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Why did some classes not go to Woodhams?


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Posted (edited)

I visited the yard on 21st July 1969 - 6023’s driving wheel had been cut at that time. I was shocked at the condition of the locos which looked pretty much like the photo above. I guess the salt laden atmosphere contributed to the general rusting, and in the case of the diesels, the bleaching of the paintwork. I don’t recall the alternative numbers having been visible on D6122. Duke of Gloucester had been shorn of its cylinders, valve gear and smoke deflectors - although marked with a c in my spotting book as one of the locos ‘cabbed’ - along with all four diesels including D8206 - I seem to remember a number of locos did not have tenders. 
 

I think we were a little surprised at the open nature of the site with no workers present - although having said that we had earlier bunked Canton and it’s DMU area without challenge (it was a weekday)!! We were also surprised at the ‘blot on the landscape’ appearance of the site from a reasonable distance, being so close to the Barry Island tourist destination. 200 odd locos covered quite an area.

Edited by MidlandRed
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A lot of people comment on the condition the loco's were in within 5-6 years of arriving, covered in rust and weeds growing out of some of them.  All I would say is park a car or van which was about 10 years old by the sea and not move it for the same period of time and check the results.

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2 hours ago, The Johnster said:

IIRC the centre driving wheels were cut on the 2 Kings, which had caused derailment problems because of the weight rather than the wheebase according to Dai, and which were shunted down to the far end of one of the 'field' roads to discourage their being moved.

Sorry, Johnster, but only 6023 had its wheels cut. 6024 left as a 4-6-0.

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5 hours ago, Michael Hodgson said:

Even by the standards of the time I was surprised at the lack of security and how I could just wander about unchallenged.


The first time I visited Barry (out of three), I went to Woodham’s office and got a typewritten note on headed stationery saying I (named) was allowed to visit their premises and view the engines. 

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Hi Folks,

 

One of the reasons for the preference of cutting wagons over steam locomotives was the differentials in the prices of steel, brasses/bronzes and copper. It should also be noted that wagons were much quicker and easier to reduce than a steam locomotive therefore reducing costs of labour and gas.

 

Had the price of copper been a little higher then the steam locomotives may not have lasted quite as long as they did.

 

Gibbo.

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, The Border Reiver said:

IIRC the Kings were not due to go to Woodhams but due to a weight restriction they were diverted from the original scrapyard the were due to go to and ended up at Woodhams

Which makes no sense (not saying you are wrong, as sometimes things happened in those days that didn't make sense) as Kings were not allowed on the Cardiff-Barry section either; they were 'double red' GW route restricted, and only allowed Paddington-Plymouth via West of England ML or via Bristol and the B & E, Bristol via Box or Badminton, Cardiff, Shrewsbury, and Newport-Shrewsbury,  They may have been divereted because of a loading gauge issue, of course.  Same restrictions applied to 47xx, but TTBOMK no 47xx ever worked west of the Severn Tunnel or Newport-Shrewsbury.

Edited by The Johnster
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7 hours ago, MidlandRed said:

 We were also surprised at the ‘blot on the landscape’ appearance of the site from a reasonable distance, being so close to the Barry Island tourist destination. 200 odd locos covered quite an area.

Few seaside resorts can boast an approach comparable to Barry Island for industrial eyesores, which are continuous from the approach to Cadoxton past the chemical works.  One has to admire the enterprise of the Barry Railway in developing the Island as a pleasure beach, but the main business was day trippers, and there were none of the usual seafront hotels and guest houses that you found in other resorts.

 

It was a huge site, and IIRC Dai paid rent for the sidings and it was not a private site, other than in the sense that it was BTDB property.  In the photo, taken from the residential side of the island, the tanks in the foreground are awaiting access to the tank farm, the steam locos occupy the centre, and Dai's actual worksite is cutting up mineal wagons behind that.  Everything took place in the open in all weathers, and it was a tough existence!  Locos that were to be put on low loaders for transport elsewhere were prepared at this site as well.  More locos were held at the 'Factory Sidings' next to the old Barry Railway workshop building, which were closer to the main line.  In the very early days, locos bought for preservation were taken out by rail, as class 7 or 8 freights with a guard's van.  ISTR a hot box put paid to this, and BR's charges for rail haulage were pitched to encourage road transport on low loaders.

