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chrisf

Class 116 diesel multiple units

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15 minutes ago, cheesysmith said:

DC kits cabs on replica suburban coach

 

The sides looked similar to Lima so done well.

 

The DC Kits boxes are too high, may be worth carving off and making from plastic card.

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Chris Leigh of this parish used to market cab roofs with built-in destination-blind boxes.

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1979

 

Chrisf apologises again for the late arrival of 1979!  Not all this time has been spent in trying to find out what happened in the early part of the year.  During 1979 it became all too apparent from the odd comment in the RO that some RCTS members were just not interested in dmus and only submitted reports of locomotive movements and observations.  We will never know just what went unreported but logic tells us that there must have been much more than we know.

 

It does seem to be the case, though, that the size and disposition of the 116 fleet had become relatively stable.  The Canton allocation was unscathed after the 1979 timetable revision in the Cardiff Valleys, probably because it was already at an irreducible minimum.  The Hamilton allocation failed completely to hit the headlines, save for the arrival of two more sets in May: 50090+59374+50132 and 50836+59344+50889.  Tonight’s homework is to work out where they had come from!

 

Tyseley now had the largest allocation of Class 116.  The allocation as at 12th August 1979 ends this chapter but it was still the case that nothing remained stable for long.  Tyseley’s 116s were now beginning to get around in earnest.  On 3rd February sets TS507 and TS538 replaced failed expresses due to adverse weather conditions.  On 27th May TS535+TS555 formed a special shuttle service from Birmingham New Street to Coalbrookdale.  On 28th July Tyseley’s 50070+59026+50095 [TS526] and 50072+59009+50105 [TS509] were observed at Manchester Victoria.  4th August saw TS547 forming a shuttle service between Kidderminster and Bewdley in the formative years of the preserved Severn Valley Railway.  To cover for some operating difficulty or other, TS544 and two other units formed 14.38 Birmingham – Paddington on 26th September and on 12th October TS524+TS538 were deployed on a relief football special from Stourbridge to Witton.

 

This report from the September 1979 RO is an early indication of how far and wide Tyseley’s 116 fleet would come to range: “Tyseley 3 car dmus are becoming more common on services through Newark Castle since the introduction of some through workings to and from Birmingham.  It is not uncommon for non-corridor suburban sets to be used on these workings, providing an uncomfortable journey for passengers travelling any distance and a difficult job for guards on the Nottingham - Lincoln paytrain section of the journey.”

 

The principal raison d’etre of Class 116 at Cricklewood came to an end on 11th May.  The dmu service between Kentish Town and Moorgate ceased after the 17.33 departure from Moorgate, formed of four 116 vehicles and leaving at 17.58.

 

Stratford still had a modest fleet of 116s, largely unheralded but earning the odd mention in despatches.  On 14th March 50867+59335+50898 worked the Romford – Upminster branch, usually the preserve of a two-car set.  On 2nd June 50845+59353+50898 formed the RCTS London and Thames Haven Rail Tour.  The same set made the headlines on 11th August when it worked the Harwich branch, followed by the 16.13 Harwich - Ipswich, the 17.45 Ipswich – Colchester and the 18.30 Colchester – Leicester.  On 13th August it worked the 07.44 Leicester – Parkeston.

 

Something notable did happen in the Valleys in 1979.  Because of fuel shortages, from 11th June several Cardiff Valleys dmu services were withdrawn and others turned short – to Treherbert at Porth, to Merthyr at Pontypridd and to Rhymney at Bargoed.  The cuts were so unpopular with passengers and unions that services were restored on 26th.  Instead, most six-car trains were reduced to three.

 

Laira’s allocation went largely unobserved in 1979.  Over the weekend of 24th June, however, someone went out with a notebook.  In it he recorded set P319 at Exeter and set P317 at Newquay.

 

To conclude this part there follows the list of Tyseley set formations as at 12th August 1979.  It is important to remember that there were day-to-day variations that went unrecorded but the list is a model of stability compared with the early years of this depot.  Non-members of Class 116 are shown in italics.

