Thursday 21st February 2019 saw GWR Castle Class No. 7029 Clun Castle on her loaded test runs from Tyseley Steam Trust to Stratford Upon Avon, Stratford Upon Avon to Small Heath Lafarge Aggr, Small Heath Lafarge to Stratford Upon Avon & Stratford Upon Avon to Tyseley Steam Trust.
This day saw the Castle head through places such as Tyseley, Whitlocks End, Wood End, Henley in Arden, Wilmcote, Lapworth, Dorridge and Solihull.
Tuesday 19th & Thursday 21st February would be the first time Clun Castle has been on mainline metals since 1988 after 31 years absence.
With Clun Castle now being back on the mainline, Vintage Trains have now announced their 2019 tours where Clun Castle will tour many places around the country. Her first tour being a nighttime charter to Worcester Shrub Hill on Thursday 28th February 2019
RailView filmed Clun Castle on the 1st loaded test run at Whitlocks End, Warwickshire, passing through with an unexpected stop due to a red signal, 3 minutes early at 10:56 and departing 3 minutes early at 10:58. Lapworth, Warwickshire passing through 1 minute late at 13:19. Solihull, Warwickshire, passing through 2 minutes early. The 2nd loaded test run was filmed at Wood End, Warwickshire, passing through 2 minutes late at 15:10. Widney Manor, Warwickshire passing through 3 minutes late at 17:13 & once again at Solihull, Warwickshire passing through 2 minutes late at 17:14.
Here are some photos of our trip:
Info about 7029 Clun Castle:
- Designed by Charles Collett
- Built by BR in 1950 at Swindon Works
- In 1959 she was modified to carry a double chimney
- She was the very final Castle Class ever built
- Her famous moment came in 1964 where she hauled the Plymouth to Bristol Temple Meads leg of a special railtour to mark the record set by 3717 City of Truro when she reached 100MPH set 60 years earlier, she was timed at 96MPH on the descent of Wellington Bank, Somerset
- In 1965 she hauled the very last GWR steam service from London Paddington to Banbury
- Withdrawn from BR in 1965
- Purchased directly from BR in 1967 by Patrick Whitehouse for preservation & then was passed on to Tyseley Locomotive Works who is her current owners
- In 1967 she toured the country to mark the end of steam on BR & hauled the very last GWR steam train.
- Returned to the mainline in the 1970s and toured the country until 1988 where she was taken off of the mainline
- She last ran at Tyseley Locomotive Works in 2001
- She returned to steam in 2017 after 16 years absence
- In 2019 she returned to the mainline for the first time since 1988
- She will now once again tour the country bringing joy to many people around the UK operating railtours for Vintage Trains Limited
- Clun Castle is Tyseley’s flagship Steam Locomotive
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