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Slade Green Open Day

Saturday 14th September 2013 saw Hastings Diesels Limited operate a return ecs (empty coaching stock) movement from Hastings to Slade Green depot’s staff open day. The service was operated by a Southeastern driver throughout and with credit to Southeastern’s organisers, the depot open day was a roaring success.

From St Leonard’s Depot the unit reversed at Hastings running up to a pathing stop at Tonbridge. From Tonbridge the unit ran fast line through Sevenoaks before picking up the slow lines at Orpington thence around the Lee Spur onto the Sidcup Line. There was another stop on the Crayford Spur before entering Slade Green Depot.

The depot open day appeared to be very well organised with around 3000 attendees. A bus was laid on to ferry people from Slade Green station to the depot with the stores entrance being used to manage the crowds entering and leaving the depot. On display were a variety of units as well as lifting a coach via the overhead crane and jacking a derailed bogie; the morning drizzle adding to the realism of the latter. Hats go off to Southeastern for their management of this event!

Visitors flocked through 1001 and eventually both engine rooms were opened up to the public due to the sheer weight of numbers wanting to look. The engines had been switched before 9am and many were surprised how warm they remained some 6 hours later! The driving cab created interest with children and electric train drivers alike although it will not be revealed as to who asked what the ship’s wheel was for! (handbrake). 

Fortunately the jacking a of derailed bogie was successful as it was being undertaken in front of 1001 and the two-car Networker being used for the demonstration had to be moved to enable 1001 to leave!

After leaving the depot and passing around the Crayford Spur a short stop was made a Crayford before returning via the Lee Spur thence fast lines through Orpington. Following a brief halt at Tonbridge 1001 enjoyed a clear run to Hastings and the reversal to St Leonard’s Depot.

.

Windows are polished as 1001 awaits the road at Hastings.

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In the morning gloom a pathing stop
is made in Tonbridge’s platform 1.

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More polishing at Tonbridge while the
Up Charing Cross is allowed to pass.

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Road 4 at Slade Green and the
unit is made ready for its visitors
.

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On nearby roads 376 035 plays company to 395005 “Dame Tanni
Grey-Thompson”
; this being the first time a 395 had visited the depot.

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Minus the “Slade Green Open Day” headboard and “Wayne Jenner”
tailboard unit 1001 is shunted back in readiness for departure.

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Passing the maintenance shed at Slade Green......

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... and the depot reception building ...

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... before the brief unscheduled stop at Crayford!

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Southeastern’s Driver Harris at the helm.

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Back at Hastings platform 2 the train is
readied for the run back to the depot...

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... before obtaining the road.

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