AUGUST 2015 NEWS : 


 

Taunton can often seen some interesting combinations of First Great Western units visiting the station during any give day. On Bank Holiday Monday 31st August Class 153 No.153380 leads a three car Class 158/9 into Taunton. The pair operated the 2Z76 12:00 Bristol Temple Meads - Taunton stopping service. While Class 153's reasonably common Class 158/9's are normally reserved for use on the Cardiff - Portsmouth diagrams. (Photo: Lewis Brownlow)
Freightliner Heavy Haul are seen arriving with the Westbury ballast MOBC replenishment move. Class 66/5 No.66523 arrives into Taunton with the 6C73 12:12 Westbury - Fairwater Yard portion. (Photo: Lewis Brownlow)
Two West Coast Railways Class 57's visited the Dartmouth Regatta on Saturday 29th from Chester. The pair No.57601 and No,57316 operated in 'top and tail' formation from Chester to Kingswear with 'The Statesman' charter. After spending the afternoon in Kingswear enjoying the regatta and air show passengers returned to Chester on the high class dining train. No.57316 is seen passing Taunton's local herb garden at the south end of Platform 5 on route back to Chester. (Photo: Paul Clarke)
During the latest First Great Western strike the overnight sleeper from London Paddington to Penzance on the 21st/22nd only operated as far as Exeter. During the early morning on the 26th Class 57/6 No.57602 'Restormel Castle' (The only remaining FGW Blue Class 57) returns through Cogload Junction with the empty stock to Old Oak Common. The 'GWR' branding and colour scheme is now progressing ready for the main launch during September. Get your last images of First Great Western colours while you still can! (Photo: Adam Snow)
Pathfinder Railtours provided two Class 20's for a rare foray into Devon on the 28th August. 'The Dartmouth Flyer' from fronted by Direct Rail Services Class 20's No.20308 and No.20305. The 1Z68 from Nuneaton to Kingswear is seen passing 40 Steps, Taunton on route to the Devon Regatta. (Photo: Jeff Treece)
First Great Western power cars No.43041 and No.43027 operated 'back to back' between Laira (Plymouth) and Old Oak Common (London) depots on Tuesday 25th August. The pair are seen passing through Platform 5 at Taunton while Citizten Rail liveried Class 153 No.153325 occupies Platform 4. (Photo: Paul Clarke)
Freightliner Heavy Haul continue to operate trains for the recent Network Rail upgrades in the Bath Spa area. On the 24th August Class 66/5 No.66585 'The Drax Flyer' passes through Platform 2 in the low evening sun at Taunton exiting from Fairwater Yard heading for Bath Spa having arrived from Westbury. (Photo: Paul Clarke)

 

Former Western Region Class 47/8 No.47832 returned to the South West for another visit on the 22nd August hauling The West Somerset Steam Express from London Paddington to Minehead. The locomotive also has the accolade of one of the most painted Class 47's in history, now wearing it's 17th livery since it was built in the 1960's. The 1Z70 from London Paddington is seen passing Cogload Junction running twenty minutes ahead of schedule having not taken it's booked route via Frome. (Photo: Brian Garrett)
Class 47 No.47832 'Tamar' is also a former First Great Western locomotive, the loco has spent much of its life operating in the South West. The loco is seen here in 2003 operating the 1C22 London Paddington - Penzance service for First Great Western passing through Creech St Michael. Further information about the interesting life of 47832 since introduction in 1964 can be found on the Class 47.co.uk website. (Photo: Brian Garrett)

First Great Westerns colourful liveries often make a nice photograph in the sun, here a Class 150/2 and 105/1 combination formed of No.150236 and No.150127 operate the 2U16 12:07 stopping service from Taunton to Cardiff Central. (Photo: Brian Garrett)

 

Over recent weeks we've featured many of the engineering trains which have been operating between Westbury and Bath taking part in the engineering blockade between Bath and Trowbridge. While the trains may bring more freight through Taunton, often it's nice to see the extensive work being carried out by Network Rail. NR have now released this suburb video via their Youtube Page showing Dundas Aqueduct site where work was carried out to lower the track level and provide enough room for the eventual fitting of overhead power lines for new electric trains. The video features footage from drones, and static time lapse photography and provides an interesting insight into the work being carried out on the route. (Video: Network Rail)

 

