We have just had a report and some photos about this trip sent in by Pete Hackney, one of our support crew.
The 8th December Cathedrals Express took 70013 on a circuitous route from Ely in Cambridgeshire to Oxford via the Lee Valley through Bishops Stortford & Cheshunt. Threading the many junctions in East London and taking the North London Line was an interesting route but hardly allowed Cromwell to show her paces. Even so we were running almost to time to Acton but then the wait for a path along the Great Western main line put us 20 minutes down. Passing Southall shed 7 1/2 hours after leaving it in the early morning we accelerated westwards picking up 6 minutes of our delay. After a change of crew and water stop at Twyford we run to Didcot taking the North Junction to Oxford where arrival was 20 minutes late following a stand at signals south of the station. It was dark by the time 70013 headed back to the station after servicing in the Up carriage sidings and turning on Didcot triangle. An on-time departure and some spirited running kept us to timetable back to London & after the return journey along the North London Line again we joined the East Coast Main Line for a short stretch before looping through Hertford. Taking the Cambridge line from Hitchin we thundered through the night and from the delighted faces of the passengers dropped off at Cambridge & Ely a great time was had by all.
The first image is from 70013's footplate looking towards Southall station as we were waiting for the signal to exit the shed at 03.58am.
The second image is Simon Towell filling the box as we waited at Acton for access to the Great Western main line at 11.26 en route to Oxford
The third image was taken at 13.42 in Oxford Up carriage sidings as 70013 (with you on the footplate) headed back light engine to Didcot to turn. Oxford station is in the distance with a First Great Western Class 185 dmu in the bay.
The fourth image was taken at Ely station at 10.41pm on our return prior to heading for Papworth Sidings for the night.
By Info | Tuesday, December 20, 2011 | Tags : 70013