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HDL Wiltshire Warrior railtour

Saturday 21 March 2009

This article was closed on 16 May 2009

[PHOTO: Imposing view of train: 39kB]

Above: Our DEMU passes Shalford Junction following its reversal at Guildford, on its way to Salisbury via Petersfield. Motor coach 60118 Tunbridge Wells is leading our five-coach train. Photograph: Simon Whittingham.

This was our 38th railtour, and ran from Hastings to Salisbury via Tonbridge and Guildford, providing a break of over three hours in Salisbury.

The tour ran smoothly and the good weather was appreciated by all. Despite a lineside fire in the Petersfield area which caused nearly half an hour’s delay on the return leg of the trip, the tour reached its conclusion at Hastings some 8 minutes early, thanks to “easy” timings, skilful driving, and the kind co-operation of all involved.

The train was formed thus: 60118-60501-69337-60529-60116, with 60118 Tunbridge Wells leading away from Hastings as far as Redhill where the first direction-change occurred.

There is a video on YouTube which shows this railtour at Dean and at Salisbury.

The publicity leaflet and the final timings are provided here for historical interest.

Photographs

[PHOTO: Headboard on train: 29kB]

Above: The specially-prepared headboards were fitted to each end of the train for this tour; this one is carried by motor coach Tunbridge Wells at Guildford. Photo by Don Benn.

[PHOTO: Station in early morning haze, with train: 45kB]

Above: 1001 winds its way over the pointwork into Hastings station just after half-past seven on a beautiful spring morning. Photo by Don Benn.

[PHOTO: Train in station: 37kB]

Above & below: Motor coach 60116 Mountfield brings up the rear at Hastings station, as the railtour waits to get under way. Photos by Don Benn.

[PHOTO: Train in station: 33kB]

[PHOTO: Train approaching station: 42kB]

Above: 1001 arriving off the Tonbridge branch at Redhill, and (below) reversing in platform 2 to proceed towards Reigate. Note the “1012” painted at the end of the solebar, a reference to the unit-number from which this vehicle (motor coach number 60118) originates. Photos by John Simmonds.

[PHOTO: Side view of train in platform: 31kB]

[PHOTO: Train approaching platform: 35kB]

Above & below: 1001 passes Shalford station on the way into Guildford for its second reversal of the outward journey. The full yellow-painted end of motor coach 60116 Mountfield is apparent in the “approach” view. Photographs: Simon Whittingham.

[PHOTO: Train receding from platform: 31kB]

[PHOTO: Train in station: 31kB]

Above: 1001 reversed at Guildford station, at which point the Tunbridge Wells motor coach became the leading end again. Photo by Don Benn.

[PHOTO: Train and bridge: 61kB]

Above: Our train recedes beneath the skew brick-arch bridge that carries the A3100 over the line, between Shalford Junction and Farncombe station. Simon Whittingham.

[PHOTO: Train in scenic cutting: 55kB]

Above: This scenic view shows the DEMU heading through a cutting between Haslemere and Liphook; the wooded countryside, heavy earthworks, and the Track Parallelling Hut for the 3rd-rail electrification system, are all characteristic of railways in the area. Photo republished with permission from Nick.

[PHOTO: Train and passengers in station: 28kB]

Above & below: Our heritage train has proved popular with children of all ages (writer included!). Some of them are seen admiring it during the railtour’s pathing-stop at Eastleigh. Photos by Andy Armitage.

[PHOTO: Train and passengers in station: 31kB]

[PHOTO: Train and scenery: 46kB]

Above: 1001 after passing beneath the bridge carrying the B3084 over the line, between Romsey and Dunbridge. Photo by Andrew Cameron.

[PHOTO: Train approaching: 35kB]

Above: Our train passes Dean station at speed, between Dunbridge and Salisbury. The Civil Engineering siding to its right is evidently disused. Photo by Nathan Williamson.

[PHOTO: Train in station: 35kB]

Above & below: The railtour reached its destination of Salisbury; the train was then worked empty to the bay platform 5 as seen below. It was moved subsequently to the local depot to replenish its lavatory-flush tanks. Photos by Don Benn.

[PHOTO: Drivers and their train in station: 36kB]

[PHOTO: Train in platform: 33kB]

A fine view of our 1957-vintage train resting in the bay platform (Above), and (below) in the depot alongside a Class 159 unit. Photos by Andy Armitage.

[PHOTO: Trains in sidings: 26kB]

[PHOTO: Train on curve: 39kB]

Above & below: 1001 passes through Romsey station on the ‘Up’ line with the return leg of the journey, running several minutes early at this point. It will shortly take the left-hand junction onto the single-track branch towards Eastleigh, whose station at Chandler’s Ford was closed to passengers between 1969 and 2003. Photos by Andrew Cameron.

[PHOTO: Train passing station: 40kB]

Further photographs showing the train on its travels on this day may be found at Jontrains Railway Images.