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Southern Region and Eastern Region locos at Oxford


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Currently day dreaming/arm chair planing a future project based on Oxfords long lost (some say fictional) city terminus. Set in the late 50s, early 60s. I have found out a lot of information already, especially about the inter regional trains and ‘foreign’ locos seen there. But my knowledge of things outside Swindon is limited so I need some help filling in the gaps!

 

Am I right that there was a link from Banbury to the GCR? And that this was used for trains going from the south coast to the north?

As I understand the SR locos would work to Oxford. Would an ex-GWR loco take over as far as Banbury? Or would you see an ER (or was it LMR by then?) loco taking over at Oxford? And which non GWR classes particularly would you see if you were an Oxford trainspotter?

 

Basically if I were to get one or two foreign locos to add to my ex-GWR fleet for variety what would be a good choice? I’ve already got a SR N and a West Country on order. Anything else from the SR? And what should represent trains from the GCR? 
 

Thanks

 

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Posted (edited)

King Arthurs (Urie and Maunsell), Lord Nelsons, Light Pacifics (original and rebuilt), Rebuilt Merchant Navies were generally the usual fare. I’ve not seen photographic evidence of unrebuilt MNs at Oxford, 

Certainly a very interesting choice of location for variety of locomotives and especially coaching stock.

Edited by Right Away
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SR locos already noted, normally exLNER locos would only be working through (to/from Swindon) after the through Cambridge trains ceased but exLLNEr locos had worked some of those too.  LMS and ex LNWR types were common post-war and after the adjacent former LNWR terminus closed.  Prior to the war the only freight traffic exchange with the LNWR route was either via the exchamnge sidings at Oxford North or at a yard north of Oxford (Yarnton Jcn).  LMS group types would really only have started to be seen at Oxford GW station after the wartime link via Oxford North Jcn opened in 1940 and through freight working to Hinksey yard was possible.  In later steam days LMS Ttypes - basivcally Black Fives and sometimes 8Fs worked through Oxford to SR metals at basingstoke and beyond.

 

The cross0cuntry trains worked by SR engines to Oxford changed there to Western locos which worked to either Banc bury or usuall on through to Leicester or Nottingham.  Apart from the through working to Swindon LNER locos generally didn't come past Banbury. In BR days they seem to have almost invariably been B1s as they pushed various older classes aside.

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I find this a bit hard to navigate, but a mine of information https://spottinglogs.co.uk/1954-2/

 

Extract of non-GWR locos from two logs:

 

19 Jun 1954 Oxford 71B 30737
19 Jun 1954 Oxford 15A 48010
19 Jun 1954 Oxford 15A 48387
19 Jun 1954 Oxford 1E 48693
19 Jun 1954 Oxford 31A 65504
19 Jun 1954 Oxford 1E 75031
19 Jun 1954 Oxford 1E 75033
19 Jun 1954 Oxford 81F 90312

 

3 May 1959 Oxford 71B 34028
3 May 1959 Oxford 31A 61283
3 May 1959 Oxford 81F 75007
3 May 1959 Oxford 81F 75008
3 May 1959 Oxford 1E 80042
3 May 1959 Oxford 86C 90573
3 May 1959 Oxford 15A 92056

 

Message there seems to be "dont forget goods engines".

 

 

 

 

Edited by Nearholmer
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Two books to get:

"At the Heart Of the Great Western" Silver Link, Adrian Vaughan.

"Rail Centres: Oxford" Ian Allan/Book Law, L. Waters

 

Both have loads of info on services in and around Oxford and photos of the various services.

 

Some locos seen in the 50s, not yet mentioned. LNWR 0-8-0s, Crabs, Jubilees, Stanier Tanks*, Midland 3F. I think the occasional V2 also got there from the GC line.

 

*42667 worked the last passenger train from Rewley Road @ 4:45PM on the 1st October 1951.

After that date all passenger services used Oxford GWR station.

Edited by melmerby
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1 hour ago, Steamport Southport said:

There was a photo in a magazine a few years ago with the "full set" on Oxford shed.

 

The LNER loco was a B1 and I think the SR loco was a S15. LMS was obviously a Five.

 

 

Jason

I've seen more than one photo with the 3 various foreign locos and no GWR visible!

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Especially ex LMS and BR after the transfer north of Oxford (ex WR) to LM Region - similarly with locos.

 

At what point did GC transfer to BR (LM Region)? Annesley largely stocked with BR and ex LM locos in the 60s? 
 

Interesting views on You Tube of line near Oxford Canal - Hymek; Warship; class 47 (but which region? I’d wager various); class 40; class 22 - lots of variation!! Also WR and LM dmus if that floats your boat!! 117 and Derby Lightweight (119, 116 also?). 
 

