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Extremly common Units originally built as 2 or 3-car but many now reformed as Mongrel 3-car particularly in the FGW/GWR region.
The Class158/9 3-car mongrel's seem to be largely a thing of the past with most of them now being reformed into their original 2-car form.Thus goving GWR a 50% increase in available individual Units.However this working '1F14' the 10:23 from Portsmouth Harbour to Cardif-Central required a pair to maintain sufficient seating on these popular services.So here is 158747 and 158763 passing Wylye with a rather ghostly looking driver peering out of the shadows!
..29 november 2019..
158953 passes a very green Wylye with '1F11' the 10:48 from Bristol-parkway going only as far as Fareham.Engineering Works probably preventing it from going to its normal destination of Portsmouth Harbour.
..14 september 2019..
GWR's Dirge-Green 3-car Mongrel 158952 rolls over the summit of the Upton Scudamore incline prior to the drop down into Westbury.The train being '1F24' the 14:23 from Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff-Central.
..20 august 2019..
158887 in the original style of livery for 'South Western Railway' slows on the approach to Redbridge-Junction with '2R62' the 16:56 from Salisbury going to Romsey (twice) via Eastleigh.
..27 june 2019..
2-car 158766 gets away from its station stop at Olffield Park in Bath with '1F13' the 11:08 from Cardiff-Central heading for Portsmouth Harbour.The two carriages were jammed full to standing,not really an adequate number of seats for such a long distance service.But then GWR probably couldn't give a toss for its long suffering passengers--do they!
..7 october 2018..
158956 approaches Masters Farm Crossing just west of Fairwood Junction with '2C18' the 13:24 from Filton-Abbey Wood going to Frome.This straight and level section of track used to be the site of a set of water troughs to allow steam trains to replenish their tenders whilst on the move.Naturally no trace whatsover of these long long installations now exist!
..17 september 2018..
South Western Railway's 158888 runs out of Eastleigh with '2S27' the 11:07 from Romsey to Salisbury via Southampton. Apart from a couple of 158's and 159's and currently just a pair of 444/450-EMU's as well this newish company have made very little effort to re-brand their coaching stock apart from cheapo stickers to cover up the SWT ownership of the previous franchise!
..7 august 2018..
2-Car 158888 was the first 'South Western Railway' liveried DMU. Here seen departing Redbridge with '2S35' the 13:07 from Romsey to Salisbury via Eastleigh.
..6 august 2018..
Today's '1F19' the 13:30 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour was in the hands of Mongrel-158951.Yesterday the poor fare paying customers had to endure this journey in a Class-150 with no air-conditioning.I bet that was interesting given it was only a 2-car as well.Having to stand as well as die from heat-stroke is really good GWR customer service I would say! It is seen at Heytesbury in the Wylye Valley.
..10 july 2018..
One of the few remaining FGW-Blue 158-Mongrels approaches a shadowy Clink Road Junction in Frome with '2O94' the 15:04 from Worcester Foregate Street to Weymouth.It should have started at Great Malvern but that section of the journey was cancelled due to 'A problem with the traction equipment'.That was todays excuse anyway!
..2 july 2018..
A rather shiny 158951 is seen on the approach to Hawkeridge-Junction with '1P11' the 11:00 from Bristol-Parkway to Portsmouth Harbour.The GWR-Green colours blanding in nicely with the undergrowth!
..27 june 2018..
158798,GWR's only genuine 3-car Class-158 that used to be running around until quite recently in 'Springboard' Charity Blue Livery but now is regretfully totally anonymous in sludge-green gets away from Westbury as '1V94' the long distance service from Brighton (08:59 off) heading for Great Malvern.Seen approaching Hawkeridge Junction nr Westbury.Note the Turbo 166202 sat in the head-shunt here await to call to Westbury Station for its next turn of duty.
..27 june 2018..
One of GWR's now almost universally liveried Green 158/9's cruises through Claverton in the Limpley Stoke Valley with 1F18' the 12:23 from Portsmouth Harbour to Bristol Parkway instead of its usual destination of Cardiff-Central.The Severn Tunnel being currently closed for engineering works.
..26 june 2018..
158/9 Mongrel 158952 gleams in its new coat of GWR-Green.There cannot be many left now in the FGW-Blue-can there? Here it is with '1F19' the 14:01 from Bristol-Parkway to Portsmouth Harbour.There are no trains from Cardiff currently as the Severn-tunnel is closed for engineering works-probably to do with the over-budget electrification shambles!
..23 june 2018..
158954,one of the few remaining FGW-Blue Class158/9 mongrels passes Upton Scudamore with the 14:23 from Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff Central service.Arn Hill nr Warminster looming in the background.
..11 june 2018..
GWR seem to be rather short of DMU's currently here around Westbury.Even Class-153's have made a reappearance.Indeed this seems to be a 'hire-in' from South Western Railway. So this is 158888 in SW-Rly's latest colours working '2E26' the 16:28 from Warminster to Gloucester.Apparantly there seems to be some kind of problem with the cascaded Class-166's or maybe with the cascade itself requiring them to go back temporarity from wence they came! All about par for the coarse on today disjointed railways!
..9 june 2018..
'Hire-in' 158884 in hybrid livery form comprising SW-Trains livery and South-Western Railway branding is seen at Westbury shuttling about changing platforms as an ECS.All very clean and shiny.The Salisbury Depot train cleaning machine seemingly doing an excellent job!
..5 may 2018..
GWR's Mongrel 3-car 158951 passes Hawkeridge Junction with '1F11' the 10:22 from Cardiff-Central going down to the South Coast at Portsmouth Harbour.
..3 may 2018..
With the number os FGW-Blue 158/9's dwindling fast it was nice to picture one here at Southview Farm nr Trowbridge since this stretch ofline has been cleared out of rampant bushes and shrubs. So here is 158994 working '1F17'the 12:22 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour in a nice patch of blue sky in between the far more common cloudy patches!
..25 april 2018..
With the urban sprawl now creeping well into the countryside between Trowbridge and Westbury clearly visible in the background GWR-Green liveried 158957 passes Southview Farm with '1F16' the 11:23 from Portsmouth Harbour going to Cardiff-Central.
..25 april 2018..
GWR-Green 158951 climbs up through Upton-Scudamore with 1F19' the 13:30 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour. Over the past 3 or 4 days the temperatures have risen to well over 25 degrees C locally with plenty of sunshine.In that time all the bushes have miraculously greened up very quickly,a week or so ago this scene would have been mainly brown!
..20 april 2018..
SWT liveried 158886 comes over Eastleigh East Junction with '2S47' the 16:07 from Romsey to Salisbury via Southampton.
..18 april 2018..
The 'New Kid on the Block' livery-wise is this effort from South-Western Railways.In fact this rendition on 158890 seems to be displaying slightly revised darker 'ends' than the first few to enter service. Here viewed departing Redbridge going to Salisbury as 2S31' the 12:07 off Romsey via Eastleigh and Southampton.
..18 april 2018..
GWR-Green 158950 is seen coming off the route from the Salisbury direction with '1F09' the 09:30 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour.The track on the left of course goes to Bournemouth and Weymouth.
..18 april 2018..
158886 draws to a stop in Redbridge to collect a few waiting passengers.The service is '2R42' the 11:56 shuttle service from Salisbury (Novichok City) to Romsey via Southampton and Eastleigh.
..18 april 2018..
One of the few remaining examples of a FGW-Blue Class 158/9 Mongrels is 158954.here viewed passing Redbridge with '2O05' the 11:11 from Westbury going only as far as Southampton-Central.
..18 april 2018..
Newly reliveried into 'South Western Railway' colours 158887 comes off the Romsey line into Eastleigh with '2S27' the 11:07 from Romsey to Salisbury.A bit of a grabshot really but I suppose it kinda works just ?
..18 april 2018..
If all else fails,grab a Class-158 shot 'If' the sun is shining! Here is '1F11' the 10:30 from Cardiff-Central going down to Portsmouth Harbour pictured at Hawkeridge Junction on the approach to Westbury.A fairly shiny 158956 'Mongrel' forming the train on this diagram.
..26 march 2018..
Today this Unit achieved something a high proportion of those working on this route didn't! It actually completed the entire journey from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour without being terminated somewhere for some operational reason or excuse! Here the FGW-Blue 158953 passing under Church Road at Heywood with '1F19' the 13:30 from Cardiff.Contrary to the usual BBC forecast this afternoon turned out nice and sunny albeit with a temperature of near- 0 degrees C.
..19 march 2018..
158886 gets away from Southampton-Central with '2S35' the local shuttle type service between Romsey and Salisbury via Easleigh. All very mundane but pictured purely because the sun was shining briefly and I was still grieving having missed the previous three freight trains to the dullness!
..13 march 2018..
A rather immaculate looking 158952 accelerates away from Trowbridge with '1F11' the 10:30 service from Cardiff-Central going down to Portsmouth Harbour.Pictured through a very small hole in the mesh-cage at Dursley Road Footbridge in Trowbridge!
