B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days

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Mickey
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Re: KX 1970s loco hauled jobs

Post by Mickey »

manna wrote: Tue Apr 06, 2021 11:14 pm Always a bummer, when you got a loco with a nice new Vacuum pipe, hard as bullets.
Yeah to right manna what you wanted if you was coupling up or even uncoupling was an older vacuum brake pipe which also applied to the steam heater pipe as well.

On arriving at Cambridge station the secondman (fireman) would hop off the loco and walk back along the platform to the 'back cab' end of the loco and then get down 'in between' the loco and the front coach down in the 4ft amongst the oily ballast and 'break' the vacuum brake pipes between the loco and front coach and if connected the steam heating pipes as well and then put the locos vacuum brake pipe back on the locos 'dummy coupling' to allow the driver to create a vacuum to ''ease up' the loco to the front coach and to simultaneously as the loco eases up it would push the coupling nearly over 'the coupling hook' with some help by the secondmans strength after which the locos coupling should (but was not always done?) be put back onto the locos coupling hook although a lot of couplings were just left off the coupling hook and left 'dangling down' from the coupling hook which would sometimes 'bang about' on rough P.Way. while travelling along at 50-60mph.

I got fairly adept at coupling and uncoupling although it was obviously a potentially dangerous job if you was 'on the job' and not concentrating on what you was doing. No H&S 'hard hats' in those days 45+ years ago and sometimes not even any gloves either.
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Mickey
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Re: KX 1970s loco hauled jobs

Post by Mickey »

B.R. days...

Standard footplate crews essential equipment- https://footplateequipment.co.uk/wp-con ... ew_can.jpg

Locomen's tea...

Locomen's tea was usually made in a white enamel tea can (see the above example) by putting either a couple of teabags into the can or some drivers preferred loose tea and then getting off the loco and going to find some simmering hot water usually from a train crews lobby in a yard or a shunters lobby in some sidings somewhere then after filling the can with hot simmering water usually from a battered old heavy iron kettle that was always left on the simmer on a beat up old gas cooker you would then make your way back to the loco carrying the can of tea and climb back on board the loco. Once back on board the loco empty a couple of heaped tablespoon full amounts of sugar into the tea can along with emptying some fresh whole milk usually from an old washed out sauce bottle (none of that semi skimmed stuff back in 1974-75) while leaving the teabags or loose tea to stew in the tea can after which you would possibly pour the driver a cup full of sweet tea first into one of those nice little British Rail tea cups that were 'borrowed' from the Kings Cross station buffet on platform no.10 which proved to be quite popular with drivers back then before pouring yourself a mug full.
Original start date of 2010 on the LNER forum and previously posted 4500+ posts.
Mickey
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B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days

Post by Mickey »

Change of area onto the GE at Stratford in 1979 when I was a secondman at the shed during most of that year.

Locos seen at Stratford shed during 1979 were-

Class 08 350hp 0-6-0 shunters, class 31 blue livered (headcode box & non-headcode box toffee apples) class 37 & class 47.

1.The Poplar goods. Class 31 loco with a consist of box vans, mineral wagons, bogie bolsters & x2 brake vans either end of the train. Departs Temple Mills sometime between 9:00-9:30am for a run down to Poplar docks via Victoria Park Hackney with a return trip from Poplar docks to Temple Mills a couple of hours later.

2.The Silvertown trip. Class 08 loco with a consist of 5-6 mineral wagons and a brake van. Departs Temple Mills during the morning sometime around 10:00am and goes via Stratford low level to Silvertown yard also shunts Abbey Mills coal & coke yard on the way down to Silvertown before eventually returning to Temple Mills.

3.The Romford goods. Class 31 loco with a consist of 4-5 mineral wagons and a brake van. Departs Temple Mills during the morning sometimes around 10:00am and joins the GE main line at Stratford for a short run down to Romford and then return to Temple Mills sometime later.

4.The Ilford milk train. Class 31 loco with a consist of about a dozen fully vacuum braked x6 wheeled short wheel base milk tanks. The empties Ilford milk depot to Clapham Junction yard on the southern region during the afternoon and the full milk tanks Clapham Junction to Ilford milk depot. The route via the north & west London lines.

5.The GN parcels. Class 31 loco with a consist of BGs & GUVs and departed Clapham Junction yard on the southern region around 3:00am and went via the west & north London line to Harringay Park Junction where it joined the GN with a crew relief at Ferme Park Down yard. The train destination was (from memory?) Peterborough. I can't remember what the first part of this diagram entailed in going over to Clapham Junction yard?.

6.The Bricklayers Arms parcel vans. Class 31 loco with a consist of about 10-12 BG & GUVs and departed from Temple Mills possibly around late morning (it was a daylight working) to Bricklayers Arms in south east London in southern region territory. The train went via the north & west London lines and then across south & south east London to Bricklayers Arms. I have a feeling the return working was 'light engine' from Bricklayers Arms back to Stratford loco.

