Mk3 Coaches for GCR(N) Sulzer Sunday

Join us this Sunday 22nd October at Great Central Railway (Nottingham) when 125 Group’s Mk3 coaches will be on passenger trains hauled by Scotrail 47765 and Large-Logo 47292 running top and tail for ‘Sulzer Running Day’. Services will be operating to the Yellow Timetable with departures from Ruddington at 1030, 1215, 1400 and 1545. Mk3 vehicles 12092, 10206 and 11074 will be in passenger use, Buffet 125 will be available on-board serving drinks and snacks plus 125 Group Sales Stand will be open on the train. Locomotives subject to availability on the day, for more details see GCR(N) website HERE.

Prototype HST power car 41001 is away at Old Oak Common. 125 Group owns six Mk3 coaches: 12092, 10206 and 11074 which are shown in the photograph at Bristol Temple Meads on 1st May 2016, plus recently acquired 12065, 12087 and 12134 which are under restoration at GCR(N) Ruddington. Photo ©125 Group.

Mk3 Coach Restoration Progress

125 Group Mk3 TSO 12087 on test at Rushcliffe Halt GCRN with 56097 and 5376, 15/10/2017. ©K.Baldwin
Working lights inside Mk3 TSO 12087 ©B.Webber

125 Group is delighted to announce major restoration progress with the first of our recently purchased Mk3 coaches at Great Central Railway (Nottingham).

Tourist Standard Open (TSO) 12087 has been the focus of initial efforts. Following completion of roof repairs to make the vehicle watertight, a replacement brake distributor was installed plus some rectification work to PASSCOM pipework, allowing brakes and air systems to be tested and commissioned. Electrical work was then tackled, the coach has been treated to a new set of batteries, individual circuits were livened up and checked, including the lights. 12087 was then placed (locked out of use) at the end of the GCR(N) service train consist on Sunday 15th October and completed 60 miles of fault free running. During the last trip, our engineers allowed the Motor Alternator and Air-Conditioning System to operate on the move from Ruddington to Rushcliffe Halt, which all functioned normally, the batteries charging healthily at 109.3 volts.

Prior to acquisition by 125 Group, the vehicles had been stored out of use for many years. This major progress in less than two months has been possible through the dedication and determined efforts of our volunteers. Further work required to 12087 includes a new buckeye coupler and external door, toilet restoration plus some attention to flooring and carpets. We plan for the coach to re-enter public service on Saturday 4th November and look forward to welcoming passengers on-board!

Easter Saturday HST Valenta action at GCRN

Prototype HST Power Car 41001 and 125 Group’s matching Mk3 Coaches at Barnstone on the scenic Great Central Railway-Nottingham ©Jason Cross

Easter Saturday 15th April sees Prototype HST Power Car 41001 and 125 Group’s matching Mk3 coaches working passenger services for the first time this year at Great Central Railway-Nottingham, following important winter maintenance. The ‘Yellow Timetable’ will be in operation with departures from Ruddington at 1030, 1215, 1400 and 1545, Class 25 locomotive D7629 is planned to be on the south end of the set.

Services depart from Ruddington and head through the scenic Nottinghamshire countryside almost 10 miles southwards to Loughborough High Level where there is no station but the train gives a great view of the Midland Mainline and BRUSH Locomotive Works with class 73s and 92s usually on display. Ruddington station (parking available, sat-nav postcode NG11 6JS) is the operating base of GCRN with attractions for all the family, historic rolling stock under restoration plus a working ride-on miniature railway and model railway to watch, Rushcliffe Country Park is also close by. Trains also call at Rushcliffe Halt in the village of East Leake (sat-nav postcode LE12 6JT) where parking is also available.

Prototype Power Car 41001 is part of the National Collection and was restored to working order by 125 Group under the ‘Project Miller’ banner, GCRN is our home base. 41001 is fitted with a Paxman Valenta engine, the type originally used in all production Inter-City 125s. Join us on Easter Saturday and experience the marvellous screaming Valenta powering our historic HST on the former Great Central mainline!

