirty, safety hazardous) uncoupling and coupling work at track level between vehicles - in all the oil and other stuff that seems to accumulate near buffer stops.
     
    Last edited: 5 May 2015
  16. TorqueOfTheDevil

    TorqueOfTheDevil Member

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    More frequent than these was the WAG Express where the 57 (and, later, the 67) would run round at Holyhead. I can't recall exactly when the DVTs started but it was after the 67s. To begin with, the 67s ran by themselves.
     
  17. hairyhandedfool

    hairyhandedfool Established Member

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    The only other sensible option I can think of is that the services were top and tail (photos online seem to suggest this was not the norm), but the stock and locos went to Cricklewood during the daytime, as far as I can make out:

    1B19 0928/0930 Nottingham-St Pancras
    5B19 1207 St Pancras-Cricklewood Sidings ECS
    5F48 Cricklewood Sidings-St Pancras ECS
    1F48 1730/1725 St Pancras-Sheffield

    sulzerpower.com lists a different loco hauling the two class 1 trains each day, though I can't vouch for the accuracy of it.
     
    Last edited: 5 May 2015
  18. kjhskj75

    kjhskj75 Member

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    They were kept on the Engine Siding just outside the station. Still there, but no longer used.
     
  19. dk1

    dk1 Established Member

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    On the GEML before DBSOs fresh engines where normally provided at Liverpool Street but at the Norwich end this was often a luxury. Most where shunt released by the class 03 station pilot which would draw up enough when the signal cleared to allow the loco over the buffer end crossovers. At Yarmouth the platforms where long enough in most cases to stop short & a flag or tail lamp indicated the driver needed to do this. But the 03 based here would normally attatch & take the stock into the carriage sidings. Failing this the loco would propell it.
     
  20. D6975

    D6975 Established Member

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    Wrong.
    Fife circle doesn't use DVTs or DBSOs (yet)

    The Rhymneys used to run round in the station at Rhymney on Saturdays, because they went up and down all day, not just peak hours one way journeys.
     
    Last edited: 5 May 2015
  21. Welshman

    Welshman Established Member

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    In steam days, sometimes the uncoupled incoming engine would give the departing service a push as far as the starting signal.

    This was particularly welcomed by the crew of a heavy train starting against a steep gradient from the end of the platform. This used to happen particularly at the old Bradford Exchange station.
     
  22. ExRes

    ExRes Established Member

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    One Class 47 was kept berthed on the platform at St Pancras overnight, in the morning it would drop out to the home signal and then onto the country end of the arriving set, it would then go top and tail to Cricklewood for the day

    In the evening in would return top and tail where the leading 47 would be detached and become the berthed engine for the following day
     
  23. colchesterken

    colchesterken Member

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    ahhh The old days when we went to Southend the steam engine would stop short of the buffers uncouple shunt forward points changed the engine would run round ready to go back
    Just like on the heritage railways ...the good old days
     
  24. Tim R-T-C

    Tim R-T-C Established Member

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    I hadn't realised how much they still did this in Paris - go to Gare du Nord or better, Gare d'Austerlitz - it is a delight.
     
  25. Mike99

    Mike99 Member

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    On a similar sort of theme, workng for a TOC a couple of years ago selling tickets and doing reservations over the phone a gentleman booked tickets WAT to HON and asked for a seat reservation in the restaurant car so he could take luncheon.!!! :roll:
     
  26. Mag_seven

    Mag_seven Established Member

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    Similarly at Reading.
     
  27. Observer

    Observer Member

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    Apparently there will be a DBSO soon on one of the runs because of platform changes at Waverley later in the year, according to a recent post on here. DRS have a few but require a good lot of work. They also have a DVT that was used for Class 68 testing but again, would require an overhaul.

    I would expect once more 170s are sent down south, the more loco hauled runs there will be?
     
    Last edited: 5 May 2015
  28. DelW

    DelW Member

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    That was the way I took it in the story which prompted my original question.

    Thanks to all for various responses, several services mentioned that I didn't know about, and for details of how terminal workings functioned.

    Del
     
  29. Jegerpizza

    Jegerpizza Member

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    The Fort William sleeper class 67 run around at Fort William, before heading into a siding, i do believe.
     
    Last edited: 6 May 2015
  30. gazthomas

    gazthomas Established Member

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    Sleepers, WAG express pre DVTs, Pendolino drags, etc
     
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