..15 february 2018..
Hindsight is a wonderful thing! Now that the GWR-Green is the predominant livery these days it makes you realise that the older FGW-Blue wasn't quite so bad after all! Hence of the several Units that passed here in full sun I chose to show this shot because is is way-way more colourful than the dirgy dank dire drudgy GWR-Green! So here is an unidentified 158/9 crossing the Avon River Bridge at Bradford-on-Avon working '1O98' the 10:48 from Great Malvern going all the way to Brighton.A journey of well over 200 miles!
..30 january 2018..
GWR/FGW-Mongrel 158954 speeds non-stop past Freshford working '1F14' the 10:23 from Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff-Central.This location here was completely opened up earlier this year but already the bushes and fast growing shrubs are making something of a comeback.By about June-2018 shots here will once again become quite difficult!
..28 december 2017..
One of the few remaining FGW-Blue 158/9 mongrels was today used on '2C18' the 12:42 from Gloucester to Frome.Normally this is an even more mundane 150 or possibly a 153.Here pictured at Fairwood shortly after its Westbury departure.Note the incredibly long shadows cast by this Unit.Even at this time (14:40) photography is becoming increasingly problematic if shadows are to be avoided!
..11 december 2017..
Despite 158/9's and 150's all around it getting repainted into GWR-Green,158798 GWR's only genuine 3-car Class-158 still retains its 'Charity-Springboard' livery.Here is is seen departing Bradford-on-Avon with'1V94' the 09:00 from Brighton going nominally to Great Malvern but failed to get there.It only got as as far as Worcester-Shrub Hill because of 'operational reasons' (Todays excuse of choice!).......
..25 november 2017..
This Unit-158888 was the first DMU to get the latest livery introduced by 'South Western Railway' which took over the franchise from SWT on the 20th of August,less than 3 months ago.Here viewed slowing for its booked stop at Millbrook working '2S39' the 14:07 from Romsey to Salisbury via Southampton.
..17 november 2017..
'South Western Railway's' 158888 passes Maritime in Southampton working '2R46' the 12:56 from Salisbury to Romsey local shuttle service.
..17 november 2017..
158888 wears the new livery of the recently introduced new franchise 'South Western Railways' that has now taken over from SWT in this part of the country.Not particularly inspiring but it 'Is what it Is' I suppose? This Unit was working '2S27' the 11:07 from Romsey to Salisbury and is viewed getting away from its Eastleigh Station stop.
..17 november 2017..
DMU-158766 wears the dour GWR-Green as it cruises down the avenue of autumnal shrubs and trees on the approach to Fairwood-Junction nr Westbury.It departed Weymouth at 11:10 as '2V90' going only as far as Bristol-Temple Meads. Pictured at Masters Farm Crossing.
..2 november 2017..
GWR's sole remaining Class-158 2-car 158763 wearing the FGW-Dynamic Lines livery speeds up the straight away from Fairwood-Junction in the background.The train being '2O89' the 10:42 from Gloucester heading for Weymouth.Pictured from a nicely manicured Masters Farm Crossing nr Fairwood.
..2 november 2017..
GWR-Green-Mongrel 158957 passes the Metel Box Bridge at Worcester working '2O90' the 14:50 from Great Malvern going all the way to the south coast at Weymouth.
..28 august 2017..
FGW-Blue Mongrel 158/9's are now fast becoming an endangered species.Only a couple are left that havn't been subjected to the dour GWR-Green make-over. So here is 158951 running down towards Bradford Junction shortly after departing Trowbridge with '1V94' the 08:59 from Brighton going to Great Malvern, a not inconsiderable distance of about 200 miles!
..15 august 2017..
GWR liveried 158950 rounds the curve into Freshford whilst traversing the Limpley Stoke Valley operating '1O95' the 12:08 from Cardiff-Central going all the way the Brighton. Sadly in the bright midday sun this sad livery still looks crap!
..18 june 2017..
The modern-day GWR liveried 158956 moves away from a classic example of an almost original 'real' GWR station here at Bradford-on-Avon that is even painted in a classic old GWR style.The '158/9' is working a Great Malvern (10:48 off) to Brighton service '1O98'.Shame it is not a 'Hall' class and 5 Hawksworth coaches instead of this plastic-tosh!
..16 june 2017..
Still in FGW-Blue 158961 approaches Thornford in deepest Dorsetshire with '2E26' the 15:08 from Weymouth going to Gloucester.The track through this location remains jointed bullhead rail on wooden sleepers giving a reminder of years gone by with the rythmic clickity-click from the wheels over the joints as the train passed!
..14 june 2017..
The GWR-DMU fleet has now just about reached the 'tipping-point' where the reliveried 'Green' Units are now more common than the old FGW-Blue ones.Here is one of the small fleet of 'mongrel' 158/9's that are used pretty much exclusively on the Cardiff to Brighton route.This one 158956 was operating '1F13' the 11:30 from Cardiff-Central going down to Portsmouth Harbour.Viewed passing Oldfield Park in the western outskirts of the City of Bath. Oh yes,it was green as well.At least the thing was shiny!
13 june 2017..
Although this line here through Gillingham from Waterloo to Exeter is only about 15 miles from home I rarely pay it a visit due to Class158/159's having a 100% monopoly of all passenger workings.Today however because the NMT-HST was passing through I made an exception picturing this working whilst I was waiting. So here are 158888/159022 forming '1L25' the 10:20 from Waterloo going to Exeter-St-Davids.As there was no working going east here whilst this train called it was using the 'up' platform saving customers a hike over the old SR type concrete footbridge.
..1 june 2017..
GWR's only 3-car Class158 which runs around in 'Springboard' charity colours climbs up through the well overgrown cutting on the Upton-Scudamore Incline just before the summit.This Unit 158798 was operating '1F19' the 13:30 from Cardiff-Central going down to the sea at Portsmouth Harbour.
..5 may 2017..
Mongre1 3-car 158950 in GWR's misguided Olive-Green livery climbs up through Penleigh nr Westbury with '1F07' the 08:30 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth Harbour.This once quite rare reliveried style is now beginning to dominate the DMU's that work this line down to the South Coast! GWR must be serious about this colour scheme,they are even doing Class-153's now even though they said they wern't going too!
..2 may 2017..
'1F23' the 14:30 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour operated by GWR's 158956 which is made up of one part of 158748 (leading) with 158768 Complete) climbs the Upton Scudamore Incline at Old Dilton about 8 minutes ahead of the returning Belmond Pullman with 67029 leading.Naturally the light failed for that one--------so this was the only result of the evening------Oh Well!
..26 april 2017..
Here is 158956 which was in fact the first 158/9 to get the Olive-Green GWR treatment.Most of this sub-class have now been so treated hence making the railway scene here in the Limpley Stoike Valley at Avoncliff even more dull than it was before! It is working '1F14' the 10:23 from Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff--Central.
..26 april 2017..
East Midlands Trains service '1R86' the 11:57 from Norwich to Liverpool-Lime Street slows for its Whittlesea passenger stop.Super-Sprinter 158780 doing the duty.
..8 april 2017..
2-car 158773 operated by East-Midland Trains slows for its station stop here at Whittlesea.It was working '1L06' the 07:42 from Liverpool-Lime Street to Norwich.This livery being almost identical to that in use with South-West Trains which I see most days down in the West-Country.
..8 april 2017..
'1L05' the 06:49 from Liverpool-Lime Street to Norwich gets away from Whittlesea.2-car 158810 formed this service.
..8 april 2017..
FGW's 158952 speeds through Wylye at Townend Farm Crossing working '1F09' the 09:30 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth Harbour.Stilll in the older Blue 'dymanic lines style, a repaint into GWR Olive-Green cannot not be very far away ?
..21 march 2017..
Today's '2E25' the 15:28 from Warminster to Bristol-Temple Meads was 158955.Here viewed slowing for its booked stop at Freshford.This small wayside station is surprisingly busy with people alighting and joining every service.In fact during the week it is cheaper to park here all day for free and pay the train fare into Bath than it is to 'Pay and Display' in that City!!!! Hence the invariably full car-park during the working week.
..18 february 2017..
The first 158/9 to have the GWR livery applied was this one 158956.Here it is looking rather sheepish passing Freshford on '1F20' the 13:23 from Portsmouth Harbour going to Cardiff-Central.
..18 february 2017..
.. 158798 continues to carry the 'Springboard' Charity blue livery.Here it is passing Freshford in the Limpley Stoke Valley working '1F17' the 12:30 from Cardiff-Central going down to Portsmouth Harbour.The Vista here is now as good as if not better than when the famous local photographer 'Ivo Peters' pictured many workings here as featured in the well known book 'Railway Elegance'........I have my copy---Have you?
,,18 february 2017..
This is the view through the 'thick-arch' aquaduct at Avoncliff looking north off the platform.158954 is seen approaching to pass through this Halt non-stop with '1F11' the 10:30 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth Harbour.Note how the tracks spread here to each pass through their own portal under the K&A Canal.
