SWINDON TO STRATFORD FTL Dept
and GOSPEL OAK JCT

An audio recording made from the driving cab of a Class 47 locomotive from Swindon to Stratford Freightliner Depot in north London. Recorded in the middle to late 80's. Stratford FTL and Diesel Depot no longer exist. The area is now the sidings and depot for the Channel Tunnel trains that run from St. Pancreas Station to Brussels and Paris using the new High Speed One line.

The recording was made on a portable mini-tape recorder using an external stereo microphone. However the recorder is mono only. The freightliner service was the Pengam (South Wales) to Stratford FTL depot. The driver having taken over at Swindon and working through to Stratford FTL depot and the return working. The recording stops at Gospel Oak Jct due to a guard joining the train at Acton Mainline station, making further recording difficult.

Freightliner trains run at a maximum speed of 75mph and can be up to a maximum of 25 sea containers weighing up to 2,000 plus tones.


Myself with Class 47363 at Marchwood Station 1998

The Brush-built Class 47 is a mixed freight/passenger locomotive with a top speed of 95 mph. The weight is 127 tons with 2.5 thousand horse power. They were built in the early 60's as the standard B.R. locomotive to replace steam locomotives. They could work just about every type of freight and passenger train on B.R. and were equally at home shunting in yards and sidings and were a popular locomotive with train crews.


A Class 47 driving cab at Temple Mills Freight yard, north London 1981

Many were scrapped but a number remain in preservation and are used on special excursion trains, while a number were converted to Class 57's, when an American GM engine and new Altenator replaced the original Sultzer engine and generator. These still work Freightliner trains and are also used as stand-by locomotives known as 'Thunderbirds' that assist failed electric locomotives including the latest Pendilino tilting trains.

The recording is made up of approx. 6 x 10 minute sections, each made up of brief sections where it was considered of interest to the listener. You will hear brief breaks between each part. These have been cleaned-up on an audio programme to avoid the sound of switching on and off and any sudden loud noises being an irritation.

MP3 files at 64kbps

Part One Swindon To Didcot

Part Two Didcot To Southall

Part Three Southall To West Hampstead

Part Four West Hampstead To Tottenham South Jct

Part Five Tottenham South Jct To Stratford FTL & Depot

Part Six Stratford FTL & Depot To Gospel Oak Jct

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