A C&O query revisited

The day to day working of the Caledonian Railway Company, including its constituents and successors.
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Posts: 54
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2018 7:34 pm

A C&O query revisited

Post by Bill_Gensheet »

Back in TTL 43.26-7 44.6-7 and 46.11, CD pages 829/830, 837/8 and 902, the timetables for the C&O in 1964 were reviewed, noting several unusual arrangements for Killin area freight trains and additional trains attributed to Cruachan Hydro scheme construction.

The main questions were around Killin freight trains working to Balquhidder and Luib, after those stations had closed to public goods traffic, these being shown in the Killin loco diagram which was dated as 'Amended from 27 July' (44.7/page 830).

To these timetables in TTL, I can now add a summer 1964 public passenger timetable, scan attached.

Several ideas were suggested to explain these movements, and to reconcile with other information / images.

My take on these is:

The Killin loco diagram 'from 27 July' times at Callander are too tight for a run round, so the school carriages must have been taken to Callander on a freight, likely 2:42 pm ex Oban, supporting the 3:21 from Killin Jn as being LE at least in/until summer 1964.

I would discount the additional Taynuilt trains carrying Killin traffic as these were class 5 (fully braked) while Killin traffic was at least in part unbraked coal wagons so run as class 8/9.

The FO variation of 3:00 pm ex Taynuilt is required due to the FO school train through to Crianlarich and following 2:05 pm Stirling - Oban freight, rather than for putative Luib traffic. Any shunting at Luib would be difficult with oncoming trains in section.

It was suggested some additional traffic at Balquhidder, Killin or Luib might be due to hydro construction traffic, but the Breadalbane (St Fillans, Lawyers, Lyon) hydro was fully completed by 1961.

My views of this are that the 'from 15 June' freight WTT has several flaws likely to result in late running. These, and some times in the Killin loco diagram 'from 27 July', suggest some wider changes were needed to the main line freight timings. This may mean that attempting to reconcile the Killin loco 'from 27 July' timings with the 'from 15 June' main line freight WTT might be futile.

I wonder if anyone has come across any additional documents since the articles were published in 1993 ? In particular the amended freight WTT 'from 27 July 1964' or the Killin loco diagram 'from 15 June 1964' would shed light on several of the unanswered questions.

Over to the forum.....

C+O 1964 up.png
C+O 1964 up.png (427.96 KiB) Viewed 278 times
C+O 1964 down.png
C+O 1964 down.png (412.17 KiB) Viewed 278 times
Posts: 54
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2018 7:34 pm

Re: A C&O query revisited

Post by Bill_Gensheet »

In detail the three operational difficulties I see in the 'from 15 June WTT' see are:

Glenlochy crossing has no times, suggesting it was (intended to be ?) switched out.
That required the 6:15 am Stirling - Oban freight to make Dalmally by 10:10 or else end up several hours late by Oban. Historically this train had crossed the summer 9:xx am ex Oban at Glenlochy giving more time at intermediate stations.
This in turn means that the morning Killin goods no longer met the 06:15 Stirling freight at Killin Junction, so there seems little point in that 8:50 freight from Killin.

The 2:05 pm Stirling - Oban freight has time allowed for shunting at Strathyre and/or Balquhidder, but shunting during the time at Killin Junction would seem impractical due to the branch loco not present (doing the school run) and the approaching and passing trains (3:00 ex Taynuilt, 4.06 ex Callander school train). There would also be difficulties around what shunted was permitted on the main line gradients around Killin Junction.

The 6:32 am Oban - Stirling freight timings at Strathyre & Callander simply do not work, the summer-only 9:10 am Oban - Glasgow passenger catches it up. Either the 09:10 Oban cannot reach Callander until 11:59, or the 6:32 Oban has to be held at Strathyre until 11:49, or at Balquhidder until 11:36.

I also note the following inconsequential typo error in the WTT
The 6:15 am Stirling - Oban at Luib, arrive 8:48 seems more likely
John Paton
Posts: 250
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:50 pm

Re: A C&O query revisited

Post by John Paton »


Please don't assume that my silence indicates lack of interest in your query - I just haven't had time to go through each point and look up whatever documents I have. One point I'd challenge - your suggestion that the school carriage(s) were taken to Callander on a freight. I have seen many photos of the southbound empty working of loco+carriages (including the front cover of TTL 140). I also remember as a youngster a family picnic in the parking area on the east side of Loch Lubnaig in '63 or '64 being totally enlivened by the sight of a 2-6-4T and one carriage slowly making its way south, but stopping for a while in a cutting opposite us - during which only steam emerging from the hillside indicated the presence of the train. In youthful ignorance I assumed that this was a typical train on the line, and I remember my father telling me that it had stopped for water. Only later did I realise that the train had stopped at Craig-na-Cailleach platform for a chat, to drop-off or pick-up PWay staff, or to give someone a lift to Callander. You rightly say that the loco diagram gives a Callander turn-round time of only three minutes, and the summer 1960 PWWT has the same. However the summer 1965 PWWT allows more time: arrival 3.55pm, departure 4.6pm. 1960 allows 4 minutes southbound at Balquhidder for water, no mention is made of watering in 1965.

I'll respond to your other points in due course.

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