NOTES AND NEWS

WEST COUNTRY AREA

Avonmouth

02/12 59201 powered the 6C63 empty and 6C64 return loaded import stone to Westbury.
04/12 66122 was on the 6C90 Newport ADJ - Avonmouth 'enterprise' freight trip.
09/12 66087 departed around 13:00 on 6C02 'trip' to Newport formed of 15 cargowagons, passing Pilning at 13:22. Later, 66086 arrived with 8 repaired HTA coal wagons from Newport ADJ. This working had been noted passing Patchway at 14:17.
10/12 66135 handled the 6C63/6C64 Westbury import stone working.
16/12 Two Filton 'infill' stone workings were scheduled to operate, one being identified as 6W80 06:40 Newport - Filton West headed by 66066. Also recorded during the morning was 66178 on the 6C01/6C02 Newport ADJ freight trip.
18/12 66084 departed on the return 6C97 freight trip to Newport ADJ during the morning.
23/12 A surprise visitor during the early afternoon was Advenza 57006 running as a 0Z57 Gloucester - Cardiff Tidal, (0Z58) Avonmouth - Gloucester route learner light-engine, having been noted passing Patchway en-route at 12:45. A new Advenza freight-flow from the Chittening Estate to West Wales was thought to be the reason for the Class 57 visit, being only the third record for this location. The previous Class 57 visitors to Avonmouth have been:- 57002 which arrived on the rear of Pathfinder Tour's return 'Yankee Sidewinder' (1Z30 16:45 Trowbridge - Sheffield) excursion with 66011 + 66028 leading on 27/02/99. The 57 worked the train away from the location on departure, with the 66s removed (Page 8. April 1999 Magazine) and 57005 which departed on a loaded Freightliner car train (one of only two known car workings for the company around that time from this location) on 05/07/00 (Page 4. September 2000 Magazine).
30/12 66078 worked the 6C90 Newport ADJ - Avonmouth freight trip.

Locos recorded on coal duty during the month have included;- 66005/021/023/051/077/116/154/169/184/196/201/302/304.
08405 continues as the area shunting pilot.

