Prototype HST 41001 on site for OOC111 Open Day

47828, 41001 and 57604 arrived at Old Oak Common. © 125 Group

Prototype High Speed Train power car 41001 has safely arrived at Old Oak Common ready for the open day this Saturday 2nd September, following rail transfer from home base Great Central Railway Nottingham. 41001 and 125 Group crew powered the move from Ruddington GCRN last Sunday hauling 47828 and The Class 37 Loco Group’s 37003 as far as Rushcliffe Halt where 57604 and Rail Operations Group took over for the run to Old Oak, dropping off 37003 at Leicester. Thanks to ROG for their usual professional service.

Tickets are still available for the public open day, celebrating over 111 years of train maintenance and servicing at this historic West London depot. On display will be a unique collection of steam, diesel and electric locomotives also merchandise stalls, including the 125 Group Sales Stand, children’s activities, fun fair, entertainers plus locomotive naming ceremonies. All proceeds will go to the depot’s chosen charity Place2Be, providing mental health support for children and whose patron is the Duchess of Cambridge.

To view full information about the open day, including how to get there and to buy tickets on-line, see the event website www.oocopenday.com

41001 departing for Old Oak Common

41001 on GCR(N) ‘Mainline’ ©125 Group

On Sunday 27th August, Prototype High Speed Train power car 41001 will be setting off from its home base Ruddington on the Great Central Railway (Nottingham) heading for Old Oak Common and the Great Western Railway public Open Day which takes place on Saturday 2nd September.

41001 together with 47828 + 37003 are expected to depart from Ruddington at approx 0830 Sunday 27th August heading for Rushcliffe Halt which is also known as East Leake/Hotchley Hill. They will be collected by 57604 with schedule planned 0Z58 1000 Hotchley Hill – Leicester Depot to set down 37003 then onward as 0Z59 1530 Leicester Depot – Old Oak Common via Oakham 16/14, Peterborough 16/45, Huntingdon 17/30, Potters Bar 18/30, Finsbury Park 1848-1932, Camden Road 19/51, Willesden Jn High Level 20/09, Acton Mainline 2012-2017, Old Oak Common 2047.

Live schedules can be found here, courtesy of our friends at Realtime Trains. Please note, as always, this information is provided in good faith but these movements can change at short notice on the day subject to operational constraints, the trains may run early or late or be cancelled.

0Z58  http://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/R73450/2017/08/27/advanced

0Z59  http://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/O22593/2017/08/27/advanced

Tickets are still available for what promises to be a very memorable open day celebrating 111 years of Old Oak Common. To view full information about the open day, including how to get there and to buy tickets on-line, see the event website www.oocopenday.com

Prototype HST running Sat 26th August Great Central Railway Nottingham

Prototype HST power car 41001 at Fifty Steps GCRN ©125 Group

Prototype High Speed Train Power Car 41001 and 125 Group’s matching Mk3 coaches will be working passenger trains at Great Central Railway (Nottingham) on Saturday 26th August. Services depart from Ruddington station (sat-nav postcode NG11 6JS) at 1030, 1215, 1400 and 1545 running to Loughborough Viaduct and back. The preserved HST will operate top ‘n’ tail with 41001 at the north end of the Mk3 coaches and locomotive 47292 is planned to be at the south end. Tickets are available to buy on the day on-board the train, or in advance on-line from www.gcrn.co.uk which has further information.

The GCR(N) route is just under 10 miles long, after departing from Ruddington trains reverse at Fifty Steps then run southbound calling at Rushcliffe Halt station, continuing through the scenic Nottinghamshire countryside to Loughborough Viaduct, which has no station but affords a great view over the Midland Mainline and looks down into Brush Locomotive Works, with class 73s, 92s and 319s often visible. Ruddington station is the base for GCR(N) with many heritage transport exhibits, Rushcliffe Country Park is also nearby including, for the younger enthusiast, an extensive green play area next to the railway line.

‘Buffet 125’ will be open on-board our Mk3 coach 10206, selling hot dogs, sandwiches, hot and cold beverages plus alcoholic drinks including bottled beer, our volunteers will be pleased to serve you. The 125 Group sales stand will also be on the train, with our latest range of merchandise available. Experience a grand summer’s day out with 41001 and its original screaming Paxman Valenta engine!

