Highlights of their last stand. May Derby's finest live long in the memories of those that knew them and travelled behind them.
The workings included in this page were initially greatly influenced by the arrival of the summer timetable in May 1987 which saw a number of serious changes for the use of the Class 45's from the previous winter timetable of 1986/87.
The locomotive hauled Trans-Pennine services were mostly replaced by Class 150/2 Sprinters working the routes Hull - North Wales, Scarborough - Liverpool and Hull - Chester, with the Liverpool - Newcastle services continuing to be locomotive hauled by Class 47/4s. This would mark the end for the Class 45 working over this route, so noted in those final days were:
Unfortunately for the authorities the Class 45s continued to be used from May 11th on services out of Liverpool, so noted on 11th were 45150, 12th 45108, 13th 45108 & 18th 45149.
Elsewhere, on May 9th the last Cardiff - Glasgow service utilised 45141 instead of the more normal pair of Class 50s.
Although the idea was to cover the last year of operation of the Class 45's it would be unfortunate to leave out the effort off 45033 commencing during the May Bank Holiday weekend. The Class 45/0's no longer had operational boilers so their choice for any passenger workings was immediately handicapped. The passenger duties started on May 23rd when the the 1E82 9.03 Liverpool - Newcastle failed in the Huddersfield area and was then taken forward by 45033. The movements of 45033 are not recorded on May 24th but on Monday May 25th 45033 worked the 1E46 17.45 Carlisle - Leeds and remained on the diagram for the rest of the week. The diagram included the 2P00 06.00 Skipton - Carlisle, 1E20 10.05 Carlisle - Leeds, the 1E61 13.02 return and the aforementioned 1E46 17.45 return to Leeds. The passenger working continued on the Saturday when 45033 worked an Appleby - St Pancras charter as far as Leeds!
The Liverpool - Newcastle passenger services continued to see Class 45 haulage through the end of May. The new Sprinter services operating alongside the Class 45 hauled services suffered from severe overcrowding. Class 45s operating out of Liverpool included 45137 (May 27th) & 45145 (May 30th). On May 23rd 45124 worked the 06.23 Leeds - Poole and the 07.07 Sheffield - Skegness was worked by 45107.
The summer timetable also saw changes to the few locomotive hauled Midland main line services. The overnight 00.05 St Pancras - Derby and the 23.59 Sheffield - St Pancras were eliminated as were the daytime 08.00 Nottingham - St Pancras and the 16.35 St Pancras - Nottingham. On May 10th the 16.20 ex-St Pancras carried headboards, hauled by 45137. May 11th saw 45128 on the 17.30 ex-St Pancras, whilst 45150 worked a service on May 22nd. Like the Trans-Pennine route, it would be left to Class 47/4s to handle the locomotive hauled services.
Because of the dwindling number of Class 45's and their lack of passenger diagrams it was rare to find the continuous use of one on any diagram, such as with 45033 detailed above, but from time to time other Class 45's did manage to put in some lengthy runs as detailed in the notes below. These notes do not constitute a record of all the workings, rather a sampling of what the Class 45's got up to in their final year.
As June opened there were thirty seven Class 45's still in service, sixteen Class 45/0's and twenty one Class 45/1's, all allocated to Tinsley and available for a variety of duties, principally parcels, departmental and freight workings. For the Class 45/1's there were twelve weekday diagrams, with the Class 45/0's having eight weekday diagrams - the weekend diagrams were less. With the existing locomotives an availability of 66% was required to cover the diagrams. The diagrams primarily involved workings over the LMR,ER & WR, but occasional visits were made to the ScR. The freight workings took these Class 45s to Frodingham/Scunthorpe, Knottingley, Red Bank on freight and parcels duties.
Of these remaining Peaks seven were from those built at Derby, and two; 45037 & 45107 would remain in service until the end of July 1988, just a week short of the withdrawal of the final members from regular service.
Officially the end of the 1986/87 winter timetable had seen the demise of their scheduled passenger diagrams on the Midland mainline and the Trans-Pennine route, however they would return to these routes on passenger workings on an occasional basis. For instance as June began the Trans-Pennine route saw extensive use of Class 45's on passenger workings, with at least four making multiple trips in the first half of June. These were diagrammed for Class 47/4's, with the Class 45/1's filling in due to failures, shortages or late running.
The 10.30 Berwick - Newcastle dmu required the assistance of 45022 on June 3rd.