The Network Rail MOBC (Medium Output Ballast Cleaner) has also been kept busy of late with Freightliner Heavy Haul continuing to operate the specialist trains from Fairwater Yard. On the 15th August former Direct Rail Services Class 66/4 No.66413 is seen at Taunton's Fairwater Yard between shunting duties. (Photo: Paul Rundle) *Qualified Personnel, with Permission
Cross Country Trains currently have 'The Big Hoot' branding applied to the side of Voyager No.221138. The Big Hoot is a similar event to the Ardman Animations Gromit and Shaun the Sheep figures which have been large colorful owls located and visitor attractions around Birmingham during the school holidays. No.221138 was captured at Taunton on a scheduled service train. (Photo: Paul Clarke)
Weekday engineering trains from the the Bath engineering blockade has kept Taunton's freight scene alive. On the 14th August Freightliner Heavy Haul Class 66/5 No.66513 arrives into Taunton a rake of MRA side tippers in tow. The loco was working the 6T41 Bath - Westbury which ran via Tauntons Fairwater Yard to change direction and head back to Westbury via the B&H route. (Photo: Paul Clarke)
Aggregate Industries liveried Class 59/0 No.59005 'Kenneth J Painter' operated the Exeter Riverside stone replenishment contract on the 14th August. The locomotives is pictured passing Taunton with the return 7C28 empties to Whatley from Exeter Riverside. (Photo: Paul Clarke)
Looking more like an advert for a local Asda store, the Bristol 'European Green Capital' 2015 powercar passed through Taunton on the 11th August with classmate 43018. The pair were operating between Laira and St Philips Marsh Depot after 43126's repair from its its most recent failure in Cornwall. (Photo: Nathan Williamson)
Colas Rail Freight Class 70 No.70802 arrives into Taunton westbound at 19:27 to reverse in Fairwater Yard while working the 6T45 18:27 Westbury to Bath via Fairwater. No.70804 was on the oposite end of the train allowing the train to quickly depart back to Bath on the 12th August. (Photo: Nathan Willamson)
The West Somerset Express visited the West Somerset Railway from London Paddington on the 8th August using BR 7P No.70000 'Britannia' as far as Bishops Lydeard. At Bishops Lydeard the mainline steam locomotive was removed for servicing while the WSR home fleet locos No.3850 took over for the run to Minehead and back. The 2-8-0 heavy freight locomotive being an ideal choice to haul heavier mainline charter sets. Visiting charters are now also the only time its possible to capture different coloured traditional coaching stock on WSR metals. Rounding the curve near Woolsten Moor No.3850 returns from Minehead with West Coast Maroon Mk1 coaching stock nicely complementing the BR Black loco. (Photo Quentin Hawkes)
The DEPG's Dieses have been busy over the summer period operating their booked diesel diagrams. On the 8th August BR Class 14 No.D9526 is captured at Cedar Falls heading for its final stop at Bishops Lydeard before returning to Williton light engine. (Photo: Quentin Hawkes)
The 7th August provided a colourful and buys day of rail freight in Taunton. Due to an engineering blockade at Box Tunnel multiple engineers trains connected with delivering or removing ballast from the site were routed via Fairwater Yard from Westbury to gain access to the correct end of the engineering blockade. Colas Class 70 No.70809 hauled the 6T26 Westbury - Bath via Fairwater Yard into Taunton. (Photo: Paul Clarke)
Freightliner Heavy Haul Class 66/5 No.66515 exits from Fairwater Yard with a rake of Network Rail 'Falcons' hauling the 6T24 Fairwater Yard - Bath Spa engineers. (Photo: Paul Clarke)
Freightliner Heavy Haul also operate Ex Direct Rail Services Class 66/4 No.66415. The locomotive has been operating out of Taunton for several weeks now. On the 7th August the de branded Class 66 departs from Taunton with the 6T25 from Fairwater Yard to Bath conveying more Network Rail 'Falcons'. (Photo: Paul Clarke)
DB Schenker Class 59/2 No.59205 operated the Exeter Riverside virtual quarry trip on the 7th August, the brightly coloured locomotive is pictured passing Taunton with the 7C28 Exeter Riverside - Whatley empties having been unloaded at Exeter Riverside. (Photo: Paul Clarke)
Mendip Rails own pioneer locomotive No.59001 'Yeoman Endeavour' powers through Taunton on the 6th August with the 6C28 Exeter Riverside - Whatley stone empties. The locomotives trademark 'bell' is seen on the leading end of the locomotive. (Photo: Paul Clarke)
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