Branch Line Britain - celebrating Britain's minor railways

Blog 2019

January 2019

No railway journeys made this month.


 

February 2019

GBRF Class 66 No 66779, Evening Star in unusual khaki green livery at Coleshill Parkway station on 2/2/19

1/2/2019 Leigh-on-Sea to London Fenchurch Street. London Marylebone to Haddenham and Thame Parkway. Haddenham & Thame Parkway to Oxford Parkway. Oxford Parkway to Oxford. Oxford to Banbury. Banbury to Warkwick Parkway. Warwick Parkway to Birmingham Snow Hill.

I went up to Birmingham to see King King in concert and stayed overnight in the city. On the way I was able to visit some Parkway stations to get some photographs for a book I am bringing out later in the year. There was no snow when I left home, but once we were  out of the tunnel north of Marylebone I was quite surprised to see plenty of it in North London for a change. In fact there was plenty of snow all the way as far as Banbury, then it disappeared. Luckily all the trains ran on time and there were no cancellations. the only train that I got that was full was the Cross Country service between Oxford and Banbury.

 


2/2/2019  Birmingham New Street to Tame Bridge Parkway and return via Witton. Birmingham New Street to Coleshill Parkway and return. Birmingham Moor Street to Dorridge. Dorridge to Stratford-upon-Avon Parkway. Stratford-upon-Avon Parkway to Leamington Spa. Leamington Spa to London Marylebone. London Fencurch Street to Leigh-on-Sea. 

The next day I bought a West Midlands Day Ranger ticket for £18 and travelled round the West Midlands for a few hours before coming back to Essex. At Coleshill Parkway I was intrigued to see a driver change over of a freight train on the station. The two drivers had a chat before the train departed - see photo. Then at Dorridge I was able to sit out on the platform with a coffee and croissant at a table by the cafe in spite of the cold, as the bright sun made it quite pleasant. I then caught one of the through trains to Stratford-upon-Avon, a Class 172, over a small piece of new track for me between Hatton West Junction and Hatton South Junction. Again all the trains ran on time with no delays and there was plenty of seating, apart from when we stopped at wembley Stadium on the way back, where many Spurs fans got on, leading to standing room only. By the way all the snow had melted in London.

 


7/2/2019 Leigh-on-Sea to London Fenchurch Street. London Blackfriars to London Bridge. West Ham to Leigh-on-Sea

Went up to London for the evening whilst my wife went to a concert at the 02. Met up with her afterwards.

 


18/2/2019 Leigh-on-Sea to London Fenchurch Street. Farringdon to Greenwich. West Ham to Leigh-on-Sea

 

Went with a friend up to London to pay a visit to the Post Offce Mail Rail train. We had a ride on the very small train which was quite cramped for me, though it was an interesting ride with films beamed to the side of the tunnel at different stops and an exhibition of the mail trains form a bygone era. Then took a Thameslink train from Farringdon across the river to Greenwich, where my friend was able to ride on a DLR train for the first time.