June 6th saw Hertfordshire Railtours 'The Hills & Cities No. 2' being hauled throughout by Class 45's. The tour started with 45029 at Euston, travelling up the WCML, the Crewe avoiding line, Middlewich, Warrington Bank Quay, then east via a circuitous route to Manchester Victoria. From here it was off to Rochdale and across the Pennines via Hebden Bridge, then south-east to Criggleston, Barnsley and Sheffield. Here 45062 took over following the Hope Valley route to Ashburys, then more circuitous running to Stockport, Stoke, Stone and Rugeley. From here it was over to Walsall and Aston for a run down the WCML to Euston.
Their decreasing numbers made the Class 45s good candidates for Open Days, on June 6th 45140 was one of the exhibits at Worksop Open Day.
45150 worked the 09.03 Liverpool - Newcastle on June 13th, being noted a couple of days later on freight workings from the Liverpool area. All was not well at Scunthorpe on June 15th, 45058 was noted derailed in the yard whilst 45110 required a tow to Tinsley for repairs, two other Peaks were noted this day at Scunthorpe; 45007 & 45012. The presence of the two Class 45/0's at Scunthorpe was a result of the Class 45/0 diagrams, Frodingham, Holbeck & Tinsley each had two diagrams, whilst Buxton & Healey Mills each had one.
On June 18th 45142 caught fire at Slaithwaite whilst working an early morning parcels train, the fire damage proved terminal for this veteran, by the end of the month 45142 was withdrawn.
45113 had several days covering on NE/SW Class 47/4 diagrams, a not uncommon event during the summer if the 47/4's were not available for whatever reason. The workings began on June 19th when 45113 handled the 1O05 7.45 Newcastle - Poole as far as Birmingham, coming back with the 1E63 10.38 Poole - Newcastle. The next day it worked the 1O05 8.03 Newcastle - Weymouth as far as Birmingham, returning with the 1E63 9.55 Weymouth - Newcastle. And on the 21st it worked the 14.40 Newcastle - Poole to Birmingham.
45062 was back in action on the WCML when it started out from Euston on June 27th with Hertfordshire railtours 'The Bakers Dozen'. However all was not well with 45062 and twenty six years of active service ended about fifteen minutes out from Euston when the Peak became a failure. 31305 dragged 45062 and its train on to Birmingham New Street where 45128 was waiting to take over. 45128 headed out to Worcester, Hereford, Maindee Curve, Filton Jct, Bath Spa and Westbury. This tour appeared to have encountered pathing problems in the Malvern area, causing delays of over an hour. From here the tour followed the LSWR line into Waterloo, still with 45128 in charge. 45062 is believed not to have run again being withdrawn on July 2nd.
Class 45s visiting Hereford included 45121 on June 26th, sent from Severn Tunnel Jct to collect a train of continuously welded rail. Before this happened it was used to rescue a failed southbound parcels train at Craven Arms, taking it to Hereford, where 45121 was removed to await the arrival of the track train. Three days later on June 29th 45121 was in charge of the 1E51 MO 9.07 Bristol Parkway - York relief.
During the first week of July a Centenary celebration at Darlington was attended by a number of rail vehicles, including withdrawn 45070 which was brought in from Thornaby by 37109 on June 27th.
On July 2nd 45106 was on Trans-Pennine passenger duty working the 10.25 Newcastle - Liverpool forward from Leeds when 47497 was declared a failure.
Class 45's continued to be frequent visitors to the Frodingham area, normally on freight service. On July 1st 45012 was sent out on a freight to Healey Mills, the crew brought back 45113 which remained in the area for at least two weeks working steel traffic.
The above view was a result of a fill-in turn in between long distance mail/van trains. The twelve diagrams booked for the Class 45/1's involved three diagrams across the Trans-Pennine route with newspapers from Manchester to Leeds, York & Newcastle, one overnight van train from Manchester to Peterborough with a locomotive change at Leicester, four overnight mail/van workings over the Midland mainline and three similar workings over the NE/SW route between Newcastle, Leeds & Bristol. On these NE/SW workings, before heading back north with the balancing overnight return working, Bristol would use the locomotive to work the 2C44 16.48 Bristol - Weston Super Mare and the return 2C79 17.50. This working could produce anything between a Class 31 and a Class 47, the Class 45/1's were only occasionally used. One other turn that was used by these locomotives was the 2O60 16.20 Bristol - Weymouth and the return 2V70 19.35.
On July 9th 45034 worked an engineer's train from Radyr to Bristol.