Bristol Parkway, Pilning and Westerleigh

02/12 'Army red' 60040 worked the 6C83 Machen - Westbury loaded stone formed with 'on loan' FLHH green livered JGA wagons, passing Filton Abbeywood at 15:25, having departed Machen at 14:08.
03/12 66597 (which had arrived on coal empties on 29/11) was present stabled light-engine. The loco was believed to have been a failure. DRS 20309 + 20312 arrived in Parkway up loop at 13:14, departing at 13:44 with the 6M67 14:00 Bridgwater - Crewe nuclear flasks, having earlier passed Filton Abbeywood at 13:11 (123 minutes early). Another freight train observation was 66607 working 6Z59 Harlow Mill - Pengam stone empties.
04/12 60014 was reported as a failure in the Severn Tunnel on 6A11 Robeston -Theale loaded fuel tanks at 03:00. The train had activated the hot-box detector at Marshfield but was allowed to continue at 30 mph, but slipped to a stand inside the tunnel at the low speed. 66167 was despatched from Westbury, the train passing Pilning at 07:11, reaching Westbury at 08:23, then leaving at 10:25 for Theale behind the Class 60 which was reached at 12:20 (359 minutes late!). Solitary freight noted this evening, 66196 empty MGR to Avonmouth from Didcot.
05/12 Advenza 57006 passed Parkway at 13:55 with empty scrap wagons and two tankers in the up direction.
06/12 66520 arrived at Parkway during the afternoon on 4V22 09:15 Fiddler's Ferry - Stoke Gifford down sidings coal empties, one of two new Saturday afternoon workings, the other being 4V20 07:34 Fiddler's Ferry - Stock Gifford (booked Severn Tunnel junction 12:55). At 17:00, 66515/520/526/566 were all stabled at Parkway in the down sidings.
08/12 60094 was over at Westerleigh on tank duty. A cold and wet evening with 5 workings recorded, four of which occurred in a 20 min time slot (19:45 -20:05), first up was 66196 with a loaded Avonmouth - Didcot MGR, 66526 arriving in down loop with MGR empties for Portbury (shunted train into yard later on). 66077 then worked through with MGR empties for Avonmouth quickly followed by 66724 "Fastline" MGR empties for Portbury concluding the evening was 66140 MoD liner.
09/12 66142 passed on the 6B24 Didcot - Wentlooge MoD stores, whilst later, GBRf 66723 passed down light-engine at 13:58 heading for Temple Meads station.
10/12 60062 worked the 6E41 Westerleigh - Lindsey fuel tank empties, 66723 headed north through Parkway at 08:25 light-engine and 66526 was recorded as stabled in the down sidings at 20:30.
11/12 Similar to 8/12, 66190 loaded MGR service for Didcot from Avonmouth, late running ADJ - Willesden "Enterprise" behind 66101 (delayed due to HST in trouble in the Severn Tunnel). 66077 MGR empties for Avonmouth, 66526 in down loop with MGR empties for Portbury and 66301 "Fastline" MGR empties for Portbury. Test unit 950001 arrived at 10:10 from Avonmouth, reversing and departing at 10:32 towards Temple Meads. Later, 66174 + 66181 top n'tailing the Barton Hill water cannon appeared in the up direction at 12:55 and Central Train's green livered 153354 passed at 14:00 running from Tyseley -Eastleigh works empty for refurbishment. Also, due to signalling problems at Westerleigh junction, the 10:30 Swansea - Paddington First/GW HST service (due Parkway at 12:02) was diverted via Bath and Box.
13/12 Special DB Schenker-Rail livered 60074 arrived at Westerleigh on the 6B13 Robeston - Westerleigh loaded fuel tanks behind assisting loco 60099. At Pilning, 66201 passed at 12:30 with the 6B86 13:00 Portbury - Aberthaw loaded coal service and 66559 worked through at 14:44 on 4V22 09:15 Fiddler's Ferry - Stoke Gifford coal empties.
14/12 66524/559/565 were stabled in the downside sidings at Stoke Gifford.
15/12 3 freights recorded this evening, 66184 MGR empties for Avonmouth, 66116 loaded MGR for Didcot and 66090 MoD Liner. Also seen was XC HST set using power cars 43207/304 with rake XC02 (Dec Magazine). It was learnt that the Fastline had been re-timed for this week, it was reported that 66304 was passing Ashton Junction on the return duty at 19:30, there was no sign of the service at Parkway on departure at 20:30. 66090 was on the 6B24 Didcot - Wentlooge MoD stores.
17/12 Observations at Pilning between 12:25 - 14:40 recorded the following;- track machine DR73911 down (12:29), 66004 6B24 Didcot - Wentlooge MoD stores (12:36), 67017 + 67028 top n'tailing 2U14 Taunton - Cardiff local passenger (12:41), 66035 6B35 Hayes - Moreton - on -Lugg stone empties (13:12), 66559 4V20 Crewe Basford Hall yard - Stoke Gifford down sidings (13:45), 66129 6B86 13:00 Portbury - Aberthaw loaded coal (14:31), 67028 + 67017 top n'tailing 2C79 Cardiff - Taunton local passenger (14:35). The 4C09 17:52 Stoke Gifford - Portbury coal empties behind 66559 departed early, passing Parson's street at 17:56.
18/12 67026 + EWS silver 67029 top n'tailed a 1Z71 11:15 Cardiff Central - Eastleigh and 1Z72 14:18 return Northern Belle dining special. The outward working passed Filton Abbeywood at 11:55 arriving at Temple Meads at 12:02 for a reverse outward via Bath. The associated ECS workings were as follows; 5Z71 05:10 Crewe C.S. - Cardiff Central (11:04) and 5Z72 17:18 Cardiff Central - Crewe C.S. (20:44).
18/12 Five MGRs seen tonight, 66116 with a loaded Avonmouth - Didcot service plus two sets of empties for Avonmouth worked by 66077 and 66021. 66550 arrived light engine and was attached to a rake of MGR wagons stabled on the down loop - departing for Portbury shortly afterwards. 66584 noted with a rake of MGR empties for Portbury and for a while was alongside 66550and its train. 66584 shunted its train into the sidings, was detached and stabled further over in the yard. Also seen tonight were XC power cars 43285/357 with set XC01, 66162 passing through with the Mod Liner, and a late running Bescot - St Blazey freight behind 66131. As for 15/12, the Fastline service (66301) was reported at Ashton at 18:00 on its return working - not seen at Parkway by 21:00 - assumed that it travelled back via Bath.
21/12 66512/560/584 were all stabled in the down sidings at Parkway at 10:30.
22/12 A brief pre-match visit tonight found 66531 with MGR empties stabled in the yard, 66051 with MGR empties for Avonmouth and 66512 passed through with MGR empties for Portbury. The XC HST working utilised power cars 43321/378 with coaching set XC03, and heading northbound light engines were 47810 + 57006.
23/12 DRS 37038 + 37218 were noted in the up loop at Parkway between 13:31 - 13:54 on 6M67 Bridgwater - Crewe nuclear flasks.
24/12 66515 and 66584 were stabled at Parkway.
27/12 66060 passed Parkway at 13:25 on 6M60 St. Blazey - Bescot freight.
28/12 66515/523/584 were all present stabled at Parkway in the usual downside area.
30/12 Cotswold 47810 passed Parkway at 14:18 on a 6Z61 Cardiff Tidal sidings - Gloucester empty scrap wagon move.

