Class 50

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50049 and 50044 on the rear of a Railtour at Brunstane, 19/11/2011. Photo by fragglerock

Fifty Class 50 diesel locomotives were built 1967-1968 by English Electric for British Rail.

These 100mph machines were fitted with electric train heating, and were the first complete class delivered in the then new BR blue livery.

They were originally numbered D400 - D449, but most locos soon lost the D prefix.

The locomotives were based at Crewe diesel depot and worked both passenger and freight trains on the West Coast Main Line north of Crewe to Glasgow and Perth.

The class were a common sight in Central Scotland, and having worked north overnight on the WCML found themselves used on local freight trains during the day.

From May 1970 to May 1974 the Glasgow Central - London Euston expresses used pairs of class 50s working in multiple.

After the completion of the WCML electrification in 1974, the class was reallocated to the Western Region of British Rail, and daily visits to Scotland ended.

On the Western, all fifty locomotives were named from 1978 onwards, with a Royal Navy theme used.

Withdrawal and Scrapping
Withdrawal of the Class started in 1987, and their regular duties ceased in 1991.
The last 3 locos were withdrawn by British Rail in 1994.

Five class 50 locos were scrapped by M.C. Metals at Springburn:

50003 NSE revised light blue, BR symbol Arrived 04/04/92 Cut up 30/04/92
50018 NSE revised light blue, BR symbol Arrived 15/06/92 Cut up 21/01/93
50037 NSE revised dark blue, WofE symbol Arrived 15/06/92 Cut up 15/12/92
50046 BR Large Logo, black roof Arrived 15/06/92 Cut up 19/06/92
50048 NSE revised dark blue, WofE symbol Arrived 04/04/92 Cut up 29/04/92

Although 50046 was cut up within 4 days of arriving at the Scrap yard, both cabs were preserved.
One of the cabs from 50037 was saved and moved to Bo'ness. It remained there until being moved south to Rowsley, Peak Rail, in September 2010.

Preservation
19 of the class have been preserved, with some returned to mainline running.

One preserved loco, 50021 Rodney, was based on the Bo'ness and Kinneil Railway from 1995 to 2002.

The loco which had been based on the Gloucestershire & Warwickshire Railway, moved by road for display at Crewe Open Day on 21/8/95, then travelled onwards by rail to Bo'ness in October 1995. It was departed by road to Tyseley in September 2002.

50031 Hood and 50049 Defiance have visited Scotland on railtours in recent years.


Railtours and Mainline movements

Date      Loco Tour Name Link  Route Remarks Photo
 
1985
25.Aug.1985   50030 The Scots Streaker II link Plymouth - Edinburgh (and return) Haymarket Open Day Flickr
50030 Repulse, stabled at Haymarket until return leg. Flickr, Photo
 
1988
14.May.1988 50009 & 50036 The Hoover Dambuster link Birmingham - Glasgow Central (return via Kilmarnock) Double headed Photo
50009 Conqueror and 50036 Victorious
 
1994
05.Feb.1994 50033 & 50050 The Midland Scotsman link Birmingham - Glasgow Central (and return) Double headed Flickr
Running as D433 and D400, unnamed
 
2000
16 Sep 2000 50021   Polmadie Open day (from Bo'ness) (not working)
  50031 & 50049 Celtic Hoover link Birmingham - Kilmarnock - Glasgow Central Double headed photo
  50031 & 50049 Celtic Hoover Glasgow Central - Beattock - Birmingham Double headed
Running as D431 and D449, unnamed
 
2005
04 Mar 2005 50031 & 50049 The Monarch of the Glen link Swindon - Fort William Double headed
05 Mar 2005 50031 & 50049 The Monarch of the Glen Fort William - Mallaig (and return) Top and Tail Photo
06 Mar 2005 50031 & 50049 The Monarch of the Glen Fort William -Dundee - Perth - Dalmuir Top and Tail
07 Mar 2005 50031 & 50049 The Monarch of the Glen Dalmuir - Swindon Double headed
 
2006
16 Jun 2006 50031 & 50049 The Orcadian link Swindon - Inverness Double headed Photo
17 Jun 2006 50031 & 50049 The Orcadian Inverness - Kyle (and return) Top and Tail
18 Jun 2006 50031 & 50049 The Orcadian Inverness - Wick - Thurso (and return) Top and Tail
19 Jun 2006 50031 & 50049 The Orcadian Inverness - Swindon Double headed
  Locos had an alternative identity on one side: 50031 as 50028 Tiger and 50049 as 50012 Benbow.
 
2007
05 Oct 2007 50049 The Autumn Highlander link London Kings Cross - Perth (via ECML) On rear. 55022 leading
  50049 The Autumn Highlander Perth - Inverness On rear. 40145 leading
06 Oct 2007 50049 The Autumn Highlander Inverness - Strathcarron (and return) Top and tail with 40145
07 Oct 2007 50049 The Autumn Highlander Inverness - Wick - Thurso (and return) Top and tail with 40145
08 Oct 2007 50049 The Autumn Highlander Inverness - Perth With 40145 on rear
  50049 The Autumn Highlander Perth - London Kings Cross (via ECML) With 55022 leading, 40145 on rear
 
2011
19 Nov 2011 50049 & 50044 The Edinburgh Explorer II Timings Preston - Edinburgh (via ECML) With 57001 on rear.Photo
  (50049 & 50044) Fife Circle Mini-Tour Timings Edinburgh - Fife Circle (out via Dunfermline) On rear, with 57001 leading.
50049 Defiance (large logo livery), 50044 Exeter (BR blue livery)
 
2015
24 Jul 2015 50007 & 50017 (loco convoy) Timings Washwood Heath - Bo'ness (via WCML, Springburn) Hauled by 31601, with dead 40106.Flickr
25 Jul 2015 50007 & 50017 Bo'ness Diesel Gala Timings Between Bo'ness & Manuel Jn (B&KR) Various workings Photo
26 Jul 2015 50007 & 50017 Bo'ness Diesel Gala Timings Between Bo'ness & Manuel Jn (B&KR) Various workings =
01 Aug 2015 50017 & 50007 (loco convoy) Timings Bo'ness - Carlisle (via Springburn & WCML) Hauled by 31601 from Linlithgow. Flickr
50007 Hercules (BR Blue livery), 50017 Royal Oak (Network SouthEast livery)


See Also

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