HDL Thames Tidal railtour

Saturday 31 March 2012

This article was opened on Monday 2 April 2012

[PHOTO: Train in station: 63kB]

Above: The Thames Tidal railtour reversed at Barking, to serve Fenchurch Street on its way to the coast. A District Line train is visible in the background. Photo by Colin Duff.

Hastings Diesels Limited’s 52nd public railtour was from Hastings to London Fenchurch Street, Southend and Shoeburyness.

This outing operated via pickups at Bromley South and Clapham Junction, before negotiating the North London Line and the Gospel Oak to Barking route, reversing at Barking to serve London Fenchurch Street. From there it ran out via Tilbury to Southend and Shoeburyness. The return was via Laindon and Upminster, and did not serve Fenchurch Street.

Our train performed trouble-free. On the return leg of the trip, we were delayed in the Pitsea area because the line was closed at police request—the police helicopter had been deployed in the search for an armed suspect. We were 30 minutes down at one point, but thanks to some clear running and some scheduled recovery time we were back to 23 minutes down at Clapham Junction, 12 down at Bromley South, and on time thereafter. See also the timekeeping reports linked below.

Historical data

The train was formed thus: 60118-60501-69337-70262-60529-60116, with motor coach 60116 Mountfield leading on departure from Hastings.

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

Also available are the running & punctuality reports (from TRUST) for the outward and return journeys.

Cab video footage

Video footage from a forward-facing camera mounted in the cab has been made available via the links below. Despite further investment in equipment we still have some vibration problems, and are working to solve this issue. The video material at these links is © Copyright 2012 Andy Armitage.


Various photographers have taken video-footage depicting this railtour and have uploaded it to YouTube; the following are links to some starting-points but do not represent a definitive collection:


[PHOTO: Train in station: 57kB]

Above: At around half-past eight in the morning, motor coach Mountfield leads our train as it calls at Tunbridge Wells. Photo by Andy Armitage.

[PHOTO: Dog on lead at station: 45kB]

Above: Eddie the depot dog felt this was a particularly appropriate photo-opportunity. Andy Armitage did the honours.

[PHOTO: Train in covered station: 44kB]

Above: Following our reversal at Barking, we called at London Fenchurch Street station—the main point of origin for c2c trains. A subsequent c2c service to Grays is being advertised on the passenger-information display. Photo by Colin Duff.

[PHOTO: Train in station: 64kB]

Above: Motor coach 60118 Tunbridge Wells brings up the rear upon arrival at Southend Central. Photo by Colin Duff.

[PHOTO: Trains in depot yard: 49kB]

Above: The train laid over in the yard at Shoeburyness.

[PHOTO: Train approaching across pointwork: 85kB]

Above: After interior cleaning and the refilling of toilet-flushing water tanks in Shoeburyness yard, 1001 was captured by Colin Duff as it returned to Shoeburyness station for the return trip.

See also a set of photographs at www.bloodandcustard.org.