7.Empty stock workings. Class 31s were the usual locos employed on the ECS workings between Thornton Fields carriage sidings (just passed Bow Junction) & Liverpool Street and Liverpool Street & Thornton Fields carriage sidings.

8.Norwich & Harwich workings. I had nothing to do with them and I presume some of those workings were Stratford top link jobs with the usual locos being class 47s on the Norwich workings and probably class 37s on the Harwich workings?.
Original start date of 2010 on the LNER forum and previously posted 4500+ posts.
Mickey
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B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days

Post by Mickey »

Did a shed bash at Stratford loco back in 1970/71 and recall seeing x5 Baby Deltics lined up buffer to buffer in a siding around the back of the main shed I presume for scrapping. Also I have a feeling some BTH class 15s were also nearby?.

When you did a shed bash back then most train crews in and around a shed or depot wouldn't say anything to you but you knew the shed foreman mite holler at you to clear off and mite even chase you!. :wink:
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kudu
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Re: B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days

Post by kudu »

Further to Mickey's info above on tea-making may I draw attention to the GN's interesting coffee-making facilities at Peterborough. The bottom entry under 0-4-0s in the Locomotives section of this website refers.

Kudu
Mickey
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Re: B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days

Post by Mickey »

Talking of drinking coffee it was possible to tell who the coffee drinkers were at Kings Cross loco back in 1974-75 those guys (usually secondmen) would carry around either a dark blue or a orange enamel coffee pot unlike the majority of tea drinking drivers & secondmen who would carry around a white enamel tea can (like myself).
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rockinjohn
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Re: B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days/thornton fields

Post by rockinjohn »

Hi Mickey &All,have a question ref:Thornton Fields stock siding in steam days always had a B1 standing by,when I travelled out to Stratford on the Shenfield sparks can always remember this,after Bishopsgate sidings always good for a K3 or buck jumper& once a W.R.94xx saddle tank, I would cross to the other side ofthe Carriage for the B1,then same side to to see the steep incline down&sand sidings(ex Marks Tey?) which had a v.powerful Y4 tank(the Stratford Works had the last one) superseded by another powerful 0-4-0 diesel in '60's, arriving @ Stratford, binoculars out to see the scrap line full of F6 tanks&Clauds @ the time,ok back to the question was Thornton Fields a "dead " end or did it have a perimeter loop because the buffer stops faced outwards? towards the "main lines"in those days.Thnks,hope this makes sense, can't find a track diagram for the same.
Mickey
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Re: B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days/thornton fields

Post by Mickey »

rockinjohn wrote: Mon Apr 26, 2021 2:29 am ok back to the question was Thornton Fields a "dead " end or did it have a perimeter loop because the buffer stops faced outwards? towards the "main lines"in those days.Thnks,hope this makes sense, can't find a track diagram for the same.
I think they were dead end sidings jj although I wouldn't swear on it as I only ever recall visiting them the once although they were plainly seen from passing trains on the main and electrified lines between Bethnal Green and Stratford sitting at a north easterly angle as opposed to the east/west running of the main line. Anyway I vaguely recall going into Thornton Fields carriage sidings one day sometime during the latter part of 1979 to 'hook up' to a train of B.R.Mk1s for Liverpool street although it's all a bit vague now but I do vaguely recall getting down off the loco (a Brush type 2 and probably a Stratford toffee apple no doubt?) and going into a lobby to make a can of tea what else?. Even though Thornton Fields was fairly close to Stratford (just beyond Bow Junction s/box) I think that was the only time that I ever went into those carriage sidings on a loco as a secondman plus I only did around 9 months at Stratford before transferring out of the loco and back into the signalling grade at the start of 1980 and all the diagrams that I recall working when I was at Stratford were freight only diagrams usually starting and finishing in Temple Mills or taking the loco back into Stratford loco.

I haven't been around that area Bow/Stratford since the end of the 1970s or the very start of the 1980s.
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Mickey
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Re: B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days

Post by Mickey »

A bit of trivia concerning Thornton Fields carriage sidings is that it appeared briefly in a old episode of Callan the tv drama series starring Edward Woodward that was on the telly between 1967-1972. In a brief scene that I recall watching about 4 or 5 years ago on a dvd a bloke is seen being chased by another bloke into a railway carriage sidings that turned out to be none other than Thornton Fields carriage sidings the name of the sidings in the episode was mentioned in another source on the web as being Thornton Fields carriage sidings circa 1969-70.
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rockinjohn
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Re: B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days/thornton fields

Post by rockinjohn »

Hi Mickey thnks for reply, forgot to mention where the B1 sat standby? next to a brick railwaymens s/storey office---sign on point, post steam, an E/E type 2(67XX) in orig. green livery also sat, never saw a blue moved on by then,now that B1 always faced the "street" tender first &never seemed to move,maybe rostered for any "street" failures,seem to remember another B1(in steam) that never appeared to move in Romford "up"sidings (C/E?)standby also?rgds jj
Mickey
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Re: B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days

Post by Mickey »

Meanwhile back at 'the cross' and sitting in the foreman' lobby in Passenger loco on engine movements...

