56301 shunting a rake of DB red liveried MRA box wagons at Peak Forest on 10th October 2018. Photo copyright: Paul Biggs.

56301 shunting a rake of DB red liveried MRA box wagons at Peak Forest on 10th October 2018. Photo copyright: Paul Biggs.

The Class 56 Group’s mainline registered locomotive, 56301, has started a period of hire to GB Railfreight/ VICTA Rail. The locomotive will be used at the CEMEX quarry site in Dove Holes, Derbyshire and duties will include preparing and loading trains ready for dispatch to locations such as Dallam, Attercliffe, Ripple Lane etc.

The hire period should be for 60 to 90 days and as part of the hire arrangement 56301 will receive a replacement set of bogies. These replacement bogies will be to mainline standards and will replace the set currently under 56301, which have wheelsets with tyres at near scrap size.

This arrangement will allow 56301 to continue to work on the national network, as and when required for spot or medium term hire work. This agreement will also allow 56006 to retain a good set of bogies.

The Class 56 Group had previously considered swapping bogies between 56006 with 56301. The drawback to that plan was that 56006 would then be sitting on near scrap tyres and vulnerable to a wheel slide. This could render the wheelsets unrecoverable and the loco laid up awaiting a purchase of replacement wheelsets, which the group would be unlikely to be able to fund.

The Class 56 Group are pleased to be entering into this agreement with GB Railfreight and we look forward to building a good relationship with the freight operating company during the course of the hire period and beyond.

The Class 56 Group would like to remind group members and other general railway enthusiasts that the CEMEX site is not open to public access. We’d like to point out that anyone wishing to view the locomotive stabled or working can do so quite easily, safely and legally from the overbridge near the entrance to the DB Cargo facility. Parking is not easy in the area and we’d ask any visitors to be both safety minded and considerate of the local community and railway / quarry staff when in the area.

The Class 56 Group

11th October 2018

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