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GCR London Extension - express passenger workings

The London Extension is a big subject and I'm going to start with a look at the first years and express passenger traffic to and from Marylebone. Many of the photographs are not dated, or the date is suspect but the locos changed quite a bit at first so I shall try to arrange them initially by approximate year of loco construction.

And focus on the Marylebone end where at first the GCR had to share the Metroplitan's suburban line out of Baker Street and the GCR service was photographed a lot.


The Pollitt Class 13 4-2-2 singles did not last long on the extension and by 1903 had been transferred from Neasden to Leicester from where they could still reach Marylebone, of course, and by 1904 to the Cheshire Lines where the work was less demanding. No 967 is passing West Hampstead in 1901 with the 5.40pm Marylebone-Manchester express. The five carriages included two of the clerestory catering cars. Photo: author's collection.


The date is approximately 1900 and Pollitt 4-4-0 Class 11A No 872 is near Northwood with an Up express made up with four gangwayed Parker carriages. This was the most common length for quite a long time. Photo: author's collection.


Northwood, not far from Pinner was a popular location with photographers and this Up train is headed by another Pollitt Class 11A but with a secondary service. At first the headlamp code was the same for all the GCR trains running along the Metropolitan and it can be hard to distinguish between the long distance flyers and the intermediate secondary services. Photo: author's collection.


In 1901 Robinson introduced the more powerful Class 11B 4-4-0 and No 1022 (built 1902) is approaching with another secondary service. Photo: author's collection.


Class 11B No 1033 was built a month later and is in charge of a heavy gangwayed express made up to 6 carriages with catering, almost certainly from Manchester. Photo: author's collection.


Ah, the sleek lines of another Class 11B, so sad that they were all rebuilt with larger boilers as Class 12D; more powerful they may have become, but at the expense of their good looks. The Edwardian era ushered in some of the most handsome locos the country ever saw, especially the 4-4-0s, and this was one of the best. No 104 is approaching with another tidy four-carriage express. Photo: author's collection.


When rebuilding of the 11Bs started, Robinson had already introduced his "Atlantics", initially Class 8A (LNER C4), one of which, No 1086 is passing with a gangwayed express that has been made up to five carriages. Photo: author's collection.


This time it's one of the compound "Atlantics", Class 8D No 258. All four were named, albeit not very attractively to the travelling public, after senior officers of the GCR, this one The Rt.Hon. Viscount Cross GCB GCSI. Photo: author's collection.

To be continued...

GCR carriages: are here.

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