..7 february 2017..
158957 GWR-Green Mongrel number-2 is now fully reformed since its use temporarily as a Green/Blue 2-car.Here it is pictured in its now complete state again departing Westbury working '1F12' the 09:23 from Portsmouth Harbour going to Cardiff-Central.Viewed at Westbury North Junction.
..25 january 2017..
158958 works '1F11' the 10:30 service from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth Harbour.Seen at Cattybrook where the line splits into two seperately graded tracks in readiness to enter the Patchway Tunnels.Note the monster single foundation to take a central spar type support for the upcoming electrication equipment.In the distance can be be more convention albeit stupidly over-engineered trackside method!
..21 january 2017..
158957 the 2nd 158/9 to get the 'Green' treatment has now been reformed into a fully GWR-Green 3-car.It was running around a few weeks ago as a mis-numbered 2-car with one green and one blue carriage! So here it is departing Bradford-on-Avon operating '1V94' the 08:59 from Brighton going all the way to Great Malvern.Seen crossing the River-Avon with a local Swan nicely posing in the foreground!
..20 january 2017..
Now this is an unusual combination! 158957 with both ends numbered as such was seen departing Westbury running as a 2-car.158/9's are normally 3-car's.Even stranger was despite both 'halfs' being numbered nominally as a dedicated pair,one was in the new GWR-Green whilst the other carriage was in the older FGW-Blue. This oddball is pictured going to Swindon from Westbury as '2M10' the 12:20 away from there.
..3 january 2017..
With the morning cloud and mist forming interesting shapes over Battlesbury Hill FGW-158961 speeds past Norton Bavant with '1F07' the 08:29 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth Harbour.Network Rail have been flailing the banks along here recently nicely decapitating a large shrub that was blocking this wider shot.Well done NR it was well overdue!
..30 december 2016..
With both Platforms 1 & 2 occupied with delayed trains '1F09' the 09:44 from Newport to Portsmouth Harbour was required to use Platform 3.This is quite unusual for trains going to the South Coast.Here is 158955 restarting after a slight delay whilst all the passengers who were stood on Platform 1 struggled over to this one so they could continue standing in this very overloaded 3-car working.Oh for a Crompton with 6 Mk-1's!
..27 december 2016..
FGW's Charity be-decaled 158798 departs from a rather frosty Westbury working '1F10' the 08:23 from Portsmouth Harbour going only as far as Newport.This being due to ongoing engineering works between there and Cardiff resulting in no services to the Welsh Capital.
..27 december 2016..
So far this Unit,158956 remains only one of a pair of FGW-Mongrel 3-car to have suffered a repaint into the latest GWR green colour scheme. The other being 158957.Here it is slowing for Bradford-on Avon with '1O98' the 10:50 from Great Malvern going all the way to Brighton.A nice calm day on the river giving a 'just about' recognisable reflection in the river's surface.
..20 december 2016..
This is the colourful scene looking east off the A4810 main roadbridge at Llandevenny.Autumnal colours still cling on here as 158798 the 'blue' charity DMU passes by heading for Cardiff with the 09:23 from Portsmouth Harbour '1F12'.
..29 november 2016..
The 'Springboard' Charity-Blue 3-car 158798 certainly shows up well against some autumn colours here at Newton-St-Loe as it speeds by working '1F16' the 11:23 from Porstmouth Harbour over to Cardiff-Central.
..5 november 2016..
Hand-Held using 3200-iso is quite possible these days and even the results fairly acceptable! Here is 158798 the 'Springboard' liveried version sitting in Bristol-Temple Meads waiting 'time' working '1F30' the 17:23 from Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff-Central.For once the ultra low shutter speed of just 1/15th of a sec allows the digital destination indicator to actually show up.
..2 november 2016..
158766 is seen approaching Dr Day's Junction in the City of Bristol.It was working '1F13' the 11:30 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour. The badly overgrown brick lined cutting here was a blaze of autumn colours making the shot albeit just a '158' just about worthwhile!
..31 october 2016..
158956 pictured during its brief 2 minute halt here at Westbury working '1F34' the 19:23 from Portsmouth Harbour to Bristol-Parkway.Currently this is still the only '158' in the GWR-fleet to carry the latest green livery.This was also a 'hand held' shot using 3200-iso.Try that with Kodachrome-25 and exposure would have been about a minute so basically no chance!
..19 october 2016..
'Dynamic Lines' liveried 158952 gets away from Trowbridge with '1O98' the 10:50 from Great Malvern going all the way to Brighton. Viewed from the 'caged' Dursley Lane footbridge using a 35mm F2 lens simply because that optic just fits through the wire meshing! Oh yes and an excellent piece of glass as well!
..5 october 2016..
The 'Charity' decaled 158798 continues to carry this styling but for how much longer I wonder? Here it is passing Arn Hill on the approach to Warminster working '1F23' the 15:02 from Bristol-Parkway to Portsmouth Harbour.Since the Severn Tunnel is closed for 6 weeks until the end of October passengers from Cardiff-etc need to travel by bus as far as Parkway in Bristol.
..22 september 2016..
Units come and go at Southampton-central. Here is 158954 on '1F09' the 09:30 from Cardiff-Central heading for Portsmouth Harbour.Meanwhile 158882 goes in the other direction on '2S27' from Romsey (11:07 off) abeit about 35 minutes late going to Salisbury.Plenty of livery variety here even though most of the workings are 'Units' of one type or another!
..8 september 2016..
Springboard Charity adorned 158798 gets away from Westbury with '1F20' the 13:23 from Portsmouth Harbour going to Cardiff-Central.Under the programme of signalling centralisation the large Power Box in the rear of this shot is set to eventually close.I expect the land will be cleared and even more houses will be built on the site.probably within months!
..12 august 2016..
Springboard-'Supporting North Somerset Children with Additional Needs' adorned genuine 3-car 158798 cruises past Arn Hill nr Warminster working '1F24' the 14:23 from Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff-Central.
..11 august 2016..
FGW's Springboard Charity liveried 158798 climbs up through Dilton-Marsh on '1F07' the 08:30 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour. Here we see something that is quite rare these days in the UK---A completely clear blue sky with no cloud whatsoever------amazing!
..19 july 2016..
The latest 'Unit' repaint into GWR-Drab is this one 158956.Here seen working '1F24' thr14:23 from Poertsmouth Harbour going nominally to Cardiff-Central.It was however cancelled from Bristol-TM due to a level-crossing incident apparantly. This very green unit is seen passing a very green Norton Bavant in the very green Wylye Valley. At least the sky was blue (For a change!).
The 15:24 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour '1F25' journeys through the very green Limpley Stoke Valley nr Dundas.Mongrel 158954 being the Unit...Just think in a few years time this relatively luxurious and with the benefit of hindsight quite colourful type of DMU will be replaced by the Sludge-Green 165/166 Turbo-Rejects from the Thames Valley.It's called progress--I call it something else!!!!!!!
..02 july 2016..
FGW-Mongrel 3-car 158958 speeds away from Bathampton-Junction here passing Claverton with '1F23' the 14:24 from Cardiff-central heading for Portsmouth Harbour.
..02 july 2016..
'Springboard.Org' vinyled 158798 has just departed Trowbridge going to Cardiff-Central with '1F14' the 10:23 from Portsmouth Harbour.The recent Open-Day at Bristol's SFM-Depot was in aid of this same Charity.Hopefully it raised a substantial amount towards the cause!
..24 may 2016..
FGW's 158954 passes Arn Hill at the top of the Upton Scudamore Incline working '1F07' the 08:30 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth Harbour.The Oil Seed Rape fields making for a very colourful background.Anticipation for '6O41' the Westbury-Eastleigh Engineers that usually follows this working was high given the full blue skies.However 'Sods Law' triumphed again as that working turned out not to be running---A Pity!
..24 may 2016..
The 'Springboard' Charity vinyl'd 158798 speeds down the Wylye-Valley.Viewed at Townend Farm Crossing in funnily enough Wylye! It was working '1F07' the 08:33 from Cardiff-Central bound for Portsmouth Harbour.
..21 april 2016..
Todays '2O94' the 14:50 from Great Malvern going down to Weymouth was operated by 158798,the only genuine 3-car 158 in the entire FGW/GWR fleet.Additionally it runs in a special blue-livery advertising 'Springboard' a charity for 'Supporting North Somerset Children with Additional Needs'.Seen passing Berkley Marsh heading west in nice evening light.
..20 april 2016..
'Hired-In' 158888 from SWT is seen with the FGW/GWR service '2O90' from Bath-Spa to Weymouth. Pictured just after departure from Westbury at Fairwood.With the accident the other day between an HST and a FGW-150 at Plymouth which caused considerable damage to both units no doubt this particular 'Hire-In' contract is set to be renewed to cover the shortfall!
..06 april 2016..
