HDL Norfolk Navigator railtour

Saturday 26 March 2011

This article was closed on Sunday 1 May 2011

[PHOTO: Train heading through station: 52kB]

Above: Colin Price photographed the railtour as it passed through Redhill on its way to East Croydon.

Hastings Diesels Limited’s 47th public railtour was from Hastings to Ely, and to Dereham on the preserved Mid-Norfolk Railway.

Our train performed faultlessly, and with the easy timings given we were able to recoup some time lost by pathing issues in the west London area. On the return leg, we lost some time behind a stopping train on the North London Line but quickly made it up again after Purley and were 22 minutes early at one stage, arriving 8 minutes early into Hastings.


Because of engineering blockades in force that weekend, our route between Tonbridge and Clapham Junction was via Redhill in both directions, with a passenger stop at East Croydon. From Clapham Junction we ran via Barnes, Cricklewood and the East Coast Main Line; on our return, from Cambridge we took the Bishops Stortford route and then ran via Stratford and the North London Line to reach Barnes once more. Our routes round the London area include lines not normally used by passenger trains:

Historical data

The train was formed thus: 60118-60501-69337-70262-60529-60116, with motor coach 60118 Tunbridge Wells leading on departure from Hastings. It returned in the same orientation.

The publicity leaflet, final timings, and map of the railtour route remain available.

Cab video footage

Video footage from a forward-facing camera mounted in the cab has been made available via the links below. Unfortunately we are still suffering with engine-vibration being resonated by the camera-mounting, and are working to solve this issue. The video material at these links is © Copyright Andy Armitage 2011.


[PHOTO: passenger info monitor at station: 24kB] [PHOTO: passenger info monitor at station: 24kB]

Above: The platform monitors at East Croydon provided particularly helpful and accurate information to passengers.

[PHOTO: Train on embankment: 46kB]

Above: After leaving the overhead wires behind at Ely North Junction, our train heads north-east towards Dereham. Photo by David Pond.

[PHOTO: 1001 ready to depart Wymondham: 60kB]

Above: At Wymondham the railtour reversed direction to access the Mid-Norfolk Railway.

[PHOTO: Train seen from track level: 74kB]

Above: Our train at Kimblerley Park.

[PHOTO: Trains in station: 52kB]

Above: The railtour paused at Thuxton on the way to Dereham.

[PHOTO: Train, station and signal-box: 52kB]

Above: The splendid signal-box and station at Yaxham, plus the Hastings DEMU which called there.

[PHOTO: Trains in station viewed from track level: 62kB]

Above: Our train upon arrival at Dereham which is currently the northern terminus of the Mid-Norfolk Railway—however the line beyond is being restored to operational condition.

[PHOTO: Trains in station: 56kB]

Above: Motor coach Mountfield at Dereham. Photo by Andy Armitage.

[PHOTO: Trains on track at dusk: 47kB]

Above: At dusk, 1001 returns towards London and approaches the Level Crossing at Brimsdown. Photo by Colin Duff.