Polyrus

Polyrus

Posted on 12/08/2014


Photo taken on September 18, 2014


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The Expression-Express The Expression-Express


Railway Railway



Keywords

50040
D440
Leviathan
Centurion
scrapyard
Booth's
Booth Roe Metals
rotherham
british railways
diesel locomotive
british rail
analogue
colour film


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Railway scrapyards

50040 at Booth's scrapyard in Rotherham

50040 at Booth's scrapyard in Rotherham 

Seen here on 35mm film during the summer of 1996 at Booth’s yard and standing in front of the Network SE liveried 50023 Howe, which was also doomed.

This class 50 diesel was introduced to BR traffic as D440 25/09/1968 and renumbered to 50040 under TOPS 01/01/1973. The official naming ceremony as Leviathan was at Plymouth Laira depot in August 1979. Renamed Centurion 8/07/1987 (after a request from the Royal Navy and the name was transferred from 50011, the first of the class to be withdrawn).

The Leviathan nameplates later sold at auction for £3250

The whole class was named after warships of the Royal Navy, although Leviathan was an oddity in that HMS Leviathan was not built until the end of WWII in 1945 and was never commissioned.

Following withdrawal from British Railways service 50040 Leviathan/Centurion was moved to C.F. Booths yard in Rotherham for disposal. Along with a number of other class 50s it was stored there for several years awaiting possible developments with the charity ‘Operation Collingwood’, which ultimately failed. No progress had been made and the heavily-robbed locomotive was eventually sold by Booths to a private owner for preservation at around the same time that 50023 Howe was also sold. Howe was moved to the Barrow Hill centre where substantial work was undertaken on it prior to the preservation attempt floundering.

50040 was moved to the Coventry Railway Centre. Unfortunately little significant work was undertaken on 50040 from then on, which resulted in further deterioration in its condition. The locomotive did change hands a couple of times, but eventually in 2008 the majority of people accepted it was too far gone for anything other than a complete rebuild, so it was sold to Paul Spracklen, owner of 50026 Indomitable, for use as a source of spares. The main generator was retained by its previous owner for use with 50008 Thunderer, and Mr Spracklen was able to obtain some vital items for 50026, including the radiators. With all salvageable components removed Spracken then sold the loco as scrap to Simms Metals of Halesowen. As such on the 27th June 2008, 50040 was loaded for its last ever trip, to Halesowen. Dismantling of the loco began almost immediately.

So EE Works no D1181, introduced to traffic 25th September 1968 finally met its fate. Its last passenger working had been the 19.44 Weymouth-Bristol Temple Meads 13th June 1989, although it worked a few parcel services prior to being withdrawn from BR service on 22nd August 1989.

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