Cross-London Transfer Freights

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Pyewipe Junction
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Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by Pyewipe Junction » Fri Apr 15, 2011 9:07 am

On p42 of Brian Haresnape's book Bulleid Locomotoves there is an interesting photo of Q1 No 33013 heading a westbound transfer freight at Graham Road signal box in March 1959, at the same time as an N7 passes overhead on the flyover with a Liverpool Street - Enfield Town suburban service.

This got me thinking - what non-LNER locos would have been seen on these duties during the steam era. I am particularly interested in ex-SR and GWR types. Would, for example, class W 2-6-4s (specifically designed for transfer duties) have been regular performers, even though they were normally shedded at Hither Green and Norwood Junction? Would they have been allowed from Snow Hill to Farringdon?

I assume J50s, J52s and N2s performed these duties in the other direction. Were tender locos ever used?

kudu
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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by kudu » Fri Apr 15, 2011 10:52 am

Let's deal with the Q1 first. This was almost certainly a Temple Mills - Feltham working via the North London. A Feltham-based loco, of course.

The W tanks worked between Hither Green or Norwood and Acton or Stonebridge via the West London.

So Snow Hill is only part of the story of London transfer freights. These were largely dominated by Hornsey J50s so far as I can recall (or J52s before then), at least on the GN workings. N2s were strictly passenger.

If you want to know more of the types on freight transfers on the North and West London routes you could do worse than start with a piece I posted here on August 29 2010 in the Non-LNER railway chat section. Called "A Place by the Railway" it is in impressionistic rather than factual style, but it does cover all the types you would typically see in the late 50s on both these lines.

I would just add for now that GW locos only worked from the GW line (eg Acton) and along the West London. I'm not sure how far they went, but they certainly reached Kensington and presumably Clapham Jnct.

Maybe someone else can add more, especially on the Snow Hill route, though I cannot personally remember non-LNER locos battling up the incline at Kings Cross. I'm not so sure about the workings to the Midland on this route.

Come back if this prompts more specific questions and I'm sure someone here will be able to answer.

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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by Beechwood » Fri Apr 15, 2011 3:19 pm

The Snow Hill route is well covered in "Steam on the Widened Lines", 2 volumes by Geoff Goslin.

According to him, GWR locos only ran from Paddington as far as Farringdon before branching off into the GWR goods depot at Smithfield Market.

The MR and LMS ran freights from the St Pancras line to Whitecross St (between Barbican and Moorgate) and onto the SR via Snow Hill.

The SR and predecessors don't seem to have used the route for freight. Passenger services were run by the SE&CR and predecessors via Snow Hill onto the GNR and round to Moorgate until the first world war.

Presumably, a lot of traffic was carried through Stratford and Clapham Junction over the North London line (or direct from Cricklewood to Clapham Junction in the case of the Midland line)? Whilst much further round, it must have been much easier to operate.

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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by Blink Bonny » Fri Apr 15, 2011 6:00 pm

I've also seen pictures of W tanks at Willesden.

Dunno about LNER lines.
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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by manna » Fri Apr 15, 2011 10:26 pm

G'day Gents

N1 tanks I think were another class to work over the Snow Hill route.

SE&CR passenger tank locos worked to Barnet,(Northern Heights) Enfield, and possibly Potters Bar, here's a picture that I've posted before.

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Pyewipe Junction
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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by Pyewipe Junction » Fri Apr 15, 2011 11:36 pm

Thanks for all the replies so far. I didn't mean to imply that the Snow Hill route was the major route for transfer freights. It must have been quite minor compared with the route via the WLE. BTW, when did it finally cease for freight working? Early '60s wasn't it? I wouldn't have liked to be a J50/52 ahead of a SR EMU!

My impression is that most transfer freight from the SR and GWR went to and from the LMS. Am I right? How much went in between the LMS and LNER? A lot more I would assume. Ans the locos involved would have been the usual suspects - 8Fs and 4F 0-6-0s.