 

TS500  50061+59000+50092

TS501  50057+59001+50097

TS502  50861+59002+50912

TS503  50076+59003+50118

TS504  50059+59004+50104

TS505  50065+59005+50094

TS506  50058+59006+50112

TS507  50069+59007+50099

TS508  50851+59376+50904

TS509  50072+59009+50105

TS510  50067+59010+50093

TS511  50819+59346+50915

TS512  50051+59012+50113

TS513  50077+59013+50120

TS514  50862+59014+50872

TS515  50050+59015+51143

TS516  50074+59016+50110

TS517  50824+59343+50906

TS518  50056+59018+50098

TS519  50064+59019+50115

TS520  50827+59361+50880

TS521  51112+59336+51146

TS522  50078+59022+50109

TS523  50055+59023+50116

TS524  50066+59024+50103

TS525  50830+59332+50883

TS526  50076+59026+50095

TS527  50834+59038+50887

TS528  50062+59028+50117

TS529  50828+59338+50127

TS530  50831+59339+50884

TS531  50052+59341+50914

TS532  50079+59351+50121

TS533  51129+59439+51142

TS534  50053+59342+50886

TS535  50860+59438+50913

TS536  50107+59442+50833

TS537  50108+59440+51130

TS538  51131+59441+51144

TS539  50119+59443+51133

TS540  50832+59029+50885

TS541  50835+59334+50888

TS542  50837+59358+50890

TS543  50842+59350+50895

TS544  50854+59192+50907

TS545  50865+59372+50921[to Stratford from 26th September]

TS546  51138+59448+51151

TS547  50857+59368+50910

TS548  50866+59352+50919

TS549  51136+59528+51149

TS550  50082+59366+50124

TS551  50852+59328+50871

TS552  50081+59543+50123

TS553  50818+59326+50878

TS554  50821+59333+50875

TS555  50826+59360+50905

TS556  50863+59617+50916

TS557  50100+59348+50840 [arrived in July]

TS558  50102+59020+50850 [arrived in July]

 

I will try not to keep gentle readers waiting quite so long for the tidings of 1980.

 

Chris

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Don’t worry about us having to wait Chris; your health is more important.  Mind, when I remarked last autumn that viruses were nasty little chaps I wasn’t expecting to be proved so right so quickly...

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Tyseley 116s

 

I do remember staring at the inside end wondering where the gangway was as previously I had only travelled on WR 116s.

 

Definitely prefered 117 118 due to toilets.

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Posted (edited)
On 30 June 2018 at 18:42, chrisf said:

As expected, there is little to report for 1967.  Perhaps surprisingly, much of it deals with liveries, but there must have been many more observations than made it into the hallowed pages of the Railway Observer.  51137+59447+51150, now without seats for parcels traffic, acquitted blue livery but we are not told whether the ends had all-over yellow or merely a panel.  It was reported that the former first class compartments in the trailer retained the ‘1’ markings.  On 19th August 50918 was noted at Saltash in blue with full yellow end misformed with 50868, still in green - not the lighter shade, surely?  In md September a Scottish observer noted 50826, 50879 and no trailer at St Rollox works in blue and W50825+59333+50878 in green at Hamilton Central.  Back in the West Country, 50854+59346+50907, 50088+50130 and 50848+50901 were noted in blue with yellow panels and somewhere in Tyseley’s hinterland were seen 50052+59002+50107 in blue with full yellow end.

 

Set numbers for the 116s in Scotland were given in February 1967 as 134 – 142 for those allocated to Hamilton and 238 – 240 for those allocated to Leith Central.  Useful as this information is, it stops short of identifying which sets carried which numbers. The search continues.

 

In March 1967 the three Hawksworth trainers were withdrawn from Reading.  One instance of such a vehicle working with 116s was recorded and there may have been others.  On the subject of withdrawals, 50096 and 59025 sustained collision damage at a so far unknown location.  They were withdrawn in October 1967 and cut up at Swindon.

 

Much more happened in 116 land during 1968.   Look upon what is set out above as the calm before the storm …

 

Chris

 

Great to see this amazing thread live again. Thank you for your efforts Chrisf - some of the late 50s and early 60s stuff has been very interesting. 

 

I have a few observations to record here most of which come from the one spotting note book which hasn't been mislaid or chucked out:- 

 

1) From a holiday in St Ives in summer 1965 -

The branch set was a tatty dark green (I think unlined) with SYP second batch unit, W50849; W50902 and I can't be sure of the centre car - possibly W59357. At St Erth, in the sidings was DTC W56289 - clearly out of use but available if needed. 

