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BR green locos in the late 1970s


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Morning all,

I know the question about liveries and which were the last members of each class to carry BR green livery has been asked and answered a number of times, however I am trying to work out a time period for my next layout.  Based around South Yorkshire, I have concluded it can either go around 1976 (at which point the semaphore signalling I want was still around) or its positioned around 1983/1984, for which some Rule #1 will apply to the semaphore signalling! The advantage of going for the '76 era is that it retains true wagonload freight with box vans and mineral wagons aplenty, Class 24s, 25s and 40s were still running, head codes were mainly all 0000 so no issues there, and potentially the opportunity for the odd BR green loco to break up the blue, while moving to '84 brings Class 58s and modern speedlink formations into play.

 

So I started looking at what locos were still carrying BR green livery during 1976.  Unfortunately a lot of information has been lost with the rmWeb upgrades and the old forum having been taken offline.

 

I have ruled out the Class 31s (last seemed to go around 1974, from when all were in blue) and 'Deltics' (not that they are applicable for South Yorkshire) went by early 1970/71 I believe and the 50s (again not applicable) never carried green.  Given I'm looking in South Yorkshire, I haven't even bothered with the diesel hydraulics!

 

Class 08 - several including 08060 (noted Lincoln Feb 1976) 08172 (noted Leeds 1976), 08401 (noted Doncaster Works in 1976), 08405 (Immingham August 1976), 08923 (noted at Speak in July 79 in green)

Class 13 - 13002 (noted at Tinsley in 1976)

Class 20 - 20026 [HD] (noted Frodingham 1977), 20075 [HD] (noted Toton 1979 - early badge), 20075 [HD] (Noted Westhouses 1979), 20129 (noted Tinsley Mar 1976). 20132 (noted York 1976), 20141 [CHB] (noted Westhouses in 1980 - early badge), 20146 [CHB] (noted Nottingham 1976), 20147 [CHB] (noted Chesterfield in July 1977), 20151 [CHB] (noted Westhouses 1978),  20153 [CHB] (noted Burton Jan 1977), 20165 [CHB] (noted Bescot 1976), 20169 [CHB] (Nottingham 1976), 20170 [CHB] (noted Newport August 1979), 20175 [CHB] (noted Nottingham Oct 1977), 20177 [CHB] (noted Nottingham 1978)

Class 24 -

Class 25 - 25043 [RHB] (noted Carlisle March 1976 - repainted blue at Derby in May 1976), 25102 [RHB] (noted Newton Heath February 1976)

Class 37 - 37244 [CHB] (noted Cardiff July 1976)

Class 40 - 40039 [HD] (noted Tinsley Mar 1976) 40106 (celebrity), 40136 (noted Crewe July 1976), 40171 (noted Wigan May 1976)

Class 44 - 

Class 45 - 

Class 46 -

Class 47 - 47195 (noted Cardiff Feb 1977), 47256 (noted Rhyl in 1977), 47353 (noted Millerhill Mar 1976), 47366 (noted in Wales in June 1977), 47356 (noted Oxford Jan 1976), 47366 (noted Nuneaton May 1977), 47369 (noted Nottingham 1976)

 

BTW: My note s use [HD] for headcode discs, [CHB] for Centre Headcode, [SHB] for split head code and [RHB] for roof mounted headcode box.

 

Does anyone know when 24136 was repainted? I've a note of it in North Wales in September/October 1975. 24136 was withdrawn 4th October 1975, so that answers that one (thanks @giz)

 

Im guessing by the locations that the Class 20s were noted, that many of the Toton fleet were late receiving repaints, but I find it quite remarkable that only one '37' appears to have lasted into 1976 in green?  Were there no Toton based examples for instance? Edit: Noted in the answers below, that there were few if any Class 37s based at Toton.

 

So can any one add to the info above?  Also, were there any locos still running round with 'D' numbers, or 'D' numbers minus the prefix, in blue in 1976? Im assuming the answer to the last question is no, as I think TOPS was fully implemented during 1975.

 

Also, does anyone know when the last Maroon Mk1 disappeared from Class 1 use? Im thinking specifically of cross-country duties? Im assuming by 1976, they would all have been BR blue.

 

As ever, all help appreciated.

 

Rich

Edited by MarshLane
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The railblue.com site is down but available via the Wayback Machine.