Dynamic-Lines GWR/FGW Mongrel 3-car 158953 climbs up through Old Dilton with '1F65' the 16:19 from Swindon going to Portsmouth Harbour.The odd starting location for this service is due to the normal route for these trains is currently closed for engineering works nr Bath Spa so these services are starting from Swindon as a temporary measure.
..05 april 2016..
Springboard Charity-Vinyled 158798 motors up past Parson Street in the western suburbs of Bristol with '2U14' the 11:04 from Taunton to Cardiff-Central.
..05 april 2016..
South-West Trains owned 158888 appears to be on lease today to FGW/GWR? Here it is passing Fairwood on the approach to Westbury with '2V88' the 08:53 from Weymouth going to Bristol-Temple Meads.
..25 march 2016..
158950 a 3-car FGW-Mongrel passes Wylye strangely in the Wylye-Valley with '1F24' the 14:23 from Portsmouth Harbour heading to Cardiff-Central.Interestingly since FGW/GWR have launched their new GWR-Green livery this old Blue one suddenly seems quite attractive...Perhaps it's because the new style is so awful ????????? No, not perhaps,definitely!
..22 march 2016..
The Pale-Blue 'Springboard Opportunity Group' liveried 158798,the only genuine 3-car Class-158 FGW possesses passes through the soon to be completely ruined Sydney Gardens in the City of Bath-Spa.It was working '1F14' the 10:23 from Portsmouth Harbour heading for Cardiff-Central.This is quite a difficult location to picture workings in sun if possible without heavy long shadows,hence this 'head-on' shot.I think it just about works 'Just'.
..21 march 2016..
158951 Mongrel 3-car coupled with 150236 runs into Westbury with '1F03' the 09:13 from Cardiff-Central going to Fareham.
..13 march 2016..
An unidentified Mongrel FGW-158/9 slips away from Bath Spa over the rooftops and past the towering spire of St John the Evangelist Catholic Church with '1F07' the 08:30 from Cardiff heading for Portsmouth.
24 february 2016..
'1W64' the 13:02 from Camarthen going all the way to Manchester-Oxford Road,a total journey time of over 5 hours! passes up through Ponthir shortly after departing from Newport.Arriva Trains-Wales 2-car 158840 making up the duty.
..15 february 2016..
158798 the 'Springboard Opportunity Group' vinyl adorned member of the FGW/GWR fleet speeds through Magor with '1F13' the 11:30 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth Harbour.It may be looking a little grubby here but no doubt will get a thorough smartening up for when it attends the Bristol-St Phillips Marsh Depot Open-Day on 2nd May 2016 as all proceeds/profits are to be donated to that Charity and this Unit will be seen as a sort of Flagship for that concern.
..15 february 2016..
158961,a FGW/GWR Mongrel 3-Car speeds through the moribund Pilning Station working '1F23' the 14:30 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth-Harbour.Just two trains a week (On a Saturday) call here just to satisfy the 'Parliamentry' minimum service without having to formally go through the official closure process.That is set to change when electrification finally arrives through here.It will then simply be swept away in the name of progress. As the 1960's pop song goes--as far as photography here is concerned----''If you want it---Here it is----Come as get it---Make your mind up fast!'' just about sums it all up. No doubt about it, this location is doomed!
..11 february 2016..
After 37025 had passed going east at Pilning it was decided to go to Acton-Turville for the return working from Swindon due in about 150 minutes.Upon arriving there it was discovered it was reversing at Bristol-Parkway and left there 108 minutes early on its return to Barry.I never learn?It did this 10 days ago and we missed it completely on its return then.However today we were lucky as it halted in Pilning loop for over 30 minutes enabling the shot seen here.'4B20'/37025 is passed by 158952 working '1F16' the 11:23 from Portmouth Harbour heading for Cardiff-Central.The driver of 37025 was having a lovely time taking shot after shot in the sun whilst he waited his path!
..11 february 2016..
158961 swings through Magor in S-Wales with '1F16' the 11:23 from Portsmouth Harbour going to Cardiff-Central.No signs of electrification around here yet apart from some much needed shrub and bush clearance on the linesides and the new footbridge I am stood on.Sadly the rather nice 3-arch bridge in the background is set to be demolished and replaced by some concrete and metal modern monster with no architectural merit whatsoever in the coming year or so!
..30 january 2016..
158798 in the pale-blue advertising livery style that 'Supports Somerset Children with Special Needs' passes Llandevenny with '1F11' the 10:26 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth Harbour.
..30 january 2016..
FGW-GWR's lone 3-car 158---158798 in advertising livery pale-blue passes the sad and lonely porta-loo that still stands sentinel at Pilning as it has done now for many years. The train is of coarse a Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour working '1F17' that departed Cardiff at 12:30. Rumour has it that this route just might receive a bit of a boost in a couple of years time with the use of displaced HST's to ease the appalling overcrowding on this very popular service!
..28 january 2016..
158957 runs into its booked Wesbury Station stop with '1F13' the 11:30 from Cardiff heading for Portsmouth Harbour in a rare patch of winter sunlight.
..06 january 2016..
A rather clean looking Mongrel-3 car 158959 breasts the top on the Upton-Scudamore Incline working '1F26' the 10:26 away from Cardiff going to Portsmouth Harbour.Viewed from the A350 overbridge nr Granada Services at Warminster.
..31 december 2015..
In what has become the norm lately FWG's sole genuine 3-car Class-158 No-158798 rolls into Trowbridge with the 08:59 from Brighton going to Great Malvern as '1V94' under 1600asa lighting conditions.The unique decoration on this DMU extols the virtues of 'Springboardweb.Org.UK.----Supporting North Somerset childern with special needs.That probably incudes me for being out on such an appallingly dull day,not forgetting the 'Terrible-Twins-MF & DB!
..17 december 2015..
FGW's 158957 prepares to depart with '1F23', the 15:02 from Bristol-Parkway to Portsmouth Harbour service from a seemingly deserted Salisbury.3 minutes earlier as the train arrived the platform was teeming with forty to fifty passengers all waiting to board this working.Superb flourecent lighting on this station makes night photography fairly easy with no need for much if any colour balance alterations during post picture processing.
..05 december 2015..
The dire 1600asa lighting during this dank month of November continues. Here is '1F14' the 10:23 from Portsmouth Harbour going to Cardiff during its pause at Westbury.The destination panel of the 'advertising liveried' 158798 shows 'Caerdydd-Canolog' quite clearly for a change being due to the extreemly low shutter speeds in use today.This of coarse is jibberish for 'Cardiff-Central' !!!!
..19 november 2015..
FGW-Mongrel 158961 stands in Westbury's platform-3 about to depart for Cheltenham with '2M17' the 19:32 departure from here.Since virtually all forms of traction are now fitted with high intensity LED headlights it makes night photography much more difficult with the tendency now for the exposure to flare and also the production of much more intense total internal reflections.
..13 november 2015..
For some reason the Railtour from Eastleigh to Paignton '1Z30' was held for a short while at Bradford-Junction even though it's route was on the main towards Bath/Bristol.This presented a chance to picture DMU-158951 on '1F09' the 09:30 from Cardiff to Portsmouth Harbour passing the 1959 built Kitchen-Car that was part of the railtour working.This coach M80042 was originally BR1646 and has had many owners in the past few years including FM-Rail,Cargo-D,Stobart's and currently Riviera-Trains.It was looking really good in BR-Blue/Grey with commonwealth style bogies.Viewed at Ladydown nr Trowbridge.
..24 september 2015..
A short visit to Pilning was undertaken on the way homefrom S-Wales today.Recently it has been announced that it is to close shortly.The first week in december I believe.The gates will be locked and the footbridge removed to aid the electrification of this route.Hence yet another photographic location can be consigned to the dustbin of Network-Rail! so here is 158956 coupled to 150122 speeding non-stop through Pilning on '1F24' the 15:41 from Salisbury going to Cardiff.
..19 september 2015..
The blue advertising (Springboard.Org) liveried 158798 powers away from Westbury working '1F14' the 10:23 from Portsmouth Harbour going to Cardiff-Central.Note the rampant Buddleia doing a good job of obscuring the 'Caution-cross only when light shows' sign.Although to be quite honest in todays H&S paranoia driven world it is probably no longer in use! If so why? is it still there ??????
..10 september 2015..
A pair of FGW mongrel 3-car 158/9's cross each other adjacent to the Freightliner Maritime Depot in Southampton.Heading towards the camera is 158950 working '1F51' the 11:21 from Swindon to Portsmouth whilst 158954 going the other way is doing '1F58 the 12:23 from Portsmouth heading for Swindon.The unusual northern destination for these trains Swindon because the Limpley Stoke Valley and lines through Bath Spa being closed due to upgrade work for the forthcoming electrification project.
..22 august 2015..
158798 in 'Supporting North-Somerset Children with Additional Needs' Livery gets away from Southampton-Central with the 13:23 from Portsmouth Harbour going today to Swindon as '1F60'.The Bath line to Bristol and Cardiff is of coarse closed for major rebuilding in readiness for the upcoming electrification of that route.
..07 august 2015..