2) Holiday in North Devon July/August 1966 - W50818; W50871; W59326 - green/syp/lined (I think) - it left Barnstaple on the Taunton route with the destination blank - either to Taunton or an intermediate location like Dulverton - the route closed in October 1966 and i had presumed it was a Laira unit but not sure. May still have been Bristol. 

 

3) Holiday in south Devon near Dawlish - most of two weeks in early July 1967 spent trainspotting on the sea wall. All of these observations were near Teignmouth, probably Newton Abbott to Exmouth:-

W50088; W50130; W59362 (blue syp; red buffer beams white cab roof);

W50849; W59357; W50902 (green SYP);

W50910; W59368; W50857 (green syp); 

At Newton Abbott W50868 (presumed green as no other comment); W50918 (recorded as BFYP); W56298 (bsyp). (NB 56298 and 56292 (green syp) were both recorded working with two cars of class 120 batch 3 (headcode panel) and class 118 during the period so likely spare cars. 

 

Kings Cross - 30-10-68

E50877; E59343; E50830; E50828; E59332; E50824 recorded as running as a 6 car - green syp looking quite dirty - appeared in the evening peak I suspect this may have been a nine car and a Baby Deltic or something intervened such was the level of business in the peak - and we didn't see E50880, E50883 E59361 within the formation. (NB the next train recorded was E51116; E56318 (GRCW); E51472; E56447 (Cravens) running as a 4 car!! So maybe FP were really scraping the barrell!! 

 

Paddington 30-10-68

W50910 (BFYE), W55992 (Bsyp) with unrecorded GUVs? between. 

W50915 (no livery record presumed green); W55991 (Bsyp) also with parcels coaches in between. 

W50083; W59503; W56281; W51412; W59522; W56285; W59543; W51379 - recorded as an 8 car unit. 

 

Kings Cross 9-4-69

E50824; E59361; E50880 (no liveries recorded thought green). 

E50883; E59332; E50828 (no liveries recorded - thought green). I don't recall ever seeing an FP 116 in blue during the 60s. 

 

The other observation which may be of interest is that until the cross city line was upgraded and class 116 allocated to it (additional stations on the New Street to Barnt Green length), the class 116s stayed after the LM take over of Tyseley etc on ex WR services (eg Birmingham to Kidderminster; Moor St to Stratford; Birmingham to Leamington, whilst the LM units (Park Royal; GRCW; BRCW twins; Met Cammell 2 and 3 cars, BRCW and Cravens 3 cars all remained on indigenous LMR services. This continued even after Snow Hill closed and the Kidderminster services moved to New Street. Some of the LM units moved out (BRCW 2 cars; Met Camm 2 cars) when a series of lines closed (eg Walsall to Rugeley TV, Wolverhampton to Browhills and beyond), whilst the Park Royal and GRCW were displaced when the WCML electrification through Birmingham and to Walsall brought in the AM4s and AM10s. Some of the Four Oaks/Lichfield/Redditch 3 car Met Cams and Tyseley class 119 went to Chester - used on the Wolverhampton - Shrewsbury and beyond services after loss of their through trains from Paddington after Snow Hill closure and electrification, Rugby/Coventry/

Birmingham/Walsall/ Wolverhampton  to Stafford. 

 

The class 116, 122 and DTCs all received the M prefix fairly quickly (I started spotting in around 1963 and never recorded a Tyseley unit with a W prefix - except I think the few Cross Country units remaining at Tyseley stayed W prefixed until transfer to Chester or Etches Park in the later 60s). 

 

The other interesting thing is the inter transfer of certain 116 and 122 units between Tyseley and Canton, Bristol and Laira continued through the 60s after 1963 and beyond - an example being 55018 which went back to Laira and was used on the Okehampton branch - it was as if Tyseley was viewed and viewed itself as a WR depot until the early 70s!! I only saw 55018 on ex LNW lines (Bescot) undertaking route learning in BFYE - however a friend had seen it previously parked at Stourbridge Junction in green but it had possibly been used on the Town shuttle. 

 

I hope this this rambling is of interest to those with DMU and class 116 interests. 

 

 

Edited by MidlandRed
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Chris,

Glad to hear that you are feeling better, and happy to see the next update in this ongoing saga.

