|Electrical Equipment:||English Electric / Associated Electrical Industries|
|Mechanical Construction:||English Electric (Vulcan Foundry)|
86401 on a Caledonian Sleeper working at London Euston
86401 represents the 86/4 subclass, which were generally used in later years on mail and parcels services, although this didn't stop examples being found on express passenger duties from time to time.
86401 was the first Class 86 to be preserved, being purchased from EWS in June 2004, in full working order. It had been withdrawn in 2003 following the cessation of mail traffic by rail.
86401 was scheduled to be named "The Chartered Institute of Transport", but the plates were never affixed. Instead it was named "Northampton Town" on 13th May 1989 but the plates were removed in November 1991. It was named "Hertfordshire Rail Tours" on 15th October 1998, the plates remaining in place until withdrawal at the end of 2002.
As the only AC electric to legitimately carry Network SouthEast livery, it was restored to the scheme in 2005 for the Crewe Works Open Days with sponsorship from the Webb Crewe Works Open Weekend Committee, where it was rechristened "Northampton Town".
In 2015 86401 was restored to full main line running order, to provide support for 86101 and 87002 on the Serco Caledonian Sleeper contract. To comply with the latest main line requirements the loco was fitted with a Vacuum Circuit Breaker, OTMR (Data Recorder) and GSM-R radio. The "Northampton Town" name plates were removed and replaced by "Mons Meg", the name of a mediaeval bombard (cannon) on display at Edinburgh Castle. 86401 performed a solo main line test run from Willesden TMD to Watford Junction, Euston and back to Willesden on 4th August 2015. After a further test run, from Willesden to Bletchley and back, 86401 worked its first commercial train in preservation, 5M16 empty coaches from the Lowland Caledonian Sleeper, from London Euston to Wembley Inter City Depot on the morning of 8th August 2015.
86401 was sold to West Coast Railway Company (WCRC) on 14th February 2020.
86401 had travelled 17669 miles in 4 years as a main-line-registered Electric Traction Ltd. locomotive.
86213 at Barrow Hill
86401at Crewe Electric Traction Depot
The AL6 design was produced ostensibly from the experience gained with the first five designs in the early years of the WCML electrification. It featured a general construction design and bogies closely following those of the AL5, high-tension tap changing (power control) pioneered on the AL2 and a completely modular interior based around the concept of four 'power packs', one for each traction motor.
In a departure from the styling of the AL1-AL5 fleet, the AL6s featured squared-off front ends, as opposed to the raked back noses of the earlier designs. The three window arrangement was retained, as was the headcode box. Another significant change was the lack of a second pantograph when built.
Two builders were responsible for the construction of the 100 locomotives. BR Doncaster was given the job of completing 60 locomotives, while Vulcan Foundry was to build 40. Eventually the numbers were reversed with VF building the majority due to capacity problems at Doncaster. Electrical equipment was supplied by AEI and English Electric, and one area that received special attention was that of noise levels. The cooling fans on the AL6 were specially designed to avoid the sometimes deafening roar produced by the earlier locos!
The first locomotives from each manufacturer were noted on test in January 1965, however build dates, first testing dates, first passenger traffic dates and introduction dates for the AL6s were so varied that it is almost impossible to state which locomotives came first. E3101 and E3161 were amongst the first locos sighted, and E3173 (of which more later) is often quoted as the first delivered, though two locos became the first to haul passenger trains, both being charged with football specials in May 1965. Official introduction didn't come until August of the same year.
In a change of livery form the earlier classes, the AL6s all emerged painted in Rail Blue (Monastral Blue), with white cab window surrounds and and white cab roof (this latter being slightly debatable as some photographic evidence tents to suggest that cab roofs were either perpetually filthy or a very light Dove Grey) and not the Electric Blue of the early classes. The first AL6s entered traffic without yellow warning panels, though these were not absent from the locomotives for long. When first introduced the AL6s built at Doncaster featured red bufferbeams and Vulcan Foundry built locomotives Rail Blue The original number series was E3101 - E3200.
The whole fleet was delivered within 24 months, however, and the class soon settled down to regular service on a variety of trains, including pick-up goods! Two designs of traction motor were used on the fleet, with slightly different gear ratios, but with little impact on performance in the early years.
