Saturday, August 18, 2012

Prince William and I

Good to meet up with Prince William today, at Carlisle's Citadel Station.

The Prince is of course a Class 47 diesel, owned by the National Railway Museum, and operated on the main line by West Coast Railways. Today it was the tail of the Cumbrian Mountain Express railtour, and was used to park the coaches while the passengers spent their break shopping in Carlisle.

At the front was 60009 Union of South Africa, see its history here.

Next year is the 75th anniversary of Mallard's world speed record for steam traction, and the National Railway Museum is planning to gather together all six preserved A4s - no mean feat as two are in museums in North America. But I read that they are already in the process of being shipped back here temporarily. To see all six lined up will be really special.

60009 on its way with its support coach to turn round at the Upperby loop.

"Back a bit!" Engine and coach get coupled up for the return leg south.

Pamela was there again too!

Ready to go.

But not before the hard working support staff have a wee break. A caption needed here, I think. How about, "Not a patch on a strawberry Mivvi!"

It was a busy day at the Citadel. This was a diesel excursion headed up to Edinburgh, top and tailed by two DRS Class 47s in Northern Belle Livery, Galloway Princess and Solway Princess.

This was another excursion from London St Pancras to Carlisle and return on this East Midlands Trains HST.

Pretty, yes. But steam traction still gets my vote!

Meanwhile the regular services came and went throughout the day. I am sorry that Virgin is no longer to operate the WCML franchise. They have certainly shown what can be done. One Glasgow bound 11-coach train today carried this name plate. Ironic or what.

And finally... Carlisle is a terminus for some Northern Rail services. Today, passengers on one Cumbrian Coast line departure set off, not by train, but on a replacement bus service. "Calling at all stations!" It's a funny world.

Photos © Skip Cottage

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