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The Mad Hatter 11/05/19

Discussion in 'What's Going On' started by MarkinDurham, Apr 1, 2019.

  1. RalphW

    RalphW Part of the furniture Staff Member Administrator Friend

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    I like the shot from Frodsham hill, tried it myself in the past, it's a bit tricky though when it dives into the tunnel, trying to keep the pan at the same rate....
     
  2. Groks212

    Groks212 Member

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    I see it's still sat at York, almost 30 minutes late now.

    Dave B
     
  3. MarkinDurham

    MarkinDurham Member

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    Just been told by someone on the train - it's apparently a medical issue with one of the passengers. Paramedics have been called. Not good. I hope that the person involved will be OK.
     
  4. Groks212

    Groks212 Member

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    Thanks, hope the person is ok too.

    Dave B
     
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  5. green five

    green five Well-Known Member

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    Beautiful shot.

    Sent from my D6603 using Tapatalk
     
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  6. nige757

    nige757 Member

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    A bit late in posting, 60163 at Copy Pit.

     
  7. MarkinDurham

    MarkinDurham Member

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    On the move from York now, I see, almost an hour late.

    On a brighter note, it looks as though it has been a great day out, with good running and some stunning photos and videos posted. Thanks to all involved :)
     
  8. FlyingScotsman4472

    FlyingScotsman4472 Member

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    Running through the stunning Vale of Edale seen here at Nether Booth.

    DSC_2828affinity fb.jpg
     
  9. steamingyorkshire

    steamingyorkshire Member

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    'The Mad Hatter' on the 11th May 2019 hauled by LNER A1 No.60163 'Tornado'. Firstly seen at Bolton Percy, I then managed to chase it to Lydgate Viaduct on the climb to Copy Pit. I also nipped out to Goosehill near Normanton for the return, only to find upon arrival a new bridge with a 6ft parapet, thankfully with this work they've also done some tree clearance opening the cutting, 'Tornado' made a lovely noise on the climb out of Wakefield Kirkgate yesterday evening.

    Video Available Here

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  10. MellishR

    MellishR Well-Known Member Friend

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    Clearly another successful trip for Tornado, but can someone please explain the name? The only Mad Hatters that I was previously aware of were Lewis Carroll's character and the real people in the hat trade (in such places as Luton and Stockport) who suffered from mercury poisoning. What is the connection between any of them and either Darlington or Chester?
     
  11. D1002

    D1002 Well-Known Member

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    A bit tenuous perhaps but the Hatter and the March Hare were referred to as “both mad” by the Cheshire Cat.
     
  12. MellishR

    MellishR Well-Known Member Friend

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    I had thought of that but dismissed it as too tenuous. Perhaps they first thought of "The Cheshire Cat", then worried about that creature's talent for disappearing, and lateral thinking took them to the Hatter.
     
  13. Fulwood Flyer

    Fulwood Flyer Member

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    Here is an explanation from the Tornado tour description, which hopefully explains it;
    "The train name reflects the Alice in Wonderland author’s connection to both Cheshire, where Lewis Carroll was born, and the North East, where he lived for part of his childhood. That, and the fact that one must be a little bonkers to undertake the building of a steam locomotive – let alone do it twice!"
     
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  14. Oswald T Wistle

    Oswald T Wistle Well-Known Member Friend

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    A bit late with this one, yesterday was a long day, the trip was over some unfamiliar track and I had to watch the football on TV.

    The Mad Hatter 11 May 2019 – 60163 Tornado hauling 11+POB

    This was to have been part of Tornado’s 10th Anniversary celebrations but was postponed following last year’s problems; it is, as far as I can remember, the last of the postponed trips on which I, or more correctly, WE are travelling – Mrs W is out for another run. Mrs W likes Chester, Mrs W does not like getting up at 05.45 to drive (be driven) to Skipton to catch the train to Leeds and then another train to York to meet up with the Mad Hatter train. (The name of the train, a character from Alice in Wonderland whose author, Lewis Carroll was born in Cheshire and spent some of his childhood in the north east also recognises those who were “bonkers” enough to build a new steam loco.)