List of green locos at Dec.1976 (under pics of cl.47 & cl.45)

https://web.archive.org/web/20131225060440/http://www.railblue.com/rail_blue_history.htm

 

List of locos with TOPS numbers while in green (also contains details about black locos, D-numbered ones etc)

https://web.archive.org/web/20131225055908/http://www.railblue.com/rail_blue_history_2.htm

 

Home page: https://web.archive.org/web/20140310131824/http://www.railblue.com/

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Toton didn't have any Class 37s allocated in 1976, in fact I'm not sure it ever did !

 

As regards unrenumbered locos, apart from the Westerns (not applicable as you say), IIRC the last non-TOPS locos were some of the Peaks, due to the progress of ETH-fitting, not sure whether these lasted beyond 1975 however ?

 

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3 hours ago, keefer said:

The railblue.com site is down but available via the Wayback Machine.

List of green locos at Dec.1976 (under pics of cl.47 & cl.45)

https://web.archive.org/web/20131225060440/http://www.railblue.com/rail_blue_history.htm

 

List of locos with TOPS numbers while in green (also contains details about black locos, D-numbered ones etc)

https://web.archive.org/web/20131225055908/http://www.railblue.com/rail_blue_history_2.htm

 

Home page: https://web.archive.org/web/20140310131824/http://www.railblue.com/

Thanks. I'd looked for the railblue.com website but it appears to have gone offline totally, as the domain name is available for sale.  Id not thought about the Wayback Machine - good thinking!!  Thanks for flagging that one up.

 

18 minutes ago, caradoc said:

Toton didn't have any Class 37s allocated in 1976, in fact I'm not sure it ever did !

 

As regards unrenumbered locos, apart from the Westerns (not applicable as you say), IIRC the last non-TOPS locos were some of the Peaks, due to the progress of ETH-fitting, not sure whether these lasted beyond 1975 however ?

 

Well that would be a good reason why it didn't have any green locos then!!  How did I not realise that no 37s were allocated to Toton! One of those durrr moments lol!  Thanks.

 

Yes I think the ETH peaks would all have been done before 1976, so that would answer that one.  Any images I have found of the 44s have all been in blue - but despite there only being 10 I haven't actually noticed which numbers they were, so I suspect they were all blue by 76 too.

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16 hours ago, MarshLane said:

 

So can any one add to the info above?  Also, were there any locos still running round with 'D' numbers, or 'D' numbers minus the prefix, in blue in 1976? Im assuming the answer to the last question is no, as I think TOPS was fully implemented during 1975.

The class 52 'Westerns' ran in service for 2 years after 1975, with the original cast aluminium number plates using their original numbers; some but not all had the cast 'D' prefix painted over in the black background that the number plates were all painted in with the blue livery.  TOPS documentation described the locos as 52 0xx, but the TOPS numbers were never carried on the locos.

 

6 Hymeks were still running in service during 1975 and may have lasted beyond the full implementation of TOPS.  These had individual cast aluminium numbers similar to the AL series 25kv electrics, and the 'D' prefix was removed, leaving a rust print visible.

 

Can't quote examples, but I'd be very surprised if some 08s were not still carrying their 4 digit numbers in 1976. 

Edited by The Johnster
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In response to the final maroon Mk1 part of the question there was a rake based at Derby which saw intermittent used until 1976(?) all in maroon.  At the very least you can have some out-of-traffic ones at that time.  

 

Hymeks had a mixture of original raised numbers with or without the D-prefix (some were purloined by trophy hunters, no doubt) and a few with the cast aluminium numbers replaced by stickers of which I believe late survivor 7076 was one.  

 

No class 50 ever ran in green originally but famously 50007 was among the locos painted into a representation of GWR lined green livery for the GW150 celebrations.  But not until 1985.  

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17 hours ago, The Johnster said:

Can't quote examples, but I'd be very surprised if some 08s were not still carrying their 4 digit numbers in 1976. 


There was an 08 that I used to see regularly at Willesden, which was in some sort of very dark colour, possibly black, possibly filthy green, until possible as late as the early 1980s, and I have a feeling that might have carried its ‘proper’ number.

 

Edit: just checked, and it was D3052, in black, but I’m well out with the date - it went in 1973! How time flies.

