Back to Eridge - I blipped the station in March - and this time there was train action. Because of the way this station is laid out, it's a mainline station on the other platform island, the engine cannot run around the train to change ends and go back to Tunbridge Wells. To get round this an engine waits here, on a spur next to the platform, and when the train arrives the "spare" engine is attached to the end without an engine. At departure time it tows the train out of the station, including the engine which brought the train in, until it has crossed the points where the spare engine is dropped off to reverse back down the spur to wait for the next train at which point it will take that train back.

This shot shows number 72 waiting on the track spur after bringing the train and swapping to let the diesel (in extras) do the run back to Royal Tunbridge Wells. This engine is a 0-6-0st Hunslet Austerity built in 1947. They were designed for shunting and  hundreds were built for the war department. This is one of the post-war engines which went to the National Coal Board and that's the livery she's wearing.  

So there ya go - May Day in the sun

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