60009 Union of South Africa passing Mill Hill Broadway. Down-Xmas Yorkshireman. 22-Dec-2012.MOV
London & North Eastern Railways A4 Class No: 60009 Union of South Africa pounds up the 1 in 176 grade past Mill Hill Broadway Station (MIL) on the Down Midland Main Line (MML) Relief Line, with the Down Railway Touring Company (RTC) Christmas Yorkshireman from London-Victoria (VIC) to York. It's Saturday 22nd December 2012 and the time was 07:49. Union of South Africa was five minutes late and pathed to follow the 06:39 First Capital Connect (FC) Metro service from Selhurst to Bedford. The Metro left MIL 4 minutes late hence the late running of UoSA. It was a cold, very wet, early-Winter morning. I originally planned to film this train at Hendon (HEN), 1st stop up the line from MIL. However, at HEN UoSA was running on the Down Goods and there would be no station lighting and sunrise was still 20 minutes away. So, I chose MIL instead. Steam is very, very rare on the MML. The last Down Steam special to pass MIL was back in March 2011. As you can see the weather was appalling. The lens got rain-drops on it, the wind took some of the sound away and right next door is the M1 hence the traffic noise. But, just listen to the sound of UoSA working up the grade. That's just how the A4's sounded when I was a kid working up the grade at Finsbury Park so I was cast back 50 years. From MIL UoSA heads North on the MML calling to pick-up at St. Albans, Luton and Kettering where UoSA is watered. After Kettering 60009 turns off the MML joining the East Midlands (EM) line to Corby and Melton Mowbray re-joining the MML at Syston Junction. UoSA continues North then coming off the MML finally at Tapton Junction stopping at Barrow Hill South Junction for water. After re-watering UoSA joins the Northern Trains route from Sheffield to York at Masborough Junction. UoSA is timed to arrive at York at 14:03. Trivia time. This was the 94th Down main-line steam excursion of 2012 in the London area. On 22-Dec-2011 34067 hauled the 104th down special to Dover. The Olympic and Paralympic steam-ban has made a big difference in the numbers. This was the 2nd and last Down main-line run of 2012 by UoSA. 60009 was under repair in 2011. It's the 30th and last Down RTC steam special in the London area of 2012. On 17-Dec-2011 70013 made the 32nd and last Down RTC run to York. Today's train was the only down steam special to run through MIL in 2012. On 12-Mar-2011 70013 made the only Down steam run of 2011 past MIL with a train for Sheffield. MIL is a 4-platform station. Platform 1 is the Up Relief Line and is where I stood. Platform 2 is the Down Relief Line and was passed by UoSA. Platform 3 is the Up-Main and Platform 4 is the Down-Main. The MML at MIL between 06:44 and 07:44 on a Saturday morning has 9 Down trains and 9 Up trains. 5 of the 10 Down trains are EM Main-Line trains to York, and 4 to Nottingham. The 4 FC Down trains consist of 2 Main-Line trains to Bedford and 2 Metro trains to Luton. 3 of the 9 Up trains are EM Main-Line trains to London-St. Pancras-International. 4 of the 6 FC trains are Main-Line trains to Brighton and the other 2 are Metro trains head for Sutton. All Metro trains stop at MIL. The Midland Railway was a late-comer to reach London. It's main-line from Bedford to London was opened as far as Camden Road ( a station that no longer exists) on 13th July 1868 and that included the station known as Mill Hill (The present name was introduced by British Railways after 1948). The line from Camden Road to Mill Hill was 4-track. The station had its own goods yard from July 1868 and this was next to what is now the Down-Main at the Down end of the station. Hope you enjoy and please give me your feedback. Plan to film Clan later today.