Andrew Barclay 486 (Meaford No. 4)

Meaford No. 4 / Andrew Barclay 486 is an example of a number of diesel-hydraulic shunters built by the firm in the mid-1960s mainly for power stations and the MOD.

Information
Built: 1964
Builder: Andrew Barclay
Engine: Rolls Royce C8SFL diesel
Power: 311 hp (232 kW)
Wheel arrangement: 0-6-0

Built in 1964 [1], AB486 operated at a number of power stations. After being built it worked at West Burton power station before transferring to Meaford Power Station (as its No. 4 loco) in 1979. Coal traffic to the power station ended in the mid-1980s, National Power (as the CEGB had become by then) donated No. 4 to the Foxfield Railway in 1990 where it still resides.

To cope with tight curves despite being an 0-6-0 the middle wheels are flangeless. The relatively large cab is designed to give good visibility in all directions.
Two views of Meaford No. 4 at the Foxfield Railway

The locomotive carries the name Clive

[1] Industrial Locomotives (13th Edition), (Industrial Railway Society, 2003) p. 194

Class 455 (BREL York Suburban Services 4-car)

The Class 455 electric multiple unit uses the former Southern Railways/Region 750v DC third rail system. The units were built in the early 1980s to replace 4-SUB and EPB stock by BREL York [1] and are examples of 1982 Standard High Density Stock. All in all 137 sets were built between 1983 and 1985. Currently they are operated by Southern and South West Trains on commuter lines out of Waterloo, Victoria and London Bridge.

Information
Number built: 548* (137 4-car sets)
* including 43 cars from Class 508s
Built: 1983-85
Builder: BREL York
Engine: 4 EE507-20J traction motors per set (750v DC third rail)
Power: 1, 000 hp (746 kW)
Formation: Driving Trailer Standard Open (DTSO)+Motor Standard Open (MSO)+
Trailer Standard Open (TSO)+DTSO

The units were based on the work behind the prototype Class 210 DEMUs and are related to the Class 317 and 318, like them being derived from the British Rail Mark 3 coach [2]. There are 3 sub-classes: 455/7, 455/8 and 455/9 all of which remain in use, a major visual difference is that the /7 and /9 sub-classes have a more rounded roof than the /8 which despite the numbering was built first. 455/7s were built as 3-car sets but included a carriage (TSO) taken from the Class 508 EMUs which they replaced to make them 4-car. Since privatisation the Southern 455/8s have lost their cab gangways in favour of an air conditioning unit and now look different from the other sub-classes.

They were set to remain in service into the 2020s following refurbishment and the fitting of new traction motors to some units [3]. (It is worth noting that the replaced motors are reconditioned English Electric motors from older SR EMUs such as the Class 405 and indeed dated from the early post-war period!)

However the change in the South West Trains franchise in 2017 will probably see SWT's 455s withdrawn by 2020 [4] though as yet there are no plans to replace Southern's 455s. This might not be the end of the story however as there are plans to explore fitting surplus 455s with diesel engines to turn them into bi-mode multiple units following on from the Class 319 Flex / Class 769 [5].
SWR 455 746 at Clapham Junction

SWT 5917 at Guildford

Southern 455 810 at Peckham Rye

Aboard an SWT 455


Southern 455 838 and 815 at London Bridge

SWT 5712 at Vauxhall


[1] Colin J. Marsden, DMU and EMU Recognition Guide (Ian Allan, 2013) p. 351
[2] Brian Haresnape & Alec Swain, Third Rail DC Electric Multiple Units (Ian Allan, 1989) p. 77
[3] "Vossloh Kiepe UK to deliver traction upgrade to South West Trains’ Class 455 fleet" http://www.vossloh-kiepe.co.uk/vossloh-deliver-455traction-upgrade/>
[4] "Class 455 Death Sentence", Modern Railways (May 2017) p. 25
[5] "'319 Flex' units to be Class 769", Modern Railways (June 2017) p. 85

Class 88 (Stadler Euro Dual)

The Class 88 is the latest locomotive type to arrive on British mainline rails and the first electro-diesel since the Class 73 and 74 in the 1960s (though fashionably referred to these days as bi-mode), it is also the first AC electric-diesel. The Class 88 is a development of the pure diesel Class 68 and looks very similar having the same bodyshell, cab and bogies - a major difference of course being the pantograph on top!