The Ex-Gunwharf-Quays 3-car 158798 now has a modified version of that base-blue colour scheme although now it is advocating 'Supporting North Somerset Children with Additional Needs'.Here it is operating the 14:19 from Swindon to Portsmouth Harbour service '1F59'. This odd route is due to the Limpley Stoke Valley route and Bath Spa being completely shut for upgrade work concerning the FGW Electrification programme.Currently no trains from Westbury can get to Bath/Bristol or Cardiff until the end of August! Here the Pale-Blue-158 is seen climbing an increasingly overgrown Upton-Scudamore Incline shortly after departing Westbury.
..05 august 2015..
Mongrel FGW 3-Car 158960 runs through Oldfield Park on the approach to Bath Spa.It was working '1O98' the 10:50 from Great Malvern going all the way to Brighton.
..29 july 2015..
158798 FGW's only genuine 3-car 158-DMU has until quite recently been used to advertise the 'Gunwharf Quays' shopping precinct in Portsmouth.However that livery is now modified to promote the 'Springboard' Charity for 'Supporting North-Somerset Children with Additional Needs'. So here is that unique 158 passing Berkley Marsh nr Frome. Today I managed to picture it with the 'Red-End' leading as it was working '2O94' the 14:50 from Great Malvern going to Weymouth.
..29 may 2015..
FGW's 158956 & 150232 are combined here the form '1F13' the 11:26 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth-Harbour.Seen passing Worlds End Lane nr Saltford under the high midday sun.
..23 may 2015..
The 09:26 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth-Harbour '1F09' rounds the curve at Hawkeridge on the approach to Westbury.The former 'Gunwharf-Quays' liveried 158798 is now wearing a new style scheme and was doing the job.Now it is advertising on behalf of the 'Springboard' Charity who's aim is 'Supporting North-Somerset Children with additional needs'.
..23 may 2015..
2-car SWT 158890 is climbing up through Old Dilton on the Upton-Scudamore Incline with '5O34' an ECS working from Yeovil-Junction (1609 off) heading for Salisbury-T&RSMD.Apparantly a Yeovil-Junction to Waterloo service via Westbury is set to start with the summer to winter timetable change.So these SWT-Units although regulars along here are set to become more of a common sight.
..20 april 2015..
3-car 158759 running in standard 'Northern' colours gets away from Church Fenton with '1B30' the 16:27 from York to Blackpool-North.These Units which were built with a genuine centre-coach are comparatively rare.Only 9 were built out of a total of 174 sets for the UK market. FGW converted 18 2-car sets into 12 mongrel 158'9's but they don't count really.Also six 3-car metre-gauge versions went to the State Railway of Thailand.I do not expect to see those anytime soon----if ever!
..18 april 2015..
'Northern' Unit combo 158906 and 153315 pause at Chuch Fenton whilst operating '2R97' the 16:06 from York going to Hull.Note the very blue roof on this 158.I do not know if this is a 'one off' but it certainly makes it look very distinctive.
18 april 2015//
One of the local colourful Northern operated Class-158's depicting local landmarks which quite frankly puts the FGW liveried crap we have to put up with in the south to shame sits in Church-Fenton on its booked station stop whilst operating ''1B28' the 15:18 from York going to Blackpool-North.This particular Unit being a 2-car No 158908.
..18 april 2015..
FGW's 2-car 158766 climbs Upton Scudamore Incline at Old Dilton with '2F96' the 17:11 from Westbury going only as far as Warminster.
..14 april 2015..
The reason for visiting Alexandra Park high over the City of Bath was to photograph a Schenker Red-60 hauling the diverted '6B33' from Theale to Margam.Naturally I was shafted by clouds but ironically where I was stood was actually in full sunshine! Such was the distance between me and the subject. So this is the consolation prize----FGW's 158950 passing over the River Avon just after departing Bath Spa with '1F17' the 12:30 from Cardiff going to Portsmouth Harbour.
..11 april 2015..
Here is the 10:50 from Great Malvern going to Brighton & Hove.This is quite a long distance duty for a DMU of in excess of 200 miles.Here 158956,one of FGW's perpetually overcrowded Mongrel-3-car's motors through Norton- Bavant in the Wylye-Valley heading for the South-Coast.
..10 april 2015..
Gunwharf Quays-158798 passes Arn Hill on '1F26' the 15:23 from Portsmouth going to Cardiff-Central.The crop in the fields behind the train this year seems to be Broad-Beans.For the last 5 years or so it has invariable been Wheat. I expect the EU-subsidy for the new crop is more generous this year for the Bean option!
..09 april 2015..
158798 FGW's only real 3-car-158 in 'Gunwharf-Quays' livery motors through Sherrington with '1F13' the 11:30 from Cardiff to Portsmouth.After months of not getting a decent shot of it I have managed 3 good ones in just 3 days due to hanging around for days on end in the Wylye-Valley chasing freight train diverts! That of coarse is its usual route...
..09 april 2015..
158798-the solitary FGW operated genuine 3-car Class158 which is currently done up in an advertising livery extolling the virtues of shopping in the 'Gunwharf Quays' Outlet-Centre in Portsmouth passes Sherrington in the Wylye-Valley with '1F13' the 11:30 from Cardiff going appropriately to Portsmouth Harbour.Glad I finally nailed a decent shot of it with some light on the front because I hear it is about to get reliveried into yet another style very soon.
..07 april 2015..
I must be dreaming because in the low early evening light this rather clean example of a FGW-158/9 actually looks quite attractive ????????? So here is 158954 passing under the A350 main road at Arn Hill with '1F27' the 16:30 from Cardiff going to Portsmouth Harbour.
..06 april 2015..
FGW-Mongrel 158953 is seen operating '1F25' the 15:30 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour service.Old-Dilton is the location again and the use is slightly more telephoto produces a completely different picture with the trees looking somewhat larger compared with the previous shot taken minutes before from exactly the same position.
..06 april 2015..
158763,one of only two original 'twin' type 158's FGW still operates motors past Old-Dilton with the very short distance duty '2F96' from Westbury (17:11 off) going only as far as Warminster.A distance of just 4 miles! From there is does form a service to Great Malvern so this short trip is in reality a sort of positioning move!
..06 april 2015..
A couple out walking in St George's look on as 158839 wafts by on '1B67' the 14:36 from Gloucester going to Fishguard Harbour.Thankfully they timed their halt to observe the train just perfectly to be included in the right spot, No! it wasn't posed either.
..21 march 2015..
3-car mongrel-158955 scuttles along the straight at Magor with '1F09' the 09:30 from Cardiff-Central to Portsmouth Harbour.This quite colourful location was chosen to picture '6B13' with a Class-60 in charge that was due minutes after this unit.Unfortunately the cloud build-up as can be seen in the distance wrecked the expected shot so it wasn't even pictured!
..21 march 2015..
One of the very colourful and certainly more attractive looking Class-158's than those operated by FGW speeds up the main at Coedkernew west of Newport with '2G55' the 11:46 from Cheltenham-Spa going to Cardiff-Central.It is an Arrive-Trains-Wales operated 158839.This well known location is now slowly becoming very overgrown,particularly for shots on the 'Slow Lines'.Pretty soon the use of a tall set of steps will become a necessity and not just an option!
..18 march 2015..
This shot typifies what a bunch of wasteful disorganised numpties Network-Rail can be sometimes.This pair of seemingly abandoned loaded palletts have been here for many months.Several £100's worth of materials apparantly just forgotten.The lower blue bags appeared to be cement so for sure they are now ruined.It could only happen in a publicly owned monopoly! Anyway it was 158953 passing this pile of fly-tipped material with '1O98' the 10:50 from Great Malvern going all the way to Brighton on the South Coast.
..17 march 2015..
158950 one of the 3-car mongrels FGW use these days has just passed under the footbridge that once overlooked the extensive carriage sidings that existed in this area back in LCHS days.This Unit is quite distinctive due to its freshly repainted 'ends' in a slightly lighted shade of 'Rail-Yellow'. It is working '2C73' the 11:00 from Cardiff going to Taunton.
..04 march 2015..
One of the only two remaining 2-car 158's that FGW now operate runs down from Malago-Vale and into Parson Street Station.158763 is working '2Y14' the 11:12 from Bristol-Parkway going to Weston-S-Mare.
..04 march 2015..
Today FGW's sole genuine 3-car 158---158798 which is currently wearing the very bright 'Gunwharf Quays' advertising livery was not employed as it is usually on the Cardiff-Portsmouth route but rostered for a change on this working '2E25' the 15:28 from Warminster to Gt Malvern.I know it is a 'GAW' shot but actually picturing this rather elusive thing in the sun is an achievement in itself!
..03 march 2015..
First Great Westerns only genuine 3-car Unit 158798 leans through the severe curve at Ladydown shortly after departing from Trowbridge working '1F18' the 12:23 from Portmouth Harbour heading for Cardiff-Central.This unit carries the pale-blue 'stickered' advertising livery extolling the wonders of the 'Gunwharf-Quays' Shopping Centre in Portsmouth located right next to the Harbour Station!
