Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Picture of the week- 11th June 2013

The beautiful weather of just a week ago seems now to have disappeared almost as quickly as it arrived.
On 4th June the sunshine coincided with one of the few 'interesting' class 66's turning up to work in my local area. 66522 in the distinctive half line green of Shanks was entrusted to work the Freightliner train from Wool to Neasden. This locomotive was painted some years ago now to mark the partnership of Freightliner and Shanks waste group in running 'Binliner' trains from London to landfill sites out of the city thus removing thousands of lorries from the roads. The train is pictured leaving the South West Mainline near to Byfleet as it makes its way to Neasden- well worth staying out after work for!

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Steam back on the Met

Re-capturing scenes from yesteryear L150 hauls the 15:15 Harrow-on-the-Hill
 to Amersham towards Chorleywood on Saturday 25th May 2013
As part of the 150th anniversary celebrations of the London Underground steam trains returned to the outer reaches of the Metropolitan line over the May 25-27th Bank Holiday weekend. The last that time steam was seen in these parts was in 2000 when the popular 'Steam on the Met' program ran for the final time. The set up this time round was somewhat different but still resulted in three different steam locomotives seeing action on trains between Harrow-on-the-Hill and Amersham.

The three locomotives in use were:
Metropolitan Railway Locomotive No.1
These E-class tanks were built for the Met lines out of Baker St, this example being built at Neasden in 1898. Unfortunately Met No.1 only worked one passenger train during the weekend due to suffering a 'big end failure'.

GWR Pannier tank No.9466
Some 54 years younger than it's Metropolitan companion. Locomotives of this type saw use on London Underground engineering trains in their latter days and 9466 has visited the Metropolitan line on numerous previous occasions.

GWR Prairie No.5521
While having no genuine LU pedigree the GWR Prarie has been painted out in lined Metropolitan colours and re-numbered as Met 150 to commemorate the occasion.

The morning locomotive movement from Ruislip to Amersham passes
 Eastcote with 20227, 20142 the pannier tank and Met No.1
Three steam hauled passenger trains ran each day from Harrow to Amersham which a class 20 diesel (two of these were also specially painted for the 150 celebrations) working the return 'downhill' train. The trains also included vintage Metropolitan Railway electric locomotive No.12 'Sarah Siddons' and were formed of a former BR 4-TC set supplemented by the beautifully restored 4 wheel first class coach No.353. Combined the trains composed of eight vehicles and were powered by Steam, Electric and Diesel simultaneously! 

The empty stock passes Eastcote with 20189 leading.
L150 was on the rear of the train.
 Most trains boarded and alighted only from Amersham, which was the centre of the events activities with stalls on the station as well as views of the locomotives being shunted between the trains.
20189 has it's '150' headcode reflected in the mirror at
Amersham. Any excuse to spread the 150 spirit!

Two trains of stock ran each day to and from Ruislip depot providing an additional opportunity for photographers.

Once again London Underground and the London Transport Museum must be commended for putting on such a good event (and writing a very good guide to accompany tickets). Lets hope it doesn't take another 12 years before we see steam on the Met once more!