As mentioned elsewhere in the text it was not easy for a single locomotive to settle down into a diagram for any length of time. However on July 13th 45115 had a good run on the diagram featuring the 1E45 08.32 Birmingham - York and the 1M06 18.09 return when it worked these runs on July 13/14/15 & 17th.
The 11.10 Cardiff - Derby/Leeds relief were occasionally worked by Class 45's, 45041 on 17th & 45108 on 25th.
July 22nd was a busy day for 45041, it replaced a Class 31 at Leicester on the 09.29 Ipswich - Birmingham, coming back on the 14.20 as far as Peterborough. A sorry duty for 45058 was the movement of 27041/42/45 from Tyne Yard towards Leicester on July 28th.
The two photographs above feature two of the booked Summer Saturday Class 45/1 diagrams operating over the NE/SW route. The top view featured a diagram that commenced on the Friday night with the 1V10 21.57 Leeds - Plymouth mail, the Class 45/1 working as far as Bristol. The next day it would return northwards from Bristol with the 1E32 09.58 Penzance - Leeds (SO). The lower photograph featured the diagram that started out with the Friday's only 1V27 22.33 Bradford - Paignton to Bristol, returning from there on the Saturday with the 1E65 09.25 Newquay - Newcastle.
A Leicester - Edinburgh day excursion on August 13th was noted with 45104 in charge throughout.
The Heaton - Red Bank vans continued to be a Class 45/1 diagram, though other Classes were often noted, 45058 on August 13th and 45056 the next day. More Trans-Pennine workings included 45128 on August 17th's 09.03 Liverpool - Newcastle and 12.25 return, the same locomotive working the 11.03 to Newcastle on 19th. Having reached Newcastle 45128 was then used on the 17.18 to Berwick and 18.46 return.
On August 18th 45121 expired at Bedford on the down rubbish Freightliner.
August 20th saw 45046 work a mid morning Llandudno Jct - Holyhead freight. Two days later 45037 & 45140 were assisting on local services in the Newcastle area due to a shortage of serviceable Heaton based dmu's.
45106 began a lengthy series of passenger workings, commencing on August 22nd and covering some Class 47/4 diagrams. It started with the 1V67 10.10 Scarborough - Paignton as far as Bristol, returning north with the 1M79 16.28 Newquay - Wolverhampton. Its workings on August 23rd were not recorded, but for August 24/25/27 & 28th it worked the 1E45 08.32 Birmingham - York and 1M86 18.09 return.
It was like old times on the southern end of the Midland mainline on the afternoon of August 21st when various parcels and passenger workings brought a total of eight Class 45's to the area. The Midland mainline passenger services were in the hands of HST sets and Class 47/4's, it was the mail and van trains from St Pancras to Leicester, Nottingham, Derby, Burton & Leeds that were diagrammed for the Class 45's. But with the Class 45's in the area it came as no surprise for a variety of reasons that they would end up on the occasional passenger working. Perhaps the two most frequent services on the Midland mainline featuring Class 45 haulage were the 1P13 17.30 St Pancras - Derby (Mon - Thur) and running to Leeds on Fridays as the 1E27. Although Class 45/1's predominated, the occasional Class 45/0 showed up such as 45037 on June 8th.
In between NE/SW mail van workings 45115 was sent out on the 16.20 Bristol - Weymouth and the return 19.35 to Bristol on August 28th.
On September 1st Hertfordshire Railtours ran 'The Hadrian Whistlestop'. It was worked from Kings Cross to Newcastle by 47582, from here 45144 headed out to Sunderland, Hartlepool and Billingham before swinging northwards to Ferryhill and Durham, turning west at Norwood Jct to join the route to Carlisle. At Upperby Jct 47479 took over to Preston, where 85010 was on hand for the run back to Euston. On this day 45104 was noted at Hull Botanic Gardens depot.
Recorded Class 45 workings on September 5th included 45049 on 11.03 Liverpool - Newcastle, 45041 on 14.00 Sheffield - Heaton ECS and the view below:
The third passenger diagram for the Class 45/1's operating over the NE/SE route during the summer of 1987 is featured above. The diagram started out with the locomotive working the 1E73 00.05 St Pancras - Leeds mail. At Leeds the locomotive picked up a set of coaching stock which was worked as the 07.32 Leeds - Scarborough ecs prior to becoming the 1V67 10.10 Scarborough - Paignton. As in the other two diagrams the Class 45/1 was removed at Bristol and returned north on the 1E06 17.44 Bristol - Leeds mail.
