A summary of notable workings for week 50 (December 12-18).
Type 2 No. 31106 powered a Network Rail test train (3Z02) from Derby RTC to Carlisle and was marshalled at the rear of the train. Later a second test train (1Q06) left Derby for Eastleigh propelled by 31285. Then in the evening 31602 worked a third (3Q40) from Derby to Didcot and back.
The Northern Belle ran from Peterborough to Finsbury Park (north London) via Cambridge with Class 47s Nos. 47810 and 47790 top-and-tail.
A rare event happened on the Highland main line as two freight trains crossed at Aviemore. DBS No. 66103 headed south with a train of four-wheeled tanks from Lairg to Grangemouth after waiting for DRS No. 66427 to arrive with an Inverness-bound modal train.
Extra Christmas mail trains ran with diesel No. 67003 hauling mail units Nos. 325004, 325001, 325011 south from Shieldmuir (Glasgow) to London Willesden while No. 67008 hauled 325013, 325003 and 325007 in the opposite direction.
A1 class steam loco No. 60163 'Tornado' was in charge of a Steam Dreams Cathedrals Express from Chertsey (Surrey) to Ely, running via Guildford, Purley and the North London line.
DRS Type 3 No. 37409 powered observation saloon No. 975025 'Caroline' on a working from Derby to Brighton and back via the Midland main line and East Croydon.
With winter snow arriving in Scotland, DRS class 37 No. 37682 ran along the Highland main line between Perth and Inverness to keep the line clear.
The New Measurement Train (NMT, 1Q26) ran from Glasgow Central to Crewe via the West Coast main line with Power Cars Nos. 43062 and 43013.
EMU No. 313210 booked to work the 16.24 from Brighton to West Worthing was evacuated before departure when smoke was spotted coming from underneath the leading carriage. The fire brigade was called to make sure it was under control.
Heavy winds damaged the overhead wires on the West Coast main line south of Rugby, so all electric services ran via Northampton for most of the day.
DRS Class 37 No. 37423 hauled Network Rail's Ultrasonic Test Train overnight from Plymouth to Penzance and return, then worked forward during the day to Exeter for another night-time run to Bristol and the Severn Beach branch. Meanwhile Network Rail's Class 37 No. 97301 powered a test train (1Q13) from Old Oak Common (west London) to Derby RTC via Oxford.
Withdrawn Class 56s Nos. 56046 and 56073 left Toton depot (Nottinghamshire) by road for scrapping at EMR Kingsbury (near Tamworth, Staffordshire).
Newly overhauled Type 5 No. 60074 was out on a test run light engine from Toton depot (Nottinghamshire) to Bedford and back.
GBRf Class 66s Nos. 66704, 66710 and 66712 ran light engine from Peterborough to Longport depot, near Stoke. The locos took a somewhat round-about route via Todmorden (West Yorkshire).
Off-lease Class 180 Adelante units Nos. 180103 and 180106 left Northern Rail's Newton Heath depot (east Manchester) for First Great Western's depot at Old Oak Common. The units will be refreshed and put into service on FGW's Cotswold line.
'Javelin' EMU No. 395017 worked into Victoria around lunchtime on the weekly empty stock, route-refreshing trip.
A1 steam loco No. 60163 'Tornado' hauled a Steam Dreams Cathedrals Express from Victoria to Sherborne (Dorset) via Haslemere and Salisbury.
A4 No. 60019 'Bittern' (running as 4492 'Dominion of New Zealand') ran with its support coach from Southall (west London) to Norwich via Cambridge.
Preserved Class 03 shunter No. D2178 from the Gwili Steam Railway (near Camarthen) was at Bristol St Philips Marsh depot for tyre turning.
Class 20s Nos. 20304 and 20301, top-and-rail with 20305 and 20302, arrived at Neasden depot (north London) in the early hours with another delivery of new S-Stock for London Underground.
With the leaf-fall railhead treatment train (RHTT) season over, DRS brought back five locos from their temporary base in Stowmarket (Suffolk) with Nos. 57004, 47841, 37069, 37510 and 57003 ran to Crewe via Peterborough.
Adelante DMU no. 180106 ran empty from Newton Heath depot (east Manchester) to Old Oak Common (west London) to join its two classmates that transferred yesterday.