Bristol Temple Meads, Kingsland Road and Barton Hill

01/12 GBRf 66731 worked an Arriva stock move via Day's curve (passing Filton Abbeywood 24 minutes late at 15:45, and noted at Newport at 16:39) as 5L66 10:52 (later re-timed as 14:52) Eastleigh -Cardiff Canton with coaching stock; 5965, 5976, 9521. The loco then returned as 0F66 15:25 Cardiff Canton sidings - Temple Meads light-engine. One Arriva XC HST working reported was the 9V59 09:00 Glasgow Central - Plymouth service formed 43303, 41195, 45003, 42234, 42378, 42377, 42376, 44052, 43321 (XC03). Steam loco 6024 King Edward I returned for railtour duty as 5Z22 14:08 Bishop's Lydeard - Barton Hill loco and support coach, passing Westbury at 16:15. Some late running for First/GW services was recorded for part of the day due to a track circuit failure at South Marston (near Swindon). Noted stabled in the old cattle dock siding (near platform 2) were charter coaches; 3124 (green livery), 3334 (Anglian blue) and 5009 (maroon).
02/12 With now only two former Wessex Train's vinyl livery Class 150/2s left in service, 150243 was noted on the 2C43 06:46 Temple Meads -Penzance First/GW service, 150265 being the other set remaining unrefurbished. 66731, stabled in the north-end no.1 bay overnight, ran 0Z47 Temple Meads - Cardiff Canton and 0Z48 12:24 return driver route learning light-engine (reported Newport 13:08, 17 minutes early). 43321 + 43303 returned north on the 9S59 06:40 Plymouth - Aberdeen Arriva XC service. During the evening; 67002 + 67022 passed Keynsham at 19:10 (2 minutes early) with the overnight 3S23 18:51 Barton Hill - Reading (via Taunton) water cannon and 66613 passed Temple Meads at 22:13 with 6Z65 16:53 Bow - Newton Abbot Hackney yard sand empties.
03/12 Two railtour arrivals at Temple Meads during the early afternoon were;- steam 60007 Sir Nigel Gresley, making a second visit for the year, with 1Z82 10:00 Waterloo - Bristol (the 1Z83 16:37 to Waterloo was the return, which departed 19 minutes late), 'Cathederals Express' (using c/stock;- 21096 loco support, 5236, 5237, 1961, 9104, 5249, 99371, 9392, 13440, 5216, 5222, 1840, 5200). and 67017 + 67025 double-heading a 1Z27 08:44 Huntington - Temple Meads and 1Z28 18:35 return, both specials being routed each way via Bath. On the freight side, 20309 + 20312 passed Temple Meads at 06:31 with the 6V74 Crewe - Bridgwater nuclear flasks (20309 being noted carrying the new DRS Compass livery), FLHH 66613 during the evening was on 6Z66 16:03 Burngullow - Bow loaded sand, GBRf 66731 which ran 0Z89 07:15 Temple Meads - Long Marston light-engine (noted Parkway at 07:20) for a 6Z90 12:15 Long Marston - Willesden PCDC stock move and Advenza 47375 which worked another light-engine move as 0Z75 Gloucester - Temple Meads (platform 5 bay), via Fishguard. The Barton Hill water cannon with 67022 + 670021 was noted heading westbound to Weston-super-Mare and held in Yatton loop from 08:56 - 09:29 and later back through Yatton at 09:51, whilst an Arriva XC HST report for the day was 43285 + 43357 with 9S53 06:40 Plymouth -Aberdeen service (near Yatton at 08:38).
04/12 47375 departed as 0Z70 09:12 Temple Meads - Old Oak Common light-engine (via Bath) and 66012 was observed on the 6B83 Machen stone trip, via Day's curve using 'hired' FLHH JGA hoppers. The Arriva XC 9V59 09:00 Glasgow - Plymouth HST service was noted formed with power cars 43285 + 43357 and XC01. A First/GW HST diversion, the 16:33 Paddington - Exeter was routed via Bristol (arriving at Taunton 58 minutes late), due to the failure of the 16:06 Paddington - Penzance service at Athelney with brake problems, which eventually reached Taunton 120 minutes late, then working 5C88 20:32 empty stock to Old Oak Common. Also in the Taunton area during the evening was the recorded failure of the 6C99 Newport ADJ - St. Blazey freight (load 19) with 66141, reported rescued by First/GW sleeper loco 57605 and moved into the station area.!
05/12 66174 + 66181 arrived in Bristol during the early hours on a 5Z60 22:43 Crewe C.S. - Barton Hill stock move (formed with Cargo D, blue/grey c/stock 6117, 6046, 6008 and an unidentified brake coach). Also the 'Yuletide Torbay Express' stock arrived as 5Z27 10:35 Old Oak Common - Barton Hill (via Bath) formed;- 17105 (in an all over blue livery!), 3122, 3112, 1671, 3140, 3107, 1863, 4927, W5350. The overnight 3S23 18:51 Barton Hill - Reading water cannon, top n'tailed by the usual 67002 + 67022 ran via Weston-super-Mare first, as opposed to at the end of the diagram.
05/12 GWR 6024 noted at Barton Hill at 09:40. (Also present 19/12)
06/12 Steam 6024 King Edward I, worked the 'Yuletide Torbay Express' 1Z27 09:21 Temple Meads - Kingswear (Parson's Street 09:24) and 1Z28 16:17 return. However there were problems on the return journey with a steam leak in the loco cab at Exeter, the train being assisted forward by 67002 as far as Taunton where the steam loco was removed, the train departing behind the Class 67 solo at 20:02. The King was returned to Bristol hauled by an unidentified diesel loco during the evening of the following day. A second steam visitor to Bristol arriving at 13:05 was 60019 Bittern on a 1Z92 07:57 Haywards Heath - Temple Meads (and 1Z93 18:26 return), which had been redated to run from 27/11. The water cannon was now formed with 66181 + 66174 inplace of the two Class 67 locos, and later 60085 was recorded passing Day's junction on 6C80 Machen -Westbury loaded stone formed with the 'hire' FLHH wagons.
08/12 Pacer 142004 returned north as 5Z42 12:00 Exeter - Newton Heath passing Temple Meads at 13:15. 67002 + 67028 commenced top n'tailing ECS training (with the four Cargo D coaches) between Taunton and Cardiff in advance of the new loco and stock workings due to commence for First/GW from 15/12 calling at most stations en-route. The day's diagram being; 5Z40 10:02 Barton Hill - Taunton (11:33), 5Z41 11:59 Taunton - Cardiff (14:54), Temple Meads 13:20 - 13:37, 5Z42 15:00 Cardiff - Barton Hill.
