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Class 122 units on Bridport Branch


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On page 55 of Gerry Beale's excellent book The Bridport Branch there is a photo of what I believe is a Class 122 single car unit at Bridport in 1965, but the number given in the caption belongs to a Class 121 unit. Does anyone know either the correct number for the unit photographed or have further details of 122s that briefly worked on the line in the early 1960s, please? 

 

Secondly, any further information on Class 120 units used would be most useful i.e. other than that in Gerry's book or the earlier The Bridport Railway by Jackson and Tattershall.

 

Many thanks in anticipation.

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Welch's book Diesels on the Western pages 45/46. Class 122 W55015 on the branch. Surprised me as I wasn't aware any worked it. Generally it was a 121. My late father worked the branch often but then don't  imagine he was too concerned by minor unit differences as I never recall him mentioning it.

Stu

 

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The DMU sets employed on the Bridport Branch would generally be Bristol based sets.

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I have Railway Observers for 1965 onwards that may help.

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What information do you seek on the Swindon Cross Country sets ?

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Brian R

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100% Pressed Steel SPCs (Class 121), with the exception of the day the branch closed, when the line was on my patch but that was only from March 1974 to the end in May 1975.   They were Bristol based cars which were outbased at Westbury which I understand had been the method of working for a long while.

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Colour Rail DE2177 shows an unidentified GRCW Class 122 at Bridport in September 1964 and I have a photo in my collection (not mine so can't post) showing a GRCW Cross Country unit, Class 119, led by W51067 on an unrecorded date but it is green with speed whiskers.

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The Cornish Railway Society article I linked to has a Doug Nicholls pic of a cl.119 unit at Bridport c.1960, unit is green w/ whiskers

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On Flickr there is a selection of photos posted by Bridport Museum, including a number of railway photos.

 

Including this which looks like 1 class 122 at Bridport. Is it possibly 55003 or 55013?

Bridport Museum Flickr site 'Bridport Station 1960s'

 

There is also this pair, identified as a 2-car class 119

Toller station 1963

 

cheers

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4 hours ago, The Stationmaster said:

They were Bristol based cars which were outbased at Westbury which I understand had been the method of working for a long while.

Before Weymouth shed closed at the end of steam they were often stabled and quite possibly fueled.

Poor quality  '67 shot of weymouth shed with an ex-works blue 121 with small panel and white cab roof.

1752592459_Shedshot.jpg.2a922f33a822296ebcbfb21b30db6b11.jpg

 

3 hours ago, Rivercider said:

 

There is also this possible pair,  or class 122 plus trailer combo

Toller station 1963

Definitely a 119 minus centre car.

 

Stu

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The line seems to have been worked by Bristol based single car units. As well as services around Bristol such as the Severn Beach branch, Bristol also appears to have provided cars for the Yeovil shuttles - from July 1966-January 1967 these were operated by railbuses W79975/76 but these were replaced by class 122 cars and the railbuses transferred to Scotland.

 

According to Railcar.co.uk, the following class 122 and 121 cars were allocated to Bristol:-

 

W55001 - Oct 67- Jun 69 (transferred to Departmental stock after this)

W55013 - May 64 - May 68

W55014 - Dec 60 - July 62

W55018 - Aug 70 - Nov 70

W55020 - Jun 85 - May 86

W55023 - July 83 - Sept 83 (on loan)

W55026 - Nov 74 - Mar 75; Oct 82 - June 85

W55027 - Jul 72 - May 73

W55028 - Jun 69 - Aug 70

W55032 - (New) Dec 60 - Nov 70; May 71 - Oct 82

W55033 - (New) Dec 60 - Jun 62; Jul 62 - Sept 62; Oct 65 - Oct 82

W55034 - (New) Jan 61 - Nov 64; Aug 68 - Nov 68; Feb 71 - May 77

W55035 - Oct 67 - May 77

 

When the ex Southern branches east of Exeter (eg Sidmouth) were dieselised, a number of Laira-based single cars were used (amongst other stock) - W55015 is listed as a Laira car, transferred on its replacement in the London Division when some of the class 121 cars were allocated there new in 1960, until transfer to the ScR in 1968 - is it possible it was loaned to Bristol or was interchanged with one of the cars on the branches or at Yeovil during the period before most of those services were withdrawn - W55015 was also a very early repaint in rail blue syp/red buffer beam/white cab roof, being noted as such on the Looe branch at the beginning of 1967. 

 

I'm sure I've seen a photo of W55014 on the Yeovil shuttles (possibly Railway Magazine from the 1967 era), but apart from the brief period mentioned above from the allocations on railcar.co.uk that is also shown as a Laira car.

 

It's also possible the WR allocation info is not complete, but the lists above give an indication of the pool of cars from which the Bridport car would be used. Whilst theoretically all the class 122, and W55026-28 could have been used, W55032-35 seem to be the most consistent of the Bristol allocation over the period until the branch closed.

