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22 hours ago, MrSimon said:

Was the milk loaded through the manhole at the top?  How did they stop other stuff falling through the hole and contaminating the milk?  

 

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 diagram of the tank. Most had one or two located next to the manhole cover. You can see one in the image below.

 

Inlet.jpg.0f68002b2fe29a2ff5621583fdc6cda0.jpg

  

22 hours ago, MrSimon said:

Could tankers be loaded directly from road tankers or did they have to go via some sort of dairy first?

 

Sorry if these were really silly questions!

 

The only silly question is the one you don't ask. ;)

 

Milk had to go via a dairy to be pasteurised, chilled and tested to ensure it was free of tuberculin. However there were several places where dairies were not rail-connected and milk was driven by lorry and then pumped into milk tanks at a siding. Penzance, Dolcoath, Saltash, Torrington, Crediton, Wellington and Marshfield all used this arrangement and there may have been others that have slipped my memory.

 

Here is a nice shot of Dolcoath in the 1970s.

 

 

http://www.cornwallrailwaysociety.org.uk/uploads/7/6/8/3/7683812/_5483164_orig.jpg

 

 

Edited by Karhedron
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29 minutes ago, Ramblin Rich said:

Well found Matt, I had a feeling  there was a picture of Dolcoath somewhere!

 

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?

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17 hours ago, Karhedron said:

 

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?

How was the milk pumped; did each road vehicle have its own pump? 

Wherever they were it must have taken quite a long time to load a tank of milk - so a train of at least 10 would be quite a job. Petroleum products were/are loaded in the same way and it was of concern to my Dad when he his job was selling the movement of oil on rail. 

 

Paul

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4 hours ago, hmrspaul said:

How was the milk pumped; did each road vehicle have its own pump? 

 

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 was Torrington which would dispatch 8 tankers in a single batch during the winter.

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On 13/10/2020 at 23:21, Karhedron said:

 

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?

Do you know what diag was the milk tanker nearest in the picture with two access ladders on one side?

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1 hour ago, Gordon A said:

Do you know what diag was the milk tanker nearest in the picture with two access ladders on one side?

 

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.

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3 hours ago, Gordon A said:

Do you know what diag was the milk tanker nearest in the picture with two access ladders on one side?

As can be seen it is W3027. If you look at Jack Slinns article  HMRS Journal vol 12 part 3 1985 pages 87 - 92 you'll see it is Lot 1717 diag 058 built 9/47 (as mentioned by Karhedron). These were 3023 - 3028 Dried Milk Products Ltd. They had tanks of 1000 and 2000 gallons and were longer over headstocks on the same wheelbase. Jack has a photo of 3120, as do I    https://PaulBartlett.zenfolio.com/gwrbrmilktanks/e30d8d2a3

Nice find on a nice photo.

Paul

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15 hours ago, Karhedron said:

 

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 was Torrington which would dispatch 8 tankers in a single batch during the winter.

 

I mentioned 10 because that is how many are in that earlier photo of Dolcoath. 

 

I did wonder about pumping because I have a general opinion that there was reluctance to put equipment on lorries in those earlier days. We are used to lorries having their own fork trucks, cranes, lifting tailgates etc. But these are expensive to link to one vehicle and I think there would have been reluctance to do this. There are photos of small mobile pumps being available where bitumen was unloaded so I just wondered if a pump on a trolley was how they worked. Putting 3000 gallons into 8 wagons through those siphons would take some time and the commodity is corrupting all the time!

 

Paul

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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.

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On 13/10/2020 at 21:36, Karhedron said:

 

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 diagram of the tank. Most had one or two located next to the manhole cover. You can see one in the image below.

 

Inlet.jpg.0f68002b2fe29a2ff5621583fdc6cda0.jpg

  

 

The only silly question is the one you don't ask. ;)

 

Milk had to go via a dairy to be pasteurised, chilled and tested to ensure it was free of tuberculin. However there were several places where dairies were not rail-connected and milk was driven by lorry and then pumped into milk tanks at a siding. Penzance, Dolcoath, Saltash, Torrington, Crediton, Wellington and Marshfield all used this arrangement and there may have been others that have slipped my memory.

 

Here is a nice shot of Dolcoath in the 1970s.

 

 

http://www.cornwallrailwaysociety.org.uk/uploads/7/6/8/3/7683812/_5483164_orig.jpg

 

 

Now that shot of Dolcoath, ladies and gentlemen, shows a proper train, tis proper job, and thum Milk Tanks too.  Lovely me 'ansomes.

 

Splendid.  

 

Cheers Matt.  Matt !

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On 08/10/2020 at 11:20, Karhedron said:

The dark blue Express Dairy livery with white lettering continued to be applied in the 50s and could be seen into the mid 60s.

Do you have a photo of any Express Dairy ones in that era or later at all? I didnt know these lasted that late and would be interested to see (and ideally identify the wagon diagram)

 

Ta!

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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 blue livery was still being applied after nationalisation, I don't find it hard to believe examples surviving until the mid-60s as milk tanks were not repainted that often.

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Marvellous film.

 

The entire staff of Express Dairies must have spent a month polishing everything in sight before the cameraman arrived ........ it all makes my tinplate versions look not-shiny-enough!

 

Colour of this one might be slightly too pale, and it would be interesting to know which photo the text was taken from.

 

 

BB49C48B-61A4-44D9-A6DF-AE4172C66005.jpeg

Edited by Nearholmer
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Just now, Nearholmer said:

The entire staff of Express Dairies must have spent a month polishing everything in sight before the cameraman arrived ........ it all makes my tinplate versions look not-shiny-enough!

 

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. ;)

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There’s a wonderful set of pictures in the LT Museum archive showing a cow being milked inside the ticket hall at what is now called Embankment station. That cow looks well-scrubbed-up.

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20 hours ago, Nearholmer said:

That cow looks well-scrubbed-up.

A friend of mine once said that while standing in a pub .... the creature in question did not appreciate it!

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On 15/10/2020 at 13:23, hmrspaul said:

 

I mentioned 10 because that is how many are in that earlier photo of Dolcoath. 

 

I did wonder about pumping because I have a general opinion that there was reluctance to put equipment on lorries in those earlier days. We are used to lorries having their own fork trucks, cranes, lifting tailgates etc. But these are expensive to link to one vehicle and I think there would have been reluctance to do this. There are photos of small mobile pumps being available where bitumen was unloaded so I just wondered if a pump on a trolley was how they worked. Putting 3000 gallons into 8 wagons through those siphons would take some time and the commodity is corrupting all the time!

 

Paul

The oad tanker would have a pump for filling anyway so pumping the milk out would be done with this

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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

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6 hours ago, astropsidings said:

I recently came across this picture currently available on EBay, presumably a tank from Torrington: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Fremington-Railway-Station-Photo-Barnstaple-Instow-Bideford-Line-L-SWR-7-/262766841135

 

 

Ian

A single bubble car would only have been able to take one loaded milk tank as their maximum permitted trailing load was 35 tons and a loaded milk tank was 28 tons.  A single power car could however take two empties as they were only 14 tons each

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