© Geoff’s Rail Diaries 2011
Here are some photos from a couple
of trips to the east midlands, both of
which ended with an hour or so on
the bridge at Shirebrook.
The first started with a couple of
industrial visits - to the mines at Moor Green and
Pye Hill. Both succumbed shortly after the
miners' strike. Moor Green was at that time home to several
locomotives, three ex-BR 350hp shunters - class 10 (the
Blackstone-engined variant) - and three products of Shrewsbury -
a couple of Sentinels and a Rolls Royce. Two of the latter were 0-
8-0DH locos - we had hoped these might be in use. So, of course,
all we saw were the class 10s - "Robin", ex-D3618, in a rather
fine red livery, and ""David", ex-D3613, in green.
We moved on to Pye Hill colliery, which promised ex-BR "03"s and
a couple of other locomotives - a Ruston and a Thomas Hill
rebuild of a former Sentinel
steam locomotive. Once again,
it was the ex-BR locomotives
which appeared to be in use -
D2132 "Lesley" appeared from
the exchange sidings, while
D2138 sat outside the shed. The Ruston - 395293 of 1956, cutely
named "I'll Try", looked a little tired, while Jayne, TH/S 137C of
1964, sat inside the shed.
On leaving Pye Hill, we headed for Shirebrook, there taking
position on the overbridge between the depot and the junction.
In the hour or so we were there, we managed to photograph a
number of movements.
A pair of class 20s left the depot and took the branch towards
Clipstone Junction. A class 56 is took the line towards Worksop
with a loaded train. The the 37s, coming from the north - firstly,
off the Clipstone branch, then from the Worksop line
Nine years later I found myself on the
same bridge. We had started out near
Willington power station. An overbridge
carrying a minor road lies between
North Stafford Junction and Stenson
Junction, on the main Birmingham -
Derby line, and is thus a busy spot.
On this occasion, amongst numerous passenger trains (HSTs and
Sprinters) were the illustrated freights. 60 092 is heading south
with coal empties, and 60 089 is doing the same. 37 420 is
heading north with what look like timber wagons
Leaving Willington, we headed north to spend a little while near
Clay Cross, a little to the north of Clay Cross South Junction,
where the lines from Derby and Toton join. This is usually pretty
busy, but today there didn't seem to be too much of interest.
Illustrated are a northbound steel empties train, in the company
of 60 086, and southbound, a class 47 hauling an 08!
Next destination was Worksop, for a
quick look around. A couple of local
passenger trains (153s) scuttled
through, then 58 016 trundled slowly
through eastbound on a coal train.
Finally, we headed south to Shirebrook.
Here, the 20s and 37s were no longer in evidence
- all traffic now seemed to be in the hands of 58s
and 56s. The photographs depict 58 022 coming off the Clipstone
line, and an unusual positioning of three 58s (23, 46 and 34)
beside the signalbox. Lastly, as the October light fades, 56006 is
seen resting at the depot.
And that's it - two more good days out. A sobering thought - with
the exception of the 60s, most of the locomotives above have
gone (or will do soon). In the meantime, the formerly freight-
only route through Shirebrook now sees passenger trains again,
in the shape of the Nottingham - Mansfield - Worksop service.
What will the next visit to Shirebrook reveal?