NORTH WALES COAST etc.
CREWE - CHESTER - BANGOR - HOLYHEAD
JANUARY 2003
- PART TWO

 4F 44422

Churnet Valley 

January 1

 Standard Class 4 number 80136 has returned to Crewe for repair after a spell on the West Somerset Railway. The first task was to remove it from its wheels,

 Crewe station and 158841 passes through, on a South Wales-Manchester service, dressed in "Ginsters" livery.

 DRS Class 37, 37607, paused for the road before heading off to the LNWR sheds. 29/1/2003

 The replacement of the AC electric locomotives on the West Coast Mail Line commences this month so catch 'em while you can. 87021 "Robert the Bruce" enters Crewe with a Liverpool train. 29/1/2003

 The multicoloured scrap shop. The revised line-up at Crewe Diesel depot scrap line with (R to L) 37xxx, 56077, 37896, 37798, 37xxx, 47774 "Poste Restante", 47xxx and 37xxx. 21/1/2003

 Visiting Crewe for repairs was 37428 "Loch Awe" renamed from "Royal Scotsman..." The locomotive carries the name "Loch Long" on the other side. 21/1/2003

 Also visiting Crewe for the fitting of TPWS equipment were 47830(R) and 47816. Both locomotives have now lost their First Great Western decals. 21/1/2003

 Fresh from repairs at Old Oak common was 37047. Thanks to the brilliantly informative "End of the Line" website for this and other information. I could not identify the class 47 but it was probably off the morning Bangor-Manchester Piccadilly working. 21/1/2003

 66515 passed through with the Penmaenmawr-Basford ballast train. 21/1/2003

 Crewe Diesel Depot parade as the class 47's line up.47761(R), 47854 "Women's Royal Voluntary Service", 47XXX (hidden), 47778 "Duke of Edinburgh's Award", 47734 "Crewe Diesel Depot Quality Assured", 47776 "Respected". 47761 later picked up FGW stock and ran off to Manchester Piccadilly for the onward journey to Holyhead. 15/1/2003

 When I arrived at Crewe, 5972 "Olton Hall" was taking water in platform 12 before continuing its journey North to Carnforth. 15/1/2003

 To see one class 20 is lucky these days but to see SIX - well, who says Crewe is boring these days. Here are four of them with 20306(L) then 20312, 20313 and 20311 moving off to the LNWR depot. All belong to Direct Rail Services. 15/1/2003

 The other two were parked in bay platform 9 and they also ran off to the LNWR depot. On the left is 20309 with 20307 leading. In the backgroud is HST power car 43069 which had failed and was receiving attention in the bay platform. The stock was Birmingham-Blackpool and on the other end was 43197 "Railway Magazine". By the time I left both locomotives were running. 15/1/2003

 There had been a rearranging of the "stored" locomotives over the past few days with the class 31's disappearing. One surprise from the movement was the appearance of 37407 outside the depot. This locomotive used to carry the name "Blackpool Tower" and is a former coastliner that has been stored at Crewe for several years. Now what? 15/1/2003

Unusually, Super Voyager 221 119 "Amelia Earhart" ran into bay platform 7 with Crewe on its destination board. It was in service. 15/1/2003

 Looking resplendent in the strong sunshine, 37698 towed 92019 "Wagner" into the platform 12 loop where it unhooked.......

 ......and ran off to reappear on the diesel depot pumps. Nice livery. 15/1/2003

 A Preston-London service ran into platform 12 where it stopped to allow the locomotive to unhook from the rear and recouple at the front. This usually indicates a DVT connection problem. On this occasion the shunter placed wedges under the leading wheels of the DVT while the locomotive ran round, I have not seen this done before. The locomotive 87001 "Royal Scot" is apparently the first AC electric built at Crewe 'though I have no confirmation of this? 15/1/2003

 In the space of one hour there were two class 86 hauled services and one hauled by 90033 in Railfreight livery. The appearance of 90028 "Vrachtverbinding" perhaps indicated that there was a motive power shortage on the West Coast Main Line. 15/1/2003

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January 1