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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by kudu » Sat Apr 16, 2011 1:05 am

Blink Bonny wrote:I've also seen pictures of W tanks at Willesden.

Dunno about LNER lines.
As I posted before, the Ws worked to Acton and Stonebridge from the WLR. They never worked the NLR and so never reached the LNER.

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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by kudu » Sat Apr 16, 2011 1:36 am

Pyewipe Junction wrote:My impression is that most transfer freight from the SR and GWR went to and from the LMS. Am I right? How much went in between the LMS and LNER? A lot more I would assume. Ans the locos involved would have been the usual suspects - 8Fs and 4F 0-6-0s.
My impression is that in the late 50s at least there was a significant volume between the SR (especially Feltham) and the GE. The volume between Stonebridge and the LNER via the North London was much less and if memory serves involved Super Ds as well as 8Fs and 4Fs (maybe not so many of the latter - Willesden didn't have many). There were also many Devons Road workings over the NLR to Feltham and possibly Acton. I can't recall so many Devons Road workings onto the WLR.

Judging by the size of the Old Oak sidings (on the link between the NLR and the LNW at Willesden Jnct) the volume of Feltham-Willesden freights was relatively low, though I often saw a 4-8-0T or S15 shunting here. (This was on my route to Old Oak shed via the canal.)

Another route branched off the NLR at Acton Wells Jnct for Cricklewood. This certainly brought Q1s to Cricklewood while 4Fs and 8Fs reached Acton or Feltham this way. I'm not sure about volumes as my base at Willesden did not give me regular observations of these workings.

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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by kudu » Sat Apr 16, 2011 1:22 pm

Some further thoughts on this complicated subject.

I believe the Cricklewood-Feltham route carried significant mineral traffic. This wouldn't be surprising. Locos would be Q1s/700s and 4Fs/8Fs. Does this also mean that the Widened Lines also carried mineral traffic from the Midland? What locos were employed? I doubt there were any Southern locos. I can certainly recall such traffic at Kings Cross monopolised by J50s.

Another major route involving part of the North London was to Ripple Lane (diverging at Gospel Oak). Traffic from Ripple Lane could also access the Midland in both directions at Kentish Town (to give access to Somers Town as well as Cricklewood and beyond, I suppose). (Edit - the St Pancras - Tilbury boat trains would also need this link.)

Finally I should mention the evening express freights from Broad Street Goods. (In my "A Place by the Railway" piece I referred to earlier I mention the freights from Camden Goods, but forgot that some of these would have originated at Broad Street instead.) These would access the slow lines from Euston at Primrose Hill, having taken the left fork at Camden Road. The locos would be Willesden Jubilees, Patriots or Black 5s, reaching Broad Street light engine via the same route. But during the day other freights for the WCML would fork right at Camden Road and continue on the NLR to Kensal Green Jnct, just before Willesden HL, and take the link to the sidings at Stonebridge etc. As I said before, my impression is that there wasn't so much traffic on this route as that through Willesden HL and then either Feltham or the WLR. I suspect there is more traffic now as freight that would previously have taken the GN main line takes this route.

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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by Beechwood » Sat Apr 16, 2011 4:43 pm

According to "Steam on the Widened Lines" by Geoff Goslin, there were LCDR passenger services to Wood Green, New Barnet, Enfield, Finsbury Park and Muswell Hill in 1897. In the same year there were SER passenger services to Muswell Hill, Enfield and Finsbury Park.

In 1959, 23 timetabled goods trains went off the GN via the widened lines to the SR. The last service train was an ER parcels working on 23 March 1969. The route was officially closed in May 1971.

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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by StevieG » Sun Apr 17, 2011 6:23 pm

A probably more minor route of some GE/SR cross London freight was via Liverpool Street.