 

Edited by MidlandRed
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On 04/04/2021 at 15:36, lapford34102 said:

Before Weymouth shed closed at the end of steam they were often stabled and quite possibly fueled.

Poor quality  '67 shot of weymouth shed with an ex-works blue 121 with small panel and white cab roof.

1752592459_Shedshot.jpg.2a922f33a822296ebcbfb21b30db6b11.jpg

 

Definitely a 119 minus centre car.

 

Stu

From the info above, and knowledge that W55032 appeared to go directly to bfye, that car is possibly either W55033 or 55035. 

 

There were three power twin class 119s which were allocated to Bristol originally. I've seen a photo of one of them on the Clevedon branch, also green with speed whiskers.

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On 04/04/2021 at 12:07, Rivercider said:

On Flickr there is a selection of photos posted by Bridport Museum, including a number of railway photos.

 

Including this which looks like 1 class 122 at Bridport. Is it possibly 55003 or 55013?

Bridport Museum Flickr site 'Bridport Station 1960s'

 

 

I'd put money on it being W55013 - note the Class 121-style lining. I've seen a photo of this unit in this livery looking looking very clean with tidy red bufferbeams in early 1967, I think at Weymouth which would support what Lapford34102 says, so I'd guess that this one and at least a couple of others (including W55018 if a detail shot on the 'railcar' website is correct) must have been the final repaints into green just before the switch to blue small yellow panel, otherwise there would have been far more green 122s with this lining visible in photos. This would date these photos (I note there are two views) to late 1966/early 1967.

 

27 minutes ago, MidlandRed said:

From the info above, and knowledge that W55032 appeared to go directly to bfye, that car is possibly either W55033 or 55035. 

 

 

That's intriguing - AFAIK W55034 was the only 121 to carry Bsyp livery, but it wasn't a Bristol unit when repainted so unlikely to have been seen in Weymouth in this condition. So which one is this then?! I'm sure I recently found a 1968 photo of it, at Bridport too, proving that my Lima model of it with clipped buffers is correct after all (it had ovals in early '67!)

 

In the summer of 1966 I rode in W55015 with trailer W56298 on the St Ives branch. The following year I noted W55014 + W55016 at Truro, both in blue full yellow livery so probably autumn (no dates in my oldest notebook!) W55013/4/5 were all sent to Scotland and after limited (if any) use as passenger vehicles were converted to parcels use, initially all in different liveries!

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On 06/04/2021 at 20:49, Neil Phillips said:

That's intriguing - AFAIK W55034 was the only 121 to carry Bsyp livery, but it wasn't a Bristol unit when repainted so unlikely to have been seen in Weymouth in this condition. So which one is this then?! I'm sure I recently found a 1968 photo of it, at Bridport too, proving that my Lima model of it with clipped buffers is correct after all (it had ovals in early '67!)

 

I'm pretty sure I've seen photos of at least one of the London class 121 units in blue syp (as an aside, also M55003 - that photo was in Railway Magazine on a Stratford-Leamington working). I wonder if it actually is W55034 in the Weymouth photo - seems entirely possible if Bristol was short of units and it may have been a short term loan en route back from overhaul? The Yeovil shuttles went over to single cars at the beginning of 1967 as the railbuses were transferred to Scotland.

 

9 hours ago, lapford34102 said:

Interesting stuff and I'll see if I can find a number for the bsyp unit Neil. A bit curious as to where the OP's got to.

Stu

 

It would be great to confirm, if you do have - however those tiny numbers on the early blue DMU repaints are notoriously difficult to identify from any distance - it would be interesting to know the date of this photo at Weymouth as well!!

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W55000 was sent to Scotland in 1967 in blue syp livery (I found a couple of nice colour pics of it piloting ScR 101s on the web a while back) and it looks likely that the first-built 122 trailer 56291 did too. W(M?)55008 was also bsyp. And 121 trailer W56280 (which I modelled using Lima parts 30 years ago - still got it). There appears to have been a bsyp 118 set hanging about Plymouth in the late 60s but I've never been able to identify it.

 

But we're now some distance from the Bridport branch!

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Many thanks for all the replies with some interesting new sources I had not discovered.

 

I don't have access to Martin Welch's book that Lapford34102 mentions, I wonder, is the picture dated at all and what livery is it in (whiskers, SYP), please?

 

With regard to the Class 120s I was after details of any units, car numbers etc., known through photographs or other recorded sightings etc., to have worked on the branch in the early days of dieselisation.

 

All info gratefully received.

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7 hours ago, Toller Down said:

I don't have access to Martin Welch's book that Lapford34102 mentions, I wonder, is the picture dated at all and what livery is it in (whiskers, SYP), please?

W55015, whiskers, Aug 64

 

Stu

 

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