News Archive for February 2017

 HOBC

(Photo: Brian Garrett)


Published on 26th February 2017

Running around one hour late and having been routed via Weston-super-Mare station Freightliner Heavy Haul Class 66/9 No.66953 leads the 6Y37 08:15 Swindon - Fairwater Yard HOBC set back to Taunton passing Creech St Michael on the 26th February 2017.

Classmate Class 66/5 No. 66552 'Maltby Raider' was on the rear of this impressively long and colourful train.

To view the gallery, please click here.


 Weekend Engineering

Published on 25th February 2017

A multitude of Colas Rail Freight operated engineers trains passed through Taunton on the 25th February 2017 in connection with track renewal work taking place between Castle Cary and Westbury.

Having run round its train in Fairwater Yard, Class 66/8 No.66847 pauses at Taunton to drop off the shunter prior to departing with the 6C22 18:23 Westbury - Castle Cary via Taunton.

(Photo: Nathan Williamson)


Weekend Engineering



Published on 25th February 2017

Continued engineering work taking place between Castle Cary and Westbury on Saturday nights/ Sundays is continuing to bring large quantities of Saturday night engineering trains through Tauntons platforms.

We were on hand again on the 25th February to record some of the workings as they arrived at Taunton before changing direction and heading to Castle Cary with their various loads in tow. (Video: Brian Garrett & Nathan Williamson)


Weekend Engineering



Published on 18th February 2017

With weekend engineering work taking place between Castle Cary and Westbury on the 18th/ 19th February 2017, Network Rail had several engineering trains booked to run round their trains at Taunton under the cover of darkness on the 18th.

Most trains originated from Hinksey Yard (Oxford) before winding their way to Taunton via Bath and Bristol. All trains did their run round within the station rather than heading into Fairwater Yard. Because of their length photography wasn't possible, so video made the best option to record the movement of trains arriving. (Video: Brian Garrett)


(Photo: Quentin Hawkes)

Published on 16th February 2017

Colas Rail Freight Class 70 No.70807 is pictured passing Norton Fitzwarren with 6C36 10:09 Moorswater - Aberthaw empty cement tanks on the 16th February 2017.

The Colas Class 70s are very much at home in the South West with upwards of 5 or 6 class members visiting the area during any given week working Cement, Engineers and Stone trains to various locations.


(Photo: Brian Garrett)

Published on 12th February 2017

Returning to Fairwater Yard on a freezing cold morning on February 12th 2017, Freightliner Heavy Haul Class 66/5 No. 66552 'Maltby Raider' passes Creech St Michael while working the Network Rail System 5 set on the 6Y37 08:40 Swindon East Loop to Fairwater Yard.

Classmate Class 66/9 No.66953 accompanied the train on the rear of the set. The service departed Swindon running 83 minutes early but was held in the Chippenham area eventually arriving back into Taunton around eight minutes behind it's original booked arrival time.

To view the gallery, please click here.


 British Rail Green

Published on 9th February 2017

Heritage Green Class 37/0 No.37057 operated by Colas Rail Freight returned north from Devon on Thursday 9th February 2017.

The 1Q06 18:35 Exeter Riverside - Westbury test train for Network Rail paused at Taunton for a short period of time before continuing its track recording trip as far as Westbury.

Heritage Green Class 37/0 No.37057 operated by Colas Rail Freight returned north from Devon on Thursday 9th February 2017. The 1Q06 18:35 Exeter Riverside - Westbury test train for Network Rail paused at Taunton for a short period of time before continuing its track recording trip as far as Westbury.

(Photo: Phil Izzard)


South West Trains Class 158

(Photo: Paul Clarke)

Published on 8th February 2017

GWR customers were treated to a rare splash of colour and comfort on the 8th February 2017 when hire in unit No.158880 from South West Trains was employed on the Taunton - Cardiff Central stopping diagrams.

South West trains are well known for their comfy seats, clean trains and bright interiors which are a far cry from the Class 150s normally used on this route. No.158880 is pictured at Taunton working the 11:08 Taunton - Cardiff Central stopping service.

To view the gallery, please click here.


Network Rail Class 73/9s Visit


Published on 7th February 2017

It is true to never say 'never' where the railways are involved.

Bets taken that a pair of Class 73s would visit Taunton in 2017 would have been fairly high odds, but yet again the UK railway system never fails to impress. On the 7th February 2017, Network Rails' pair of 'Super EDs' worked light engine from Derby to Plymouth and back to Taunton before stabling for the night. The pair is pictured in the Taunton area breaking new ground for the class.

To view the gallery, please click here.

(Photo: Paul Clarke)

(Photo: Thomas Courtney)

(Photo: Paul Clarke)



 Colas cover for DB Cargo

Published on 7th February 2017

After a brief spell of DB Cargo operating its own contract, the Mendip Stone flow is now back in the hands of Colas Rail Freight who continue to fill the lack of crew issues faced by DB Cargo.