09/12 The Class 67s continued their training trips, but the final working the 5Z41 11:59 Taunton - Cardiff did not take place due to problems with the brake coach, the train retiring to Barton Hill on arrival back in Bristol having also missed out the Weston-super-Mare loop. A further movement of Pacers took place following the end of their one year lease period to First/GW. 142070 + 142067 + 142062 + 142028 ran 5Z42 11:50 Exeter - Newton Heath passing Patchway at 13:46 (3 minutes early) heading for the Severn Tunnel and the Marches route north to Hereford. Also recorded during the day were;- 66181 + 66174 top n'tailing the 3S23 04:55 Yeovil junction - Barton Hill water cannon down through Yatton at 09:32, GBRf 66723 on an 0Z46 Willesden - Temple Meads (platform 5 bay) light-engine (Parkway 13:51) and 66559 on the 6M37 15:35 Moorswater Lafarge - Hope sidings cement empties, the first time this train had operated for several months.
10/12 The Class 67 driver training specials were cancelled, 67002 running light from Barton Hill - Old Oak Common to collect a replacement brake coach, returning as 5Z67 via Parkway hauling a single maroon livered MkII 9494. Freight workings of note were 20306 + 20310 paired on the 6M67 Bridgwater - Crewe nuclear flasks and 60085 with the 6B65 Westbury - Newport ADJ departmental (Bath 10:50). The 3S23 water cannon working was noted passing Worle at 10:07 heading towards Bristol with the two Class 66 locos.
11/12 The Class 67s continued their ECS training runs, and 66181 + 66174 headed north through Yatton at 10:13 with what turned out to be the final 3S23 Barton Hill water cannon trip of 2008. Later, test unit 950001 departed Temple Meads at 12:09 as 2Z08 for Severn Beach, returning to Temple Meads then onwards to Westbury for overnight stabling, working 2Z08 to Weymouth and 13:51 return during the following day. Spare 'hire' blue/grey Cargo D stock; 6054 and 9508 were reported as present on Barton Hill depot.
13/12 Despite flooding in the West Country due to heavy rainfall, the steam hauled 'Yuletide Torbay Express' headed by steam 6024 King Edward I was unaffected on it's journey to Kingswear and back, the return arriving back in Bristol 10 minutes early! However, flooding at Chipping Sodbury and Wootton Bassett caused disruption to services between Bristol and London from around 08:30. Some South Wales First/GW HST services were diverted via Gloucester, with nothing calling at Parkway, trains from Temple Meads being reduced to hourly xx.30 departures via Bath and the Berks & Hants route, whilst South-West services were diverted via Bristol and also the Berks & Hants due to flooding near Castle Cary (which was already being used by SWTs Class 159 units as a diversionary route due to scheduled engineering work between Yeovil junction and Salisbury!). Flooding then occurred near Bedwyn, resulting in all diversionary routes being blocked for a short period of time! Services at Parkway resumed when the First/GW 11:02 HST to Paddington departed at 11:39 and services then operated to and from Swansea every two hours. Test unit 950001 passed back through the area as 2Z08 05:28 Westbury - Plymouth, booked via Yatton loop between 10:48 - 10:57.
15/12 The main highlight of the new timetable change saw hourly First/GW services now operating between both Bristol Parkway and Weston-super-Mare as well as between Cardiff and Taunton, as well as the new loco hauled 'hire' service for First/GW, formed 67017 + 6046, 6117, 6008, 9494 (CP02) + 67028. The complete Mon-Fri week-day diagram is as follows;- 5D04 06:20 Temple Meads - Taunton ECS, 2D04 07:28 Taunton - Bristol Parkway (09:05), 2Y10 09:13 Bristol Parkway - Weston-super-Mare (10:07), 5Y10 10:10 Weston-super-Mare - Taunton ECS, 2V14 11:02 Taunton - Cardiff (13:24), 2C79 14:00 Cardiff - Taunton (16:04), 2V24 16:13 Taunton - Cardiff (18:17), 2C89 19:00 Cardiff - Taunton (21:10), 5C89 21:23 Taunton - Barton Hill ECS (via Westbury). The ECS is believed to run via Westbury on the return to maintain train crew knowledge at that location as a similar Summer Saturday operation is expected to run for First/GW again this year. The only late running reported during the first day of operation was the 2C79 which departed Weston-super-Mare 17 minutes late for Taunton and the return 2V24 from Taunton which left 11 minutes late. The workings, which will release a Class 143 unit, are expected to continue for 18 months, until the arrival of new stock. A second loco hauled set is a possibility if the arrival of new Class 172 units for the Midland is late, and further Class 150/1s are not available for transfer to First/GW for the May 2009 Summer timetable. As well as new workings for First/GW, Arriva XC changed it's HST diagrams, the 9S53 06:40 Plymouth - Aberdeen (which used to call at Weston-super-Mare, Yatton and Nailsea & Backwell) and the 9V59 09:00 Glasgow - Plymouth were discontinued being replaced by the following (with the first operating day power cars and stock formations listed);- 1V19 06:00 Leeds - Plymouth/ 1S51 12:21 Plymouth - Glasgow (43301/XC04/43384), 1V23 06:32 York - Plymouth/ 1S55 13:21 Plymouth - Edinburgh (43285/XC01/43357), 1V31 06:08 Edinburgh - Plymouth/ 1E63 15:21 Plymouth - York (XC03 formed 41195, 45003, 42290, 42234, 42378, 42377, 42376, 44012), 1V39 06:32 Dundee - Plymouth/ 1E73 17:21 Plymouth - Leeds (43207/XC02/43304).
16/12 DRS 20310 + 20306 departed Bridgwater at 13:43 with the 6M67 loaded nuclesr flasks to Crewe. The Arriva XC 1V39 06:32 Dundee - Plymouth service was worked by HST power cars 43384 + 43301 with XC04. The top 'n' tail service utilising Class 67s was seen heading south this afternoon at 14:45, locos being 67017 & 67028. (Still running in 2009 unchanged since day one)
