NOVEMBER 2010 NEWS : 


It's not often large freight trains like this can be found on branch lines such as the West Somerset Railway. Also on taken on the 26th November, 59103 can be seen traversing the double curves at Leigh Bridge between Crowcombe and Stogumber. The Mendip Rail Class 59/1 has however visited the West Somerset Railway back in 2005, when it took part during a Diesel Gala Weekend offering passengers the chance to travel behind a heavy freight locomotive. (Photo: Darren Harris)
Who would of thought that several hours after this image was taken the skies would be dropping snow! The West Somerset Railway has continue to see stone delivered to Minehead this week, with Hanson liveried Class 59/1's at the helm. 59103 'Village of Mells' approaches Blue Anchor with the return empties from Minehead to Taunton. (Photo: Alexander Martin - Brown)
Friday 26th November saw 59103 back for it's second visit to the West Somerset Railway hauling stone from the Mendip Quarries to Minehead. As the low Winter sun rises in the morning sky, 59103 is see moving forward from Minehead Station towards the unloading site. While the image looks like a warm and delightful Winter morning, it should be noted that the ambient temperature had only just risen above freezing point. This train conveyed the heaviest load of stone yet to the railway, consisting of 23 ZCA Wagons loaded to 779 tonnes. (Photo: Nathan Williamson)
The West Somerset Stone flow was treated to a Class 59/1 from Mendip Rail on Wednesday 24th November. The same say also saw DB Schenker liveried 59206 working to Exeter with stone for Riverside Yard. As the two flows share the same headcode both were re designated to 7Z27 05:15 Westbury - Taunton & 7Z29 05:35 Westbury - Exeter Riverside respectively. 59104 is seen passing 40 Steps on the relief line from the West Somerset Railway on route to Taunton as 6Z25 where it then became 6Z28 to Westbury. (Photo: Alexander Martin-Brown)
DB Schenker's only corporate liveried Class 59/2 has seen little action in the South West recently, however on the 24th November the former 'Pride of Ferrybridge' operated the 7Z29 05:35 Westbury - Exeter Riverside and 7C28 11:58 Exeter Riverside - Westbury return empties. The colourful Class 59/2 is seen passing Taunton on the return to Westbury. (Photo: Alexander Martin-Brown)
St Blazey's pair of filthy Class 66's were replaced last week with two slightly cleaner examples. Although these are currently collecting the daily layers of dirt while working their daily leaf busting operations. 66160 and 66082 have now replaced 66130 and 66167. The latest pairing can be seen passing 40 Steps with the 3S13 from Westbury to Par. The impending Firepool Development is now well underway in the background of this shot, soon a 7 story building development by Midas Construction for Knightstone Housing will emerge from the ground to fill the rear of this unique photo location. (Photo: Alexander Martin-Brown)
Every time we think that the Class 60's have made their final visit to the South West we are rewarded with 'just one more'. The 18th November saw the first appearance of the unique 60074 'Teenage Spirit'. The loco is painted is turquoise and carries Teenage Caner Trust branding with DB Schenker decals under the cab windows. The loco made a rare appearance on the 7C27 & 7C28 loaded and empty stone from Westbury to Exeter Riverside yard. 60074 is seen passing 40 Steps with the return empties to Westbury. (Photo: Jeff Treece)
Royalty visited Taunton on Tuesday 16th November when HRH Prince Philip arrived in Taunton at 10:47 on the 09:06 from London Paddington (traveling on board a scheduled FGW service, 43042+43146). The Prince was wearing his Captain-General of the Royal Marines uniform. He swiftly passed through the station into a waiting car, where he was taken to Norton Manor Camp where he presented Taunton's own 40 Commando with their campaign medals. Tomorrow 40 Commando will march through Taunton at 11am as part of their homecoming and to remember the fallen heroes from their most recent tour of duty where 14 soldiers never returned. (Photo: Jeff Treece)
6024 'King Edward 1st' departed the West Somerset Railway on Remembrance Sunday 14th November, working with it's support coach to Bristol Barton Hill. The mark the event the loco carried 5 poppies on the front smoke box. In the pouring rain the loco is seen passing Cogload Jn as the loco makes its way North to Bristol Barton Hill. (Photo: Steve Yarde)
Heritage Diesels were the order of the day on the West Somerset Railway during Saturday 13th November. After a recent period out of use and a change of oil, D7017 undertook a test run from Williton Works to Bishops Lydeard and back. The loco also took resident Class 14 D9526 along for insurance should anything go wrong. D7017 and D9526 are seen at Crowombe on route to Bishops Lydeard.Also working on the line was D1661 'North Star' on a driver training session with the WSR goods train in tow. (Photo: Phil Izzard)
Also captured at Crocombe was D1661 (47840) 'North Star' working the 11:10 from Minehead to Bishops Lydeard. After arriving at Bishops Lydeard the train was shunted before returning to Minehead with the 13:10 departure. The loco was then diagrammed to end up back at Williton works at the end of the days training. (Photo: Phil Izzard)