On the 7th February 2017 Class 70/8 No.70807 was at the helm of the lunchtime empties returning to Westbury. The locomotive is pictured passing Platform 4 at Taunton hauling 7C28 13:45 Exeter Riverside - Whatley Quarry.

To view the gallery, please click here.

(Photo: Paul Clarke)


 GWR Sleepers Fail

Published on 6th February 2017

GWR was unable to operate yet another of their overnight sleeper services on the 5th/6th February 2017.

As a result, passengers were transferred onto an HST set from Penzance. The locomotive and sleeper stock finally decided to make an appearance during the daylight hours with Class 57/6 No. 57603 'Tintagel Castle' hauling the empty stock from Long Rock Depot to Old Oak Common depot ready for the next night's service. The 5Z70 09:00 Laira - Old Oak Common is seen passing Taunton at 10:55 with the empty stock Night Riviera stock in tow.

(Photo: Paul Clarke)


 British Rail Green at Taunton

(Photo: Thomas Courtney)


Published on 6th February 2017

Heritage Green liveried Colas Rail Freight Class 37/0 No.37057 visited Taunton on the 6th February 2017 while working the 1Q06 18:00 Bristol Temple Meads to Laira test train for Network Rail.

The former persevered Class 37 is now owned by Colas and operates on many Network Rail test trains around the UK, and wears original British Railways Green livery.


Network Rail HOBC

(Photo: Simon Harling)

Published on 5th February 2017

On a wet and soggy Sunday morning on 5th February 2017, Freightliner Class 66/5 No.66524 slowly rolls back into Fairwater Yard hauling the 6Y19 08:00 Swindon East Loop to Fairwater Yard HOBC with classmate No.

66953 at the rear of a good size train been out on overnight ballast cleaning duties for Network Rail.

To view the gallery, please click here.


Missing Powercar?

(Photo: Paul Clarke)

Published on 3rd February 2017

It's not often you see a Great Western HST with its powercar missing, so this image was definitely of newsworthy inclusion.

On Friday 3rd February 2017 while working the 1A73 05:46 Exeter St Davids to London Paddington, lead power No.43172 suffered a seized axle at Castle Cary at 07:08. This effectively closed the main line to London via the B&H forcing all passenger and freights services to be diverted via Bristol. After the service was canceled the power was subsequently removed from the set and shunted into an adjacent siding at Castle Cary. Rear powercar No.43094 was then used to haul the set (LA08) back to Laira as the 5Z77 10:45 Castle Cary to Laira. The odd sight of an HST set missing its powercar is seen passing Taunton at 11:09 when the line to Castle Cary had just been reopened after the four-hour closure.


 Railvac

Published on 3rd February 2017

Colas Rail Freight delivered a Swedish Railvac from Westbury to Lostwithiel on the 3rd February 2017.

Class 66/8 No. 66850 'David Maidment OBE www.railwaychildren.org.uk' passes through the pouring rain at Taunton Station while working the 6X54 07:57 from Westbury to Lostwithiel. The locomotive later returned light engine to Westbury.

(Photo: Paul Clarke)


Alone in the expanse

(Photo: Simon Harling)

Published on 1st February 2017

With echoes of Eric Carmans hit 'All by myself' playing, lonely Colas Class 70/8 No.70804 trundles back to Westbury on the 1st February 2017 in a rare light engine movement.

The locomotive had hauled the 7C27 05:27 Westbury - Exeter Riverside stone, however, the loader at Exeter broke down and wasn't able to unload the stone. Rather than leave the expensive locomotive sitting idle until the loader could be repaired, No.70804 returned to Westbury as the 0C28 13:45 Exeter Riverside - Westbury without its normal rake of wagons in tow. It's seen here at Oath in the large expanse of the Somerset Levels.

To view the gallery, please click here.


GWR Livery Expands

GWR green is slowly being outshopped on various GWR fleet members, a recent newcomer to the area (normally based at Reading for used on the Basingstoke Shuttles) is three car Class 150 No.150002. On the 1st February 2017, the clean unit was captured working the 2U18 13:08 Taunton - Cardiff service, seen here passing Fordgate nearing Bridgwater.

(Photo: Simon Harling)

Published on 1st February 2017

GWR green is slowly being outshopped on various GWR fleet members, a recent newcomer to the area (normally based at Reading for used on the Basingstoke Shuttles) is three car Class 150 No.150002.

On the 1st February 2017, the clean unit was captured working the 2U18 13:08 Taunton - Cardiff service, seen here passing Fordgate nearing Bridgwater.

To view the gallery, please click here.


To view news stories from January 2017, click here, or for news from March 2017, click here.