Local haulage "bashes"


Part One - The Midland



07017745105r.jpg Peak power at Luton, Jan 77


During the late 70's some Midland loco hauled services that had historically stopped at Luton also made additional timetabled stops at St Albans. By 1981 the St Albans loco hauled stops had been severely reduced and in the privatised era,  just Thameslink units serve St Albans.


Luton - St Albans mileage was short at 10.35 and the journey time was equally brief at 11 minutes but a "peak" thrashing over the scenic Chiltern Green summit was always a pleasure. As with the Midland from the dark ages the diet was eth peak and more eth peak apart from the odd 45'0 or eth 47. 47514 as below produced on both these days which was a welcome bonus. 47514 was Toton's pet 47 and spent much of her 70's career on test trains from Derby RTC. By January 1979 the loco was transferred to Haymarket becoming push pull machine 47703.


There were long "festers" between the trains we travelled on, but the Midland in 1978 still saw heavy coal traffic albeit as  MGR's, much oil including the Eastern 47 hauled "Immingham oiler" from Langley to Lindsey, cement with Southern 33's as added interest and much parcels traffic. Class 25' were always pottering about on local parcels and freight traffic. Virtually all passenger traffic was "peak" powered to,  so any variation was an event. St Albans was also renowned for its many pubs...!.      


Tuesday January 3rd 1978


45108  1005 Derby-St.Pancras                                                                       Luton - St Albans      

47514  1212 St. Pancras-Derby                                                                      St Albans - Luton      

45124  1207 Derby-St.Pancras                                                                       Luton - St Albans


45108  1412 St.Pancras-Derby                                                                       St Albans - Luton


51619/59619/59612/51637 1515 Luton - St Pancras                                     Luton - St Albans


45120  1519 St.Pancras-Nottingham                                                              St Albans - Luton


45143  1407 Derby-St.Pancras                                                                       Luton - St Albans


51633/59640/59591/51614  1605 St Pancras - Luton                                                St Albans - Luton


Thursday January 5th 1978


45140  1207 Derby-St.Pancras                                                                       Luton - St Albans


47514  1412 St.Pancras-Derby                                                                       St Albans - Luton


51646/59614/59631/51592  1515 Luton - St Pancras                                                Luton - St Albans


45119  1519 St.Pancras-Nottingham                                                              St Albans - Luton


45146  1407 Derby-St.Pancras                                                                       Luton - St Albans


45123  1820 St.Pancras-Leicester                                                                   St Albans - Luton


Sunday August 19th 1979


45112  1612 St.Pancras - Derby                                                         St Pancras - St Albans


45142  1717 St Pancras - Nottingham                                                St Albans - Luton


A bog standard St Albans bail for the train an hour behind, eh peak for eh peak!


Monday August 20th 1979


25243  1025 Bedford - St Pancras                                                     Luton - St Pancras


45123  2015 St.Pancras-Derby                                                           St Pancras- Derby


For around 15 months the local Midland "bash" was enlivened by the "new" loco hauled 0825 St Pancras - Bedford and 1025 return.  Using a load 9 commuter rake off the 0727 Luton - St Pancras "commuter" the 0825 St Pancras - Bedford and 1025 return served St Albans, Harpenden, Luton, Leagrave, Harlington, Flitwick and Bedford. It had a classic Cricklewood "kick out" feel for it as not just eh peaks worked it, class 25 ,45'0 and 47 also featured.


Electrification, HST's and general rancification of the Midland saw few of us do local moves as the 80's progressed simply using the few surviving hauled trains to get from Bedford or Luton to St Pancras. One late Spring Sunday in 1989 perhaps produced the last local "hurrah!"


Sunday May 21st 1989 "The Inter City Diesel Day"


To their credit Hertfordshire Railtours organised a series of St Pancras - Leicester shuttles using 3 rakes of stock with exotic power up front. What made it special was that the local haunt of Luton was served along with nearby Wellingborough.

Luton station has probably never seen such crowds of enthusiasts!, announcements of "you  will not all be able to get on this train!" (we did) made it all the more memorable.


Sunday May 21st 1989


33021}            0850 St.Pancras-Leicester Shuttle                             St Pancras - Wellingborough


56017  0955 Leicester-St.Pancras Shuttle                              Wellingborough - Luton

" you  will not all be able to get on this train!" we all got on 37058, a bit wedged though!

37058  1040 St.Pancras-Leicester Shuttle                              Luton - Leicester

20228}            1255 Leicester-St.Pancras Shuttle                              Leicester - Luton


47347  1440 St. Pancras-Leicester Shuttle                             Luton - Wellingborough                    

58050  1520 Leicester-St.Pancras Shuttle                              Wellingborough - St Pancras

08573  Shunt release                                                   St Pancras - Cambridge St (and back)           

58050  1855 St.Pancras-Leicester Shuttle                              St Pancras - Luton

37058}            1810 Leicester-St.Pancras Shuttle                             Luton - St Pancras



A detailed report of the Inter City Diesel day with many photos is here, enjoy!


February 2016


As we all know you will today wait at the likes of Luton for a loco hauled passenger train in vain, even loco hauled "specials" are now unheard of, and very much eh Peaks no more....


Any more local haulage moves on the Midland to share?


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