General News Report digest for March 2003

This article originates from March 2003

De-icing and passenger workings

Late at night on Monday 17 March 2003, “stopped” motor coach 60000 Hastings was made available for an urgent de-icing run (with Network Rail DEMU motor coach 977937 + EPB de-icing car) from St. Leonards to Tonbridge return; this was in fact the last use of the de-icing car this season. Earlier in the day Mountfield had been used on de-icing duties on the South Central division (hence no 1001 on the passenger trains between Ashford & Hastings that day); but by late evening Mountfield and Tunbridge Wells were unavailable as they had been reformed into the 3-car unit 1001, required for the next morning’s service. Motor coach Hastings was also used briefly on that next morning, Tuesday 18, when it and 977937 ran to Eastbourne to bring a DEMU to St. Leonards depot for attention. (4 May 2003)

TPWS development

At the end of March 2003 motor coach 60116 Mountfield, the first to be fitted with TPWS, was taken out of traffic to allow modifications to be made, in order that the motor coach and its TPWS would operate together smoothly; it was then taken on a TPWS test run, with 60118 Tunbridge Wells, to Ashford International and back. This was on Monday 31 March 2003 which coincided with a train-drivers’ strike, so the working was out of service. Following this successful run, TPWS to the tested specification was then fitted to the other two motor coaches 60000 Hastings and 60118 Tunbridge Wells. (5 May 2003)