Was SR steam and diesel the exception rather than the rule? (Class 33 maybe)? 

Edited by MidlandRed
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Didn't oil tank trains from Fawley go that way, to somewhere "up country" (Bromford Bridge, wherever that is), initially hauled by Eastleigh 9F, then double-headed by Class 33 all the way, in the 1960s?

 

PS: some pictures on the web are captioned saying that the went via the DN&S, but I distinctly remember seeing a 9F hauling such a train at Winchester main station when I was a boy.

 

PPS: Having checked dates, the 9F I saw must have been from somewhere else, because it would have been c1964/5, and they’d gone from Eastleigh before then.

 

 

Edited by Nearholmer
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2 hours ago, Nearholmer said:

Didn't oil tank trains from Fawley go that way, to somewhere "up country" (Bromford Bridge, wherever that is), initially hauled by Eastleigh 9F, then double-headed by Class 33 all the way, in the 1960s?

 

PS: some pictures on the web are captioned saying that the went via the DN&S, but I distinctly remember seeing a 9F hauling such a train at Winchester main station when I was a boy.

 

 


Yeah - via DNS until a returning train of fuel empties derailed somewhere between Whitchurch and Sutton Scotney IIRC and destroyed part of the track, hastening the demise of the south of Newbury section of route - presumed replacement route via Basingstoke, Reading, Didcot etc etc (maybe too big of a presumption??!!)
 

So the trains north of Oxford ran via Banbury, Leamington to Bordesley then via the St Andrews Curve, Saltley, Washwood Heath to Bromford Bridge (the oil depot just north of the Bromford Lane over bridge and next to the erstwhile station, which was at the eastern end of the huge Washwood Heath yard) for the uninitiated on the ex MR routes from Birmingham to both Derby and Leicester and giving access via the Sutton Park line to Walsall, Bescot (and Wolverhampton via Willenhall) A magnet for some youth trainspotters including this one as although the station closed, the access stairs from the road and the platforms remained (complete with chopped off MR lamps!) into the later 60s - as well as the SR oil trains (one a day then return empties - absolute haulage equivalent of Michelin star) but a four track main line with masses of freight (haulage in the 60s being 20, 24, 25, 27, 31, 40, 44, 45,  47 and 33 - types 1 (usually), and 2 and 3 sometimes double headed) - passenger = Cravens, BRCW, Met Camm, GRCW (100), Park Royal, later, Swindon (120) DMU; all NE/SW expresses (45; 46 and later 47) - also 31 (usually 1600 hp conversions) - add to that accessibility (the 11 Outer Circle stopped at the location or an easy bike ride from much of Brum) and what’s not to like for the average Brummie loco spotter??!! A Classic location!!!! However not Oxford so apologies for the veer OT!! 

Edited by MidlandRed
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12 hours ago, Nearholmer said:

Didn't oil tank trains from Fawley go that way, to somewhere "up country" (Bromford Bridge, wherever that is), initially hauled by Eastleigh 9F, then double-headed by Class 33 all the way, in the 1960s?

 

PS: some pictures on the web are captioned saying that the went via the DN&S, but I distinctly remember seeing a 9F hauling such a train at Winchester main station when I was a boy.

 

PPS: Having checked dates, the 9F I saw must have been from somewhere else, because it would have been c1964/5, and they’d gone from Eastleigh before then.

 

 

Definitely so 'Nearholmer'.  Our school CCF used to have 'Range Days' on the range at Churn - the construction of which had been the reason for the provision of Churn Halt on the DN&S .  One of the nice ways of spending part of that day (instead of hanging around waiting your turn to shoot your Empire Test or have a spot of 'enjoyment' with a Bren gun) was to be posted to one of the 'outposts' where your job was to ensure the red flag was flying and remained flying and warn off anyone who came towards the range.  I luckily got an outpost with a superb view of the railway albeit too far away to read numbers on the occasional passing trains and the Bromford Bridge oil train was the highlight of the very occasional train watching day.

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12 hours ago, MidlandRed said:

Especially ex LMS and BR after the transfer north of Oxford (ex WR) to LM Region - similarly with locos.

 

At what point did GC transfer to BR (LM Region)? Annesley largely stocked with BR and ex LM locos in the 60s? 
 

Interesting views on You Tube of line near Oxford Canal - Hymek; Warship; class 47 (but which region? I’d wager various); class 40; class 22 - lots of variation!! Also WR and LM dmus if that floats your boat!! 117 and Derby Lightweight (119, 116 also?). 
 

Was SR steam and diesel the exception rather than the rule? (Class 33 maybe)? 

