The Silver Bullets

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Coxster

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Does anyone know what service was nicknamed 'The Silver Bullets'? I believe it was hauled by 37s in the north west of England (around Liverpool). I do not know where it went or what it hauled so any help would be appriciated.
 
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Met Driver

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I'm pretty sure it's the Burngullow-Irvine china clay workings, so called because of the silver tanks which were once used on the services.
 

Coxster

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I have heard of those places but can't quite picture where they are. Do you have a map of the two places? Thanks for all your help so far.
 

beermaddavep

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Burngullow-in Cornwall just west of St Austell
Irvine- in Strathclyde, just past Troon on the single track line to Kilmarnock.

Wasn't there also a china clay run to the Shotton/Wrexham area?
 

Turbostar

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Yes indeed, the 'Silver Bullets' are the trains that run between Burngullow in Cornwall, & Irvine in Scotland, near Troon. They're not as popular today as they were in the past. Back then, they were always kept clean, hence the silver look (they were unpainted aluminium I think). I can remember back in the late '90s, when you had pairs of 37's hauling them, a wonderful sight seeing them storming up Hemerdon Bank between Plymouth & Ivybridge, those were the days! :) Then they went over to 60 haulage for a while, before the 66's came along. These days, the trains are not as long, & clean for that matter, & some of the time they're combined with one of the Enterprise services from Cornwall to the North, mainly with Cargowaggons & other vehicles carrying various china clay materials. With the recent cut-backs in the china clay industry down here with Imerys, who own the china clay industry, due to demand & cheaper imports, there's a big question mark on how much longer these trains are going to run, & it does look very likely they will be withdrawn in the near future. The end of an era I'm afraid. :(

Mart
 

Simming

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The Trains are still relivtivly long though, although I dont know if there still long enough to warrent 2 portions up to riverside.
 

Turbostar

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They 'aint as long as they used to be. And like I said, these days, demand is lower than it used to be. And it varies with whether they run alone, or combined with the Enterprise service. Some of the Enterprises I've seen running past me recently have been reletavely long, meaning EWS are combining some services to save time & traffic, & some of them have been seen with 'Silver Bullets' (or not so silver I guess I should say :)).

Mart
 

Simming

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yea.

The scrap train used to, or still is, quite long sometimes.

that and that cement
 

Turbostar

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Keep meaning to find out when Freightliner runs the cement to Moorswater. Only got a chance to see it once recently going past, & that was early evening. Also, have seen the scrap combined on a few of the Enterprises recently.

Mart
 

devon_metro

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Am i right in thinking this is 6V62?

Ah you live near Laira, do you know what all of teh MML Mk3s are doing there?
 

Turbostar

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I'm assuming they're one's brought by FGW, & are awaiting dispatch up north for refurbishment. For some unknown reason, when FGW buy these coaches, they bring them down here & dump them in a safe place in the yard, until a Cotswold Rail loco comes to take them back up to Bombardier Derby. Bit silly if you ask me, bringing them all the way down here, just to go back up again when ready. The other explanation is they might be for the Virgin weekend workings to & from Newquay, & are a full HST set with some spare cars just in case. I know they do keep a MML set here during the week, & it gets swapped over for another during it's travel north, if that makes sense. It's also used as a standby set, just in case any probs occur with the Voyagers when they come down here. The train is usually kept in the main sidings opp. Embankment Road, the main roud out of Plymouth that runs alongside the depot. Where I am, I can see Lipson Junc., so to see above the depot itself, I just talk a short walk across, & have a clear view of the line from there. It gets a bit busy at night, as it's used to bring various stock, Voyagers, Adelante's, & HSTs, into Laira depot for the night.:grin:

Mart
[EDIT]
Btw, the same situation goes for the power cars as well.

Mart
 

devon_metro

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The main road into Plymouth is pretty good. I used to think it was Plymouth Station as there was always an HST there and it was dark :p

I didn't realise they put Voyagers in Laira.
 

Turbostar

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Yeh, every night, from about early evening onwards, late afternoon at weekends. Sometimes it's just a single unit, sometimes a double. FGW is contracted by Virgin for light maintenance & servicing of the units at Laira, plus the usual cleaning & retention toilet emptying every night, hence why they come into Laira.

Mart
 
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