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TRACTION 257


steverabone
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TRACTION issue 257 will be published on 3rd April 2020.

 

Has your local newsagent closed down this week?

Following the news that 60% of WH Smiths stores will temporarily close and reports of many local newsagents also closing their doors, we wanted to make you aware of the numerous ways you can get hold of Traction without leaving your home (and you save money too!)


Buy a single copy of the print version or the digital version of the latest issue - TRACTION 257

Click here to buy Traction or call 01778 392012

Subscribe to the print version starting with TRACTION 258 (published 29th May)

Traction - 3 issues for £5* 
Click here or 01778 392012 (quote TRA/MAG20)

Download a Digital Edition


Click here for digital version of Traction

 

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TRACTION 257 Content

 

In this issue of TRACTION we start with an article by David Hayes about the Wednesbury area and the Dudley line in the 1980s with its heavy freight traffic.

 

Continuing with the same industrial theme David Ratcliffe describes some of the diesel shunters built by the firm of Thomas Hill.

 

By the time this issue appears it is likely that the days of Class 90s hauling expresses to Norwich will be. It seems an appropriate time to look back at the liveries that the class have carried on the Great Eastern using a selection of images from Gavin Morrison.

 

The days of locomotive hauled trains on summer Saturdays in the West Country are recalled in David Clough’s feature which is based on a traffic survey carried out a various locations in July 1983. The text is backed up with a variety of images taken of some of these trains on that day.

 

The use of articulated coaching stock in Britain largely fell out of use after WW2 but is now making something of a comeback, with new articulated stock being built for use in East Anglia and on Merseyside. Colin Boocock takes a look at the history of articulation in the British Isles and discusses its advantages and disadvantages.

 

It’s hard to believe that until 1987 a section of one of the high speed main lines out of London to the Midlands and the North was still controlled by manual signalling in exactly the same way that it had been since the nineteenth century. This section of the Midland Main Line became known as the ‘Leicester Gap’: signalling enthusiast Michael A. Vanns recorded it on film before it vanished.

 

Rail tours on unusual lines, or with motive power that normally didn’t work there, have always been popular among enthusiasts. The ‘Hundred of Wirral’ tour was one such tour taking Class 25s along the Wirral Lines of the Merseyrail system as well as a variety of lines that didn’t usually see passenger trains. Tom Heavyside braved very wet conditions on the day to photograph the train in the Wirral.

 

TRACTION MODELLING features two contrasting 4mm scale layouts set in the London area. Hornsey Road MPD is part of the much larger Hornsey Broadway layout (featured in the Spring issue of BRM) and is set firmly in the Rail Blue 1970s period at the southern end of the East Coast Main Line.

 

Moving south of the Thames Addiston South is a much smaller layout located in third rail territory somewhere in the Croydon area.

 

Stephen Rabone

 

TRA257 cover.jpg

Edited by steverabone
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Another West Midlands freight article? There surely cannot be much more to write on the subject? Well there probably can but if you didn’t know better you’d have the impression that it was the only place where freight flowed in the entire country.
 

Griff

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Thanks for your comment griffgriff.

 

The series of articles about closed freight lines in the West Midlands has been running in Traction for some years and is reaching its conclusion with the articles about the Dudley Line - Part 1 in Traction 257 covers the 1980s and Part 2 which will be in Traction 258 the 1990s.

Whilst the articles focus on the details of operations in the Midlands much of the content refers to traffic from all over the country.

 

I would dispute the implication that Traction doesn't cover freight elsewhere in the country. As can be seen below in recent issues we've had detailed articles about freight over much of Britain.

 

249 Spoil trains to Forders sidings

250 Boulby Potash traffic in 1980s and Stranraer line freight

251 Boulby Potash in 1990s

252 South Humberside steel and the West London Line

253 Kent Coal in the 1970s, Wolverton ARC stone traffic  and the National Coal Board electric line on Tyneside

254 Skinningrove steel and Kent Coal in 1980s and 1990s

255 Teesside Chemicals (2 articles)

256 Warrington area freight – coal to Fiddlers Ferry, the Manchester to Ditton freight line and Warrington Speedlink trips

 

We've also covered freight traffic on the Settle and Carlisle, the Welsh Marches Line, in Ayrshire, South Wales and numerous other areas

 

As editor I'd be delighted to receive even more articles about freight operations in other parts of the country - can you produce something?

Edited by steverabone
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I suppose the comment in this post is like the whole forum, if you don't like something, don't buy it. Models are the same, every year new items appear and people question them, if you don't like/need/want, don't buy.

Traction is a great magazine in my opinion, keep up the good work Steve

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Website doesn't allow you to pre order 

Looking forward to the 25 article,  but to be honest I'm a bit fed up about west Midlands freight only lines 

I will buy this edition,  there have been some great editions in last few months 

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10 hours ago, russ p said:

Website doesn't allow you to pre order 

Looking forward to the 25 article,  but to be honest I'm a bit fed up about west Midlands freight only lines 

I will buy this edition,  there have been some great editions in last few months 

 

You can order the issue that has just been published Traction 257 (a single copy) by going to this link.