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On 09/07/2021 at 12:48, MattA said:

..... one contributor claims to have come into posession of number of consignment labels detached from steam locos arriving in South Wales for scrap. Among these was a label for 82010, marked “Woodham Bros. Barry”. Alas, the engine ended up at Bird's...

If he'd have left the label attached, the loco might've gone where it should - and might've still been with us today !

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21 hours ago, MidlandRed said:

I visited the yard on 21st July 1969 - 6023’s driving wheel had been cut at that time. I was shocked at the condition of the locos which looked pretty much like the photo above. I guess the salt laden atmosphere contributed to the general rusting, and in the case of the diesels, the bleaching of the paintwork. I don’t recall the alternative numbers having been visible on D6122. Duke of Gloucester had been shorn of its cylinders, valve gear and smoke deflectors - although marked with a c in my spotting book as one of the locos ‘cabbed’ - along with all four diesels including D8206 - I seem to remember a number of locos did not have tenders. 
 

I think we were a little surprised at the open nature of the site with no workers present - although having said that we had earlier bunked Canton and it’s DMU area without challenge (it was a weekday)!! We were also surprised at the ‘blot on the landscape’ appearance of the site from a reasonable distance, being so close to the Barry Island tourist destination. 200 odd locos covered quite an area.

I remember visiting between 72 and 74 once or maybe twice with gricing chums. Amazing , atmospheric place to our 13 year old selves. Don't remember 8206, curses, perhaps it had been cut by then. Alas we tried bunking Canton but were repulsed by a firm 'gerrardavit' on reaching the bottom of some sort of footbridge. I think on one of these trips we had our only sighting of Falcon as we passed Ebbw Vale. Drifts off down memory lane..........................

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Wickham Green too said:

There was .......

 

282_06x.jpg.c3d594b91a4228f4ea026df7d478c771.jpg

Thats the one, I remeber someone had the footplate roof, springs, cylinder covers, motion, chimney & smokebox door off it too… it’d been everybodies christmas tree.

 

34046 was in similar condition I recall by late 1980’s.

 

 

Edited by adb968008
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By coincidence somebody mentioned to me just three days ago that he'd read somewhere that scrapping of locos had restarted in 1980 (the year that D601 & D6122(1) were finally demolished) and a 9F and large prairie had been dealt with when another load of wagons arrived, so they switched back to those - just as well as the next steam loco in line to get the chop would have been 5972........as he said, somebody must have waved a magic wand over it........:D

 

I visited Barry just the once, on a sunny 23rd February 1974 (the mass renumbering of the BR loco fleet into TOPS was in full swing at the time) - I took some photos but it was such a maze to wander around that when I got the photos back I realised I'd taken two almost identical views without realising it! Probably the score of the day for me was 71000 'Duke of Gloucester' which was already being worked on. 

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6 hours ago, Will Crompton said:

I remember visiting between 72 and 74 once or maybe twice with gricing chums. Amazing , atmospheric place to our 13 year old selves. Don't remember 8206, curses, perhaps it had been cut by then. Alas we tried bunking Canton but were repulsed by a firm 'gerrardavit' on reaching the bottom of some sort of footbridge. I think on one of these trips we had our only sighting of Falcon as we passed Ebbw Vale. Drifts off down memory lane..........................

It was certainly atmospheric, especially on a windy day when smokebox doors creaked open or slammed shut of their own accord.  The curvature of the storage roads meant that you would usually be walking between rows of locos curving away so that you couldn't see the ends of them, increasing the impression of the vastness of the place.  In the early days before the locos acquired the painted claims of various hopeful purchasers and the surface rust became all-pervading, it was almost possible if you closed one eye and squinted with the other to convince yourself that you were at a large working steam depot.

 

Falcon, 1200 by then and owned by BR, at Ebbw Vale sounds right, in Rail Blue but retaining the cast aluminium birds on the bodysides.  It was an impressive beast.

