I spoke a couple of days back about the Cotswold Rail Class 47s and their use up and down the Lickey Incline through the middle of the noughties. This prompted me to have a quick look back at what I’d got in terms of photos. There’s definitely no shortage, but here’s a nice one to get the ball rolling. It’s 47810 Captain Sensible, passing the site of the former Garringtons factory just south of Bromsgrove station, with a ‘power car drag’. The Cotswold Rail 47s were commonly used to transport First Great Western’s HST power cars from the Western Region up to Brush Works at Loughborough for refurbishment, and then back home again once the work was completed.
Sometimes a single power car would be moved; on other occasions a short convoy of them. Here, the sparkling Class 43 at the rear of the consist is No. 43018 – typically, without any branding at this stage. The 47 had itself not long been repainted, losing its Virgin red livery in favour of this rather laid back but not unpleasant grey. I first saw it ex-works in Cotswold Rail livery early the previous month, and the loco had since been busy shifting quite a few of these power cars to and fro.
The time here is 17.35 on Friday 27th April 2007, and the sun is present but not strong. Muted sun was actually more suitable than full-strength in this instance, since dark shadows right across the line behind the train would be unsightly, but subtle shadow doesn’t really impact on the aesthetics.