 

You can then order either a single digital or print copy. You can also order a print copy for Traction 255 and 256 if you missed those.

 

Stephen

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I neither lived nor worked in the West Midlands, but the freight articles are fascinating, showing a railway that no longer exists. Although my own preference would be for more 1970s info, I too enjoy every edition, even the foreign stuff !

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5 minutes ago, caradoc said:

I neither lived nor worked in the West Midlands, but the freight articles are fascinating, showing a railway that no longer exists. Although my own preference would be for more 1970s info, I too enjoy every edition, even the foreign stuff !

 

I think that this is a very valid point. Whilst the articles are very concentrated in one geographic area they remind us about how incredibly complex and busy the freight railway was. What happened in the West Midlands was replicated all over the country.

 

Fortunately David Hayes kept detailed notes about his local area, although I have managed to get him to write about areas outside his local area - Kent coal, Teesside chemicals and cross London freight!

 

It would be great if other readers who have similar knowledge about freight operations in other areas could produce articles for Traction!

 

I'm also pleased that Caradoc enjoys our foreign coverage. Broadening ones railway interests can't be a bad thing for any enthusiast.

 

Stephen

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12 hours ago, 37403 said:

I suppose the comment in this post is like the whole forum, if you don't like something, don't buy it. Models are the same, every year new items appear and people question them, if you don't like/need/want, don't buy.


I do like it......my point is that the West Midlands is over represented in my opinion and that is seems to be an area that is often revisited.
 

I shall certainly be taking advantage of the subscription offer :)

 

 

Thanks for the detailed reply Stephen.  I certainly shall continue to enjoy the magazine.

 

Griff

 

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35 minutes ago, steverabone said:

 

You can order the issue that has just been published Traction 257 (a single copy) by going to this link.

 

You can then order either a single digital or print copy. You can also order a print copy for Traction 255 and 256 if you missed those.

 

Stephen

 

Thanks Stephen,  order placed 

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be good to read up and see some photos on the early BR inter-city sleeper days from Mk1 to Mk3) with the many services to the usual destinations including some of less spotted outposts like Barrow, Stranraer and the Manchester and Liverpool sleepers, the giant 16 coach Royal Highlander, the mixed seated and sleeper scottish overnighters and perhaps even the seated only short lived NightRiders....the only problem with that is I bet there isnt much material around on these overnight services..   

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Hi Thane of Fife

Have you read the article in Traction issue 251 about the sleeping car services that operated out of Euston in the 1970s? If you haven't got a copy a digital subscription to Traction will give you access to it.

 

You can download individual copies here if you don't want a full digital subscription.

 

https://pocketmags.com/traction-magazine/issues?gclid=CjwKCAjwg6b0BRBMEiwANd1_SMxZDV2G0cAF7lKzM7I0bOXpw6rrAZZ2JPmvDYg0qZmefZaBjN3_xhoCS8sQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

 

I also wrote several articles in Traction 201 and 202 about night operation at Carlisle in the 1970s and 1980s.

 

Both of these articles have plenty of photos of the sleepers.

 

I intend in the near future to be compiling another night time feature on the WCML in the mid seventies at Stafford. Maybe with isolation I'll get around to writing it!!

Stephen Rabone

Edited by steverabone
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Hello everyone. This is the first time I have commented on this forum (or any forum for that matter) and would like to say that I very much appreciate everyone's views, good or bad (preferably good, though!), regarding my articles in TRACTION. I also appreciate that some of you are a tad tired of reading about the Black Country freight scene, but I hope you still enjoy viewing the images accompanying those features.

 

Although the Black Country is very much my main area of "expertise" so to speak, though I don't regard myself as being an expert, I am delighted to know that for many it is still a fascinating region to read about, even for those living in the West Midlands. I have attempted to document the Black Country's interesting and complex freight operations by covering various lines and periods spanning the 1970s to the 1990s and beyond, and hope that this body of work will one day be a useful "database" for future generations of enthusiasts.    

 

I am also grateful to Stephen Rabone for "fighting my corner" and for emphasizing that TRACTION has, over the years, covered freight operations in many other parts of the UK. I've even tried to broaden my range of freight articles in recent times by looking at the West London Line, Teesside Chemicals and Kent Coal amongst others, for all of which I have received complimentary comments I'm very happy to say. My other past articles in TRACTION and the TRACTION Annuals (bookazines) have covered molasses traffic to Menstrie, the North & West route, passenger activity in Dorset and the South Wales main line.

 

I hope to submit more varied articles for possible inclusion in TRACTION as and when time permits, and also plan on submitting several other Black Country-related features covering locations within the region that I feel would be of particular interest to the modelling fraternity. Cheers.

