Steam 2006

When the trains are not running.

For pictures of yesteryear visit my new fotopic site.

I am also starting a new fotopic site covering Spain.

Text in red denotes recent updates to pages.

On Thursday 21st December 71000 Duke of Gloucester took The Cathedrals Express from Victoria to Eastleigh and return while 35028 Clan Line ran round the Surrey Hills with the VSOE pullman. Both are seen at Woking in dense fog and then the VSOE is seen at Gomshall in slightly better conditions.
On Tuesday 12th December 45231 The Sherwood Forester hauled The Cathedrals Express to Salisbury and is seen approaching Fleet and then passing Worting Junction
On Tuesday 5th December 45231 The Sherwood Forester hauled The Cathedrals Express to Westbury and Salisbury and is seen leaving Fleet and then Winchfield immediately after a torrential downpour.
On Saturday 2nd December 6024 King Edward I hauled The Elgar Explorer from Willesden to Bath and is seen approaching Reading on time, just before being stopped due to a problem further along the line.
On Saturday November 25th 71000 Duke of Gloucester hauled The Cathedrals Express from Victoria to Newbury Racecourse, Bath and Bristol. It is seen approaching and passing Earley in a torrential downpour which shortly afterwards became a full-blown thunderstorm. It was being delayed by a local stopping service which caused it to work extra hard on the climb to Earley.
On Saturday 18th November 6024 King Edward I returned from Minehead in fine style, turning a half-hour late departure into a more than 15 minute early arrival, with a run from Reading to Paddington which bettered some HST performances! It is seen approaching Sonning Cutting at the start of this impressive run.
On Monday 6th November 35028 Clan Line returned from overhaul with a loaded test run using the VSOE stock and it is seen passing Virginia Water some 20 minutes late at 1248 due to a signal failure at Staines, but it had regained most of the lost time by Winchfield!
On Saturday 7th October 34067 Tangmere was again on VSOE duty with a run to Southampton and it is seen in the Winchfield area with the outward run.
On Monday 11th September 6024 King Edward I ran from Old Oak Common to Minehead with its support coach and is seen at Reading where it had a short wait for a path along the Berks & Hants line.

6024 King Edward I ran to Bristol from Paddingdon on Saturday 9th September with the Sir John Betjeman Centenary Special and is seen coming out of Sonning Cutting and slowing for the Reading stop in the morning.

On Thursday 31st August 45231 The Sherwood Forester hauled The Cathedrals Express from Victoria to Westbury and is seen either side of the Winchfield water stop in the morning

On Wednesday 30th August 34067 Tangmere returned to VSOE duty with The Royal Wessex Pullman and is seen about to pass under the flyover at Worting Junction on the outward trip and passing Sutton's Industrial Park, Reading, in fading light on the return.

Still on 16th August but now at Eastleigh where 850 Lord Nelson is set to leave the works and head for the West Somerset Railway for running in. The second picture shows it nosing through the works gate onto the main line under its own power before setting back to allow the class 66 pilot and barrier wagons to couple up. It then ran out through the station and took the Romsey line en-route to Bishops Lydeard.

On Wednesday 16th August 71000 Duke of Gloucester was again hauling the Sunny South Express (with the wrong headboard) and is seen passing Winchester at speed on a dull morning. I left the camera on AUTO but as I panned round the focus got confused.

On Sunday 6th August 6024 King Edward I hauled The Torbay Express from Bristol to Kingswear and return and is seen during the outward run on Goodrington bank. During the same week-end 7827 Lydham Manor was working service trains and is also seen at various locations along the line.

On Wednesday 2nd August 71000 Duke of Gloucester hauled a train from Kensington to Weymouth - it should have been the Sunny South Express but the headboard showed The Cathedrals Express! Whichever it was, it is seen either side of Winchfield.

On Wednesday 12th July 34067 Tangmere hauled the VSOE from Victoria to Westbury and return. It is seen approaching and departing from Theale on a glorious summer's evening.
On Sunday 9th July 71000 Duke of Gloucester hauled The Cathedrals Express to Exeter and is seen approaching and leaving Winchfield on a wet and windy morning.
On Wednesday 5th July 6024 King Edward I had another outing to Bristol, this time with the VSOE. The weather had broken and much of the run took place in heavy rain and fog. It is seen coming out of the fog at Didcot and running slowly through platform 3 in the rain, platform 1 being occupied by a late-running HST which it would have to follow.
On Friday 30th June 6024 King Edward I was in action again, this time with The Great Western Express from Paddington to Bristol and return. It is seen on the Challow loop and at Wantage Road during the return run.
On Saturday 24th June the lean spell of steam in the area was broken by 6024 King Edward I when it hauled The Bristolian from Willesden to Bristol and back. It is seen leaving Sonning cutting on the outward run and passing South Stoke on the return.

On Wednesday 12th April 45407 and 76079 hauled The Strong Countryman from Salisbury on a circular tour via Yeovil, Weymouth and Eastleigh. It was a sunny morning and I didn't start work until lunchtime. The map showed a possible location in a park in Wilton so I decided to check it out. I parked in the town and set off on foot, but there were too many trees in the way so I opted for a road bridge a few minutes before it was due.

The Chiltern Centenary was celebrated on 1st and 2nd April with a series of steam specials between Marylebone and High Wycombe. Some of the Sunday trains are seen between Beaconsfield and the M25, hauled by 5690 Leander and 48151.
On Saturday 1st April 60009 Union of South Africa hauled the VSOE to Oxford and is seen leaving Sonning cutting and slowing for Reading.

On Saturday 18th March 34067 Tangmere hauled The Pines Express from Victoria to Minehead and is seen approaching New Junction on the outskirts of Reading on another dull, freezing morning. I pushed the ASA up to 400 to use a higher speed but then it slowed right down!

On Thursday 16th March 34067 Tangmere hauled The Solent & Sarum to Salisbury and Southampton and is seen passing Fleet Pond at speed on a very dull day, seconds after I arrived. It was just switch on, point and press!

On Wednesday 1st March 34067 Tangmere hauled the VSOE to Bath/Bristol as far as Westbury. It is seen passing Fleet pond in fine style on a fine morning.

On 27th February 45407 The Lancashire Fusilier travelled from Stewarts Lane to Bury. It is seen passing through Reading at around 11.30 am with it's support coach.

In early February I paid a short visit to Lagos in Portugal. The museum in the old depot has been closed since 1997 when the curator retired, and now the station has also closed and the track has been removed. A footpath runs past the depot which is securely locked but by placing my camera by the rail passing under the door I got these photographs.

On a miserably wet winter's day (Saturday January 14th) 34067 Tangmere took the VSOE to Southampton Docks. As it approached platform 2 at Winchfield a stopping service pulled in to platform 1 causing a mad rush to the footbridge. The shot was so poor it only survived for use as a thumbnail. I decided to experiment with ASA settings for the rest of the shots.

On Thursday 12th January 6233 Duchess of Sutherland took the VSOE on a private charter circular tour from Victoria via Guildford and Redhill. It is seen passing Worplesdon in fine style in the afternoon.

On Friday 6th January 6024 King Edward I made its return trip testing the new water carrier. It is seen leaving Sonning cutting and approaching Reading on a dull morning.

On January 1st I visited the North Norfolk Railway, starting and finishing at Weybourne and hoping for some sunshine. The mist only lifted briefly and the light remained poor but I did manage some reasonable pictures. There are 3 pages altogether.

Page created 3rd January 2006.

Page updated 21st December 2006.



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