..05 january 2015..
Here is (for me) a comparatively rare picture of people actually milling around in readiness to board a train. This DMU is just arriving from Portsmouth-Harbour going to Cardiff-Central.The working is '1F14' having left the South Coast at 10:23.The Unit is 158956 at Westbury and for once the backlit effect worked quite well!
..27 january 2015..
One of the very few FGW-2-car 158's 158763 rolls into Westbury with '2F97',the 08:50 service from Great Malvern which terminates here at Westbury.
..23 january 2015..
As I had made the effort to get to this location for an expected GBRf hauled freight in about 15 minutes a shot of the preceeding FGW-158 was a given.It is 158955,one of that companies mongrel 3-car units that was working '1F09' the 09:30 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth Harbour.The location is Hawkeridge on the outskirts of Westbury.
..23 january 2015..
3-car FGW-Mongrel 158951 rattles the pointwork at Hawkeridge Junction on the approach to Westbury whilst operating '1F11' the 10:30 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth Harbour.The area to the right of this DMU is now quite simply a thick forest of Buddleia-Davidii about 10 ft high and getting higher every year.Not so long ago it was just an empty space with grass and a few scattered weeds!
..22 january 2015..
158798 is the only 'as built' 3-car 158-type DMU that FGW possesses.All the rest are mongrels that are renumbered into the 158/9 number range.It had been selected to carry the 'Gunwharf Quays' advertising colours of a shopping complex in Porstmouth.Here it has just exited the Severn-Tunnel with '1F11' the 10:30 from Cardiff going approprietly to Portsmouth. Note the colour co-ordinated 'hire-in' bog in the engineers parking area.No doubt NR are still paying a monthly fee for that and have been for years and years!
..29 december 2014..
So here is a closer view of the 'Gunwharf Quays' livery very recently applied to 158798.This is the only genuine 3-Car '158' working on FGW.It being built like this for Trans-Pennine work many years ago.The centre coach having no redundant driver-end installed.It is just moving away from Warminster with '1F17' the 12:30 from Cardiff heading for Portsmouth where this Outlet Shopping Centre is located. Dodgy lighting here needing 1000asa to produce this albeit very drab record shot.
..22 november 2014..
FGW seem to have gone 'Advertisement Livery' crazy as they have now turned out a 158798 in the livery scheme seen here.It now wears a 'Gunwharf Quays Outlet Shopping Centre in Portsmouth' livery making it look quite similar to an early ATW-Unit.Here it is on the 12:30 from Cardiff going to Portsmouth as '1F17'. Seen at a very damp and dreary Warminster Station stop.
..22 november 2014..
158961 runs past White Horse-Business Park in Trowbridge with '1O95' the 12:51 from Bristol-Parkway going only as far as Barnham nr Chichester.Presumably because of weekend engineering works.
..09 november 2014..
Known locally as the 'Romsey-Rocket',this is the shuttle service between Salisbury/Romsey/Southampton and Eastleigh calling at all stations.Here 158889 gets away from Mottisford & Dunbridge with '2R42' the 11:56 from Salisbury to Romsey via Southampton.(It actually visits Romsey twice per journey!
..01 november 2014..
After three days of torrential rain Thursday morning dawned clear and blue so I popped over to Dilton-Marsh for a couple of shots before the sun had a chance to inevitably disappear for the rest of the day.So here is '1F07' from Cardiff-Central heading to Portsmouth Harbour making its way up the incline as it passes Dilton-Marsh Halt non-stop.158961 doing the duty whilst the adjacent trees and bushes start to take on their autumnal colours.
..16 october 2014..
With the encroaching shadows now right on the cusp although it was only 13:45 in the afternoon 158954 passes Freshford with '1F17' the 12:30 from Cardiff to Portsmouth.This once sleepy Station's Car-Park is now invarably full to overflowing with people using the train to go to Bath.The free parking plus the small fare to Bath is much more economical than parking all day in that heavily congested City!
..09 october 2014..
'1O93' the 10:08 from Cardiff going to Fareham rolls into Westbury.158950/158766 making up the allocated service.Strictly speaking 158950 as it is formed up as a 2-car should be numbered 158761 but that is typical FWG for you.
..28 september 2014..
158960,one of FGW's mongrel 3-car sets approaches Frome with '2O94' from Great Malvern going to Weymouth. Expectations here this evening was for 2, possibly 3 empty stones with various GM's in charge.In the event they were either very early(so was missed), cancelled or terminated at Westbury.Anyway a 158 makes a bit of a change particularly in this superb evening light!
..13 august 2014..
With rainy weather predicted for today it was decided to remain fairly local and record the diversions today on the B&H and down the Wylye Valley.Well four freights including '6V62' with a pair of Colas-56's on passed all unfortunately under clouds.However as teatime was approaching one more effort was made here at White Horse Business Foot Crossing nr Trowbridge.The clouds cleared and the scene was set. Here is the prelude.---3-car FGW 158955 passes by on '1F28' from Portsmouth Harbour going to Cardiff Central.
..02 august 2014..
One of our indigenous FGW Maggot-Hybrids 158958 climbs Upton-Scudamore Incline at a modest 20mph??? The train was '1F23' the 14:30 from Cardiff going to Portsmouth Harbour.
..21 july 2014..
FGW's-Mongrel 158953 powers up past a colourful Old Dilton with '1F25' the 15:30 from Cardiff going to Portsmouth Harbour.
..09 july 2014..
SWT 2-car 158890 rattles away from St Denys with '2S51' the 17:07 from Romsey going to Salisbury via Southampton & Romsey.Note the high security compound in the foreground with all the transformers etc used to power the 3rd rail DC system in this area.All fully equipped with CCTV to deter the copper thieves ready to risk their sad little lives for a few quid!
..02 july 2014..
SWT operated 158889 runs into Millbrook on the 'Romsey-Rocket' actually the 11:56 from Salisbury '2R42' to Romsey via Romsey?? Southampton and Chandlers-Ford.
..12 june 2014..
Work continues with the task of doubling the section between Kemble and Swindon.New trackwork is seen here south of Kemble in various states of assembly whilst SWT Hire-In 158881 passes by with '2G85' the 14:14 from Swindon going to Cheltemham.On the bright side this particular line will escape the disfigurement of OHLE.Trains through here will remain either 158 type DMU's or HST's.
..07 june 2014..
'1F26' the 14:26 from Cardiff going to Portsmouth-Harbour passes Heywood, next stop being Westbury.Nothing special about 158956 apart from being a FGW-Mongrel and it looking fairly respectable for a change!
..12 may 2014..
Now I am back on home territory it;s back to the usual diet of drab FGW-Blue Units in betweeen more interesting action.Even the 3-car 158's aren't real but cobbled together hybrids of different 2-cars.Anyway here is pretend 158957 on '1O99' from Worcester-Foregate Street going only as far as Westbury.At least in the bright sunshine even FGW-158's look quite colourful! Cossington is the location nr Cam & Dursley.
..22 march 2014..
158755 sits in the Southbound bay at York having arrived some time ago with a service from the south.
..14 march 2014..
158755 is one of the 'Northern' operated 158's that was built from new as a 3-car.Unlike the FGW-Mongrels in my local area where the middle coach still retains a redundant driving cab, on these sets the middle coach is just that----a coach! The Set is sat in the Southbound bay under the ornate high and wide overall roof that is such a feature of this superb station here in York.
..14 march 2014..
This is 158829 with '1B67' the 14:35 from Goucester going all the way to Fishguard Harbour.Viewed from a somewhat lower angle at Water Street Junction shortly after departing from its last stop Pyle.Another Unit liveried in the rather pleasant colours of Arriva-Trains-Wales.---Certainly an improvement on the dour FGW-Blue 158 fleet scheme!
..08 march 2014..
SWT 'Hire-in' 158881 along with an anonymous FGW-150+++ stand in Westbury with '2O00' the 17:40 from Cheltenham-Spa going to Southampton-Central.
..18 february 2014..
This service is a recent introduction-----Departing from Swindon at 12:21 and going to Portsmouth-Harbour.158959 was the booked Unit.This new route is part of the effort to stimulate extra business on the single line from Chippenham (Thingley-Jun) via Melksham (Only station open on the line) and Trowbridge.Viewed approaching Westbury-Wilts.
..16 february 2014..
158950,one of the FGW's Mongrel 3-Car versions rolls into Westbury with '1F09' the 09:15 from Cardiff going to Portsmouth Harbour.As usual the sun was shining for this 158-DMU working whereas for the two loco movements due shortly afterwards it was not!.
..02 february 2014..
After seeing the 73's on '1Q41' earlier in the day the sun remained out so a chance of picturing the working again on its return here at Redbridge seemed like a solid bet-----WRONG!....The train although booked this way diverted at Romsey and went to Eastleigh via Chandlers Ford so it never came past here.This shot of FGW 158951 on '1F17' the 12:30 from Cardiff to Portsmouth should have been 5 minutes behind it.In the event this shot is a harsh reminder of 'what should have been'........... Sometimes I despair!
