Perhaps 2015 might not be a good year for the mainline steams. The WCRC ban from the Good Friday (3rd Apr) continued more than 1 month was completely ruined almost all steam mineline tours around the Easter time including, unfortunately most of the GB VIII schedule. During the banned period, therefore, we could enjoy only a few steam tours operated by DBS, such as VSOE by Clan Line. If we say Clan Line, sadly, she was withdrawn her service for her boiler maintenance in June. But MNLPS kindly invited me on the Surrey Hill Luncheon tour on 28th Feb that I was really enjoyed about.
Good news was that LNER B1 Mayflower nicely restored and back in the mainline. Throughout the year 2015, I think she has been working hard to cover other unavailable engines. We did not have much opportunities to see Tangmere this year too.
Apart from a few occasions to capture Duchess of Sutherland in May near Oxford and L44/L150 on "Steam on LUL Watford 90" in Sep, most tours around my area were powered by Clan Line (and then Tornado later), Mayflower, Britannia and Tangmere. It was a great shame my attempt to capture ex GWR Castle or Hall also did not come true because neither was available and the train "The Cotswold Explorer" was powered by Class 47.
At the end of the year, Black 5 45407 came down to the South to stand in for unavailable engines, Mayflower and Britannia. I enjoyed to see her powerful runs around the Christmas break time.
© Yoshi's Steam Photo Gallery