    It was a nice, sunny but cool morning, travel arrangements went to plan and we met up with Tornado at York. We were in coach K the last of 12. Coach K was only half full so we had a table to ourselves. We left York just over 3L and topped 60 just before Colton Jn; Ulleskelf and Church Fenton were passed at just under 60 but then down to 36 through Sherburn-in-Elmet then back up to 51 at Milford. We were slow through Castleford (24) and then some even slower running as we encountered traffic approaching Altofts Jn (Leeds-Nottingham). We were almost 1E as we stopped for our final pick up at Wakefield Kirkgate and we left RT. We arrived at our water stop at Healey Mills (3L); we stopped just west of the A642 overbridge. We were on the main line with the loco straddling the points at the western end of the Horbury UGL; the tanker was parked adjacent to the line. Snack time, a shared bacon butty from the buffet and a Danish pastry (each). Tornado’s tender replenished we left 4L.

    The run towards Hebden Bridge is a gentle rise averaging around 1/400 and should have been perfect for Tornado to show her paces. On several occasions just as we were up to speed we ran into traffic. After a stretch of slow running we were 13L at Milner Royd Jn and the Leeds-Man Vic stopper, that should have been behind us, was now in front (but close); by Hebden Bridge we were 17L. At Hall Royd Jn the stopper continued towards Todmorden whilst we headed right to Copy Pit . . . (For better GPS reception I moved to the other side of the coach and sat at a vacant seat opposite @Mick45305 – good to meet again).

    We passed Hall Royd Jn (18L) at 26.6 and in less than half a mile we were up to 32. As the loco dug in on the 1/65r speed held at 31 with the whole of the train now on the steep bit and Tornado appeared comfortable at that speed. When hauling 12 coaches up a notoriously steep bank what is it you do NOT want? Answer – a TSR. Leaving Cornholme the loco was eased and speed fell back to 22 but then power was re-applied and we accelerated to 25 at Portsmouth and, as the gradient eases (slightly) for the last mile or so to the top, we were soon back up to 31. 12 coaches back we passed the summit at 35.5; the front would have reached the summit at around 31/32. Hall Royd Jn to Copy Pit summit (4.43 miles) took 8m 41s and was thoroughly enjoyable; but we were 18½L and we had a slot to make on the wcml.

    We gathered speed down the hill, but slow through Burnley Manchester Rd (28) and Gannow Jn (32). It was time to cast a wistful glance to the right as we left Rose Grove (37). Tornado was busy on the 1/185r beyond Hapton (max 44) before she was eased, Huncoat (39) in anticipation of our descent to Accrington and the tight curve through the station (11 & 22¾L). There followed a brisk acceleration down the falling gradient through Church & Oswaldtwistle (47) followed by a lovely little climb through the Aspen Valley (1¼ miles @ 1/132r) to Rishton (49). Then it was down the hill with 55 across the dual carriageway at Whitebirk. The signals were clear so across Daisyfield Jn at 49 and into Blackburn Tunnel before bursting out through Blackburn station also at 49. Speed rose to 55 then power on through Mill Hill (48) and Cherry Tree (52 & 20L). Almost 60 through Pleasington and 65 past the golf course, the small peak that is Houghton summit (from the east) was topped at 55. Down Hoghton Bank with a maximum of 67 at Orams Xng and then we were slowing; Bamber Bridge (24 & 17¾L), slow as we branched left from the Preston line at Lostock Hall Jn (17 & 19L) and made our way down towards Farington Jn. We had a booked 5 min stop but luckily we were allowed out, without stopping, on to the FL (13L). Instead of the anticipated burst of speed, we trundled along waiting for the traffic in front to clear; this it did at Euxton Jn.

    Speed soon built on the falling gradient (1/986f) and we passed Balshaw Lane Jn at 51, the climb up to Coppull was topped at 50 and we dropped down to Wigan with a max of 69 near Standish. A couple of miles out from Wigan we were slowed but then the signals cleared and as we blasted through the station we accelerated from 62 to 64, there was a max of 72 before Springs Branch Jn and similar before Golborne Jn (12L). Some good running helped by a not too demanding schedule saw us 6L at Dallam Jn. We stopped at Warrington BQ for a scheduled crew change and left just under 5L. (I will include details of the crews at the end). A gentle trundle along the main line to Acton Grange Jn followed then off left and on to the Helsby line. Through Runcorn East (54 & 7L) and we were soon eating up the miles in the beautiful Cheshire countryside; Halton (67), Frodsham Jn (66) across the R Weaver (67) and through Frodsham at 71. We slowed to 42 through Helsby (5L) another quick sprint to 71 across the R Gowy before easing as we passed Mickle Trafford Jn (55 & 2½L), then we were stopping in pl4 at Chester (1L). This was a good finish to a cross country journey where other traffic can often throw a spanner in the works.