17/12 HST power cars 43304 + 43207 worked the day's 1V39 and the 1S51 12:21 Plymouth - Glasgow was in the hands of 43301 + 43303
18/12 66550 seen heading towards Bristol at 18:00, light engine. (See Parkway notes). The first Eastleigh works refurbished 'local lines livery' Class 143, no. 143617 was noted at Bath (09:15) working the 08:45 Westbury - Gloucester First/GW service. Later Cotswold-Rail 47828 passed Lawrence Hill at 17:52 with coaches 3313, 5669 (both in Pullman livery), 9525 (Wessex Train's 'pink'), 5906 (inter-city) for Temple Meads and the former Bath Road depot spur. The working was believed to have originated from Barrow Hill. 66204 was also recorded during the evening on the 6B99 St. Blazey - Cardiff Tidal scrap train. An additional Arriva XC Voyager ECS driver diversionary route learning trip commenced between Bristol and Taunton (via Bath and Westbury). The full diagram (XC421), is due to run 15/12/08 - 14/05/09 (as required) and is reported as being;- 5M26 05:05 Eastleigh - Bournemouth, 1M26 06:30 Bournemouth - Manchester, 1V41 12:07 Manchester - Temple Meads (15:10), 5C41 15:20 Temple Meads - Taunton (16:29) ECS, 5C65 16:41 Taunton - Temple Meads (17:53), 1M65 18:00 Temple Meads - Manchester, 1G91 21:28 Manchester - Birmingham NS, 22.58 Birmingham NS - Central Rivers depot (with XC519). The Bristol - Taunton line is to be closed for week-end engineering work from 28/03 - 16/05.
19/12 GBRf 66724, on hire to Fastline, worked the 4Z18 Chaddeston - Portbury coal empties passing Parson's street at 14:55. The Arriva XC 1V39 was recorded with power cars 43378 + 43321.
20/12 Steam 6024 King Edward I + support coach W35333 + 67028 ran 5Z28 East depot - Newport, the steam loco working the 'Yuletime Torbay Express' starting from South Wales for the first time as 1Z27 08:15 Newport - Kingswear (calling at Temple Meads between 09:14 - 09:21) and 1Z28 16:15 return. A Voyager set, 221125 was reported at Westbury, assumed linked to the 5C41/5C65 Arriva XC diversionary route learning runs (see full diagram listed under 18/12). Two Arriva XC HST services reported were; 1V39 07:00 Glasgow - Plymouth (43301/XC04/43303) departing Temple Meads at 15:02 (25 minutes late), and 1V47 09:00 Glasgow - Penzance (43357/XC01/43285) departing Temple Meads at 17:04 (20 late).
21/12 Steam 6024 King Edward I, worked the final 2008 'Yuletime Torbay Express' (and the only Sunday working of this additional short series), the 1Z28 return being noted passing Nailsea & Backwell station at 19:46.
22/12 Three ECS moves during the day were;- Steam 6024 King Edward I on 5Z24 13:42 Barton Hill - Bishop's Lydeard with support coach and tank wagon (Flax Bourton 14:12), Advenza 47375 with the two Pullman coaches 3313 and 5669 (which arrived on the 18/12) as 5Z?? 12:06 Temple Meads - Norwich (Saltford 12:14) and 66133 which departed at 13:32 (via Parkway) hauling the 'Torbay Express' stock as 5Z27 12:43 Temple Meads - Old Oak Common. Two freight workings noted during the day were;- 37038 + 37218 on the 6M67 Bridgwater - Crewe nuclear flasks at 12:50 and earlier 66508 on the 6V21 Hope sidings - Moorswater cement (Yatton 05:54).
23/12 The 1S55 13:21 Plymouth - Edinburgh Arriva XC service (with power cars 43285 + 43357) was terminated at Temple Meads and sent back west in the path of the 1V39 06:32 Dundee - Plymouth (and later returning on the 1E73 17:21 Plymouth - Leeds) due to the failure of the 1V39 at Derby (with power cars 43303 + 43207). A Voyager set took the 1S55 forward from Bristol. On the subject of Voyagers, 220019 was reported to have covered the 5C41/5C65 Taunton diversionary route learner, during the afternoon. Also during the afternoon, 60004 ran via Day's curve as 0C41 light-engine in the path of the Newport ADJ - Westbury departmental. Only coaches 9525 and 5906 remained in the former Bath road depot spur.
24/12 The Arriva XC 1V39 06:32 Dundee - Plymouth was in the hands of power cars 43357 + 43285 and 220006 worked the 5C41/5C65 diversionary route learning trips. A refurbished Midland livery Class 153 unit (believed to be 153334) passed Bath at 11:50 on an Eastleigh works - Tyseley move. Some engineering works over the Christmas period were reported as in the Severn Tunnel area and at Paddington station (track-work) from 23:00 (24/12) - (06:00) 27/12 at each location.
29/12 Heavy Haul wagons noted southbound at 07:35 behind 66524 suggesting empty MGR for Portbury.
30/12 66021 seen heading southbound at 08:25 with MGR in tow, possibly bound for Westbury.
30/12 DRS 66423 + 66426 made a surprise appearance on the 6M67 14:00 Bridgwater - Crewe nuclear flasks, passing Parson's Street at 12:44 (becoming the first sub class appearance on this working since 02/04, Page 6. June 2008 Magazine). 220031 was on the 5C41/5C65 diversionary route learner. A view of the former rubbish rail container terminal at Bath Oldfield Park, found rusty tracks and 15 containers still present. A road/rail machine was reported as on site earlier in the month.
31/12 67017 + 67028 have continued to operate the newly introduced week-day local-hauled service for First/GW problem free, although 153368 appeared on part of the diagram during the day working the 2D04 07:28 Taunton - Bristol Parkway, onwards from Temple Meads and the 2Y10 09:13 Parkway - Taunton back to Temple Meads only. The reason for this was uncertain (possibly due to late running?), meanwhile the Class 67s and train remained at platform 10 to allow the Class 153 to complete it's outing! Only First/GW units 150243 and 150265 remained in the former Wessex Train's vinyl livery as 2008 drew to a close.

