47210/1860 remembered, thanks to Robin Morel

  In the late 80’s another trip north of the border hunting down the few eth class 37’s and one particular spoon I thought 47 210 would be an easy find having managed to get a tour around Eastfield, plenty on shed with the usual 47/7 push pull services passing with dbso and mark 3 stock but alas 210 wasn’t on shed and as it was the weekend when no booked aggregate services were operated.

Built by BR Crewe Works and released into traffic during August 1965, D1860 was a midland loco until May 1974 when a spell north of the border at both Glasgow Eastfield and Edinburgh Haymarket. With sectorisation the loco came under the FAME (Eastfield Aggregate) pool and it was named at Eastfield “Blue Circle Cement” during December 1989 in recognition of this major customer.

The nameplates being removed during April 1993 were originally unveiled with much ceremony on grid 56 124 at Theale Blue Circle Cement terminal on 24th October 1983 to mark the signing of a 10 year deal to move cement by rail.

Things changed in January 1990 however when the loco came south and was allocated to Sheffield Tinsley working for Railfreight Distribution   and you can imagine what I felt passing Willesden Brent sidings when a certain Trainload Construction named ‘spoon’ came into sight!

Railfreight Distribution spent little time in applying the RfD sub sector markings over the former trainload construction markings and the nameplate as mentioned earlier was also removed.

Spells in various RfD pools included eventually being allocated to the DAET channel Tunnel pool of twin tank, ‘green circle’ multiple working fleet in March 1996. With the introduction of more modern traction after a spell in store at Bescot 47 210 made the last journey to the component recovery and distribution centre at Wigan on the 17th December 1998 before being scrapped in August 2000 some 35 years since its’ release into traffic .

The loco proved very unpopular with ground staff due to the retention of the miniature snow plough equipment even when the centre blade was removed during the summer months. The only RfD 47 so equipped, I can tell you trying to couple this loco in multiple with another green circle 47 was very very difficult with the outer two plough blades usually getting in the way and even when working alone the travelling shunters often complained of the ploughs, I was later told that RfD had a commitment to provide one loco with ploughs as part of a national adverse weather strategy that called for xx amount of msp fitted traction to supplement the larger propelled ploughs.

 In 1997 when I worked at Wembley the loco had a repaint at Sheffield Tinsley after the cab front yellow paint had faded and the opportunity was taken to smarten up the loco with Channel Tunnel logos and even the cast BR double arrow logo received a lick of paint. Sadly within 2 years she was withdrawn and cut just a few months later. 47210 gone but not forgotten

Sample turns over the years

1860    2345 (07/03) Euston - Glasgow ex Preston, via S n C, GSW)

1860    1M04 0715 Sheffield - St Pancras “Master Cutler” 210772

1860    1E65 1805 St Pancras - Sheffield 300872

1860    1P10 1030 St Pancras - Derby 020673

1860    1610 Newcastle - Liverpool 281173

47210 oil at Luton 150275

Inverness Lochgorm..030775


47210 0905 Glasgow-Inverness 170979

47210  1E70 1435 Paignton - Leeds (ex New St) 190280

47210 1240 Inverness – Edinburgh 150981


47210  1340 Aberdeen-Inverness 171184

47210  1545 Glasgow - Carlisle 240686


47210 1614 Bir Int’l – Edinburgh (portion ex Carstairs) 160391


47210 withdrawn 1/99, cut 08/00


47210 on film



199547210r.jpg 47210 poses in the afternoon sun on Willesden Brent in Railfreight distribution livery in early 1995, an RM phot


05069747210wembleylhsr.jpg looking very smart after attention from the 41A paint team 47210 is on Wembley LHS, 050697, an RM phot


0207894721051Lr.jpg 47210 still in BR blue and looking in good condition at Thornaby 020789, thanks to Mark Beal

11049247210oxr.jpg Now in railfreight Construction grey and named Blue Circle cement, 47210 passes through Oxford with a LUL train, 110492, thanks to Mark Beal

13059447210didr.jpg With a change in sector decals from Mark’s 1992 view, 47210 passes Didcot with a liner, 130594, thanks to Mark Beal

24019847210r.jpg In RfD colours with enhanced window surrounds passing good old MK on 240198 with the 6A02 0853 Washwood Heath - Wembley automotive service, thanks to Mark Beal

24059747210r.jpg 47210 at Scarborough's excursion platform after working forward from york with an HRT adex, 240597, a "GJ" phot


Thanks again to Robin and Mark Beal for the phots and loco memories


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