..14 january 2104..
'2L54' the 13:15 from Maesteg going to Cardiff-Central slows for Bridgend. Arriva-Trains-Wales liveried 158829 forming the service.No mistaking this location given all the information available on the gate-board.Even the distance from Paddington is displayed.
..11 january 2014..
Arriva-Trains-Wales 158838 is seen approaching Llandeilo-Junction nr Llanelli with '1B67' the 14:45 from Gloucester going to Fishguard Harbour. As can be seen from the shadows the day was now pretty much over although it was only 17:20. Only another 3 weeks to go and BST reverts to GMT and then this time of evening will be totally dark!.
..10 october 2013..
More 'Unit' action.Well I suppose its a way of keeping my eye-in! Basically its worth photographing anything that moves these days because TOC's come and go as do Unit types (Eventually!) So here is a FGW 158/9 No-158952 thrumming up the Incline at Upton-Scudamoe with '1F17' the 12:30 from Cardiff heading for Portsmouth Harbour.Nothing special about this shot,its just that the sun was out and its another 'Unit' in the bag!
..07 september 2013..
Here is '1F09' the 09:30 from Cardiff going to Portsmouth Harbour.It is seen having just run out of the 'Avenue' on the approach to its next stop at Bradford-on-Avon.Class 158 mongral 3-car 158798 doing the virtually 100% fully occupied/overloaded service.
..07 september 2013..
SWT-158888 slows for the Southampton-Central stop with '2R42' the 11:56 from Salisbury going to Romsey via Eastleigh.
..04 september 2013..
The former GWR Station at Bradford on Avon retains much of its old charm.A local group of volunteers maintain it to a high standard.Note the original style Nameboard and the recently restored and re-erected GWR Footbridge.All the benches are GWR and the station buildings and canopies are painted in the old western style.However the rolling stock is still FGW as is seen with 158954 as it make a stop on its journey from Portsmouth Harbour (11:23 off) going to Cardiff as '1F16'. A very pleasant place to spend a while watching the world go by!
..03 september 2013..
In the vain hope that Bardon-Blue 66623 might return early from Eastleigh back to Westbury it was decided to sit it out at Kimbridge just north of Romsey on the Salisbury line.However it was not to be as 66623 went to Maritime for fuel so did not depart from Eastleigh until after sunset.However a poor consolation prize was this shot of the 16:59 from Brighton going to Bristol-Temple Meads '1V96' seen approaching Kimbridge Level Crossing in the yellowing late evening light. At least it gave me a chance to use my 70-200 'L' lens which stays in the camera bag far too long sometimes. FGW mongrel 3-car 158957 was the booked Unit.
..22 august 2013..
SWT 158889 is approaching Redbridge with '2R58' the 15:56 from Salisbury going to Romsey via Eastleigh.Amazingly the old bridge with the fisherman on was once the main road out of Southampton going towards Bournemouth.Just imagine the congestion if that was still the case now!
..22 august 2013..
This is '2S43' the 15:07 from Romsey going to Salisbury via Eastleigh.SWT 2-car 158883 doing the duty.It is seen hurrying past Mouth Pleasant in Southampton.These SWT 158's are certainly far more attractive than the dour FGW versions we have to put up with around Westbury!
..22 august 2013..
158/150 combo 158956 and 150131 pass Norton Bavant with '1F13' the 11:08 from Cardiff going to Portsmouth Harbour.
..31 march 2013..
I have not visited this rather high vantage point for pictures for quite a long time.In the intervening years a new signal gantry as appeared and the lineside trees and bushes are considerably higher.At least the Car-Park CCTV-camera was now missing so we were able to relax and not get asked to leave like the last time! Here are 158766 and 150120 forming the 09:10 from Taunton to Cardiff '2U20' crossing the River Usk prior to arrival into Newport Station.
..02 february 2013..
158885 again but this time showing how brightly lit Salisbury Station is at night.Apart from the new aluminium benches and intense lighting this Station is pretty much the same as it was when Bullied-Pacific's ruled the roost on all the major trains.
..23 september 2013..
SWT 2-car 158885 sits in Salisbury.No lights on in the passenger area's so almost certainly about to move off onto the local depot for overnight servicing.
..23 september 2013..
Athough numbered in the Mongrel FGW 3-car 158/9 series, 158956 is actually running as a 2-car.Viewed here running into Westbury with the 10:41 from Gloucester going to Weymouth '2O89'.At last the sun has come out in 2013, the first time in 14 days!
..09 january 2013..
With the line through the LS-Valley working to maximum capacity (Workings about every 6 to 8 minutes) in both directions due to all the diversions going on today space still had to be found for the regular scheduled trains that use this route.One such working was the 12:08 from Cardiff going to Brighton.Here made up with just one 3-car 158/9 'mongrel'. 158957 viewed here at Claverton heading south
..18 november 2012..
2-Car 158959 slows for Clink-Junction at Berkley-Marsh under an extreemly black (Am I allowed to say that anymore?) sky with '2O89' from Gloucester going to Weymouth. Seconds later an heavy hailstorm erupted so I beat a hasty retreat to the car!
..02 november 2012..
158955 formed the 15:34 from Cheltenham going to Weymouth today.Here pictured passing the freshly harvested cornfields at Berkley-Marsh nr Frome.In fact the baler was still in the field finishing up making these large circular bales of straw.20 seconds earlier and the farm machinary would have been in view as well!
..07 september 2012..
Unit-Duo 2-cars 158763 and 150128 today made up the 10:08 from Cardiff going all the way to Brighton as '1O93'.Here it is seen running into Bradford-on -Avon for its booked stop.Not a very satisfactory combination for such a long distance working.The lack of a corridor connection between the two types of unit also make life very difficult for the Guard/Revenue protection Officer! Surely there is some kind of H&S ruling about effectively running 50% of the train staff-less? Informed sources say this is quite an unusual combination,perhaps it was a last minute lash-up to obtain a reasonably sized number of seats on this very busy service.
..19 august 2012..
After all the expectations and rumours the only additional stock drafted into the local area to help out during the 'Olympic Rush' was this solitary Class-158 2-car loaned by 'East Midland Trains' to fellow company 'South West Trains' who in turn sub-leased it to FGW.Here it is seen on the return run from Salisbury-Depot going back home to Nottingham as '5Z58' at the end of the hire period (26th-July to 19th-August).Probably the last time ever this particular unit 158799 will be recorded passing through Bradford-on-Avon in deepest Wiltshire. Despite appearances the Unit was travelling through the station non-stop at about 50 mph when photographed!
..19 august 2012..
With the 2012 Olympics drawing to a close the need for this 'On-Hire' Class158 --158799 from East-Midland-Trains sent to South-West-Trains and then sub-hired again to FGW will now be coming to an end.Hearing it was booked on the 12:40 from Worcester-Foregate Street to Weymouth '2090' and it was passing within 150 yards of my front-door I decided to get a shot before it was returned north.Here it is seen partnered with 158951,one of the FGW mongrel 3-car sets approaching Clink-Junction about to make its booked Frome stop.
..11 august 2012..
East-Midlands liveried 158799 seen on the freight only line at Chelleston heading for Stenson-Junction then towards the south,actually going to SWT on loan for the duration of the Olympics.The working is '5Z58' from Nottingham-Eastcott to Salisbury.In practice it will actually spend all its time working for FGW as it doesn't have the correct radio equipment to work on the SWT routes into London-Waterloo.
..26 july 2012..
Mongrel FGW 158955 crests the top of the Upton-Scudamore Incline before dropping down to Westbury going eventually to Cardiff-Central having departed from Portsmouth-Harbour at 17:23.The A350 Westbury to Warminster roadbridge forming the backdrop.
..19 july 2012..
'1F20',the 13:23 from Portsmouth motors past the Cricket Ground at Twerton going to Cardiff.158798 doing the duty.Heavy tree growth here has once again obscured the well known turreted tunnel mouth just out of shot behind the overgrowth.
..30 june 2012..
If all else fails there is always a 'Unit' to fall back on in iffy lighting conditions.Here is FGW 3-car mongrel 158955 running through Oldfield-Park on '1F11',the 10:30 off Cardiff going to Portsmouth.Note the rather rusty loop-line here used daily up to a few years ago by the local 'Binliner' from Calvert.
..30 june 2012..
158960,the 09:23 from Portsmouth Harbour heading for Cardiff Central speeds non-stop through Oldfield-Park.This Station,about a mile west of Bath-Spa is remarkably unsullied with offensive failtrack junk such as palisade fencing and un-necessary barriers everywhere.No doubt this ambience will be completely ruined when this route in changed forever with overhead 25Kva wiring.How they will cope with the Brunelian overbridges such as the one in the background is anybodys guess!
..09 june 2012..
