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  1. Milk would get my vote. The traffic lasted up until 1980 and railside dairies came in various shapes and sizes. The smart art deco example at Moreton in the Marsh is always a favourite of mine and loosely inspired the kit-bashed dairy on my layout.
  2. 44170 very probably had a sunshade when new but these tended to be removed over time. I think the Blue livery with plain white lettering is the post-war version so may well be correct for the un-shaded version of the tank. You would need a photo to be certain though. I would say there is nothing in the photo of the model that looks anachronistic.
  3. The lettering matches that on this preserved SR example. The numbering and lettering on the chassis looks correct as 44170 was an example built by the LMS in 1931 for Express Dairies.
  4. Fascinating shot, thanks for sharing. I have seen bubble cars tripping milk tanks before between Saltash and Plymouth but not around Torrington. No date unfortunately but I guess mid-60s based on the GSYP class 122. I was not aware of Torrington dispatching single tanks like this, the norm in the books seems to be substantial rakes of 6 or even 8 tanks at a time. The following shot shows a similar unit at Torrington (sans milk tank unfortunately). https://rcts.zenfolio.com/diesel/br/other/hA873F8AD
  5. Pretty much everything in the film is new or nearly so which helps. I don't doubt that a lot of time and elbow grease was spent on it though.
  6. I am fairly sure the navy blue livery with white lettering was a post-war livery. The ED livery from the 1930s was slightly more ornate with lined out lettering as seen here in this 1931 example. https://www.rail-online.co.uk/p937014290/hCE88B46E#hce88b46e
  7. There is a nice promotional video of Express Dairy from 1954 featuring the then brand new bottling plant at Morden. Around the 7:50 mark you can see the resident shunter moving a short train of tanks into the plant. 2 are silver and the other 2 navy blue. Both look newly painted based on their condition. http://www.yorkshirefilmarchive.com/film/daily-round-story-milk-production-and-distribution I do have a shot of a milk train at Carlisle in 1965 featuring a navy blue Express Diary tank with white lettering. Unfortunately it is copyrighted so I can't post it. If the blu
  8. Good thinking. That wheeled appliance could be some sort of pump. Hard to tell at the distance. I have seen it (or something similar) in another shot of Dolcoath but again it is not clear enough to make out. It does suggest its presence was not a coincidence though.
  9. I am not 100% certain but I think it is a GWR diagram O58. 2 batches were built in 1947 and 1951. They had 2 separate tanks internally to allow different grades of milk to be carried. Each inner tank had its own filler, hence the 2 ladders for access.
  10. I suppose it must have done. While a few places like Torrington had a shed with facilities at the road-rail loading point, many were just plain sidings like Dolcoath. Some rail-served creameries could load multiple tanks at once. St Erth was mentioned as having 2 loading points while photos of Green Grove appear to show 4 sets of filling pipes. Even so I do not doubt that loading was a time-consuming job and probably doubly so for the sites served by lorry. To be fair, I don't know of anywhere that dispatched 10 tanks in one go. The largest amount I know of from a single location w
  11. There is another great shot of Dolcoath from the 1950s, this time from the roadside. https://www.transporttreasury.com/p422157391/h31bae057#h31bae057 Interesting details include the taps and hoses down below the track. I would guess these were for rinsing out the tanks. Also there is some sort of wheeled appliance in the background, near the loco. Anyone care to hazard a guess what it might be? A portable steam lance for sterilizing perhaps?
  12. No, the manholes were used only for cleaning and maintenance. Using them for milk would risk contamination as you rightly deduced. It would also cause frothing which could also lead to the milk spoiling. Milk was pumped in using a small inlet on the top of the milk tank. Inside, the plumbing was arranged such that the milk ran down the sides of the tank to avoid frothing. Milk was pumped into the inlet using pipes or hose that made a fairly tight seal. At least one facility I have seen used funnels to ensure no spillages. The position and number of inlets varied depending on the di
  13. I am afraid I don't know but I would expect something along those lines.
  14. Spot on on both counts. You can see the end valve pretty clearly here on this preserved example. Cleaning was done via the large manhole cover at the top. I presume it was originally a manual process but some facilities eventually received automatic cleaners. You can see the one at St Erth in operation in this photo. It seems to have splashed quite a lot. http://www.cornwallrailwaysociety.org.uk/uploads/7/6/8/3/7683812/3297982_orig.jpg In addition to rinsing, tanks were also cleaned with steam lances to sterilise them. You can see one in use on
  15. I have only seen photos of the 6-wheeled ones on the Chard-Stowmarket workings but it is possible that the 4-wheelers were used too. There is no evidence of the 4-wheelers being used but one photo is all it would take....
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