One significant failure of the AL6 design was that of the traction motor mounting and bogie design. In the early designs, bogie-frame-mounted motors had been used with flexible drives to the axles. To reduce costs on the AL6 the motors were mounted directly on the axles, the justification for this being that 'dipped joint' tests on the East Coast Mainline where diesel locomotives with axle hung traction motors operated had shown there to be no issues with excessive track forces. Unfortunately the testing had actually shown that even the considerably lighter motors on the diesel locomotives did could cause excessive forces, the 'high force' result had been dismissed as an instrumentation error. It was soon found that the excess of unsprung weight and inadequate damping on the bogies lead to terrible riding and serious track damage at high speed. By the late 1960s the AL6s were causing serious concerns and the RTC in Derby started experiments to investigate if the bogie design could be improved, before the investigations had progressed too far reports came back from staff that they did not need instruments to analyse how rough the ride was on the locmotives, anything loose in the cab being thrown on to the floor at speeds in excess of 90 miles per hour. The rough riding of the AL6s ultimately lead to serious consequences for the locomotives with weld fractures and other mechanical damage leading to an increasing number of bogies being sidelined for repair at Crewe works.
In 1969, one locomotive, E3173, was fitted experimentally with additional suspension in the form of large helical 'flexicoil' springs in groups of three on each side of each bogie, supporting the body. The trials with the loco, which was nicknamed 'Zebedee', were a success, and eventually led to the design being fitted to the whole fleet. Following on from E3173 the Bogie Design section at Derby undertook an extensive redesign of the AL6 bogie to produce the 86/2 bogie; the bogie frames were completely redesigned and rebuilt to incorporate 'flexicoil' springs, new lateral and vertical dampers and the fitting of SAB Resilient wheels. With the benefit of computer simulation programmes such as BR Researchs VAMPIRE the dynamics of the revised bogie were analysed and the resulting locomotives were a revelation.
E3173 went on to perform an important role in the development of the HST or InterCity 125. Prior to the prototype of this train being built, E3173 was fitted with an aerodynamic nose and ran a series of high-speed tests in the Tring area, measuring air resistance and pressure effects in tunnels. It is reported that the loco reached 129 mph during these tests, becoming the first UK loco to beat Mallard's record! BR chose not to publicise the event, however, as they were expecting better things from their HST, and didn't want to overshadow the new train.
The first significant change to the Class 86 fleet (as it became known in the early 70s) was the separation of the class into two principle sub classes, determined by the traction motor type. The 86/0s were the standard loco, essentially as built, and were generally restricted to freight and slower passenger duties, with their maximum speed dropped from 100 mph to 80 mph. The 86/2s became the high-speed passenger locomotives, all being fitted with revised bogies. Forty-nine locomotives were originally converted, increased soon afterwards to 58. As traction motor types were distributed amongst the fleet seemingly at random, renumbering from the original E3XXX series to the new TOPS series was also essentially random, so, for instance, 86001 was not previously E3101.
In addition, three further locos were modified. Initially numbered with the 86/2s (86201-203), these were modified with new bogies of a design developed for use in the Class 87s, then under development. They were renumbered as Class 86/1s, taking the series 86101 - 86103, and undertook special testing, particularly on the northern stretches of the WCML as the line was electrified, in preparation for the new locos.
By the mid 1970s, all the 86s were in Rail Blue livery with aluminium BR double-arrows on each side, however in the late 1970s and early 1980s, several 86/2s were selected to receive names following the change in BR policy towards named locomotives. Two 86/2s were treated to a special livery to mark the 150th Anniversary of the Rainhill Trials in 1979; 86214 Sans Pareil and 86235 Novelty (both named after locomotives that took part in the original trials), were given large bodyside numbers and a full height emblem marking the event. They also received full yellow cabs and black window surrounds after a short time, being the first locos to carry the style that later developed into Large Logo Blue.
Eventually all the 86/1s and 86/2s received names, and many of the freight fleet have also been named as the years have passed. A number of the freight locos were fitted with multiple working equipment compatible with the Class 87s during this period, the addition of hefty jumper cables to the nose end being especially obvious.
By the late 1970s, the 86/0 fleet were still causing problems due to bad riding and track damage. In addition, there was a need for more 100 mph-capable locomotives. Nineteen 86/0s were modified by the use of SAB resilient wheels - a new design of wheel in two sections separated by a rubber bearing. The converted locos (86011 - 86029) were renumbered into the 86/3 series (86311 - 86329).
Still more 100 mph locos were needed, however, and a further conversion programme was undertaken, fitting all the 86/3s and 86/0s with flexicoil suspension, and fitting the 86/0s with SAB wheels, standardising the whole lot as Class 86/4, renumbered appropriately. Thus by the mid 1980s, all 100 locos were a near-standard interchangeable fleet. A number of 86/2s were moved to the Great Eastern for use on the newly electrified line to Ipswich and later Norwich. The fleet was flexible and saw locos move back and forth from the WCML at irregular intervals.
In 1986 two Class 86s locos were written off in the fatal Colwich crash. These were 86211 City of Milton Keynes (the only 86 never to receive a version of InterCity livery) and 86429 The Times (originally E3200 - the last numbered loco).
