34053 Sir Keith Park – Timing Logs
Southampton to Waterloo, 14th April 1965
|Load:||12 coaches - c. 400 tons gross|
|05.7||Eastleigh||10.02||54 / 56|
|31.4||Basingstoke||39.22||63 / 69|
|39.4||Winchfield||46.34||68.5 / 72.5|
|42.8||Fleet||49.24||70.5 / 71.5|
|48.2||MP 31||54.15||64 / 70|
|58.8||Byfleet & Newhaw||63.32||77.5|
|65.9||Hampton Court Junc||69.12||72.5|
|77.9||Vauxhall||81.44||44 / Signal Stop|
Comment: It was in April 1965 that I was able to sample a run with 34053 on a two-hour Bournemouth to Waterloo Express. An uneventful run with no higher speed than 69mph brought us into Southampton one minute late. The table sets out the run from Southampton and as can be seen from the log, 34053 was never extended, although despite a leisurely run up Winchester bank - 16 miles mostly at 1 in 252 - we were just inside the 37 minute schedule at Worting Junction. On the easier grades to Woking, things continued to be taken gently and by Woking Junction we were two minutes down; an injection of pace followed, and from Woking to Hampton Court Junction, speed averaged 74mph. Unfortunately, a signal stop outside Waterloo station caused a three-minute late arrival.
In contrast to this run, and to demonstrate just what these engines were capable of when really extended, in 1967 the final year of steam, I timed a run with No. 34036 Westwood Ho hauling a similar load; speeds of over seventy miles per hour were reached up Winchester bank and a maximum of ninety one miles per hour was achieved near Fleet.