 

TAUNTON - CARDIFF 'LOCO HAULED' FAREWELL

Friday 12th November marked the end of nearly two years of loco hauled trains operated for First Great Western by DB Schenker. With two coaching stock sets operating from 15th December 2009 through to 15th October 2010. The popular trains will be missed by Enthusiasts, commuters and those who cycle. As these trains provided ample facilities for all. First Great Western, DB Schenker and staff at Barton Hill Depot should be commended for their superb operation which has been exceptionally reliable (omitting Class 57/3 use!) throughout the two year period. It also proved that Loco Hauled can and does work on the modern railway. The Class 67's have played a huge part in the railway scene at Taunton, the 12th October brings to a close yet another chapter of railway history in the town. The final day was marked with a party atmosphere on board with enthusiasts from all over the South West meeting to ride these final services before First Great Western units take over on Monday 15th November. Since the service has been operating the trains have featured 17of the 30 strong Class 67's. 67001, 003, 005, 006, 016, 017, 018, 019, 020, 024, 025, 026, 027, 028, 029 and 030 have all worked the services, along with three rare Class 66 substitutions in the shape of 66007, 66135 & 66153.

Over the Christmas / New Year period we hope to bring you the full breakdown of all the loco hauled services which have operated from Taunton over the past two years. This will include the six month Class 57/3 GBRF operation. Quite what the railways will bring us next is unclear, but if the last few years are anything to go by.....watch this space!

At the request of several Enthusiasts, Taunton Trains produced a limited special final day poster to mark the end of the loco hauled services featuring the final pairing (67016+67017) and celebrity locomotives 67029 and 67018. Although a limited number where produced we understand there was interest for more to be made available. If any one on board the train would like one of these limited prints then please contact TAUNTON TRAINS
On the final night of the First Great Western loco hauled diagram 67016 stands at Taunton with it's headlights dimmed for the final time, having arrived with the 2C89 19:00 from Cardiff. From Monday 15th this service is expected to be worked by a pair of Class 150/1 units which have recently been cascaded from the North London Line services. (Photo: Brian Garrett)
We don't normally feature this 'type' of photo on Taunton Trains, but Friday 12th November presented an opportunity to feature the support our hobby has from enthusiasts of all shapes and sizes. Enthusiasts from all over the South West met on board the final Class 67 Loco Hauled diagrams during the day, culminating in a final group shot at Taunton prior to the ECS departing for Barton Hill in fine style. The support and send off was superbly organised and gave credit to the First Great Western / DB Schenker operation over the past 1 year 11 months, and to those who dedicated their time to riding the train on a regular basis! (Photo: Brian Garrett)

 

On a very windy night at Taunton 67016 stands in Platform 2 with the penultimate 2C89 19:00 from Cardiff. Friday 12th will be the last day of Loco Hauled services between Taunton and Cardiff before this train reverts to FGW Unit operation. Lineside enthusiasts have not been treated to good weather for the final two days of the operation, however those on board were the sensible ones keeping warm and enjoying their final miles behind these popular locomotives. The scene at Taunton tomorrow night could be very different to this! (Photo: Brian Garrett)

 

The first of seventeen stone trains commenced operating from the Mendip Hills to the West Somerset Railway on Tuesday 9th November. Former National Power Class 59/2 No.59205 had the task of hauling the first train from Merehead Quarry to Minehead in connection with local sea defence work on the Somerset Coast.

Oddly the flow of large mendip boulders in ZCA 'Sea Urchin' wagons uses two headcodes/ paths in each direction owing to the train sharing the current Mendip Rail stone path from Westbury to Exeter (which operates as required).