For rail passengers Sunday travel could be quite scary if engineering works, diversions and other goodies had turned the timetable into a cobweb of delays, interruptions, cancellations and the feared bustitutions. For the enthusiast looking for Class 45 haulage on a Sunday during the summer of 1987 it was probably best not to bother, there were only two diagrams operating and these did not involve much mileage. One of these diagrams features in the above view of 45107 at Manchester Piccadilly. The diagram started the previous day with the locomotive allocated to the 1E02 10.52 (SO) Skegness - Sheffield, having reached Sheffield the locomotive would run light to Manchester and come back on the Sunday morning with the 1E66 01.35 Manchester Piccadilly - Cleethorpes newspapers, taking the train as far as Sheffield, thence to Tinsley for refuelling. It was then back to Sheffield to takeover the 1M74 07.20 Harwich Parkeston Quay - Manchester Piccadilly service, and would then come back to Sheffield with the return 1E87 15.25 working.
The Sheffield - Heaton ECS featured 45115 September 12th.
Passenger work was the order of the day for 45106 on September 13th working the 10.37 Liverpool Lime Street - Birmingham to Crewe, and later the 14.29 Lime St - Euston again to Crewe. The end of the locomotive hauled Trans-Pennine services made Peaks on the North Wales main line an instant rarity. However they were still used on freights, particularly the ballast workings to Penmaenmawr, so noted was 45106 on 14th from Speke. The same locomotive took over the 14.25 Newcastle - Liverpool at York on September 24th after 47407 became a failure. It returned over the Trans-Pennine route the next day with the 09.03 to Newcastle.
The 14.25 Newcastle - Liverpool was hauled by 45115 on September 19th.
The Summer timetable was set to end on October 4th 1987 and with it came concern that it would be the end for the Class 45's. Withdrawals had continued throughout the summer, leaving just twenty two in service at the beginning of October. Because of this uncertainty two railtours had been organised to mourn the possible demise of the class.
The first of these railtours was Hertfordshire Railtours 'Thames-Eden' on September 26th, running between London & Carlisle and celebrating some of the first routes covered by the Class 45's. 45052 started the tour out of St Pancras, via the Erewash valley line to Dore South then along the Hope Valley route to Hazel Grove, Stockport, Stalybridge and across the Pennines to Leeds. Here 45007 & 45128 worked a round trip to Carlisle over the Settle & Carlisle route. Back at Leeds 45037 took over for a run back to Kings Cross via Wakefield & Doncaster. Since the Class 45/0's no longer had operative boilers it must have been a cool trip for most of the journey, 45128 was the 'inside' locomotive northwards from Leeds so would have been able to provide heat.
The 16.40 Taunton - Bristol was hauled by 45107 on December 30th, presumably it also worked the 15.20 from Bristol.
Pathfinder Tours October 3rd 'The 45 Finale' was another tour again handled throughout by Peaks, running as the 1Z46 06.30 Bristol - Scarborough, but it was certainly not quite their finale. 45106 started the tour from Bristol Temple Meads taking the NE/SW route via Worcester to Birmingham New Street, here 45007 joined the train, apparently all was not well with 45106. At Leicester 45107 was waiting to replace the ailing 45106 for the straightforward run to Scarborough via Sheffield & Ferrybridge. From there it was south to Hull, west to Goole and Doncaster, down the ECML to Peterborough, then cross country to Leicester and Birmingham New Street. Here 45007 was removed and 45107 returned to Bristol per the outward route.
The next day BR Tyseley/Birmingham Railway Museum held a joint Open Day, amongst many vehicles on display was 45007.
October 6th found 45141 working the 09.03 Liverpool - Newcastle. 45121 worked an Edge Hill - Penmaenmawr ballast on October 12th.
The arrival of the winter timetable continued to see Class 45's working the 16.48 Bristol - Weston Super Mare and 17.50 return. Also in the Bristol area on 13th & 14th 45106 was busy on freights, including the 19.35 Bristol - Derby mails on 13th.
On December 16th 45144 worked the 19.00 Taunton - Bristol, shortly afterwards it sustained derailment damage at Malago Vale carriage sidings, bringing to an end a career of just over twenty five years.
The Hertfordshire Railtours 'Mersey Docker' ran on February 20th. 47483 took the train from Euston via Birmingham New Street, Stafford, Stoke on Trent and Manchester Piccadilly to Trafford Park Freightliner Terminal. Here 45128 was waiting to take the railtour over many lines in the Manchester and Wirral Peninsula areas, reaching as far north as Oldham, before heading south to Stockport, then west to Northwich, Ellesmere Port, north to Rock Ferry and Bidston before heading south to Wrexham, Shrewsbury and Wolverhampton. Here 85035 took over for the run to Euston.