    The loco was reversing the stock out of the platform as Mrs W and I made our way to the city centre for some lunch. Lunch was a shared pizza at the local Bella Italia; good, plenty for two and came reasonably quickly. Mrs W did some shopping (I trailed along); she bought a pair of sandals. There was just time for an ice cream before making our way back to the station. Mrs W had a coconut cone and I had a honeycomb; £2.50 each – sorry Victor but Chester is tourists, shoppers and posers (thrift is not a word that is used in Chester).

    We arrived back at the station early. Tornado had been turned and, with the POB behind, it was attached to the western end of the stock and was waiting in one of the sidings behind the station. After a few minutes Tornado headed off to the west then reversed the ECS into platform 4. Coach K was directly behind the POB, so our seats were 1½ coaches back from the loco (and the toplight was open – yes!). A few seconds early, we were off and we retraced our route back as far as Mickle Trafford Jn where we headed right and onto the former CLC route to Manchester. It was a lovely late afternoon, sunny but still cool. The line is single track as far as Mouldsworth (MP31) but the climb towards Delamere starts before this, around MP34 near Little Barrow. (I don’t have a gradient profile but from the GPS data it appears that the line climbs for just over 5 miles at around 1/124r to a summit before Delamere). We hit the start of the climb at 49, at Mouldsworth there was a slowing to 25 (end of single track, crossing, platform?) but then the power came back on and we topped a noisy climb at 46.

    We were now around RT and as we passed through Cuddington someone on the footplate “found” the chime whistle. There were long toots, short toots, tunes were played and the chime whistle became the order of the day for all subsequent stations and for anyone else who might like it; the conventional whistle continued to be used for warning purposes. We slowed to 19 as we trundled across Northwich Viaduct, through Northwich at 37 and over 5E. Through Lostock Graham (44 & 7E) before we powered through Plumley at 59. (This was my first steam trip through Plumley and it was particularly poignant as it is where my great grandfather John William Taylor was station master for around 10 years prior to his death in 1904). We were currently running around 8E and passed through Knutsford at 40, then charged through Mobberley at 63 (I wonder if Dolly from Dinnerladies did move there?). We slowed to 11 approaching Hale, through Altrincham (18 but still over 7E), much of the running was easy paced. We switched to the freight line at Northenden Jn (4½E) and sauntered to stop on the bridge that crosses the Buxton line and waited to join the Hope Valley route at Hazel grove HL Jn. We had a scheduled 9 minute wait but arrived 4E and were 4L when given a green.

    Once out it is uphill all the way, speed had increased to 31 as we entered Disley Tunnel (2m 364yd @ 1/132r) we left at 38, average through tunnel, 37.7 and very noisy. We had a crew change booked for Chinley so nothing exceptional was attempted. The gradient tightens to 1/90ish and we passed New Mills S Jn SB at 41 but 6¼L. We stopped in Chinley 7½L and were 9½L when we restarted. Now climbing at 1/100 we passed Chinley SB at 26 this increased to 29 at Chinley E Jn (10½L). Approaching Cowburn Tunnel the gradient eases to 1/150r. Cowburn Tunnel (2m 182yd, initially 1/150r then level for the final ½ mile). I understand that there may be a 40mph TSR just beyond the eastern portal. We entered the tunnel at 35 and blasted along before easing seemingly before the level section, and left at 35; the average speed through tunnel was 36.4 (this supports there being a high intermediate speed in the tunnel followed by an easing for the TSR). Next comes 8 miles of downhill (mostly 1/100) until some uphill before Bamford. In lovely evening sunshine the footplate crew set about regaining some lost time. Speed was up to 61 at Edale, a mile further and this had increased to 71, Hope 60, now on a rising gradient we flew through Bamford at 67, Hathersage 64, Grindleford 64 and into Totley Tunnel at 63.8. Totley is the longest of the three tunnels, 3m 950yd, initially from the west it is level then falls first at 1/150 then 1/176, and braking we exited at 61; the transit time gave an average speed of 65.3 mph – noisy and wonderful!