7C27 0433 Whatley Quarry– Taunton, 6Z24 0645 Taunton – Minehead

6Z25 1200 Minehead - Taunton, 6Z28 1310 Taunton – Whatley Quarry

We will continue to monitor the train and provide photos where possible, but as the train enters the line while it's dark it may only be possible to obtain photos of the emtpy train returning from Minehead. Our 'Rolling Stone' section of the website will also be kept up to date during the period of this operation.

66018 worked the second train of loaded boulders into the West Somerset Railway on Wednesday 10th November with another rake of ZCA 'Sea Urchins'. A bed of stone has been laid beneath the larger rocks to prevent them from moving around during transit. As the sun rises beyond 66018 passes Woolsten Moor near Williton on route to Minehead. (Photo: Steve Yarde)
Slighty further along the West Somerset Railway 66018 was bought to a halt at Williton for a short period awaiting entry into the station. While waiting the sun managed to rise slightly higher into the sky providing this scene from the road bridge adjacent to Williton station. (Photo: Cameron Walker)

 

 

Our final photo of '1st Generation DMU Week' on Taunton Trains is bubble car P109 (55009) at Taunton, seen stabled in Platform 6. The unit was captured on the 12th June 1986 before working a stopping service to Bristol Temple Meads. This unit has actually made it into preservation, the unit is currently located on the Mid Norfolk Railway, and recently took part in the Severn Valley Railway's 'Railcar Weekend'. It currently wears former BR Green livery. (Photo: Rowlie)
We continue '1st Generation DMU Week' on Taunton Trains with this shot of a Class 108 DMU at 40 Steps, Taunton. Having arrived from Bristol Temple Meads the two car unit ( 54204 & 53614) is seen reversing at 40 Steps before forming another stopping service back to Bristol. We know little else about this unit, other than it hasn't survived into preservation. (Photo: Rowlie)
'1st Generation DMU Week' on Taunton Trains continues with a local celbrity of the time. As part of the GWR150 celebrations on of Bristol Bath Road's allocation of DMU's was painted into Chocolate and Cream livery. D430 is seen at Taunton during this period. The popular Class 117 unit could be found operating all over the South West, and was formed of the following coaches: 51410 59520 51368. (Photo: Dave Jones)
We continue '1st Generation DMU Week' on Taunton Trains with this image of a Class 117 DMU at Taunton on the 12th May 1984. Set B450 is seen at Taunton shortly after arriving from Bristol. It was formed of coaches 51394, 59547 and 51352. B450 was also instantly recognisable by it's centre car which had been taken from a Class 101. The smooth centre car roof and first class compartment are clearly visible in this shot. (Photo: Gary Parsons)
We continue '1st Generation DMU Week' on Taunton Trains with this superb image of a Class 121 Bubble Car on a route leading special from Salisbury to Paignton at Cogload Jn on the 6th May 1994. L130 55030 was painted in Network Southeast colours at the time of this shot and sported remarkably clean exhaust pipes on the front end. Ironically this unit still exists today, and is currently in open store at Aylesbury wearing the same livery but now numbered 960013. (Photo: Dave Jones)
After the recent discovery of additional photos and information linked to the Exeter Railfair in 1994, we have spent some considerable time researching and scanning new images which have come to light. The Exeter Railfair pages have been fully updated, with charter stock details and a new set of photos which has never been seen before. We trust you will find the information interesting to read through. If you have any further info to add to this section of the website then please do not hesitate to contact us at Taunton Trains
We turn back the clock 22 years with this image taken at Taunton in November 1988. This very rare photo of a former Derby Class 127 was captured stabled in the bay Platform at Taunton in November 1988! W55978 & W55968 were converted for use in the parcels sector after their passenger life had expired. The unit was normally based in the North West, and very few photos exist of set 918. Quite how it ended up in Taunton is a mystery. This photo will also make a great addition to our ongoing Platfrom 1 Gallery (Photo: Jeff Treece)
As part of our ever expanding website, we've spent many weeks creating the latest pictorial addition to the website. As the Class 60's are very much in decide (despite their age) and the first 20 of the Class have now been put up for sale by DB Schenker, we decided it was high time to provide a permanent gallery for all 100 of the Class on Taunton Trains. Our aim is to record one image for each Class member working through Taunton. Why not have a look at the Class 60 pictorial page and see if you can help us complete the task. Email Taunton Trains if you have any images to add!

2010 NEWS

Want to look at what happened in NEWS 2009? Have a look in our Archive Page