Edited by Nearholmer
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2 hours ago, Gwiwer said:

In response to the final maroon Mk1 part of the question there was a rake based at Derby which saw intermittent used until 1976(?) all in maroon.  At the very least you can have some out-of-traffic ones at that time.  

LIned maroon and green liveries lasted for quite a while on NPCCS stock, but was often difficult to distinguish beneath the filth.  Wouldn't like to comment on when the last non-blue van was in service, but my impression is that it was well after TOPS was fully implemented.  

 

2 hours ago, Gwiwer said:

 

Hymeks had a mixture of original raised numbers with or without the D-prefix (some were purloined by trophy hunters, no doubt) and a few with the cast aluminium numbers replaced by stickers of which I believe late survivor 7076 was one.

I'm sure some did find their way into the wrong hands, as they were IIRC removed at the sheds with the instruction following the final withdrawal of steam (and need for D prefixes) in 1968.  As pre-TOPS diesels only had 4 digit numbers this could have been done when the last GW locos in service were withdrawn 2 years earlier.  The AL E30xx/E31xx series electrics and Southern E50xx and electo-diesel E60xx retained their E prefixes, aluminium cast in the case of the ALs, until renumbered under TOPS, which as we have seen did not happen overnight.

 

2 hours ago, Gwiwer said:

No class 50 ever ran in green originally

I believe I am correct in saying that the 50s were the first class to be produced new entirely in the blue  livery and the class 87 electrics the first locos produced new to entirely carry TOPS numbers.  There were of course other examples of locos produced new in blue livery, including the D83xx series class 20s.  The 4-REP and 4-TC units for the Bournemouth electrification were the first such stock to appear in blue, plain blue not blue/grey originally, and they had cast aluminium double arrows which looked very smart.  They may have been the only new stock produced with small yellow warning panels.

 

Class 47 D11xx series and Class 37 D66xx series may have been the last locos built new in any green livery, with SYP, unless there were D81xx series class 20s that post dated them into service.  AFAIK no stock other than the Bournemouth electrics were built new in blue syp, or any loco at all built in a green livery with lyp, but I'm happy to be corrected on this.  All the AL6 electrics were in service in 'electric blue' with syp before the livery change in 1966.

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The 4VEP and AM10 were also new in BSYP with cast arrows.

Amazingly enough, when the blue units came in, there were still some plain green (no yellow panel/ends) Cromptons around - have seen a pic of one hauling a blue TC

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The only thing I remember was that 40106 was the last 40 in green in 1978.  She became something of a celebrity and I believe kept her green livery and was never repainted blue . Certainly model railways of the period in BR Blue always had a version of 40106 , the only green loco around. 

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1 hour ago, The Johnster said:

 

 

I believe I am correct in.  AFAIK no stock otherAll the AL6 electrics were in service in 'electric blue' with syp before the livery change in 1966.

AL6 were Rail Blue syp. There were (two I think) class 25s turned out in blue syp plus many class 73s.

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1 hour ago, keefer said:

The 4VEP and AM10 were also new in BSYP with cast arrows.

Amazingly enough, when the blue units came in, there were still some plain green (no yellow panel/ends) Cromptons around - have seen a pic of one hauling a blue TC

 

Only Bournemouth line Veps 7701 - 7720 were blue syp; 7721 - 7807/9-14 were fye from new and the remainder arrived b/g.

 

39 minutes ago, stovepipe said:

And also some peaks were bsyp.

 

There was also a celebrity green 45 which IIRC disgraced itself by catching fire and shortening its already charmed life.

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On 15 January 2020 at 21:47, 50A55B said:

AL6 were Rail Blue syp. There were (two I think) class 25s turned out in blue syp plus many class 73s.

 

The earliest AL6s were delivered without yellow panels (not sure exactly which but early E316x and possibly E310x - photos of them in service like that are around). Another thing with first delivered AL6s was red buffer beams - I will stand corrected on the exact change point but I think E3101-7 and E3161-67 of the two concurrent builds (EE Vulcan Foundry and BR Doncaster) had them.

 

I think all the JB Electro Diesels were delivered in blue syp, the main difference being the white lower body trim stripe on E6007-E6013, subsequently omitted on the rest. I thought they looked rather better with the White stripe.

