5th December 1998
D9000 to Newcastle...again

On Saturday 5th December 1998, D9000 worked 1E33, the 13:45 departure from Birmingham New Steet to Newcastle, and 1M67 from Newcastle back to New Street. This was the second time that D9000 had worked 1E33/1M67(1V67) this year, the other occasion being a last minute substitution, following the cancellation of the Ramsgate diagram on 19th September 1998. As the December run had been widely publicised on the 'net and in the railway press, it was to be expected that a good number of Deltic bashers would be turning up for the ride. Virgin were not to be disappointed at the turnout !

1E33 started behind a Virgin Duff at Bristol Temple Meads, at 11:10. In order to ensure that I got a 'ringside' seat behind D9000, I joined the service at Swindon. 1E33 was booked to travel to Birmingham via Oxford, due to Railtrack engineering work on the ex-Midland line to Bristol.

As we arrived at New Street behind the Duff after an uneventful journey, D9000 was noted parked in the bay adjacent to platform 12a (first time I've seen her parked there). Also there to greet us, was a large crowd of expectant Deltic bashers (and 'neds'), who intended travelling on the train.

Departure was 14 minutes late, as 13:59, as it seemed to take an age to get the Deltic coupled onto the train, and then all the bashers onto the train. After a spirited exit from Birmingham, we caught up with a slower (freight?) train in front of us. No big issue, as the line speed to Derby is a pathetic 90mph, despite an almost perfect alignment for much of the way. As the weather was cold and clear, there were lots of photographers out and about as far as Sheffield (where it got dark), so we can expect to see some good piccies in the various railways magazines of this run.

At every station we seemed to be picking up more and more bashers, so by about Doncaster the train was almost totally 'wedged'. Once on the ECML D9000 could show her 100mph credentials once again, and we had an excellent run from Doncaster as far as Dringhouses (York), where we were stopped by a signal. The Deltic record from Doncaster to York (set on the previous 1E33 outing with D9000) was therefore safe for a while longer (for ever?).

The real challenge though is on the famous racing stretch between York and Darlington, where 30 minutes is the time to beat for a Deltic (40 minutes for a Duff:-). 1E33 is booked slow lines from York to Northallerton on a Saturday, but as we were 12 minutes late leaving York, we were sent out on the fast lines. An excellent run to Darlington followed, and we ran from York to Darlington in 29 minutes 33 seconds start to stop, without exceeding 102mph, or dipping down below the magic 100mph mark. Needless to say, we were almost right-time again upon arrival at Darlington.

1E33 : 05-Dec-1998
D9000+7 Mk2e's 239/275 tonnes

Location

 

Schedule

Actual

speed(s)

York

dep

15:58

16:10:18

FL

Skelton Jcn

pass

-

16:12:46

67/101/100/102

Pilmoor SB

pass

-

16:21:27

102/100

Thirsk

pass

-

16:25:30

100/102/100

Northallerton

pass

-

16:30:12

100/102

Darlington S

pass

-

16:39:01

45

Darlington

arr

16:39

16:39:51

-

This was an average speed of more than 86mph start to stop ! Excellent driving, presumably by a Leeds driver. As far as I know, this is a new record for a diesel locomotive hauled train between York and Darlington, although we 'only' had a 'featherweight' load of just seven Mk2e coaches.

Arrival at Newcastle would have been several minutes early, if we'd not been held at a signal on the King Edward bridge. Shame that it was now well dark (December remember) as this location is usually one where I don't mind waiting, as the view is second-to-none. Once we were finally allowed into the station, and drew to a stop, the whole train poured out to go and pay tribute to an excellent locomotive.

Whilst waiting at Newcatle Central, it was observed that a rake of Anglia stock was waiting on the adjacent platform on a southbound railtour. Sod's Law says that this train was booked to be in front of us all the way to York, and that it would be Duff hauled by a knackered RES Duff. We departed on time at 17:53, and travelled as booked at the High- Level bridge. We had our first signal stop at King Edward bridge junction, and the second stop at Chester-le-Street. We were 5 minutes late by Darlington, presumably because the Duff on the train in front was totally err, duff.

