Great Railway Joke

January 22, 2009

A trainspotter, sorry, enthusiast is in an Italian Restaurant. He goes for the pasta dish. The waiter says “How would you like your pasta, sir?” and the enthusiast says “Adelante” The waiter then says “Would you like a large portion sir?” and the enthusiast says “Yes please, drive. Make it double-headed Adelante”


The Cathedrals Express. Live Coverage.

October 11, 2008


Live coverage of the Cathedrals Express, pulled by 30777, the Sir Lamiel.

Live coverage, only on

A day spotting in St Ives.

August 10, 2008

My wife and I had a splendid holiday in Cornwall recently which included 3 nights in St. Ives. The opportunity was, of course, too great to miss, so I spent a day sitting in the Car Park at St. Ives station taking as many numbers as possible. My disappointment at writing the same number every half an hour was compounded by the loss of the piece of paper I’d written it down on whilst shooting the video below.

British Wildlife Hates MTUs. The Proof.

April 27, 2008

This song thrush was probably looking forward to some Valenta power….


Earthquake comments.

February 27, 2008

There were some rather misguided comments in the media regarding this morning’s earthquake. Many people suggested it sounded like a train going past, some even suggesting a High Speed Train.

I don’t know much about HSTs but I’m going, for the sake of argument, to assume they meant a First Great Western class 43. With a length of 220m and with the tremors lasting ten seconds, this would mean the train would be travelling past at 79.2 km/h which is a paltry 49.5 mph or less than 40% of their operational top speed.

Plus, and this is the big one for me, an HST set with fully clagging Paxman Valentas would make a bit of noise, but given that the trains use MTUs, I doubt very much that you’d hear a thing.

So. In future, if there’s an earthquake, let’s not make fatuous comparisons with it to High Speed Trains. The rail network gets enough bad publicity as it is. An earthquake sounds like an earthquake and has nothing to do with trains. Nothing. 

Matt. It’s a Deltic!

September 30, 2007

Yesterday I went to buy some models with my friend who likes models even more than I do. On the way back, via Scrubs Lane, as we went past a railway he suddenly shouted, “Matt. It’s a Deltic. It’s a Deltic, Matt! It’s a Delticmatt!” I had a quick look and I was certain it was not a  Deltic. We then had a ferocious argument, only very recently settled with evidence to the contrary which I list here, here and here.

There’s a lesson to be learned here, spotters and enthusiasts. Just because a diesel locomotive looks like a Deltic doesn’t mean it is a Deltic. By all means, if you see a class 55 then shout as loud as you can. But just make sure you don’t make the same mistake as my friend. I did once and I’m still paying for it. 

Rolls Royce Power

July 29, 2007

This is more like it. A superb video of British enginesmanship at it’s best. More excellent footage to follow at THE UK rail blog.