We received an invitation to this major event in late 2006 , and not only would it be a pleasure to be attending this superb railway it also would help ‘bed in’ the new parts fitted during 31108’s engine repairs going on at the time. In early April 2007 with all work completed and having recently received a repaint back into ‘Railfreight’ livery , 108 was given a series of test runs at Butterley and on 12/04/07 passed the ‘transit exam’ in order to travel over Network Rail.
The first stage of the movement to Grosmont took place on Tuesday 16th April ,courtesy of 40145 , with a stop off at Barrow Hill to collect D9009 (55009) & 55019 and thence to NRM York to attach D6700 (37119) also appearing at the event. Following a night berthed up at York , the convoy set off on the Wednesday morning with a 1500 arrival at Grosmont.31108 was given an exam by the NYMR Diesel Engineer on the Thursday afternoon and as ‘we’ were based at Pickering over the weekend , the loco was rostered to work the 1650 Grosmont – Pickering service train (vice steam) that afternoon.Thus the Gala started early for us ..!
31108 stands next to A4 Pacific 60007 ‘Sir Nigel Gresley’ in Grosmont shed during an exam..19/04/07
Arriving at Pickering with the 1650 service train from Grosmont is 31108 on 19/04/07.. photo S Harvey
Each day over the event 31108 was given 2 full round trips of the line ,mostly on our own , on load 6 or 7 coaches except for the Sunday when we worked an extra turn from Pickering to get us positioned back at Grosmont.We had an extremely sociable 1010 / 1015 departure time from Pickering each morning which was very welcome indeed……!
The following is a list of trains we worked over the weekend :
Thurs 19th April…1650 Grosmont – Pickering.
Fri 20th April…1015 Pickering – Grosmont , 1155 Grosmont – Pickering , 1330 Pickering – Grosmont , 1510 Grosmont – Pickering.
Sat 21st April…1010 Pickering – Grosmont , 1150 Grosmont – Pickering , 1330 Pickering – Grosmont (piloted by 40145) , 1610 Grosmont – Pickering.
Sun 22nd April..1010 Pickering – Grosmont (piloted by 50027) , 1150 Grosmont – Pickering (with 55019 on inside) , 1330 Pickering – Grosmont (piloted by 55019) , 1610 Grosmont – Pickering , 1750 Pickering – Grosmont.
The 1155 Grosmont – Pickering leaves Goathland with 31108 at the NYMR Diesel Gala..20/04/07 photo S Harvey
The superb 40145 pilots 31108 on the 1330 Pickering – Grosmont seen arriving at Goathland..20/04/07 photo S Harvey
31108 sounded fantastic through the Dales and thankfully gave a faultless performance much to the pleasure of those attending…..dragging then propelling 55019 being very noteworthy ‘ear splitting’ runs ! It was also nice to work with 50027…and especially 40145 once again !, however as per normal the single runs were the best …’hellfire’…!
This was a very well organised event and we thoroughly enjoyed being part of it .We most certainly would like to return with another one of our fleet at some stage……. A big thankyou to the NYMR staff and especially to Kev Yeoman (Gala organiser) and our crews and guards for the weekend making this a very memorable visit.
Due to a problem with D200 (40122) , 31108 stayed at the NYMR a little longer than planned and returned back to Butterley on 10/05/07 courtesy of 40145 once more.
With plenty of people enjoying ‘the thrash’ , 31108 arrives at Gothland on the 1610 Grosmont – Pickering..
21/04/07 photo S Harvey
31108’s final departure from Grosmont is the 1610 to Pickering seen here awaiting time..22/04/07
En-route from NYMR to MRB , 31108 passes Duffield with 40145 at the helm…10/05/07 photo R Reedman