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European Railroad Discussion > Out on an HST hunt


Date: 12/07/22 10:05
Out on an HST hunt
Author: 86235

Yesterday our power company (NationalGrid) was replacing a line of 11kV transmission poles, consequently we were without power for nine hours. So I headed off on a day out to the South Devon coast in SW England, a drive of 136 miles, mainly on freeways. The forecast was reasonably good, calm but cold (5C) with the chance of sunny periods after a bright, but cloudy start. That was good enough for me for the first week of December!

My reason for going that far was to shoot some of the remaining 40+ year old HSTs (High Speed Trains) which are definitely on their way out. Great Western has a small fleet of four car Castle Class mini-HSTs for glorified local work whilst Cross Country (XC) have a handful of seven car HSTs which they use on their services between Eastern Scotland / North East England and SW England. All flavours of HSTs look to be on borrowed time. Three of the Great Western diagrams will swap to five car 800/802s from the timetable change next Sunday and both Scotrail (with their Inter 7 cities sets) and XC are looking at relatively modern stock - class 221 Voyagers and class 222 Meridians - which will become available from Avanti and East Midlands Railway respectively when they take delivery of their new class 805s (Avanti) and 810s (East Midlands) sometime in 2023. In addition Great Western may become the new home of some of the 1990s DMUs (175s and 158s) which Transport for Wales will be returning to the ROSCo once their new 197s come on stream, also in 2023. All good reasons to get the HSTs whilst they are still reasonably plentiful.

1: But the first thing I saw along the sea wall was a pair of Great Western 150s on an Exmouth to Paignton service. Aways nice to see multiple units in multiple, even 150s!
2: Heading east 2U14 08:20 Truro to Cardiff formed with power cars 43092 Cromwell's Castle and 43187 Cardiff Castle. These services normally start from Penzance in the far south west but there's engineering work ongoing west of Truro all this week, with a bus connection to Penzance and St Ives.
3: There's not a huge amount of freight in South Devon, this is an exception 6C99 Exeter Riverside to St Blazey consisting of china clay hoppers which were worked down to Exeter on Monday from Cliffe Vale near Stoke on Trent. More blue sky was beginning to appear.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 12/07/22 22:37 by 86235.








Date: 12/07/22 10:13
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: 86235

4: Taken along the new sea wall in Dawlish XC's 1S51 Plymouth to Edinburgh with power cars 43357 and 43301.
5: From another vantage point further east a class 166 on a Paignton to Exmouth service. Today the sea was pretty calm but you can see just how close to the sea the railway is. 
6: The second of the day's XC HSTs 1V50 06:06 Edinburgh to Plymouth (arr 14:48) running along the sea wall.








Date: 12/07/22 10:21
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: PasadenaSub

Great set of photos with the land and sea.  I half-expected to see Doc Martin out for a walk with Louisa, but I suppose this is Devon and not Portwenn in Cornwall :o)

Rich



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/07/22 10:22 by PasadenaSub.



Date: 12/07/22 10:27
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: 86235

7: I took this on my phone, 2U16 Truro to Cardiff leaving Teignmouth.
8: And finally, taken a little further east at Cockwood Harbour, the 13:55 Paignton to Exmouth. Last shot of an enjoyable, if chilly, day out.
9: a short video of the HST seen in shot 4 on the 1V44 06:11 Leeds to Plymouth.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/07/22 11:38 by 86235.



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Date: 12/07/22 10:56
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: railstiesballast

Well played: Great photo journaism from what your neighbours may have written off as a bad day.



Date: 12/07/22 11:10
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: 86235

railstiesballast Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Well played: Great photo journaism from what your
> neighbours may have written off as a bad day.

Thanks



Date: 12/07/22 12:47
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: DKay

Very nice Nick. Looksl ike they are still putting the finishing touches to the new SeaWall. Very interesting project. 
Regards,DK



Date: 12/07/22 12:50
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: 86235

DKay Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Very nice Nick. Looksl ike they are still putting
> the finishing touches to the new SeaWall.

Yes, that's right and whilst the work is ongoing the sea wall path is closed.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/07/22 12:50 by 86235.



Date: 12/07/22 14:48
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: dwatry

Great shots!  I will be really sad to see the HSTs go, when they finally do.  



Date: 12/07/22 18:20
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: tq-07fan

Very nice! The HST was one of the few British trains we would see pictures of in the United States with any regularity so I've always liked them.