Gloucester

02/12 Some freight workings reported during the day included;- 60031 with the 6B13 Robeston - Westerleigh loaded fuel tanks, 66015 on the 6V92 Corby - Margam steel empties and 60074 + 60066 paired on the 6M81 Margam - Round Oak steel.
05/12 Advenza 57006 ran 0Z06 Gloucester - Cardiff Tidal sidings light engine.
06/12 Due to engineering work north of Cheltenham, 60024 with the 6E41 10:13 Westerleigh -Lindsey fuel tank empties were routed via the Stroud Valley (booked St. Mary's 11:42), to Swindon and the GWML, following a loco run-round (booked 11:01 - 11:09) at Gloucester. The service was reported as running an hour late on the day.
16/12 Advenza 47237 worked a 6V95 Gloucester -Cardiff Tidal scrap metal service.
17/12 47237 returned north on a Cardiff Tidal - Shipley train of scrap empties, on arrival at Gloucester the loco went onto the station stabling point for attention before continuing forward.
18/12 FLHH 66546 worked south on 4V56 Fiddler's Ferry - Portbury coal empties during the afternoon and earlier Colas duo 47727 + 47749 headed a 6Z47 11:00 Newport -Rugby departmental formed;- machine DR76601 Owen + DR92400 + a KEA flat.
29/12 Cotswold-Rail 47810 ran 0Z57 Gloucester - Cardiff Tidal light-engine.