Information
Number built: 10
Built: 2015-16
Builder: Stadler Rail
Engine: Four ABB 4FRA6063 traction motors (25kV AC OHLE)
Caterpillar C27 diesel
Power: (Electric) 5, 364 hp (4, 000kW)
(Diesel) 950hp (710kW)
Wheel arrangement: Bo-Bo

The Class 88 is a true electro-diesel which uses the same traction equipment and control software in both modes though the diesel engine (a Caterpillar C27) only provides 20% as much power compared to electric mode. Ten Class 88s have been bought by Direct Rail Services with deliveries starting in early 2017 and an introduction into service in the following Summer.
Three views of 88 003 at Kidderminster SVR

On the SVR, only diesel power could be used of course

Note the similarity to the Class 68

Class 332 Heathrow Express

The Class 332 EMUs are used exclusively on the Heathrow Express out of London Paddington. The trains leave for the airport every fifteen minutes on a non-stop journey which takes fifteen minutes. Similar units known as the Class 333 operate in the North of England.

Information
Number built: 61 (14 4 and 5 car sets)
Built: 1997-98, 2002
Builder: CAF Siemens
Engine: 4 Siemens traction motors (25kV AC OHLE)
Power: 1, 877 hp (1, 400 kW)
Formation: Driving Motor First Open (DMFO)+Trailer Standard Open (TSO)
+Pantograph Trailer Standard Open Kavatory (PTSOL)+
Driving Motor Standard Open (DMSO) or
DMSO+TSO+PTSOL+Driving Motor First Lavatory Open (DMFLO)
(5 car sets have an extra TSO)

The EMUs were originally delivered as three-car sets but have been reformed as four and five car sets with further car deliveries. There are nine four-car sets and five five-car sets [1]. They were the first electric trains to operate on the Great Western Main Line after a portion was electrified as far as the airport junction.
332 012 passes through Ealing Broadway heading for Paddington

332 001 up on jacks at the Heathrow Express depot at Old Oak Common

Interior of 332 003

Another view inside Old Oak Common depot

Cab of 332 003

332 006 waits to depart at London Paddington

[1] Colin J. Marsden, DMU and EMU Recognition Guide (Ian Allan, 2013) p. 266

London Underground R Stock

The R Stock was built for the Circle and District Lines to replace life-expired hand operated door stock. The stock was a mixture of new build and converted Q38 Stock. They served until being replaced by D78 Stock in the early 1980s.

Information
Number built: 378 (including conversions)
Built: 1949-59 (3 production batches)
Builder: Gloucester Railway Carriage & Wagon Company, Metro-Cammell,
Birmingham Railway Carriage & Wagon Company
Engine: British Thomson-Houston traction equipment (630v DC fourth rail)
Formation: Driving Motor (DM)+Non Driving Motor (NDM)+NDM+NDM
or NDM+DM

The first batch of R Stock was the R47 Stock which was built by the Birmingham and Gloucester Railway Carriage & Wagon Companies, they were joined by converted (by GRWC) Q Stock trailers known as R38/1. The second batch was built by Metro-Cammell as the R49 Stock. The earlier R Stock was built from steel but R49 was built from aluminium alloy [1]. As the aluminium was corrosion resistant they were also left unpainted. This combined with the alloy to make R49 cars 16% lighter than R47s [2] - giving a 12% saving in energy [3]. There was also a third and final batch of trains (also by Metro-Cammell) known as the R59 Stock.

Externally the R Stock was similar to the earlier Q Stock with a flare to the bottom of the car sides. Stock was semi-permanently coupled in 4-car and 2-car sets which could be combined to form 6 or 8 car trains. Later on all train formations were modified with some 4-car sets reduced to 3 cars and some increased to 5.

Some R Stock was withdrawn due to being surplus in the early 1970s but the rest survived until the early 1980s with the final withdrawal in March 1983. Three cars have been preserved.
Preserved DM 22679 at LTM Acton

Cab of 22679

Aboard 22679

[1] Paul Moss, London Underground (Haynes, 2014) p. 110
[2] Brian Hardy, Underground Train File Surface Stock 1933-1959 (Capital Transport, 2002) p. 78
[3] Piers Connor, The London Underground Electric Train (Crowood Press, 2015) p. 139

London Underground 1973 Tube Stock

The 1973 Tube Stock fleet was ordered to replace the mixture of 1938, 1959 and 1962 that operated on the Piccadilly Line. A larger fleet was also ordered as more trains were also needed for the extensions of the Piccadilly Line to Heathrow Airport in the late 1970s [1]. The trains entered service from 1975 and are now the second oldest stock on the London Underground.


Eighty six 6 car units were ordered with an extra 3 car unit for the Aldwych branch, seventy six of these are needed for peak time operation. The trains usually operate with 2 UNDMs in the middle though 20 units can operate as a complete 3 car unit with 2 DMs at either end however service trains usually contain 6 cars. When the Aldwych branch of the Piccadilly Line was still operating then a single 3-car unit was used on it [2].