All the best,

Eddie

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On 24/07/2020 at 09:48, MJI said:

Tyseley 116s

 

I do remember staring at the inside end wondering where the gangway was as previously I had only travelled on WR 116s.

 

Definitely prefered 117 118 due to toilets.

Being South Walian, I resented the 117/8s and their toilets.  Why should London people get toilets and not us.  Nothing brings out my inner cottage burner more than an an Englishman who can have a cr*P when a Welshman can't...

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21 hours ago, The Johnster said:

Being South Walian, I resented the 117/8s and their toilets.  Why should London people get toilets and not us.  Nothing brings out my inner cottage burner more than an an Englishman who can have a cr*P when a Welshman can't...

 

Those of us who travelled on Southern Region high-density passenger trains (commonly known as 4Sub and 4EPB) also didn't have toilets.

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Ah, but I didn't resent the poor sods on the the SUBs and EPBs, or the BedPans, or the Lea Valley.

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5 minutes ago, The Johnster said:

Ah, but I didn't resent the poor sods on the the SUBs and EPBs, or the BedPans, or the Lea Valley.

The class 127s had a toilet in the TSO(L).

 

When traveling form Bedford to St Pancras my dad would agree to my brother and I to sit up behind the driver in the leading DMBS. My mother would then tell him off and make us sit in the carriage with the loo "in case we needed to go". That is after being told to go to the toilet before leaving the house  to go to the station and then being told to go to the toilet before we got on the train.

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Posted (edited)
On 1 August 2020 at 01:12, The Johnster said:

Being South Walian, I resented the 117/8s and their toilets.  Why should London people get toilets and not us.  Nothing brings out my inner cottage burner more than an an Englishman who can have a cr*P when a Welshman can't...

 

Even Englishmen travelling in the ex GWR West Midlands, including those from posh places like Royal Leamington Spa, Solihull, Knowle, Dorridge and Stratford On Avon couldn't have one, such was the operational area of Tyseley's class 116s. 

 

Clearly the LMR was willing to incur the wrath of disgusted of Royal Sutton Coldfield and Barnt Green when the Cross City Line was improved in the mid 70s (using higher capacity trains with 116 units). Presumably they thought the loss of the previous toilet and gangway fitted low density Metro Cammell 3 car units Units replaced with the inferior ex WR suburban stock would be OK after the Royal Borough of Sutton Coldfield suffered the ignomony, with howls of protest in the local press after being subsumed into the City of Birmingham in Local Government reorganisation in 1974!!! I guess WMPTE was responsible for that scheme. 

 

It it is curious that the WR specified toilets for the 117 and 118 class though. Perhaps they had learned from the previous error! 

Edited by MidlandRed

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6 hours ago, Budgie said:

 

Those of us who travelled on Southern Region high-density passenger trains (commonly known as 4Sub and 4EPB) also didn't have toilets.

Well, not in the conventional sense anyway...

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Clive,

 

The travelling by train "toilet ritual" sounds so familier.

 

Rather than a DMU it would have been a BIL or a HAP or Bulleid/Maunsell coaching stock but the repeated entreaties to "...go to the toilet now, I don't want to have to find a public toilet later I have too much to do..."  from mum rings in my ears even now, 65 years later.

 

Great thread Clive, thanks.

 

Kind regards,

 

Richard B

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1980

 

There is astonishingly little to report of Class 116 in 1980.  On 22nd March TS517 was at Canton.  It may have arrived via Gloucester because non-corridor stock is not allowed through Colwall or Severn tunnels.  On 21st May the only known reallocation of the year took place, of 50073+59017+50891 and 50111 from Cricklewood to Tyseley.

 

In an apparently random observation the Railway Observer remarked of Stratford depot: “Contrary to popular belief, dmus at this depot are allocated in sets, though adherence is rare.  The 116s are: 50844+59335+50897, 50845+59353+50898, 50865+59372+50921, 50867+59375+50920.”

 

On 5th July 50115+59019+50064 [TS519] collided head on with a Class 47 at Birmingham New Street.  50115 was severely damaged and later withdrawn. 

 

On 11th and 12th October the overhead wires between Liverpool Street to Hackney Downs were converted from 6.25kV to 25kV.  A dmu shuttle was provided by two sets borrowed from Cricklewood – 50054+59021+50075 and 50838+59011+50870 – in addition to sets from Stratford’s allocation.