 

The other thing rarely mentioned with the early monastral (rail) blue builds and repaints was the part matt finish (I think eggshell was the term). This seemed to give way subsequently to a gloss finish (later 1967?) - the new Mark 2 stock on the WCML and AM10/VEP/REP units looked quite shabby with a completely matt finish developing quite quickly with carriage washing chemicals of the era. I suspect as well as lighting and film condition, early rail blue stock looks a slightly different colour from later gloss finished stock in photos. 

 

The first and second of the final class 25 build transferred to Derby from Beyer Peacock (D7660 and D7661) were delivered in blue syp (does anyone know how long they lasted before the yellow front was changed - I don't recall seeing them in syp so suspect may have been changed relatively early on - ( correction - photos of D7661 in August 1969 indicate it was still bsyp - NB D7660 uniquely of these last 18 class 25s also had red buffer beams).

 

Another livery oddity was the batches of class 76 and 77 repainted in rail blue in the mid 60s but retaining  the later British Railways symbol. Some of these lasted quite late on - I have a photo somewhere of 76022 in this condition (but with added fyp) in a line of 76s at Godley Junction in 1981 - and clearly the same colour as the regular blue/fyp/ British Rail symbol ones accompanying it. 

Edited by MidlandRed
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I saw D3052 at Willesden in 1973, black with original BR crest, it was withdrawn before becoming 08039. However D3170 at Carlisle Kingmoor was renumbered 08105 apparently still in black livery. A photo appeared in an Ian Allan combo of the time but I'd love to see a colour pic....

Diesels built new in blue:

Class 50 - D400-49

Class 47 - D1733 (XP64 Bsyp), D1953-61

Class 25 - D7660-77 (D7660/1 Bsyp)

Class 20 - D8178-99/8300-27

These final 18 Class 25s displayed 4 different versions of blue livery, confusion reigned! (D7660 Bsyp with BR arrows below the driver's cab side windows only/D7661 Bsyp with 4 arrows/D7662-71 Bfye with 4 arrows/D7672-77 with 4 arrows moved down to be central on the cabsides with works plates on the cab doors). D7660-69 were also dual-braked from new, presumably to work Euston Mark 2a ECS stock. I can't say how long the two Bsyp ones lasted but I've never seen photos of them in early blue with full yellow ends. By the time I saw them in 1973 they were in standard BFYE with central BR arrows.

If Crewe had switched its Class 47 build to blue at the same time as Loughborough, D1107-11 would (presumably) have looked like D1953-61.

As MidlandRed says, all Class 73/1s were delivered in Bsyp - E6007-11 had the off-white stripe but no BR arrows, E6012/3 had both and E6014-49 had the arrows but no stripe. Since E6012 went into traffic in December 1965 this must surely have been the first BR loco of any type to display the new logo after D1733. I wonder if Lima realised the significance of their OO model?!

By a twist of fate, Class 45 scored both the first and last diesels to receive TOPS numbers - 45101 (ex-D96) and 45071 (ex-D125) respectively, the latter due to a lengthy rebuild following collision damage. 45101-12 and 45001-3 received numbers on all four corners. Although it would appear that Class 45 was renumbered at random, this is true up to a point - once the full quota of fifty Class 45/1s had been completed, the remaining locos still requiring works attention were quickly renumbered into Class 45/0 in numerical order. I can't be specific at the moment as all my references are packed away for a house move but the Modern Locomotives Illustrated listings make for interesting reading at times!

 

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7 hours ago, Neil Phillips said:

I saw D3052 at Willesden in 1973, black with original BR crest, it was withdrawn before becoming 08039. However D3170 at Carlisle Kingmoor was renumbered 08105 apparently still in black livery. A photo appeared in an Ian Allan combo of the time but I'd love to see a colour pic....

Diesels built new in blue:

Class 50 - D400-49

Class 47 - D1733 (XP64 Bsyp), D1953-61

Class 25 - D7660-77 (D7660/1 Bsyp)

Class 20 - D8178-99/8300-27

These final 18 Class 25s displayed 4 different versions of blue livery, confusion reigned! (D7660 Bsyp with BR arrows below the driver's cab side windows only/D7661 Bsyp with 4 arrows/D7662-71 Bfye with 4 arrows/D7672-77 with 4 arrows moved down to be central on the cabsides with works plates on the cab doors). D7660-69 were also dual-braked from new, presumably to work Euston Mark 2a ECS stock. I can't say how long the two Bsyp ones lasted but I've never seen photos of them in early blue with full yellow ends. By the time I saw them in 1973 they were in standard BFYE with central BR arrows.