That was a fairly boring job 'engine movements' which meant sitting around for 5 or 6 hours with your driver in the foreman's lobby waiting for the foreman to ask you and your driver to go and move a class 31 or class 47 or a Deltic and put it on the coal road which for the secondman meant 'pulling a set or two of hand points' although a bit of glory was attached to it as all the loco spotters gathered at the end on no.10 platform would be watching everything that was going on. :wink:
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rockinjohn
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Re: B.R.(ER) 1970s diesel days/kings x

Post by rockinjohn »

Hi Mickey can remember those 2nd men moving off of the stabling point @ the "X", E/Electric type 4/ Deltic/DP2 or the "falcon"&arriving alongside a platform for an up departure after much backward and forward movement, just like in the "A1"/"B1" steam days,those guys look of satisfaction, stepping off the footplate &moving amongst the gob smacked trainspotters,.... their one minute of fame as Andy Warhol observed?jj
rockinjohn
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Re: B.R.(ER)F6 tanks/stratford

Post by rockinjohn »

Hi tried to place this info on the F6 tanks shedded @ "30A" but cant find a link?or just not clever enough,their was a Spike MIlligan film circa'55/'56 he was a postman & an F6 tank featured Epping -Ongar? a station which I cant place/ or seen before, the tank is in lovely ex:works, maybe they knew a day of filming was soon?now during the 2nd W/War a few of "30A" F6's had their chimmeys shortened for possible use on the L.P.T.B."Circle line"due to possible interuppted electric supply (did it happen ever?)better safe than sorry!,they had enough F6's with the pre-electrified L.P.T.B.Central Line routes&the North Woolwich branch a sort or retirement home for drivers &locos alike(not the fireman)
Mickey
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Re: B.R.(ER)F6 tanks/stratford

Post by Mickey »

rockinjohn wrote: Wed Apr 28, 2021 8:44 am the North Woolwich branch a sort or retirement home for drivers &locos alike(not the fireman)
The Stratford drivers during the late 1970s (and probably for several decades before that during the steam days) who drove the x2 car Craven units between Stratford low level & North Woolwaich use to call those jobs by a nickname which I think was something to do with the county of Kent not that the railway actually crossed the river Thames and went into Kent(?) although thinking about it 40+ years later I believe they may have referred to driving those x2 car Cravens between Stratford low level and North Woolwich as the Kent coast express?.

I went down the North Woolwich branch on a 350hp 0-6-0 diesel shunter one day back in 1979 from Temple Mills via Stratford low level (Stratford Southern Junction s/box) then paseed Stratford Market and Abbey Mills s/box (West Ham) then passed Canning Town station to Custom House station where there was a bi-directional 'goods line' possibly worked under Electric Token working from Custom House s/box on the 'goods line' with Silvertown goods yard. One Train Working (formerly One Engine In Steam) was in force between Custom House s/box to & from North Woolwich with a 'train staff' and Absolute Block working was in force between Custom House s/box & Abbey Mills s/box over the double-track section anyway the 'goods line' from Custom House station ran parallel with the North Woolwich single line to Silvertown station where the single line carried on to the terminus at North Woolwich but the goods line terminated at Silvertown and then ran back into some old sidings roads near the docks. I think we brought a few mineral wagons out of the yard from Silvertown sidings back to Temple Mills that day?.

After leaving Custom House station & s/box the North Woolwich line and the 'goods line' that ran parallel with the North Woolwich single line then dived down under one of the docks through a tunnel section before rising up a gradient on the Silvertown side and back into the open air anyway this 'dive under tunnel' was always pron to flooding and from memory I heard that a 'Flood warning' instrument' was to be found in Custom House s/box to warn the signalman when the water level had risen over the rails which would mean the job would have to come to a stand until the water pumps had lowered the water level in the tunnel.
Original start date of 2010 on the LNER forum and previously posted 4500+ posts.
Mickey
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Posts: 599
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Re: B.R.(ER)F6 tanks/stratford

Post by Mickey »

rockinjohn wrote: Wed Apr 28, 2021 8:44 am Hi tried to place this info on the F6 tanks shedded @ "30A" but cant find a link?or just not clever enough,their was a Spike MIlligan film circa'55/'56 he was a postman & an F6 tank featured Epping -Ongar? a station which I cant place/ or seen before, the tank is in lovely ex:works, maybe they knew a day of filming was soon?now during the 2nd W/War a few of "30A" F6's had their chimmeys shortened for possible use on the L.P.T.B."Circle line"due to possible interuppted electric supply (did it happen ever?)better safe than sorry!,they had enough F6's with the pre-electrified L.P.T.B.Central Line routes&the North Woolwich branch a sort or retirement home for drivers &locos alike(not the fireman)
A GE F6 tank?. No thanks I'd rather have a 0-6-0 Pannier or a 0-6-0 'Jinty' thanks jj.
Original start date of 2010 on the LNER forum and previously posted 4500+ posts.
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