I worked with someone until only about five years ago who started as a Stratford fireman, and he once related that some of his first turns were on goods trains to/from the Stratford / Temple Mills area via Liverpool Street (don't know if the pilot did an engine release so that they could run round their train, or there was a 'turnover' loco involved) and the East London line to/from wherever (he might have said Hither Green).
They therefore utilised the Liv.St.-facing GE/ELL junction in the Electric Lines at East London Junction (/Bishopsgate Low Level/Wheler Street/Brick Lane/Shoreditch: some people seem to refer to it by different names) just a short throne's stow from Shoreditch LT station (barely 60 yards I'd say), and passing through the Thames Tunnel.
I have a feeling he mentioned that they could not be too long, possibly on weight grounds [gradients? (Bethnal Green 'bank'?) ].

I can only imagine that they were allowed west of Bow Junction and into Liverpool Street at notably quiet passenger traffic times.
Also, see viewtopic.php?f=5&t=3797&p=32357&hilit= ... don#p32357 , where in posts from 08th July 2010, there is a little more info. about E.L.Jn. and these trips. (A pity the posted jn. & signal box image is not now accessible thanks to the Fotopic situation.)
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rockinjohn
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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by rockinjohn » Sun Mar 17, 2019 3:53 am

Yes J6 0-6-0 tender engines did work across on cross London freights to the S.R.Feltham @least and the S.R unhappy about these E.R.&M.R incursions in "electric land" banning them traversing in the peak hours, often impounding them,sometimes for days until an E.R.crew(with route knowledge could ferry them back) photos exist of Hornsey allocated J50 locos @ Hither Green,Stewarts Lane &Norwood Junc.M.P.D's.

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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by rockinjohn » Sun May 05, 2019 1:46 am

My wife's grandfather Jack Roads worked from Hornsey MPD pre diesel days,apart from New England freights he worked many Cross London goods trains to Temple Mills,Poplar Docks,& Feltham etc, around 54/55 he sadly gained an eyeful of hot ash,whilst driving a Tank Engine either a J52 or a N1,managing to halt the Southern Region bound Goods ex Ferme Park in Kings Cross(MET) & being taken off the footplate to a called ambulance &the train to await the arrival of a relief driver, he never returned to the Footplate or Railways after this sad incident.

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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by Mickey » Sun May 05, 2019 5:14 am

Responding to your post rockingjohn on cross London freight workings It went on well into the B.R. era.

When I was a secondman (fireman) at Stratford during 1979 there was a number of cross London freight diagrams still in operation at Stratford at that time and a couple that I remember was the Ilford milk depot to Clapham Junction job with the milk being carried in short wheel base milk tanks with the empties originating at Ilford milk depot beside the GE main line and then they went via North London line at Stratford the West London line at Willesden High level and then down towards Clapham Junction through Kensington Olympia to Clapham Junction on the southern region with the full milk tanks being worked back to Ilford milk depot back across the West London line and the North London back to Ilford beside the GE main line. Also there was a 'Bricklayers Arms job' I remember with usually a lengthy train of parcel vans possibly starting from Temple Mills (I can't remember now?) that went across the North London line, West London line then pass Latchmere Junction and Longhedge Junction on the southern region and around the South London lines eventually arriving in the big but by 1979 near deserted Bricklayers Arms depot and former loco shed area. Also there was still the 'Poplar Goods' a loose coupled train that ran during the weekday mornings from Temple Mills to Poplar docks and return via Victoria Park and pass the site of the old Devon's Road loco shed which in 1979 was a vast empty area of land. All those diagrams were worked by Brush class 31s.

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Re: Cross-London Transfer Freights

Post by rockinjohn » Tue May 07, 2019 9:13 am

Hi Mickey thanks for the reply,remember seeing Western Region panniers @ Stewarts Lane M.P.D. & impounded J50's and scratching my head thinking whats this all about.Lambeth Nth goods for one(WR)& bad timing for the J50,& a couple of sightings of 97xx(condensing) or 08 shunters passing thru KIngs Cross Underground Station, Smithfield bound, replete with mooing cows(I think)& people moving forward to catch these trains on approaching ,which planet did these people come from? ha.

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