The new A1 visits Shropshire
Tornado in the Valley
25 & 28 October 2009
Back Contact Geoff
In March we'd had the good fortune to be visiting Edinburgh at the same time as the newly-built A1 -"Tornado" would be hauling its first southbound train from the Scottish capital. "Must make the effort to see it again". I suppose we could have made more effort... Then the news spread - 60163 would be visiting the Severn Valley Railway in late October - great! Let's hope for some decent weather...
Saturday wasn't great, but Sunday morning looked good, despite a heavy shower as I left home. A goodly gathering of camera- bearing enthusiasts assembled near Hay Bridge - and were rewarded with the sun coming out at just the right time (then going in again - most unusual!). There seemed to be a possibility that the preceding train would have the N2 on it - now that would be a real bonus. It wasn't - it was "Erlestoke Manor", running tender-first. Work got the better of me on Monday, and Tuesday wasn't very great, but Wednesday looked very promising - and so it turned out. The natural amphitheatre near Eardington seemed ideal - especially if, as rumoured, Tornado had been turned. It hadn't ("they're turning it this evening") - and the preceding train was hauled by the N2 - and the sun was out again - wonderful! I returned for the afternoon run - due into Bridgnorth at 4.04pm. The light was, of course, truly perfect - strong and directional. Sadly, it was "third time unlucky". The N2 had run short of steam, apparently, on its afternoon run, and had left Bridgnorth around 20 minutes late. There wasn't much chance of Tornado coming through before 4.20... The weather did its best, but the sinking sun got the better of us, and had just set when the train finally came through just after 4.30 (yes, there was just enough light for photos and video, but if it had been on time...).
Geoff’s Rail Diaries
1744 doesn't seem to be struggling 60163 running gently... ...up the bank Apple green and autumn tints The sun has set... ...but there's still (just) enough light Tornado... ...making easy work of the bank