Information
Number built: 519 (86.5 6-car units)
Built: 1974-77
Builder: Metro-Cammell
Engine: 4 LT118 traction motors per motor car (630v DC fourth rail)
Formation: Driving Motor (DM)+Trailer (T)+Uncoupling Non+Driving Motor
(UNDM)[+UNDM+T+DM] (some as DM+T+DM)

At 18m long the 1973ts cars are longer than previous tube stock (which were usually around 16m long) this allowed for 6 car trains instead of 7 as was the case before with virtually the same capacity but a reduced cost due to smaller number of bogies, car bodies et cetera [3]. The 1973ts was refurbished by Bombardier in the late 1990s and has regularly been London Underground's most reliable fleet of stock [4].

The 1973ts is due to be replaced in the Deep Tube Upgrade Programme in the mid 2020s. It is possible that some 1973ts cars could live on to be used to replace the ageing 1938ts/Class 483s on the Isle of Wight Island Line.
235 at Acton Town

Ealing Common

Approaching Acton Town

157 at Acton Town

Another 73ts at Acton Town

Passing through Ravenscourt Park

[1] John Glover, London Underground Rolling Stock in Colour (Ian Allan, 2009) p. 8
[2] Anthony Badsey-Ellis and Mike Horne, The Aldwych Branch (Capital Transport, 2009) p. 72
[3] J. Graeme Bruce, The London Underground Tube Stock (Ian Allan, 1988) p. 114
[4] John Hawkins, "LU Train Reliability", Underground News No. 644 (August 2015), p. 458

Midland Metro Urbos 3

The Urbos 3 fleet is the second generation of light rail rolling stock built for the Midland Metro from Wolverhampton to Birmingham, replacing the earlier T69 fleet [1].

Information
Number built: 21
Built: 2012-15
Builder: CAF
Engine: 12 traction motors (750v DC OHLE)
Power: 1, 320 hp (960 kW)

The Urbos is a successful type built by CAF used in dozens of light rail systems across the world though the Midland Metro fleet is the only Urbos 3 stock used in England (the type is also used in Edinburgh).

They were introduced for the extension of the Midland Metro from Snow Hill to New Street in Birmingham. They are slightly wider than the T69s they replaced thus the line had to be closed for a few weeks to allow for platform modifications before the Urbos 3 could enter service.

CAF are working on retro-fitting rechargable batteries to the fleet to allow them to operate on future extensions to the line where there are no overhead wires.
Number 34 outside Birmingham New Street

At the Stephenson Street spur

Number 31 arrives at Jewellery Quarter

Side view at Jewellery Quarter

At Bull Street

Number 17 and a friend at The Hawthorns

[1] Colin J Marsden, Rail Guide 2016 (Ian Allan, 2016) p. 280

Ruston & Hornsby 165 series (including Class D1/3 and Class 97/6)

Ruston & Hornsby built hundreds of small industrial shunters between 1947 and the mid-1960s [1], they were known as the 165 series and had diesel-mechanical and diesel-electric transmission versions and also versions with both 0-4-0 and 0-6-0 wheel arrangements.

Although most went to industrial users two 165DS 0-4-0 shunters were sold to British Railways as the Class DY1, later renamed D1/3 [2]. Incidentally the prototype of this type of shunter was loaned to the LNER for a short period just before nationalisation for testing and evaluation though nothing more came of this at the time. The two D1/3s worked in the Stratford area until withdrawal in the late 1960s. One was preserved along with a good number of ex-industrial 165s which are a common sight on preserved railways.

Information for Class D1/3
Number built: 2
Built: 1956
Builder: Ruston & Hornsby
Engine: Ruston 6VPHL diesel
Power: 165 hp (123 kW)
Wheel arrangement: 0-4-0

Five 0-6-0 165DE shunters were also bought for departmental service by BR Western Region's civil engineering department, the first arriving in 1952 and the rest 1959 [3]. These were known as the Class 97/6 [4] and served until the late 1980s and early 90s at locations like Radyr, Taunton, Reading and Swindon [5] mainly shunting long welded rail trains [6]. Three of these locomotives have been preserved.
Former 97/6 PWM654 preserved at the Heritage Shunters Trust, Rowsley South

D2961 at Bridgnorth, SVR

Former BIP Chemicals shunter 31920 (165DM) seen at Highley, SVR

GEC 424841 165DE Roman at Foxfield Railway

Another view of PWM654

[1] Ray Hooley, Engine Production Years <http://www.oldengine.org/members/ruston/Production5.htm>
[2] Brian Haresnape, Diesel Shunters (Ian Allan, 1984) p. 52
[3] Paul Smith & Shirley Smith, British Rail Departmental Locomotives 1948-1968 (Ian Allan, 2014) p. 19
[4] Haresnape, Shunters p. 79
[5] Colin J. Marsden, Departmental Stock (Ian Allan, 1984) p. 108
[6] Heritage Shunters Trust Stock List (2016) p. 12