Hot and cold drinks, also snacks will be available on-board the train, plus 125 Group sales items. Buy your ‘Bound for Craigy’ pin badges and quality HST merchandise here. For more information about tickets, timetables and how to get to GCRN, view their website www.gcrn.co.uk.

Bonnie Bo’ness

Prototype HST 41001 at Bo’ness ©125 Group

Prototype Power Car 41001 and 125 Group’s matching Mk3 coaches are headlining the Bo’ness & Kinneil Railway Summer Diesel Gala this weekend. The historic High Speed Train has been entertaining the enthusiasts for the past two days hauling passenger trains from Bo’ness up the stiff climb to Manuel.

Tomorrow Sunday 24th July is the last day of the gala and the Prototype HST is now planned to work the 1220, 1545 and 1900 departures from Bo’ness with our Valenta Power Car leading and hauling the these trains solo to Manuel. Note the 1220 is a new confirmed addition. For details about the B&KR click HERE, we hope you can join us for a trip on the splendid railway behind 41001.

On Monday 25th July 41001 and our Mk3 coaches 11074, 10206 and 12092 will start their homeward journey south, hauled by locomotives 20205 + 20189. The transit is expected to depart from Bo’ness Junction Exchange Siding at approx 0830 bound for York, with onward movement to Ruddington GCRN on Tuesday. More details will be posted here when available.

Prototype HST Bound for Bo’ness

HST Bubblebath ©125 Group

This weekend Prototype HST Power Car 41001 and 125 Group’s matching Mk3 coaches will be starring at the Bo’ness & Kinneil Railway Summer Diesel Gala, hauling passenger trains on the south bank of Firth of Forth between Bo’ness and Manuel. This will be the first time for 41001 working public trains in Scotland, the historic Valenta powered HST will be running on all three days Friday 22nd, Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th July. This exciting event will also feature other visiting locos plus the home diesel fleet. More information, including ticket prices and a link to the special timetable loco roster are available at the B&KR website HERE.

Our volunteers have been busy preparing the HST ready for the trip from its home base Great Central Railway (Nottingham) to Scotland. Traction for the mainline movements is planned to be 20189 + 20205, below is a summary of the booked workings with live schedule links courtesy of Realtime Trains:

Wednesday 20th July 2016

0Z20 14+56 Tyseley – Hotchley Hill/Rushcliffe Halt (arrive 17+36) via Nuneaton, Leicester, Loughborough South Jn 16/56. 20189 + 20205. http://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/R41096/2016/07/20/advanced

5Z41 16+30 Ruddington – Hotchley Hill/Rushcliffe Halt (arrive 17+15) via Fifty Steps (reverse), power car 41001 hauling Mk3 coaches 11074+10206+12092.

5M20 20+05 Hotchley Hill/Rushcliffe Halt – Derby (arrive 22+38) via Loughborough South Jn 20/45, Humberstone Road (run round/reverse). 20189 + 20205 hauling 41001, 11074, 10206 and 12092. http://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/K91059/2016/07/20/advanced

Thursday 21st July 2016

5S20 08+24 Derby – Bo’ness Junction Exchange Siding via Chesterfield, Beighton Jn, Moorthorpe, Milford, York Avoiding Line, East Coast Mainline, Newcastle, Dunbar, Monktonhall Jn, Millerhill, Suburban Line, Falkirk High, Cadder Down Passenger Loop (run round/reverse), Falkirk High, booked to arrive Bo’ness Junction Exchange Siding 23+32. 20189 + 20205 hauling 41001, 11074, 10206 and 12092. Note this movement is booked to be recessed in many loops for a great deal of time, see schedule for the full timing details. http://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/K91057/2016/07/21/advanced

Please note, as always, all of this information is provided in good faith but these movements, traction and consists can change at short notice on the day subject to operational constraints, the trains may run early or late or be cancelled.