Posts Tagged ‘925 Cheltenham’

Cheltenham

Posted: March 25, 2015 in Trains, Transport, UK
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925 Cheltenham was one of 40 ‘Schools Class’ locomotives built for the Southern Region and which were the most powerful locomotives in Britain at their time of operation. They were named after public schools within the Southern area.

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Cheltenham was built at Eastleigh works in 1934 and performed both passenger and freight duties on the Southern region. It was withdrawn from Service in 1962.


Lord Nelson and Cheltenham dual hauling a train northbound on the Mid-Hants Railway

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Following its withdrawal it was taken to Eastleigh for a light overhaul and then was on display at the national railway Museum at York until the decision was taken in 2010 to return it to working order. It was restored at Eastleigh and Ropley and entered into service in 2012 on the Mid-Hants Railway.

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2 other examples of schools class locomotives are preserved, one, working, on the North York Moors railway and one, on static display, at the Bluebell Railway

A trip out of London yesterday to visit the Mid-Hants Railway for the first day of their Spring Steam Gala. It promised to be a great day with no less than 6 engines in steam (5 on passenger services) working on the line.

Arriving at Alton, my first trip was to Ropley behind 4464 Bittern. I am a real fan of the A4 Pacifics and so this is a magic moment although it does seem strange to see it hauling tender first as there is no way of turning a loco at Alton.

4464 Bittern at Alton

4464 Bittern at Alton

By the time I arrived at Ropley the rain has begun to fall. A chance here to visit the Engine and carriage shed, although with 6 steaming locos and 34051 Winston Churchill having left for York two weeks earlier the former is pretty empty.

Carriage Shed, Ropley

Carriage Shed, Ropley

The next stage of my journey is to Alresford and I do this behind 925 Cheltenham

925 Cheltenham entering Ropley

925 Cheltenham entering Ropley

The rain is really coming down hard but a good chance to grab a hot drink and visit the various model railway layouts all of which represent the workings of the Mid-Hants line at various times in its history.

Alresford Station in pouring rain

Alresford Station in pouring rain

Then its is back to Ropley, this time on a dual-hauled service behind 925 Cheltenham and 850 Lord Nelson.

925 Cheltenham and 850 Lord nelson waiting to leave Alresford

925 Cheltenham and 850 Lord nelson waiting to leave Alresford

By the time we reach Ropley the rain has stopped allowing some time to photgraph 34007 Wadebridge hauling a goods train before completing my trip back to Alton behind 70000 Britannia.

70000 Britannia entering Ropley

70000 Britannia entering Ropley

In one return trip I have managed to travel behind 4 of the 5 steam locomotives in operation (only missing out on ‘Black 5’ 45379). An excellent day despite the weather although this proved a real challenge to photography.