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The Powerhouse

Saturday 9 December 2017

Our annual pre-Christmas Forgotten Tracks railtour has become very much a part of the enthusiast calendar and this year’s highly unusual one is certainly not going to disappoint.

So cast your mind back to the 1980s when the very first General Motors diesels began to arrive in the UK. The first Class 59s went straight to Somerset, handling huge tonnages of Mendip stone. But then came the National Power Class 59/2s which were more wide-ranging and were particularly associated with the Yorkshire coalfields. But under EWS ownership these migrated south and joined their cousins at Merehead in the Mendip Hills.

So on today’s trip we take one of the 75mph Class 59/2s back to its old stomping ground on an interesting tour of non-passenger lines and spurs in Yorkshire, assisted by a Class 60 where topping and tailing is required.

The Class 59/2 will make an unusual sight on the ECML. At Retford we veer left, taking the curve to Whisker Hill Junction and on through Worksop to Sheffield, where a Class 60 will be added at the rear. After reversal the route is then via Woodburn Junction, Broughton Lane Junction and Shepcote Lane Junction, running right into Tinsley Yard.

The 59/2 is once more at the head as we head out of Tinsley, through Rotherham Central, Aldwarke Junction, Thryburgh Junction and Hexthorpe Junction where we veer left on to the Doncaster Avoiding Line, passing over the ECML to Bentley Junction to arrive at Stainforth & Hatfield where we reverse once again.

Our final stint with the Class 60 will be via Thorpe Marsh Junction, the new Doncaster North Flyover, Askern and the Knottinglay East Chord to Kellingley Loop where it is detached. The 59/2 then takes us via Knottingley, Pontefract Monkhill, Crofton West, Turners Lane, Normanton and Church Fenton to reach York where we have a leg-stretching break of about an hour. During this time the Class 59/2 runs round the train, ready for homeward run via the East Coast Main Line.

Demand for our pre-Christmas tour is always great, so early booking is recommended


London Finsbury Park07.42 CONFIRMED21.22 CONFIRMED
Potters Bar08.05 CONFIRMED21.08 CONFIRMED
Stevenage08.30 CONFIRMED20.49 CONFIRMED
Peterborough09.35 CONFIRMED19.55 CONFIRMED