Portbury Branchline

01/12 The new Fastline coal service commenced as 4Z18 16.38 Chaddeston - Portbury empties (21:00), Parkway 20:02, Temple Meads 20:13 - 20:21, and 6Z18 23:00 Portbury - Radcliffe P.S. (06:30) loaded coal, Temple Meads 23:42 - 23:46, Bath 00:03, Swindon 00.49, Oxford 01:35, (Mon - Thur Only) and 4Z18 12:48 Chaddeston - Portbury (16:39), Parkway 15:50, Temple Meads 16:02, and 6Z18 19:00 Portbury - Radcliffe P.S. loaded coal (04:45), Temple Meads 19:52 - 19:57, Parkway 20:17, Swindon 21:05 - 21:15, Oxford 22:04., (Friday Only). 66304 (with 16 IIAs) became the first Class member over the Portbury line, having passed Lawrence Hill at 21:15 with the inward 4Z18 empties, around 60 minutes late. The 6Z18 loaded service was reported as running around 313 minutes late on the return!
02/12 66304 again powered the 4Z18/6Z18 Radcliffe coal service.
03/12 66304 was again on the 6Z18 23:00 coal departure, being observed over the river from Avonmouth at 22:55 still loading. 66117 had earlier departed on the 6X52 17:27 MWFO loaded cars to Washwood Heath/Tyne yard.
05/12 66302 passed Yate around 16:00 on the inward 4Z18 empties to Portbury arriving at 17:05, the return 6Z18 again leaving Portbury late this time by 132 minutes! Part of the reason for this evenings late running was the very early arrival (instead of after the booked Fastline arrival time) of the FLHH empties for the 6M02 21:00 departure to Fiddler's Ferry P.S. being noted 116 minutes early arriving at Ashton Gate at 20:04 behind 66551!
09/12 Fastline continued their 4Z18 16:38 Chaddeston - Portbury empty coal and return 6Z18 23:00 to Radcliffe P.S. during the second week in December, 66302 being in charge of today's workings.
10/12 66302 again worked the 4Z18/6Z18 Radcliffe P.S. coal service, the loaded train being noted at Ashton Gate between 23:59 - 00.03 (11/12) on the 6Z18 loaded return.
11/12 Test unit 950001 running as 2Z08 visited the branch passing Pill inward at 11:24, returning at 11:48 back towards Bristol, through the same location.
12/12 66301 worked the 6Z18 19:00 (FO) loaded coal departure for Radcliffe P.S. at 23:30, 270 minutes late!
15/12 The Fastline coal diagram was ADJusted to run 4Z18 11:08 Chaddeston - Portbury (15:00) and a 6Z18 17:00 loaded return to Radcliffe P.S. (this departure time slot having previously been used for an Aberthaw departure by EWS) from Mon - Fri during this week. 66304 was noted passing Parkway at 15:30 on the inward 4Z18 empties.
16/12 'Hire' GBRf 66724 covered the Fastline coal working passing Temple Meads slightly down on time at 14:52 with the 4Z18 empties. This was the third GBRf loco to visit the Portbury line, 66716 and 66717 (on loan to Freightliner Heavy-haul) worked Mossend car trains during September and October 2003.
17/12 The 4Z18 Radcliffe coal empties were noted passing Pill at at 14:21 behind 66303.
18/12 66301 worked the 4Z18/6Z18 Radcliffe coal service, the empties being recorded passing Yate at 13:35 and the loaded return through Chippenham at 19:10.
19/12 GBRf 66724 made a second 'hire' run on the 4Z18 passing Parson's street with the 4Z18 empties at 14:56.
22/12 The Fastline diagram for the short Christmas week was;- 4Z18 22:18 Chaddeston - Portbury (02:55), Parson's Street 02:19, and 6Z18 05:00 return, Temple Meads 05:52, 66303 being incharge of today's workings.
23/12 66305 worked the 6Z18 05:00 loaded coal departure to Radcliffe PS.
24/12 66305 was again on the 6Z18 05:00 loaded coal service to Radcliffe P.S.
30/12 66302 worked the 6Z18 05:00 loaded coal service to Radcliffe P.S.
31/12 66304 was seen at the dock gate at 05:50 with a late running 6Z18 05:00 loaded coal service to Radcliffe P.S.

Locos recorded on coal duty during the month have included;- 66021/023/66116/129/132/154/201. 66301/302/303/304/305. 66512/514/515/518/520/523/524/526/531/551/557/559/560/561/564/581/584. 66595/596. 66724.

Units seen during the month
142004/028/067/070/082.
143611/617/618/619/620/621.
150121/127/219/221/232/233/234/238/243/246/247/248/265/266/278/279/280
150281
153318/354/368/372/373
158748/763/766/767/951/952/955/956/957/958/959*.
220003/006/008/010/013/014/015/016/017/018/025/026/028/029/031/032/033
221114/116/118/121/125/127/129/130/132/135/136/140
950001.
Misformed set;- 158959 with 52778 + 57778 only.

STOCK ALTERATIONS

Locomotives

Transfers
56311/312(DF)-WF (WF = Wansford), 92044 - France
WZFF - 58001/005/006/013/021/026/036/042
WZTS - 58002/003/008/012/014/016/019/022/023/028/037/045/048
FAMT - 37413
MBDL - 37403
DFFT Freightliner Route Learning Class 66 - 66502/536/587
RCJB Fastline Class 66 - 66301/302/303/304/305
WAFW EWS Hire Class 67 for FGW - 67016/017/028

Stored
08514/630/664/922. 09017/101. 60005/013/017/028/029/042/051/055,
60061/071/073/075/077/079/095. 66406/407/408/409/410. 92002
CB: 87003/006/034. CE: 92002. CD: 56069/087/106.
DC: 08514/664/922. 09101. EH: 56091. 58035. MG: 08630.
TO: 60005/013/017/028/029/042/051/055/061/071/073/075/077/079/095.
WA: 56018. ZH: 66406/407/408/409/410. Newport ADJ: 09017.

Traffic
37029 -BH, 37406 -TO, 37601 -KM, 92004 -CE

Withdrawn
08402/489/509/510/582/587/665/670/694/715/775/890/900/919/933/955.
37046/058/077/196/221/238/293/294/377/421/516/692/796/798/799/801.
56027/043/052/064/076/082/084/086/089/101/114.

Sold
Booth: 08509/510/582/665/694/775/890/919/955 37046/058/077/196/221/238/293/294/377/516/692/796/798
56043/052/064/076/082/084/086/089
TJ Thomson: 08402/489/587/670/715/900/933
Hanson Tr: 56027/114
Sandbach C&C: 37799/801
Private: 37421. 56101.