 

The access footbridge at Canton, leading across the SWML from de Croche Place, a cul-de-sac off Ninian Park Road, is still there and used to be a well used spotting location; you were trespassing but usually tolerated if you did not come down the steps on the shed side, as you discovered.  You could see a fair bit of the action from the bridge, and the view up and down the SWML was good.  It is now 'caged' in at the de Croche place end and can only be accessed by rail staff with a smartcard entry system.

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I remember visiting Canton in the mid 70's with a few friends, standing on the bridge watching the action.  A couple of BR guys walked past and must of heard we were not local, so they invited us to have a look around.  After a quick stop at I assume was the foreman's office, we were conducted around at a fairly brisk pace.  I visited Canton a few times after that but always in a organised group.

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That would have been during my time as a guard at the depot, and I am wondering if I was the guy that showed you around.  I did take a group of casual enthusiast visitors on a Sunday afternoon while on one of the 'spare' duties; in those days there were 'sets of spare traincrews that booked on at 2 hour intervals 24/6, 4 hourly on Sundays, a boring duty unless something turned up, though you were guaranteed a job if you were on the 2 am or 4 am spare turn.  Train Crew Foreman phoned the rest room and suggested it might relieve the boredom, which it did; I was known to be up for enthusiast related work and did several railtours as well.  I was glad of the diversion, and volunteered for it as my driver and secondman were involved in a card school.  There were about half a dozen chaps, and I took them through the running shed, around the rear yard, the maintenance depot, and then the carriage shed and dmu, picking them up at the running shed Foreman's office.  Took about half hour IIRC.

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17 minutes ago, The Johnster said:

That would have been during my time as a guard at the depot, and I am wondering if I was the guy that showed you around.  I did take a group of casual enthusiast visitors on a Sunday afternoon while on one of the 'spare' duties; in those days there were 'sets of spare traincrews that booked on at 2 hour intervals 24/6, 4 hourly on Sundays, a boring duty unless something turned up, though you were guaranteed a job if you were on the 2 am or 4 am spare turn.  Train Crew Foreman phoned the rest room and suggested it might relieve the boredom, which it did; I was known to be up for enthusiast related work and did several railtours as well.  I was glad of the diversion, and volunteered for it as my driver and secondman were involved in a card school.  There were about half a dozen chaps, and I took them through the running shed, around the rear yard, the maintenance depot, and then the carriage shed and dmu, picking them up at the running shed Foreman's office.  Took about half hour IIRC.

 

Could well have been.  If it was, thank you from the then spotty oik :locomotive:

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2 hours ago, jools1959 said:

 

Could well have been.  If it was, thank you from the then spotty oik :locomotive:

Long haired hippy scruffy misfit and thus in no state to criticise spotty oiks myself in those days!  You’re welcome; it relieved the boredom…

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At Chateau Danemouth we've been having a massive turnout (two skips full) and I came across some slides taken at Woodhams on a wintery sunny day in 1978. They are high contrast so don't scan really well

 

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Dave

Edited by Danemouth
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On 09/07/2021 at 01:58, jools1959 said:

I think it also had to do with location as scrap merchant's had to also pay for transportation, which wasn't cheap, on top of the price they paid for the loco.  Why pay XXXX amount for a loco that was hundreds of miles away when a similar loco was a short distance away.  Even if a dealer bought several loco's and they all travelled together, it was a slow process in moving them as they had to have a path made available, usually on secondary routes, stop often to make sure the bearing weren't overheating as some loco's could have been standing outside 6 months or more and they often had someone riding in one the cabs, which made the costs add up.

Did the purchasers have to pay for transportation? Given that there are reports within the thread, that locos didn't always go to the designated purchaser, how would that work out?

 

Maybe the purchase price for scrap yards, included transportation?

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10 hours ago, didcot said:

Weren't 6023 and 6024 used as dead weights for bridge testing which helped put them in Woodhams catchment area?

It appears they were purchased by a Briton Ferry or Swansea scrap yard; but someone realised they were banned west of Cardiff on the South Wales main line.

.

They were resold to Woodham Bros. and allowed to be moved, slowly, as far as Barry instead..

.

I've no doubt some contributors will have differing versions.

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