4th December 2019 · ‘East Midlands Memories Collection’

Presenter: Geoff King

Our speaker on 4 December was Geoff King to present East Midlands Memories Collection.

The history and development of the routes in the Leicester Area was described including those towards Peterborough via Market Harborough and Melton Mowbray culminating in the opening of the Great Central route in 1899.

The area around Wigston and Knighton junction featured a wide variety of traffic, some double headed by ex LMS,LNER and BR Standard classes including the Blue Pullman on test together with the ex LMS diesels 10000 and 10001.

The signalling arrangements and track layouts were described,with some pre- grouping signals still in use, together with some of the complex locomotive diagrams then operating.

At Leicester Belgrave Road the surviving traffic, summer only excursions to the East Lincolnshire coastal resorts featured Colwick based B1 locomotives. Moving north we saw a B17 Sandringham and other ex LNER classes working rerouted cross country services from East Anglia to the Midlands following closure of the M and GN.

The ex GC route south of Leicester was a favourite location showing many ex-LNER classes working both local and through passenger services and also the fish trains from Hull and Grimsby.

The now closed Swannington branch and the route towards Coalville featured showing pre grouping classes still in service because of restricted clearances on the former.

The area around Seaton Junction showed the complex track layout with the Uppingham and Stamford routes parallel with each other, the former featuring an ex LT and S tank engine on the one coach service and also services on the nearby Harringworth Viaduct.

At Market Harborough the interchange between the ex LMS and LNWR routes was seen and also featured some rail tours in the area including an RCTS tour starting from Leicester with haulage including a Black 5 and Fowler 2-6-4 tank engine. .