A week later on the 27th 45110 was in charge of the Pathfinder Tours 'Pembroke Coast Explorer'. The tour started at Derby making its way west via Worcester, Bristol Parkway and Cardiff to Llandeilo Jct. Here 37428 took the train on to Pembroke Dock and then back to Whitland. Here 45110 took over the train, with 37428 still on the rear as far as Letterston Jct, at this point 37428 took the lead, still with 45110 attached, travelling over the Trecwn branch. From the end of the branch 45110 led the train to Fishguard Harbour. Is this the first Peak to reach Fishguard Harbour? 45110 returned the train via the direct outward route to Derby.
When 91001 required moving from Derby to Bounds Green on April 18th it was left for 45115 to do the job.
45110 was the first locomotive in charge of May 2nd's Hertfordshire Railtours 'The Avon Lady', working from St Pancras to Leicester via Corby and Syston Jct. At Leicester 45052 took over for the run to Stratford upon Avon via Water Orton and Tyseley. It was then north to Stafford via Solihull, Birmingham New Street, Bescot and Rugeley. From Stafford it was south down the WCML Trent Valley line to Bletchley, via Claydon L&NE Jct to Aylesbury and south to Marylebone.
A Merrymaker excursion ran on May 7th from Leicester to Carlisle, apparently out and back via the Settle & Carlisle route, 45141 was in charge throughout.
On May 14th Pathfinder Railtours ran their 'Peak-N-Sea' railtour, starting at Swindon and reaching as far north as Blackpool North. 47450 worked the train from Swindon to Bristol, Cheltenham, Worcester & Birmingham New Street. Here the Class 47 was replaced by 45110 for the short run to Leicester. 45052 took over here for the bulk of the railtour to Loughborough, Sheet Stores Jct, Uttoxeter, Stoke, Stockport and Buxton. Reversing here it ran via Manchester Piccadilly, Bolton and Chorley to Blackpool North. Retracing its tracks to Preston the tour headed south to Frodsham Jct, Helsby, Chester, Ruabon, Gobowen, Shrewsbury, Wolverhampton, Walsall and Birmingham New Street. Here 47450 was on hand to retrace its route home.
45107 was noted at Bedford Open Day on May 29th and again at Coalville Open Day on June 5th. For the Bedford Open Day a Kettering - Bedford shuttle utilised 45128.
On July 2nd 45046 & 45110 were noted in service at York.
The Torbay Explorer, a British Rail excursion ran on July 7th from Derby & Leicester to Paignton. 45110 was bringing the stock from Oxley when it was declared a failure, 47417 took the tour as far as Leicester where 45141 took over for the remainder of the tour.
A Derby - Skegness working was handled by 45037 on July 10th.
On July 13th there were not enough Sprinters to cover the Derby - Crewe run so 45107 and three coaches filled in for two trips.
July 17th saw the running of Pathfinder Tours 'Conway Crusader', starting at Reading behind 50035 and running via Bristol, Gloucester and Worcester to Birmingham New Street. Here 45012 took over to run via Bescot, Shrewsbury and Chester to Llandudno. At Llandundo 47238 was added for the round trip run to Blaneau Ffestiniog and the run out to Holyhead. Fumes in the cab of 45012 were the reason for the addition of 47238, which did struggle on the run to Blaneau. 45012 returned the train to Crewe where 45103 took the railtour via Shrewsbury to Birmingham New Street, here 50035 was on hand to return to Reading via the outward route.
By July 19th 45012 had reached Tinsley and was out of service, to be condemned on July 27th with power unit defects.
45107 was noted at Southport on July 26th, the next day it was withdrawn.
July 30th was a busy day for 45141, it started out with a Leeds - Tenby service as far as Cardiff, then a parcels working to Bristol, then back up the NE/SW route on the 1E94 Bristol - Newcastle.
Regular operation of the Peaks ended during the first week of August, when the remaining few were withdrawn and put out to pasture. Some would linger for another five years before finally being laid to rest at MC Metals, Glasgow.
The opportunity was taken to create a celebrity Peak, much along the lines of Class 40 D200/40122. The locomotive chosen for this special treatment was 45106, but I guess that's another story.
More to follow as time permits.
Resources and other reading:
Page added September 14th 2005.