Olympic back-up 158799 seen returning to the East-Midlands as '5Z56' passing Bradford-on-Avon. ----------19 august 2012----------
The 13:36 from Bath-Spa to Cardiff made up with 3-car mongrel 158959 cruises past the loops at Pilning about to plunge into the moist darkness that is the famous Severn-Tunnel.'6B33' with 60079 sits in the westbound loop patiently waiting its slot through the tunnel as well.Due to H&S regulations this highly imflammable working can only traverse the entire length of the tunnel alone.No train either way are permitted whilst it is in there! Hence the long wait as these rules can take quite a long time to achieve!
..26 may 2012..
Looking about a nice as is can do in the bright sunlight 158959 climbs towards the crest of Upton-Scudamore Incline with the 14:30 from cardiff heading for Portsmouth Harbour.The Hawthorn bushes are finally coming into flower although quite late due to the terrible weather the previous month.
..24 may 2012..
158950 runs into Filton Abbey Wood with '2C83' from Cardiff (16:00 off) going to Taunton.
..21 may 2012..
FGW-Hybrid 158957 exits the 'Avenue' on the approach to Bradford-on-Avon with the 12:51 from Bristol-TM to Salisbury.As can be seen from the skies the light faded seconds after its passing and the reason for being here (Schenker-66101 on 6V62) slipped by in the dark 5-minutes later.
..08 may 2012..
158882,one of SWT's diesel fleet passes St-Cross just south of Winchester.An irregular DMU turn '2B91' on the 3rd-rail.The 16:38 Winchester to Totton.
..17 april 2012..
158956,one of FGW's cobbled-up triple's ascends Upton-Scudamore Incline as '1F27' the 15:30 from Cardiff-Central going to Portsmouth.Storm Clouds were again in evidence in the distance but luckily did not come our way.
..12 april 2012..
Arriva-Trains-Wales unmolested Class-158 Units are certainly more pleasing to the eye than the bland FGW variety! Here is 158831 on the 11:45 off Cheltenham going to Maesteg,somewhere? up a Valley west of Cardiff. Unit is seen passing the Footbridge at Hatherley in the western outskirts of Cheltenham.
..06 april 2012..
Only a 'Unit' but still looking quite striking in the superb spring sunshine! 158825 wearing the new type Arriva-Trains-Wales styling passes south through Ponthir on '1V79' from Manchester-Piccadilly going to Milford-Haven.
..27 march 2012..
'Hire-In' 158881 from SWT works a FGW service from Cheltenham-Spa to Swindon,'2B94'. seen passing Badgeworth just west of Cheltenham.
..26 march 2012..
An unidentified Class 158/9 trundles north up the Limpley-Stoke Valley at Claverton with '1V94' from Brighton (09:00) going to Gt-Malvern.Not even Mr 'nomates' Sheep raising its head as it passes!
..24 march 2012..
The Manchester-Piccadilly to Milford-Haven '1V79' speeds past Ponthir showing off the new ATW livery.158828 2-car operating the service.
..06 march 2012..
A Table-25 working from Romsey to Salisbury via Eastleigh,Southampton and in the reverse direction Romsey again then on up to Salisbury.A kind of Hampshire local 'Circle-Line'...These SWT 158's are diagrammed for this service and very smart they always look too.158881 was on the job today. I think SWT could certainly give FGW a few tips on how to keep their stock looking externally immaculate.Mind you they do have a 'State of the Art' carriage cleaning plant at their Salisbury Depot. This service is seen accelerating away from its St-Deny's stop.
..23 march 2012..
'1F26' from Portsmouth Harbour going to Cardiff-Central was today 158950,one of FGW's hybid 3-car 158's.Seen here coming off the Portsmouth line without stopping at St-Deny's.
..23 march 2012..
The Romsey 'Circular 'service 158889 makes an interesting comparison in styling compared with 3rd-rail powered 444023 going in the other direction on a Waterloo service.Seen from the Mount Pleasant Level Crossing Footbridge.
..23 march 2012..
158821 shows off its new plumage for Arriva-Trains-Wales as it speeds past Magor with '2G56' from Maesteg (09:15) going to Cheltenham.Only 2-car 158's with Arriva-TW.They havn't pulled the 3-car FGW trick yet possibly because their routes not quite so conjested.
..06 march 2012..
The 10:12 Cardiff to Cheltenham-Spa with 158818 overtakes '4O51' headed by 66504 at Severn-Tunnel Junction.The AT-Wales service not being booked to stop at this station.
..27 january 2012..
158766 is now one of just 2 two-car 'Class 158-s' left on the FGW fleet.All the rest now make up about 13 three-car sets that have been modified from the original two-car type.Here seen approaching Westbury with the 10:41 from Gloucester going to Weymouth.
..13 january 2012..
158955 motors past Battlesbury Hill on the 10:30 from Cardiff going to Portsmouth Harbour.This location is one of the very few in the Wylye Valley that can remain shadowless even on or around the shortest day period.
..16 december 2011..
SWT-Pair 158887 and 159104 pass Westbury non-stop.Since no 'Table-20' services are booked to run at this time on a sunday can only presume this is an ECS going back to the Depot at Salisbury.
..13 november 2011..
158885/159+++ combo heads towards Basingstoke after emerging from under the flyover coming from Salisbury. Working is the 07:26 from Exeter going to London-Waterloo.
..06 october 2011..
The 11:56 from Salisbury to Romsey via Southampton rolls towards its stop here at Millbrook.SWT liveried 158883 doing the duty. ..02 september 2011..
'Hire-in' from SWT 158887 works the 12:10 from Great-Malvern going eventually to Weymouth past Yate-Common and the sea of Ragwort (Senecio jacobaea).No Horses in this field for some reason? ..06 august 2011..
Today being a Sunday and for a change the sun was shining meant that that 'Bucket&Spade' from Bristol to Weymouth and returned was understandable chokerblock! Three types of FGW's Unit Fleet were employed.158767/150239 and tail-ender 153325 the very obvious 'Interloper' from 'London-Midland'. Working is the return '2V93' off Weymouth and is seen at Feltham-Lane slowing for the Frome stop.....With todays temperature in the high 20's I hope the A/C was working! ..26 june 2011..
Years ago climbing this bank at Upton-Scudamore was a formidable task for steam on passenger workings and goods invariably required a banking loco.Nowadays these 'underfloor-engine' roller-skates such as this class 158/9 barely notice it! Here is the 16:30 Cardiff to Portsmouth utilizing one of the FGW mongrel 3-car bodge-ups,158953 climbing past the Blackberry-Brambles at Old-Dilton part way up the bank towards Warminster. Go HEREto see the 'Steam' that followed it! ..23 june 2011..
The 15:34 from Cheltenham-Spa to Weymouth approaches Frome running a few minutes down on schedule.3-car mongrel 158798 doing the seemingly well loaded duty. ..13 june 2011..
Still wearing the older Alpha-Line style livery even though now an Arriva-Unit 158819 has just departed Lydney with the 10:45 from Cheltenham going to Maesteg '2L53'. In the background can be seen the spire of Saint Mary's Church in Lydney Town. ..24 may 2011..
158886 motors away from Southampton with the 16:07 from Romsey to Salisbury via Eastleigh and Romsey! Several 158's were taken on by SWT which allowed them to get rid of their 170's a few years ago.They are mostly confined to this duty or over to Bristol and are often 'hired-out' to FGW. The Inter-Model was hauled by 66230.It was parked there for a hour and was a bit of a nuisance!!!!! ..19 may 2011..
The 11:23 from Portsmouth going to Cardiff restarts away from Bradford-on-Avon.Here about to pass over the Barton-Farm foot-crossing.158952,one of the 3-car converts doing the turn. ..03 may 2011..
3-car lash-up 158798 which makes up the 14:23 off Portsmouth going to Cardiff drops over the summit of Upton-Scudamore bank passing the mass of hawthorn blossom that is in full flower here. ..02 may 2011..
158750 operated for a while for FGW in its Trans Pennine-Express colours and glorified in the name 'Nora Batty' These days however (2016) it has been renumbered into the 158/9 series as a mongrel 3-car so its identity and livery have of coarse been lost.However inspection of the unit-carriage numbers (ending 750) will reveal it is alive and well and living in disguise! This working was '2E25' from Warminster going to Great-Malvern back in the days when overcrowding was not such a problem as today nearly 10 years later.
..09 march 2007..
This was an interesting livery for a while! FGW's 158819 became a mobile hoarding advertising 'Ginsters',famous for their pasties!The livery even extended over the roof!.It is seen here passing Marshfield between Cardiff and Newport whilst doing shuttles for the Rugby League Challenge Cup Final at the Millenium Stadium in Cardiff between Wigan and St Helens.
--15 may 2004..
Anyone for a Pasty? Five ATW Class158's were reliveried for a while in this rather distinctive colour scheme sponsored by this well known food manufacturer. Here is 158825 speeding north through Bapton in the Wylye-Valley with a mid-morning Portsmouth to Cardiff service.I often spent my lunchbreak at this bridal-crossing as sometimes you could see as many as three freights in just over an hour plus the regular Unit services.