The GC was transferred to the LMR on 1 February 1958 according to one source (which seems fairly reliable).  The last remnant of the Swindon working certainly had B1s on it later than that and ER locos definitely worked over the route after then as I occasionally travelled back from York on the Bournemouth train via the GC and that was worked in its final years over the GC by a Darnall EE Type 3 (later Class 37) between Sheffield and Banbury.

 

Annesley however as you said was very much 'LMSised' and acquired some exceedingly rundown 'Royal Scots' - one of which I had the dubious pleasure of travelling behind on the midnight Marylebone - Manchester sleeper until it was finally removed after staggering as far as Woodford Halse.

 

Apart from the Bromford Bridge oil trains SR diesels were never particularly common at Oxford and the cross-country trains went from steam to Brush Tye 4 haulage as far as I can remember.

 

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12 hours ago, The Stationmaster said:

The GC was transferred to the LMR on 1 February 1958 according to one source (which seems fairly reliable).  The last remnant of the Swindon working certainly had B1s on it later than that and ER locos definitely worked over the route after then as I occasionally travelled back from York on the Bournemouth train via the GC and that was worked in its final years over the GC by a Darnall EE Type 3 (later Class 37) between Sheffield and Banbury.

 

Annesley however as you said was very much 'LMSised' and acquired some exceedingly rundown 'Royal Scots' - one of which I had the dubious pleasure of travelling behind on the midnight Marylebone - Manchester sleeper until it was finally removed after staggering as far as Woodford Halse.

 

Apart from the Bromford Bridge oil trains SR diesels were never particularly common at Oxford and the cross-country trains went from steam to Brush Tye 4 haulage as far as I can remember.

 


Notoriously so re the Scots. They had a few Brits for a while as well IIRC (to replace the Scots?)

 

The SR had D1921-6 for some while from nearly new (from the WR) but I can’t remember the services they were used on - maybe Bournemouth to NE? 40s were used on the northern end of the Pines as well (certainly as far south as Birmingham and beyond).  

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The Bournemouth Belle was one train hauled by D1921 etc, and I think some Weymouth boat trains.

 

FFB20365-4757-429B-B280-E3D8050A71B2.jpeg.972723456aeb715e4f22763597b557b3.jpeg

(Hugh Llewelyn, Creative Commons licensed)

Edited by Nearholmer
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Posted (edited)
On 15/07/2021 at 01:12, MidlandRed said:


Yeah - via DNS until a returning train of fuel empties derailed somewhere between Whitchurch and Sutton Scotney IIRC and destroyed part of the track, hastening the demise of the south of Newbury section of route - presumed replacement route via Basingstoke, Reading, Didcot etc etc (maybe too big of a presumption??!!) .......
 

 

 

 Some images of that pitch in ....

 

15ABA6B8-CEFD-44B9-86DC-C0E7970EC637.jpeg.25feff49cf90298cbddcec42d28db920.jpeg

 

2EEA5AD5-BEA0-405E-A1F3-06326BE65651.jpeg.8b9bea6c6e45385bafd2eb631312b03e.jpeg

 

428C6A71-ECC3-47C5-90BF-D931B861958A.jpeg.94c8ee605ba2d8c312de1c5c00c978d0.jpeg

 

B1B91F27-78E7-4313-A7ED-994037CCBDB2.jpeg.e47b96bdd66c892dec13af6250afe19a.jpeg

Edited by Right Away
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  • 3 weeks later...

Thanks everyone for all the advice, pics and references. I found a copy of ‘Rail Centres Oxford’ (for 65p!) which is very inspirational. Certainly lots of locos on my shopping list

 

Im looking at getting a rake of coaches for the N-S inter-regionals that came through Oxford. What coaches would you see in the early 60s - SR, ER, Mk1 or a mix? Would it be all SR or all ER coaches or where they mixed rakes?

 

I’ve got a choice in N of Maunsell, Bullied, Mk1 (green or maroon?), Gresley or Thompson coaches! Choice can be too much sometimes 

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On 14/07/2021 at 23:05, Nearholmer said:

Didn't oil tank trains from Fawley go that way, to somewhere "up country" (Bromford Bridge, wherever that is), initially hauled by Eastleigh 9F, then double-headed by Class 33 all the way, in the 1960s?

 

PS: some pictures on the web are captioned saying that the went via the DN&S, but I distinctly remember seeing a 9F hauling such a train at Winchester main station when I was a boy.

 

PPS: Having checked dates, the 9F I saw must have been from somewhere else, because it would have been c1964/5, and they’d gone from Eastleigh before then.

 

 


The Bomford oil trains ran from Oxford via Worcester and up the Lickey  for a while in the early 60s… my research suggests 63 was their only time with Crompton haulage, does anyone else have a better time line please? 

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