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LMS Route: Nuneaton to Birmingham New Street

LMS Route: Birmingham New Street to Tamworth

Saltley Shed: mrsalt1225

English Electric Type 3 D6888 stands fresh from the works outside Saltley shed's No 3 roundhouse

English Electric Type 3 D6888 stands fresh from the works outside Saltley shed's No 3 roundhouse. This locomotive was one of a number built by Robert Stephenson & Hawthorn, in 1964, being subcontracted by English Electric. Later the locomotive was classified under the TOPS scheme as Class 37188 and was never subsequently modified and remained in service until it was withdrawn in March 1996 to be preserved as 37188 and named 'Jimmy Shand'. This designation covered all 309 locomotives as built, but with such a large number of locomotives and with two companies involved in the building, there were several differences within this sub-class alone. The most visible external difference was that the first 119 locos had a split headcode box; for these locos the four digit Train reporting number was shown in two square boxes containing two digits and separated by a pair of doors designed to allow the train crew to be exchanged while in motion. Later locomotives had a single centrally placed headcode box, and also had the horns mounted on the roof rather than built into the nose of the locomotive. This difference was the reason for the double change in numbers when implementing the TOPS scheme described earlier.

The English Electric Type 3s were designed for both passenger and freight work and was as much at home hauling heavy goods trains as it was on passenger services (indeed, in 1966 the Western Region even tried modifying some of its 37s for 100 mph (160 km/h) operation). Many of the original locomotives were fitted with boilers for steam heating. With the withdrawal of many Type 2 and Type 3 locomotives in the 1980s the 37s were selected as the standard Type 3 and many of the fleet were given a heavy overhaul to prolong their life into the 1990s and beyond. Some were fitted with electrical train heating (ETH) equipment in the 1980s to become the 37/4 sub-class, initially for use on the West Highland Line and Far North lines but later seeing use in north/mid Wales and occasionally the West Country.

Saltley Shed: mrsalt1245