If Crewe had switched its Class 47 build to blue at the same time as Loughborough, D1107-11 would (presumably) have looked like D1953-61.

As MidlandRed says, all Class 73/1s were delivered in Bsyp - E6007-11 had the off-white stripe but no BR arrows, E6012/3 had both and E6014-49 had the arrows but no stripe. Since E6012 went into traffic in December 1965 this must surely have been the first BR loco of any type to display the new logo after D1733. I wonder if Lima realised the significance of their OO model?!

By a twist of fate, Class 45 scored both the first and last diesels to receive TOPS numbers - 45101 (ex-D96) and 45071 (ex-D125) respectively, the latter due to a lengthy rebuild following collision damage. 45101-12 and 45001-3 received numbers on all four corners. Although it would appear that Class 45 was renumbered at random, this is true up to a point - once the full quota of fifty Class 45/1s had been completed, the remaining locos still requiring works attention were quickly renumbered into Class 45/0 in numerical order. I can't be specific at the moment as all my references are packed away for a house move but the Modern Locomotives Illustrated listings make for interesting reading at times!

 

 

Pedantry maybe, but;

From what I understand, D1733 wasn't technically built in blue, it was despatched from Brush at Loughborough in primer to Derby works for re-finishing in XP64 livery.

 

Mike.

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Oooh, that's splitting hairs Mike, but yes OK, I'll grant you that one! Good job they didn't send D1734, the way things turned out.....

I very nearly missed seeing D1733 in Bsyp, on my first tour around Crewe Works on 3/11/69 I found it bogieless on trestles. Somewhat bizarrely the loco which pioneered the new BR logo but ran without any for over 5 years emerged from this overhaul in standard blue but still without any logos! 1538 was likewise around the same time so maybe there were none on the shelf in the Paint shop when these two went through.

 

Neil

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On 15/01/2020 at 21:54, stovepipe said:

And also some peaks were bsyp.

Yes, as were many classes, but not as built new.  Even if you extend the definition of 'Peaks' to the spotter's one of classes 44/5/6, they were all built between 1959 and 63 in green livery with cantrail stripe; the later builds would have had syp from new, but no 'Peak' was built new in blue livery with or without small or large yellow warning panels!

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On 17/01/2020 at 09:42, Enterprisingwestern said:

 

D1733 was a common loco on NE - SW services, and as such was quite common through Sheffield/Chesterfield. I liked the coach sized numbering it ran with before overhaul!

 

Mike.

 

At that time I was in west Cornwall surrounded by hydraulics! The first Class 47 I saw was D1677 Thor at Truro in autumn 67, after a slow start such visits picked up throughout 1968 but that's another story. Although there were no reported sightings of D1733 in Cornwall in Bsyp livery, it did show up not long after its overhaul.

I've seen so many photos of this loco showing the white-on-red logos on one side and plain on the other that I began to wonder if it did in fact ever carry four logos, or just the two for publicity photos. Eventually in exasperation I put this to Russell Saxton who sent me six new photos and just ONE of these proved that it did!!

It was also the only Class 47 to carry its works plates on the body sides. D1953-61 had them attached to the cab doors.

 

Neil

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15 minutes ago, Neil Phillips said:

 

At that time I was in west Cornwall surrounded by hydraulics! The first Class 47 I saw was D1677 Thor at Truro in autumn 67, after a slow start such visits picked up throughout 1968 but that's another story. Although there were no reported sightings of D1733 in Cornwall in Bsyp livery, it did show up not long after its overhaul.

I've seen so many photos of this loco showing the white-on-red logos on one side and plain on the other that I began to wonder if it did in fact ever carry four logos, or just the two for publicity photos. Eventually in exasperation I put this to Russell Saxton who sent me six new photos and just ONE of these proved that it did!!

It was also the only Class 47 to carry its works plates on the body sides. D1953-61 had them attached to the cab doors.

 

Neil

 

Interesting - from information which has appeared from time to time Id always believed the symbols were removed before it entered normal revenue earning service - indeed it didn't have logos whenever I saw it (from the mid 60s on). Do we know for sure the period they were in place on the loco? 

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