BR Class 35 D7029
|BR Class 35 D7029|
D7029 on static display at Kidderminster in 2015
|Built By||Beyer Peacock, Gorton,|
|Power type||Diesel Hydraulic|
|Designed By||Beyer Peacock (Hymek) Limited|
|1975||Purchased by the Diesel Traction Group|
|1981||In service on NYMR|
|1996||Arrived on SVR|
|2000||Sent to Old Oak Common for overhaul|
|2005||Returned from OOC|
BR Class 35
The BR Class 35 was developed for British Railways Western Region 'BR(W)' as a 'Type 3' lightweight mixed traffic B-B locomotive used for both secondary passenger work and freight duties. The class became known as ‘Hymeks’ because of their Mekydro-designed hydraulic transmission. A total of 101 were built between 1961 and 1964; they saw use all over the Western region, including being used in multiple (up to three locomotives) as bankers on the notorious Lickey Incline. That use did include the Severn Valley branch: BR Riddles 4MT 80079 was hauled from Barry Scrapyard to the SVR by D7060 and then D7009 on 15 May 1971.
Diesel-hydraulic locomotives were not generally favoured by BR, and the class had only a short working life, being withdrawn between 1971 and 1975 when they were replaced by Class 37 diesel-electric locomotives. Three other Class 35s have survived into preservation, D7017 and D7018 at the West Somerset Railway and D7076 at the East Lancashire Railway. Two of the three have visited the SVR for Diesel Galas, D7018 in October 1985 and D7076 in May 1990 and October 2015.
D7029 in service
BR Class 35 D7029 was built by Beyer Peacock as Works No 7923 and entered traffic at Cardiff Canton in April 1962, working express trains from South Wales to London. Initially the locomotive was in BR Green livery with yellow warning panels. After brief allocations to Plymouth Laira and Bristol Bath Road in 1967, D7029 moved to Old Oak Common in April 1968.
In March 1970 D7029 was damaged at both ends in a collision, requiring 2 months of repairs at Swindon. After the repair, which included a repaint into BR Blue livery with yellow ends, D7029 returned to Old Oak Common. From there it regularly worked services from Paddington to Worcester and Hereford as well as Oxford commuter services.
D7029 was stopped in December 1974 for reported fuel dilation. It was eventually repaired on 15 January but then confined to use on Old Oak Common shed pilot duties. It was stopped with another engine fault in early February, briefly retuning to main line freight train duties after a second repair. However after a third stop for a coolant leak on 21 February, D7029 was finally withdrawn from service on 28th February 1975 after a working life of less than 13 years.
D7029 in preservation
D7029 was purchased from Old Oak Common by the Diesel Traction Group (DTG) for the sum of £3,240. After storage in the open with D821 Greyhound at Kings Meadow sidings (the former gas works) at Reading both locomotives moved to join BR Class 52 D1015 Western Champion in secure accommodation at Swindon works, where restoration was completed.
The first passenger run in preservation took place on 23 May 1981 at the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Operations continued there, with 20,603 miles of service being accumulated over the next six years. During that time the locomotive was involved in two minor collisions, on the first occasion being struck by steam locomotive 92134 (minus its tender, cab first), and on the second occasion crashing into the shed doors at Grosmont. In July 1987 the locomotive was withdrawn from service and mothballed, requiring tyre turning and the air reservoirs re-certifying.
D7029 was moved by road to Kidderminster in March 1996 but was immediately stored in a siding. In May 2000 the DTG secured accommodation at Old Oak Common, and D7029 left the SVR by road without having turned a wheel at the railway. The DTG decided that a complete strip down and overhaul was required due to the length of time out of service. In August 2005, D7029 returned to the Severn Valley Railway where the overhaul is still ongoing at the Diesel Depot.
- SVR News 22