Renumbered
43057 - 43257, 43104 - 43304, 43108 - 43308

Diesel Multiple Units

Transfers
142004/028/062/067(EX)-NH, 070(EX)-HT

Stored
180113 -ZN

Traffic
142071 -HT

Disposal
51366 - Safeside, WM Fire Brigade HQ, Duddeston

Electric Multiple Units

Transfers
377201/203/204/205/206/207/208(SU)-BI

Stored
442403/11 @ZN

Traffic
350231/232/233/235/236*/237*/238*/239*/240* -NN (* new)
4422402/21 -BI

Disposals
Booth: Car: 76184(310050)

Reformed
365501 (65894 + 72241 + 72240 + 65935)

Coaching & NPCC Stock

Disposals
Booth: 17163
Keighley & Worth: 977389 (Underframe Only)

Renumbered
82130 - 82604, 82135 - 82303

LOCAL FREIGHTLINER WORKINGS

4V50/4O51 Southampton - Wentlooge containers
01/12 66504. 03/12 66540. 04/12 66574. 05/12 66570. 09/12 66599. 10/12 66594. 11/12 66543. 19/12 66956.

4V60 Calvert - Bath/Bristol bin liner
05/12 66596. 24/12 66548. 29/12 66621.

6M07 03:00 Portbury - Rugeley P.S. loaded coal
09/12 66564.

6M55 07:00 Portbury - Rugeley P.S. loaded coal
03/12 66557. 04/12 66561. 05/12 66561. 08/12 66526. 09/12 66526. 10/12 66526. 11/12 66526. 13/12 66515. 16/12 66560. 20/12 66514.
23/12 66584. 31/12 66595.

6M61 08:31 Portbury - Rugeley P.S. loaded coal
03/12 66518 08/12 66515. 09/12 66524. 10/12 66524. 11/12 66520. 12/12 66524. 22/12 66584. 23/12 66531. 24/12 66531. 30/12 66531.
31/12 66596.

6M04 10.25 Portbury - Rugeley P.S. loaded coal
02/12 66518. 03/12 66560. 05/12 66526. 08/12 66520. 09/12 66520. 10/12 66520. 11/12 66523. 12/12 66515. 22/12 66560. 30/12 66524.
31/12 66581.

6M02 21:28 Portbury -Fiddler's Ferry P.S. loaded coal
01/12 66526. 04/12 66582. 05/12 66551. 08/12 66551. 09/12 66551. 11/12 66551. 15/12 66554. 17/12 66559.

6M12 22:50 Portbury - Fiddler's Ferry P.S. loaded coal
02/12 66526. 06/12 66561.

LOCAL FASTLINE WORKINGS

4G90 (SO) Chaddeston - Avonmouth/ 6M90 11:30 Avonmouth - Radcliffe P.S.
06/12 66304. 13/12 66304. 20/12 66304. 27/12 66302.

LOCAL EWS WORKINGS

6B13 Robeston - Westerleigh
03/12 60031. 10/12 60094. 11/12 60021. 13/12 60074. 16/11 60074. 19/12 60041. 29/12 60099.

6E41 Westerleigh - Lindsey

6B49/6B50 Newport ADJ - Swindon steel
02/12 66086. 05/12 66034. 16/12 66204. 

6B33 Theale - Robeston empty fuel tanks
02/12 60054. 06/12 60100. 04/12 60014. 11/12 60099. 18/12 60099. 20/12 60099. 23/12 60021. 30/12 60066.

6B83/6C83 (6B80/6C80 SO) Westbury - Machen - Westbury stone (TThSO)
02/12 60040 04/12 66012 06/12 60085. 09/12 66048. 11/12 66068. 16/12 66135. 18/12 66090. 20/12 66152.

6V62 Eastleigh - Plymouth Tavistock yard fuel tanks (TO)
02/12 66173. 09/12 66075. 16/12 66181. 23/12 66106. 30/12 66137.

6B65 Westbury - Newport ADJ departmental
09/12 66044. 10/12 60085. 19/12 66090.

6B35 Hayes - Moreton-on-Lugg stone empties
03/12 66044 10/12 66035. 17/12 66035.

DEPARTMENTALS & TRACK MACHINES

02/12 Bristol TM;- Road/rail; Quattro Rail 472.
09/12 Westerleigh;- Road/rail; Hydrex 104. No 3858.
13/12 Weston-super-Mare; DR73115. DR77905.

MISCELLANEOUS

Road Movement
17/12 Remains of a former SR bullied stean loco on a road lorry trailer was causing traffic jams along the A39 near Kilve, assumed en-route from Williton to join the M5 motorway at Bridgwater. It was believed to be 35011 (General Steam Navigation), which had arrived on the West Somerset Railway near enough in ex. Barry condition late in 2007, to provided parts for WC 34046 Braunton, now sucessfully returned to use on the WSR, with a mainline certificate a possibility.

Bridge Report
Not previously reported has been the 'caging' over of the footbridge over the mainline at Narroways Hill junction being the last one on the Filton bank stretch of mainline, a notorious trespass and vandalism location. Bridges at Filton Abbey Wood, Lochleaze and the small bridge over the Severn Beach line at Narroways have all been covered over during the past few years. Also (and previously not reported), further down the Bristol - Taunton mainline at Highbridge, an important road bridge near the town centre was reopened during June following mis-use by heavy vehicles regarding weight restrictions. The bridge was closed in March 2007 following structural checks by Network-Rail and was not to be be re-opened for 'several years', only cars and bikes being initially allowed to cross.