A4 steam loco No. 60019 'Bittern' (running as 4492 'Dominion of New Zealand') headed the York Yuletide Express charter from Norwich via Peterborough and Spalding. The train included diesels Nos. 47786 'Roy Castle OBE' and 47760 which worked the return leg.
Type 1 No. 20309 and Type 3 No. 37602 were paired up to work the early morning Crewe to Dungeness nuclear flask train.
DRS Class 37 No. 37601 hauled electric loco No. 90006 and a DVT vehicle from Crewe to Norwich Crown Point depot via the West Coast and Great Eastern main lines.
West Coast Railway's Class 47 No. 47237 hauled a single coach from the company's Carnforth depot for some works attention at Doncaster.
DBS Type 5 No. 66135 apparently failed at Princes Risborough (Buckinghamshire) after slipping to a halt with an empty waste train from Calvert. The train blocked the southbound platform, meaning London-bound Chiltern services had to pass through without stopping, but the driver was able to restart the loco and move off after about 20 minutes.
DBS Class 66s Nos. 66147 and 66085 top-and-tailed UK Railtours' Salisbury Plain dining railtour from Paddington, which travelled out via Swindon and Salisbury before making a rare trip for a passenger train along the Ludgershall branch from Andover and then returning to Euston.
GBRf Class 66 No. 66729 hauled Southeastern EMUs Nos. 466011 and 466013 from Doncaster Works to Tonbridge via the East Coast main line. The formation went forward to Slade Green depot (Kent) on December 17.
Freightliner's No. 90041 was allocated to work the Fridays-only 18.43 Euston to Crewe via Birmingham with Virgin's Mk 3 coaching set.
Very unusually for one of East Coast's Class 91s, No. 91124 ran light engine (and blunt end first) from Neville Hill depot (Leeds) to Doncaster.
A convoy of no less than 10 DBS locos ran in one light-engine move from Alexandra Dock Junction (near Newport, South Wales) to Westbury, with No. 66238 leading 66080, 66002, 66162, 66037, 66043, 66061, 66100, 66108 and 66213.
At least two East Coast Mk 4 sets were running in reverse formation, as both No. 91106/DVT 82225 and No. 91102/DVT 82224 had the loco at the London end.
Today was a busy day for railtours, both steam and modern traction. Statesman Rail's Leicester to Edinburgh tour was worked top-and-tail by Class 57s Nos. 57601 and 57001; HF Railtours' Carlisle to Chester trip had Type 4s Nos. 47851 and 47854 at either end; UK Railtours' KIng's Cross to Beverley tour was powered top-and-tail by DBS Nos. 66147 and 66085; and the preserved DEMU No. 1001 had an outing from Hastings to Shepherds Bush (west London). Pathfinder also ran a multi-traction tour from Westbury to freight locations in the north-west that featured Nos. 31601, 60011, 66098, 66206 and 92037 on various legs.
Meanwhile steam tours saw A1 No. 60163 'Tornado' work a Steam Dreams Cathedrals Express from Ashford (Kent) to Bath via Kensington Olympia; Ex-GWR No. 5043 'Earl of Mount Edgcumbe' was in charge of the Christmas While Rose from Tyseley (south Birmingham) to York; while BR standard No. 70013 'Britannia' headed a second Christmas White Rose tour from King's Cross to York with No. 60019 'Bittern' (as 4492 'Dominion of New Zealand') taking over for the return leg.
The VSOE Northern Belle and British Pullman trains were also running, powered respectively by diesels Nos. 47790 and 47802 on a circular trip from Coventry, and Merchant Navy steam loco No. 35028 'Clan Line' (running as 35017 'Belgian Marine') around Surrey from Victoria via Guildford.
East Coast Thunderbird No. 67020 dragged an empty Mk 4 coaching set and electric loco No. 91111 from Neville Hill depot (Leeds) to Bounds Green depot (north London). To balance the working, sister loco No. 67021 ran light engine from King's Cross to Doncaster to take up Thunderbird duties there.
The boat carrying four new Freightliner Class 70s arrived at Newport Docks in the early hours from the USA, and unloading of Nos. 70013, 70014, 70015 and 70016 began - correcting an earlier report that Nos. 70014-17 had been shipped.
After working its tour back to Kent last night, A1 steam loco No. 60163 'Tornado' made a very rare visit to Dollands Moor yard near the Channel Tunnel for stabling. It left this afternoon for Eastleigh being dragged with the tour stock by diesel No. 67025.