This was one of Network SouthEast’s popular weekend exhibitions of the 1980s, and one to take place outside of the capital. Organised by the Management of the Business Sector’s South Eastern Section, it was a memorable occasion, for it hosted a variety of interesting rolling stock. Of prominence was ‘’Deltic’’ No. D9000 (or, if you like, Class 55 No. 55022 ‘’Royal Scots Grey’’), which became the first locomotive of its type to reach Margate – previously, on 26th March 1978, No. 55007 ‘’Pinza’’ worked to Dover Marine on ‘’The Man of Kent’’ rail tour. John Horton, one of five organisers for the gala day, was responsible for the rolling stock attractions, these of which were as follows:
Class No. 47207: Originally, NSE-liveried No. 47581 was chosen for the gala. Eventually, however, the Eastern Region would not release it, requiring its substitution by No. 47207. The locomotive was accompanied by a pair of Travelling Post Office (TPO) vehicles.
Class 55 No. 55022: This appeared in its BR Two-Tone green guise, complete with the pre-TOPS number D9000. It was promoting ‘’D9000 Locomotives Limited’’, saviour of the locomotive, but an organisation which was later declared bankrupt.
Class 73 No. 73134: The Electro-Diesel was procured primarily to drag the ‘’Deltic’’ to the event. As it later transpired, it was in fact No. D9000 which dragged the Class 73 to Margate – John notes that ‘’there was hell to pay for that!’’ No. 73134 also powered trips up and down the Goods Dock shunt road, up to the signal box, and back again.
Class 08 No. 08600: This shunter had become a celebrity in Summer 1986, when the ‘’Network SouthEast’’ brand was formally launched. Repainted into ‘’Toothpaste’’ livery, renumbered 97600, and named ‘’Ivor’’, the diesel became shunter for Slade Green Depot.
4 SUB No. 4732: The celebrity unit formally opened the event, breaking a commemorative tape draped across the lines of platforms 1 and 2. It was used thereafter to form a shuttle service between Ramsgate and Margate during the gala.
De-icer (Ex-4 SUB) No. 013: This was the remnant of 4 SUB unit No. 4664. It became de-icer No. 013 in 1979, and the remaining pair of driving vehicles were renumbered ADB975896 and ADB975897 from Nos. 11387 and 11388 respectively.
’Hastings’’ unit No. 203001: This DEMU had been abolished from the ‘’Hastings’’ route via Tunbridge Wells Central in the previous year, and had since appeared in a hybrid livery of BR Green with BR roundels, but with full yellow warning panels and the ‘’Arrows of Indecision’’ logo.
4 SUB No. 4732
Starting the pictorial off, we see 4 SUB No. 4732 preparing to break the NSE-branded tape, formally marking
the start of the gala. There are an abundance of smartly-dressed gentlemen on platform 1, including the Town
Mayor. A nice addition was also the NSE-coloured bunting draped across the platform canopy framework.
© John Horton
De-icer No. 013
This smartly-presented unit first appeared in 1979, formed of two ex-driving vehicles of 4 SUB unit No. 4664.
Class 08 shunter No. 97800 ''Ivor'' can just be seen behind the formation. © John Horton
''Hastings'' Unit No. 203001
Hastings unit No. 203001 was painted in this peculiar all-over green livery, wearing both BR roundels and the
1965-inaugurated ''Arrows of Indecision'' logo. After electrification of the Hastings via Tunbridge Wells Central
route in 1986, the shortened four-vehicle unit could be found working on the line across the Romney Marsh,
between Hastings and Ashford. The unit was withdrawn from passenger service in 1990, converted into a
sandite unit, then scrapped in 1996. © John Horton
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