Rather than put the Duff onto the slow lines at Northallerton, Railtrack allowed the railtour to precede us to York. We had a very good run on the fast lines of the racing stretch whilst it lasted, but were then checked down to 38mph somewhere near Alne. We then ran at 85mph to York (presumably the RES Duff in front could only manage 85mph). If it were not for this wretched Duff, we'd have probably 'smashed' the Darlington- York record as well:-(

Why is it that a Deltic on a Railtour always gets shoved onto the slow lines to let any old service train passed (including stopping all- stations passenger pacers!), whereas a Deltic on a service train gets stuck behind a knackered Duff on a Railtour, even though there's a perfectly good set of slow lines to consign the Duff too ?

Another good run to Doncaster ensued, only to be spoilt by a signal stop a mile outside the station. Another record breaking run ruined due to a signal check, pathetic. After waving goodbye to the crowd of signalmen standing on the steps of Doncaster power box, we were then checked further between there and Sheffield. Apart from the climb up the 1-in- 100 bank out of Sheffield, and a brief 100mph after Clay Cross, the remainder of the run back to New Street was pretty uneventful. At each station the number of bashers on the train dwindled, so that by the time we arrived back in Birmingham, we were back down to the more usual 60 (or so) 'core' D9000 bashers.

D9000 made a fine sight at New Street in the artificial light, idling away on both power-units. It was quite noticeable that the engine idling speeds were much higher than normal for a Deltic. Several enterprising photographers took some long exposure shots, and I expect that some of these photos will be pretty good.

After waiting for about ten minutes, D9000 departed on 5M67 to Oxley carriage depot. After the Deltic 'drone' had subsided away, New Street station returned to being the most boring place on earth...

Ralph Barrett

Timings (Booked & Actual - for D9000 legs)
(from Nigel Rollings)

1E33 out, 1V67 return

Location Booked Actual Booked Actual
Birmingham New Street 13.46d 14.00 21.28a 21.29
Proof House Jn 13/48 14/01 21/25 21/26
Landor Street Jn 13/50 14/03 21/24 21/25
Water Orton 13/55 14/09 21/18 21/19
Kingsbury Jn 13/58 14/12 21.12 21/16
Tamworth HL 14/02 14/18 21.06a ~ 21.07d 21.10 ~ 21.12
Wichnor Jn 14/07 14/23 21/00 21/04
Burton-on-Trent 14/14 ? 20/55 ?
Stenson Jn 14/19 ? 20/51 ?
Derby 14.25a ~ 14.27d 14.41 ~ 14.44 20.43a ~ 20.45d 20.47 ~ 20.50
Ambergate Jn 14/36 ? 20/32 ?
Clay Cross South Jn 14/44 ? 20/24 ?
Chesterfield 14/47 15/02 20.18a ~ 20.20d 20.24 ~ 20.26
Dore Station Jn 14/55 15/09 20/10 20/15
Sheffield 15.00a ~ 15.03d 15.13 ~ 15.17 20.02a ~ 20.05d 20.08 ~ 20.10
Holmes Jn 15/11 15/23 19/54 20/01
Aldwarke Jn 15/14 15/26 19/51 19/58
Swinton 15/17 15/28 19/49 19/56
Hexthorpe Jn 15/23 15/34 19/41 19/45
Doncaster 15.28a ~ 15.30d 15.39 ~ 15.41 19.36a ~ 19.38d 19.39 ~ 19.42
Shaftholme Jn 15/34 15/45 19/29 19/29
Temple Hirst Jn 15/40 15/51 19/23 19/24
Hambleton North Jn 15/44 15/54 19/19 19/20
Colton Jn 15/51 15/59 19/13 19/16
York 15.56a ~ 16.06d 16.06 ~ 16.10 19.05a ~ 19.08d 19.08 ~ 19.11
Skelton Jn 16/08 16/12 19/02 19/05
Tollerton 16/14 16/17 18/55 18/57
Thirsk 16/22 16/24 18/47 18/50
Northallerton 16/26 16/30 18/42 18/45
Darlington 16.38a ~ 16.40d 16.39 ~ 16.42 18.29a ~ 18.31d 18.34 ~ 18.35
Ferryhill South Jn 16/50 16/51 18/19 18/24
Durham 16.58a ~ 17.00d 16.58 ~ 16.59 18.09a ~ 18.11d 18.14 ~ 18.16
King Edward Bridge South Jn 17/14 17/08 17/58 17/59
Newcastle 17.16a 17.15 17.53d 17.53

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