    We joined the main line at Dore Station Jn, waited outside the station at at Sig81 for 6 mins and then passed through pl 2 before making our way north then crossing the very busy main line to stop in Brightside U&DGL (1¾L) for our final water stop – the road tanker was waiting. It was around 19.20 so snack time (hot cross buns and cheese and some grapes). A little over 3L we left the loop and crossed over the main line. Tornado seemed to take some time to get into her stride, only 14 through Meadowhall and a further ¾ mile before we topped 20. On several occasions it sounded as though the regulator was opened for a short time and then closed, following each closure Tornado lifted her safety valves. Whatever there may or may not have been appeared to settle and we climbed through Chapletown (1/100) at 27, into Tankersley Tunnel (1/120r) at 30, not far in a slight slip?, but out at 32. We reached 55 down the 1/100f with 48 through Elsecar where there was a shower of rain. By Wombwell (44) we were 9L, a quick sprint down the hill and 63 as we approached Swaithe Viaduct. There followed a climb (1/100) up to Barnsley (31 & 8L) where the rain was still falling and then on to a new section of line for me. We sped through Darton at 57 and into the single bore of Woolley New Tunnel at 58 and out at 63 before slowing for Horbury Jn (6L) where we rejoined the line to Wakefield Kirkgate (arr 5L/dep 8½L).

    We left Wakefield on the final leg of our journey, we passed Turners Lane Jn (9L) then we accelerated up to 57 at Normanton where looking to the left revealed a flaming red sky as the sun set. A forgiving schedule saw us only 3L at Castleford (26), once clear of the station speed rose to the high 50s then 67 near Milford SB and 70 at Sherburn Jn. Now 1E we were slowed to 7 as we approached Church Fenton S Jn, followed by 16 through the station. Was there just time for one last hurrah? Back up to 51 through Ulleskelf with a max of 66 at Copmanthorpe but soon we were slowing and stopped in pl11 at York (RT).

    There was just time for one last look at the loco; she looked lovely and “grubby” after a long days work, then she moved off north (NRM?). As we left the train was in the platform waiting for a diesel to take it the last few miles along the ecml. We caught the service train back to Leeds and then a packed Leeds to Skipton train (I didn’t know just how many “jolly” people used this late night service). A drive home on quiet roads, save for the odd idiot – present company excepted, and home a few minutes after midnight.

    This was a long day, we were out and about for around 18 hours, but it was thoroughly enjoyable. My thanks to all who organised and operated the trip; it went to plan. The A1SLT’s stewarding is improving but can/should get better with experience to match or even exceed that of other operators. My personal highlights: the ease with which Tornado regained speed after the TSR on Copy Pit; travelling the CLC from Chester, especially through Plumley; the rollickingly good and fast descent down the Hope Valley, speed, noise, cinders and plenty of chime whistle (and I mean plenty). .

    Finally the crew details, I got all the information on Chester station platform only a couple of minutes before departure. My seemingly clear notes were less understandable when I read them back. Apologies for any errors or omissions they are almost certainly mine.

    Start to WBQ: driver Steve Hanczar, fireman Steve Matthews, TI Jim Smith, route conductor (Milford to WBQ) Andy Denton.

    WBQ to Chester: driver Keith Murfin, fireman Andy Denton, TI Bob Hart

    Chester to Chinley: driver Keith Murfin, fireman Dave Proctor, TI Bob Hart, route conductor (from Northenden Jn) Ray Eyre

    Chinley to York: driver Tony Jones, fireman Dave Proctor, TI Tom Rees, route conductor (to Brightside) Ray Eyre, (from Brightside) Andy Barker
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2019
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  15. Linesider

    Linesider Member

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  16. staffordian

    staffordian Well-Known Member

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    There have been some great videos of this train, but this one is in a class of it's own. Absolutely superb!
     
  17. D1002

    D1002 Well-Known Member

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    It’s Linesider, so only to be expected!
     
  18. Linesider

    Linesider Member

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    Many thanks, both, very kind and much appreciated. Always enjoy filming steam on Copy Pit - just wish there was more of it.
     
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  19. Fulwood Flyer

    Fulwood Flyer Member

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    Thank you very much, appreciated
     
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  20. D1002

    D1002 Well-Known Member

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    No problem. We both do video, but when it comes to quality, I think the only thing we have in common is that we both have the same forename:).
    David.
     
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