In issue 249, I enjoyed Gavin Morrison’s retro look at Holbeck shed’s last years of service in the 1960s.
My memories of this atmospheric Midland Railway ‘Cathedral of Steam’ are from a decade or so earlier when steam ruled the rails and ex-Midland and LMS locomotives dominated.
In my school days when I had rare visits to Leeds, thanks to cheap day return tickets from Durham or Newcastle, the shed was still in the Midland Region of BR and bore the code 20A. I recall great photos in the magazines of the time by the late Bishop Eric Treacy who could really capture the smoky atmosphere inside Holbeck sheds.
Top link power was provided by rebuilt Royal Scots and Jubilees – I can’t recall ever seeing even a Britannia there. Lesser passenger trains still relied largely on Midland Compounds and 2P 4-4-0s and of course, the ever-present Class 5s.
In my trainspotting days, the thought of ex-LNER Pacifics working the Settle and Carlisle route would seem impossible.
Read this letter in its entirety (plus other readers’ letters) in Issue 251 of HR – on sale now!