Edited by David J Hayes
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8 minutes ago, David J Hayes said:

I also appreciate that some of you are a tad tired of reading about the Black Country freight scene

 

Take no notice of them 'eathens David! ;)

 

Keep up the good work!

 

Andy

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  • RMweb Gold
12 minutes ago, David J Hayes said:

Hello everyone. This is the first time I have commented on this forum (or any forum for that matter) and would like to say that I very much appreciate everyone's views, good or bad (preferably good, though!), regarding my articles in TRACTION. I also appreciate that some of you are a tad tired of reading about the Black Country freight scene, but I hope you still enjoy viewing the images accompanying those features.

 

Although the Black Country is very much my main area of "expertise" so to speak, though I don't regard myself as being an expert, I am delighted to know that for many it is still a fascinating region to read about, even for those living in the West Midlands. I have attempted to document the Black Country's interesting and complex freight operations by covering various lines and periods spanning the 1970s to the 1990s and beyond, and hope that this body of work will one day be a useful "database" for future generations of enthusiasts.    

 

I am also grateful to Stephen Rabone for "fighting my corner" and for emphasizing that TRACTION has, over the years, covered freight operations in many other parts of the UK. I've even tried to broaden my range of freight articles in recent times by looking at the West London Line, Teesside Chemicals and Kent Coal amongst others, for all of which I have received complimentary comments I'm very happy to say. My other past articles in TRACTION and the TRACTION Annuals (bookazines) have covered molasses traffic to Menstrie, the North & West route, passenger activity in Dorset and the South Wales main line.

 

I hope to submit more varied articles for possible inclusion in TRACTION as and when time permits, and also plan on submitting several other Black Country-related features covering locations within the region that I feel would be of particular interest to the modelling fraternity. Cheers.

 

David,

 

I don't know the Black Country at all well but I am finding your articles very interesting and enjoyable. 

 

Far too little has been writted over the years about freight working so please do not stop.

 

David

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Stephen,

 

                just got my mits on my copy.  Thank you  - looks like another excellent read, with a broad range of articles and a nice selection of photos.  A wonderful distraction during these unusual days.  Stay safe.

 

Best wishes,

 

Paul

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  • 2 weeks later...

I’m actually finding traction getting better and better - I used to subscribe but then as I modelled more privatisation - stopped- but I’m now modelling several periods it is relevant .

 

Its all diesels , the two layouts were good in this one , and I like the way the builder of Hornsey told us a bit about his motivation for making it - better than the usual “ how I ballasted it “.

 

i think I’ll replace RM with this in future as I’m sick to death of only steam coverage and their obsession with NG 

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15 hours ago, rob D2 said:

I’m actually finding traction getting better and better - I used to subscribe but then as I modelled more privatisation - stopped- but I’m now modelling several periods it is relevant .

 

Its all diesels , the two layouts were good in this one , and I like the way the builder of Hornsey told us a bit about his motivation for making it - better than the usual “ how I ballasted it “.

 

 

 

yep, I think so too, the mix of articles is good, really liked the Leicester Gap feature, reminded me of happy times on the end of the platform at Leicester in 1983!

 

modelling stuff on D&E layouts fits well, in keeping with the mag, though this issue the Addiston South article seems to end mid sentence (p.31)?

 

cheers,

 

Keith

 

 

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37 minutes ago, tractionman said:

 

yep, I think so too, the mix of articles is good, really liked the Leicester Gap feature, reminded me of happy times on the end of the platform at Leicester in 1983!

 

modelling stuff on D&E layouts fits well, in keeping with the mag, though this issue the Addiston South article seems to end mid sentence (p.31)?

 

cheers,

 

Keith

 

 

Several readers have queried the missing words in the Addiston South article. Unfortunately, somewhere between the proof pdf pages being approved by myself and during the printing process the text was moved slightly, cutting off the last few words. The complete final paragraph is below.

 

Addiston South’ is now over 10 years old and

is beginning to show its age, so the future is

possibly a Mk. 2 version, but this time with DCC

and sound. Watch this space…

 

I'm glad you enjoyed the article about the Leicester Gap. There are several such articles covering different locations that we will be publishing in the next few issues. I won't spoil the element of surprise though by revealing what they are!!!

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 31/03/2020 at 09:33, griffgriff said:


I do like it......my point is that the West Midlands is over represented in my opinion and that is seems to be an area that is often revisited.
 

I shall certainly be taking advantage of the subscription offer :)

 

 

Thanks for the detailed reply Stephen.  I certainly shall continue to enjoy the magazine.

 

Griff

 

With respect "griffgriff" the editor can only publish what drops through his letterbox. 

I am extremely grateful David Hayes has done and continues to do what the does, but I am equally sure Stephen Rabone would welcome articles from anywhere else on the network   

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