Last Trip to Birmingham
September 24th 2003

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Churnet Valley 

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 September 2003

 I took a trip on one of the final First North Western service trains on the Holyhead-Birmingham service. Today "Restormel" was in charge and, whilst not the most interesting of journeys, it had to be done for the last time


 The journey into and out of Crewe station is depressing because of all the redundant locomotives lined up waiting to be scrapped. here are some of them.


The train I used was the 06.45 Holyhead-Birmingham, today hauled by coastal regular 47732 "Restormel" The journey out to Birmingham was uneventful with the locomotives at Bescot yard being the main point of interest.


The stop at Birmingham New Street is fairly short, just enough time to get out and take a few shots of the locomotive. There is no need for reversal at Birmingham because the train runs in a loop, entering the station from one end and leaving at the other. It keeps it simple.


The run out passes under parts of the City.


Back to Crewe and the run in is interesting, here can be seen the rows of stored and in-traffic locomotives, mainly belonging to Freightliner.


Crewe has a virtual quarry!


On the other side of the track is the stock stored by the London North Western Railway Company, here is class 47 number 47287.


 47212 with graffiti coach.


 The train was held outside the station as a London bound Virgin train passed South. I took this shot rather hurriedly, and straight into the sun, because the train had two DVT's in its formation. The locomotive is 87027 "Wolf of Baddenoch".


 History!


 LNWR are constructing a new maintenance depot which is nearing completion.


 Also stored is 37383


 The saddest sight of all, in my opinion, is 37420 "The Scottish Hosteller" which has been dumped on the scrap line at Crewe. A positive star performer on the North Wales Coast line, this was the first 37 I travelled behind on the coast. Does anyone out there have vast amounts of money they don't want because I can find a good home for it! Donations to........


 020 with similarly unfortunate class mates.


 We finally made it into Crewe where I had to get off. The train continued on to Holyhead.


Although the trains will no longer run through to Birmingham with the introduction of the Winter timetable, at least the Crewe-Holyhead service is maintained. This includes some trains continuing to be loco hauled so more Holyhead runs to come......
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 September 2003