Prototype HST 41001 for Old Oak Common Open Day

Prototype HST on test at Didcot station, with power car 41001 (43000) nearest the camera, February 1975. ©Dave Hird

125 Group is delighted to announce that Prototype High Speed Train power car 41001 is planned to be one of the star exhibits at Great Western Railway Old Oak Common public open day on Saturday 2nd September 2017, celebrating over 111 years of train maintenance and servicing at this West London depot. On display will be a unique collection of steam, diesel and electric locomotives also merchandise stalls including the 125 Group Sales Stand, children’s activities, fun fair, entertainers plus locomotive naming ceremonies.

Tickets are now on sale and demand is expected to be high for this unique event. All proceeds will go to the depot’s chosen charity Place2Be, providing mental health support for children and whose patron is the Duchess of Cambridge. To view full information about the open day, including how to get there and to buy tickets on-line, see the event website www.oocopenday.com

Old Oak Common has an illustrious history, including being home to iconic Inter-City 125s since introduction. The prototype HST is no stranger to Old Oak, it was based at the depot in 1975/6 during Western Region passenger service trials. After withdrawal, power car 41001 entered the National Collection, 125 Group became custodians in 2012 and we restored it back to working order under the ‘Project Miller’ banner. The historic power car is now based at GCR(N) Ruddington where it works public trains together with our matching Mk3 coaches.

Please note that 41001 is advertised in good faith but is subject to transfer rail movements. Should problems arise we can not be held responsible for losses (and disappointment!) arising from non-appearance. The 125 Group team are very much looking forward to this fantastic event and hope to see you there!

East Midlands Trains marks ten year charity partnership with Railway Children

The Pickering Paxman charity railtour at Whitby with power car 43082, staff and volunteers from Railway Children, EMT, BLS and 125 Group. Funds raised from the special train have since increased to £30,000! Photo ©Tony Shaw

Ten-year partnership between East Midlands Trains and Railway Children charity celebrated with special train service ‘The Pickering Paxman’ on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR)

Cheque presentation of £30,000 raised by the railtour made at London St Pancras to mark decade-long partnership

A special train on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway was recently chartered by East Midlands Trains to celebrate the tenth anniversary of its partnership with Railway Children, successfully raising £30,000 for the charity.

Staff and volunteers from East Midlands Trains, North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR), the 125 Group, Branch Line Society and Railway Children were out in force on Saturday 15 July to ensure the event’s success. The special service ran from Derby via Chesterfield, Sheffield and York on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR), from Grosmont to picturesque Pickering and then onward to Whitby. It is believed that this was the first time in Pickering’s history that the iconic High Speed Train has visited the ancient market town.

The route took in stunning scenery across Derbyshire and Yorkshire, where films such as Harry Potter and famous television shows like Heartbeat have been filmed. Once on the NYMR, there was a special rededication naming ceremony to mark the decade-long relationship between East Midlands Trains and Railway Children.

Jake Kelly, Managing Director for East Midlands Trains, said: “Everyone involved had been looking forward to the big day and the opportunity to raise money for such a good cause. All of the prep work we’d put in with our operations partner Direct Rail Services paid off as the day went like clockwork, and the support from the 125 Group, Railway Children and Branch Line Society was fantastic.”

Presentation of cheque for £30,000 to Railway Children at St.Pancras 1st August with (left to right) Ian Mortimer Branch Line Society Treasurer, Darren Ward East Midlands Trains Head of Drivers, Jake Kelly EMT Managing Director and Anuradha Chandran Head of Corporate Partnerships at Railway Children, not forgetting EMT power car 43046! ©Geoff Plumb

Anuradha Chandran, Head of Corporate Partnerships at Railway Children, said: “Railway Children were delighted to celebrate the 10th anniversary of our partnership and greatly appreciate the incredible support of East Midlands Trains, North Yorkshire Moors Railway, the 125 Group and Branch Line Society.“

All funds raised through our valuable partnership with East Midlands Trains and their customers will have a very real impact on the lives of vulnerable children in the UK, India and East Africa. Just £5.95 will allow us to feed a child in India three meals a day for a week and £25 would be enough to take a child off the streets in East Africa and get her home safely.”

Chris Price, General Manager of the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, said: “Although we run a wide range of locomotives ourselves, it was an historic occasion to welcome two stunning class 43’s to our heritage line and a unique opportunity for passengers to experience the North York Moors National Park from a special High Speed Train service.”