Running in turns - Glasgow Queen Street to Edinburgh Waverley - 1934 to 1939

Colin Hope

I was lucky enough in my school days to travel between Dullatur and Glasgow Queen Street High Level most schooldays. I travelled on the 07.56 Arriving Queen Street 08.31. This was made up usually of modern LNER Gresley corridor stock - some 7 carriages including 2 brake thirds, 1 full 7 compartment side corridor 1st class & 4 8 compartment side corridor 3rds - remember no 2nd class in Scotland in those days. The stock normally had end doors, although on occasion there might be earlier side corridor stock with individual compartment doors. No restaurant car was included.

Cowlairs Incline: Empty coaches banked by Director Class 4-4-0 2680 Lucy Ashton on Cowlairs Incline in September 1948. On the front of the train is N15 0-6-2T 9127. See image [[15567]] G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 20/09/1948

The typical train engines were 440 director class GC designed 440 but built for the Scottish area in 1924/25 and named after characters in Scott's Waverley novels. Remember at that time the NB had under 20 large Atlantics 4-4-2s mainly needed for the Edinburgh to Aberdeen lines and Edinburgh to Newcastle or Edinburgh to Carlisle, so anything over 5 or 6 carriages needed double heading. The LNER also built powerful 440 D49 Shires. One is still in preservation at Bo'ness; 'Morayshire'. Note no English Shires were allocated and no D49 Hunts operated in Scotland. In their lined Apple green they looked the part, but sometimes in greasy, wet or icy conditions the large driving wheels could slip with some spectacular results for the onlooker. In addition we had the odd A1; Merry Hampton was used When A3s came along we had Windsor Lad or Spion Cop to take us a treat indeed, usually as a result of a call from Eastfield for an A3 to take The Queen of Scots all Pullman train for Leeds and Kings Cross not have suitable power!

Bo'ness: LNER class D49 No 246 Morayshire at Boness on 11 July 2008. Colin Miller 11/07/2008

We also had the first A4 s in Black Smokebox & Apple green Golden Eagle and two or three more before Garter Blue with valances in pre war days - the ones to be used for the West Riding and Coronation trainsets had Chrome nos on cab & chrome LNER on tender. Some had corridor tenders from the 1928 'Flying Scotsman' summer non stop between Kings Cross and Edinburgh and were transferred to the A4 from the A1s &A3s used on the non stop. The coaches for the 2 special trains were finished in Garter Blue with chrome lettering whilst the Flying Scotsman had the LNER teak coaches.

Doncaster Works: Immaculate Gresley V2 2-6-2 4771 Green Arrow stands at Doncaster in 1984. This is the sole survivor of the 184 locomotives of the class built at Doncaster and Darlington works between 1936 and 1944. Colin Alexander //1984

When the V2 Green Arrows came along we had 1 or 2 of these appear on our train. Even the almighty P2s 2-8-2s appeared when they had been in the shops for repair. This running in turn required the train to stop at every stop and when it reached Polmont it had to set back into the loop to allow faster trains to overtake. The drivers and engines had really to prove their worth and what a thrill for us schoolboys to guess which engine was going to head the train We even had the double chimney A4s running in, but one we had not was 'Hush Hush', so called as the LMS were not to know about this engine which sported an air smoothed casing similar in some degree to Cock of the North P2 !0,000 had a Yarrow High Pressure Boiler stressed to 450 psi and from memory finished in grey and not green The only time I saw it was passing Dullatur running light engine towards Glasgow heading for Yarrows or their engineers. It was not really a success so it was rebuilt with stanard 250psi boiler in streamlined fashion of a Garter Blue A4 but of course retainig 4-6-4 wheel arrangement. Ah these were the Golden days of Steam as far as I was concerned.