 

So there we have it.  1981 has got to be better than that …

 

Chris

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31 minutes ago, chrisf said:

So there we have it.  1981 has got to be better than that …

 

... At least you can sugar coat it with pinstripes & union flags!

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On 01/08/2020 at 01:12, The Johnster said:

Being South Walian, I resented the 117/8s and their toilets.  Why should London people get toilets and not us.  Nothing brings out my inner cottage burner more than an an Englishman who can have a cr*P when a Welshman can't...

 

In my experience it was a brave person (of Gender) who entered a 1st Generation DMU toilet

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On 24/07/2020 at 13:53, MidlandRed said:

 

3) Holiday in south Devon near Dawlish - most of two weeks in early July 1967 spent trainspotting on the sea wall. All of these observations were near Teignmouth, probably Newton Abbott to Exmouth:-

W50088; W50130; W59362 (blue syp; red buffer beams white cab roof);

W50849; W59357; W50902 (green SYP);

W50910; W59368; W50857 (green syp); 

At Newton Abbott W50868 (presumed green as no other comment); W50918 (recorded as BFYP); W56298 (bsyp). (NB 56298 and 56292 (green syp) were both recorded working with two cars of class 120 batch 3 (headcode panel) and class 118 during the period so likely spare cars.

 

 

@Midland Red - many thanks for your detailed memory! I'm glad you noted the colours. Was that the year when they started changing from green to blue?

 

I (as a scruffy yoof) was probably on some of those very DMUs, to and from school in Teignmouth. I have to confess my own train spotting had taken a pause; I was too busy mucking about with my mates, or trying to chat up the girls on the same train, and my own memory of the colours is a bit hazy. But the green (with stripe?) was my favourite. When the blue and white arrived it seemed, somehow, not very Western Region.

 

Winter storms along the sea wall were always exciting, especially when they blew sea water over (and through) the DMUs, which kept running regardless.

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On 30 August 2020 at 22:03, KeithMacdonald said:

 

@Midland Red - many thanks for your detailed memory! I'm glad you noted the colours. Was that the year when they started changing from green to blue?

 

I (as a scruffy yoof) was probably on some of those very DMUs, to and from school in Teignmouth. I have to confess my own train spotting had taken a pause; I was too busy mucking about with my mates, or trying to chat up the girls on the same train, and my own memory of the colours is a bit hazy. But the green (with stripe?) was my favourite. When the blue and white arrived it seemed, somehow, not very Western Region.

 

Winter storms along the sea wall were always exciting, especially when they blew sea water over (and through) the DMUs, which kept running regardless.

 

@KeithMacdonald the info is from an old spotting notebook I have come across in an old removal storage box - there is another one but I haven't been able to find that at the moment - i think it's 1968/69/70. I found the whole question of liveries very interesting at that time, with the variations available (bsyp; bfyp; bsyp no logo; gfyp and new logo; bgfyp (emus and dmus) etc etc). So I tended to note this info, as well as the numbers and headcodes. The one area where the info is incomplete is when bunking sheds - where the writing becomes a bit scrawly and there's no livery info - which is a pain in some cases as for instance, visiting Bury steam shed with the stored AL3s and AL4s etc, some of which were in rail blue, most not and some with full yellow ends. Other photo info via Flickr and other sites has since clarified some of these, some of the locos being stored in the open at Longsight previously. 

 

The blue repaints of DMUs started in 1966, WR ones having small yellow panels, white cab rooves, red buffer beams and at least some, with burnt umber painted fittings below body level initially. The red buffer beams were replaced with black, ends became full yellow (around the end of 1966/ beginning of 1967 and initially extended around the cab doors and white cab rooves replaced with roof colour) - not sure when the burnt umber underframes became black - I think early 1967. The WR classes 119/120 cross country units were originally repainted plain blue but blue/grey, from later in 1967. The first time I recorded one in blue/grey was W51083/W59417/W51055 at Birmingham New Street on 21st August 1967. 

 

If the DMUs you were travelling in had doors at each seating bay (suburban type) they're likely to have been class 116 or 118. 

 

I had a similar cessation of number collecting in the early 70s - becoming a casual observer of them on train trips from work. 

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