Jim



Date: 12/09/22 12:52
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: Hexagon789

86235 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Yesterday our power company (NationalGrid) was
> replacing a line of 11kV transmission poles,
> consequently we were without power for nine hours.
> So I headed off on a day out to the South Devon
> coast in SW England, a drive of 136 miles, mainly
> on freeways. The forecast was reasonably good,
> calm but cold (5C) with the chance of sunny
> periods after a bright, but cloudy start. That was
> good enough for me for the first week of
> December!
>
> My reason for going that far was to shoot some of
> the remaining 40+ year old HSTs (High Speed
> Trains) which are definitely on their way out.
> Great Western has a small fleet of four car Castle
> Class mini-HSTs for glorified local work whilst
> Cross Country (XC) have a handful of seven car
> HSTs which they use on their services between
> Eastern Scotland / North East England and SW
> England. All flavours of HSTs look to be on
> borrowed time. Three of the Great Western diagrams
> will swap to five car 800/802s from the timetable
> change next Sunday and both Scotrail (with their
> Inter 7 cities sets) and XC are looking at
> relatively modern stock - class 221 Voyagers and
> class 222 Meridians - which will become available
> from Avanti and East Midlands Railway respectively
> when they take delivery of their new class 805s
> (Avanti) and 810s (East Midlands) sometime in
> 2023. In addition Great Western may become the new
> home of some of the 1990s DMUs (175s and 158s)
> which Transport for Wales will be returning to the
> ROSCo once their new 197s come on stream, also in
> 2023. All good reasons to get the HSTs whilst they
> are still reasonably plentiful.
>
> 1: But the first thing I saw along the sea wall
> was a pair of Great Western 150s on an Exmouth to
> Paignton service. Aways nice to see multiple units
> in multiple, even 150s!
> 2: Heading east 2U14 08:20 Truro to Cardiff formed
> with power cars 43092 Cromwell's Castle and 43187
> Cardiff Castle. These services normally start from
> Penzance in the far south west but there's
> engineering work ongoing west of Truro all this
> week, with a bus connection to Penzance and St
> Ives.
> 3: There's not a huge amount of freight in South
> Devon, this is an exception 6C99 Exeter Riverside
> to St Blazey consisting of china clay hoppers
> which were worked down to Exeter on Monday from
> Cliffe Vale near Stoke on Trent. More blue sky was
> beginning to appear.

I don't see ScotRail's sets going anytime soon, under the leasing agreement the Scottish government must pay the charges until 2030 regardless of whether it uses them or not.

Given ScotRail has the worst revenue recovery of all the GB Train Companies presently, spending yet more money on two simultaneous leases seems foolhardy.

Posted from Android



Date: 12/10/22 05:36
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: 55002

Excellent day out, Nick. I too would like to have another go at these HSTs before they go. chris uk.



Date: 12/10/22 06:30
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: 86235

Hexagon789 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I don't see ScotRail's sets going anytime soon,
> under the leasing agreement the Scottish
> government must pay the charges until 2030
> regardless of whether it uses them or not.
>
> Given ScotRail has the worst revenue recovery of
> all the GB Train Companies presently, spending yet
> more money on two simultaneous leases seems
> foolhardy.
>
> Posted from Android

You may be right but those in the industry seem to think that the lure of more modern units like the Voyagers / Meridians and the ex-TfW 158s and 175s will see off the HSTs. Maybe Scotrail will hold out, but the HSTs power cars will need a complete overhaul in the next few years (they were re-engined back in 2007) which might make the Voyager / Meridians an attractive alternative.



Date: 12/11/22 13:34
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: WrongWayMurphy

It's been 5 years since I've been to Devon, and I don't remember a sea wall in my travels then.

Can you tell me where the wall begins and ends please?

oh, and Go Go Go Plymouth Argyle FC !



Date: 12/11/22 22:45
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: railsmith

WrongWayMurphy Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It's been 5 years since I've been to Devon, and I
> don't remember a sea wall in my travels then.
>
> Can you tell me where the wall begins and ends
> please?

The wall starts about 10 miles west of Exeter St. Davids. It runs from Langstone Rock in the east (visible in distance in photo 6) to Teignmouth (photo 7), with interruptions for five tunnels through seaside cliffs. More than three miles of actual seawall over a distance of about four miles. Dawlish station sits directly beside the wall (in background of photo 4).



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 12/11/22 23:06 by railsmith.



Date: 12/14/22 08:15
Re: Out on an HST hunt
Author: dbrcnw

Thanks for the postings. My first ride on British Rail came too many years ago and it indeed was an HST.

Dale.R

PS. Thank you for the information passed along over the years to many of us rail followers, it has greatly enhanced understanting of various subjects.

 



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