Sectorisation in the late 1980s then split the fleet up once again, with the 86/4s moving to dedicated parcels and freight use, and the 86/2s remaining on InterCity passenger services. Many 86/4s had their train heating capabilities removed, with other modifications, and became Class 86/6s, with a reduced maximum speed of 75 mph. These generally operated in pairs on long-distance freight services.
At the end of the 1980s, the Freightliner subsector required a fleet of electric locomotives for dedicated Freightliner use, and so ten 86/2s were earmarked for regearing and removal of train heating. Nine of these were renumbered into a new Class 86/5 series before the InterCity sector demanded the locos back and they reverted to their 86/2 identities!
The increased use of fixed-formation trainsets, coupled with the delivery of new DVT (Driving Van Trailer) vehicles, saw the 86s modified with Time Division Multiplex (TDM) multiple working equipment. Railway Clearing House (RCH)-style jumpers were added to the cab fronts of all locos, used to control the loco whilst propelling for the 86/2s, and for general multiple working amongst the other sub-classes. The 86/4s and 86/6s lost their original multiple-working equipment soon afterwards.
At the dawn of Privatisation, the 86 fleet was divested to a number of owners and operators. The 86/1s and the majority of 86/2s passed to Eversholt Leasing Company (later Forward Trust, and later still HSBC) and hired to InterCity West Coast and InterCity Cross Country (later Virgin West Coast and Virgin Cross Country). A small fleet of seven 86/2s passed to Rail Express Systems and later EWS, together with the eight remaining 86/4s. Ten 86/6s moved to the Freightliner business, with the remainder becoming the property of Porterbrook Leasing, leased back to Freightliner.
The third loss to the fleet came in 1997 when 86239 L S Lowry was written off in the Stafford crash, however a number of locos began to be stored in the late 1990s as strategic reserves or unofficially as 'Christmas Trees' for spare parts. Some eventually returned to service, while others did not.
Freightliner chose one of their locomotives for special re-gearing trials in 2000, and 86608 was renumbered 86501, just to confuse anyone who thought that 86258 had been 86501 for a while in 1989. This loco re-entered service but remained a one-off conversion.
In mid 2002, Virgin Trains replaced all its Cross Country loco-hauled services with new stock, displacing the dedicated 86/2s which were placed into store. On a more positive note, however, Virgin, Alstom (who maintained the fleet) and HSBC agreed to repaint one of the remaining West Coast 86/2s into a good approximation of original Electric Blue livery. 86233 (E3172) was the chosen loco, renamed Alstom Heritage on the occasion of its unveiling.
2002 also saw the start of disposals, with 86219 Phoenix having the dubious distinction of being the first to be cut up. Several other locos, including numerical pioneer E3101 (86252), 86103 and 86204 (E3173 - 'Zebedee') also met their end during the year.
86s on West Coast Main Line passenger services all but ceased in 2003, leaving Anglia to continue alone until the end of 2004 when their last three locos were due to be taken out of service. Many off-lease locos were stored during 2003, however a good number were sent almost immediately for scrap. By the end of 2004 no less than 25 locos had been disposed of or sold for scrap. Meanwhile The AC Locomotive Group purchased 86401 from EWS in June 2004.
Anglia surprised everyone by retaining a couple of 86/2s for most of 2005, but the end finally came on 17th September when 86235 ran its last diagram. In the meantime, two further 86/2s (86210 and 86253) gained a new lease of life, being converted into new Mobile Load Bank machines numbered 86902 and 86901 respectively. A third 86/2 took on a new aspect as 86258 was moved to Brush Loughborough for conversion to a battery powered short-haul locomotive.
86213 had been on loan from HSBC to The AC Locomotive Group since November 2002 and, along with 86101, was purchased by the Group in 2005. Initially stored at Barrow Hill, 86213 was moved in 2005 to Wembley for use as a train supply locomotive. 86101 had been stored unused for some years but was moved to Barrow Hill in 2006 for restoration to start. 86101 became the first preserved AC electric locomotive to operate on the main line on 15th March 2007, and it became the first preserved AC electric locomotive to operate a charter train on 24th March 2007, from Carlisle to Crewe and back.
West Midlands radio presenter Les Ross purchased 86259 from HSBC in 2007, and it was restored to main line running order in 2008.
86101 was hired to Hull Trains in late 2007 for use on weekend services between London Kings Cross and Doncaster. These services ran from 11th January 2008 to 20th April 2008. Thus 86101 became the first preserved AC electric locomotive to work scheduled passenger services. The services required use of the Time Division Multiplex (TDM) remote control system, and sustained running at 110 mph.
In 2008 Europhoenix Ltd. completed a deal to purchase the remaining HSBC Class 86/2 fleet, numbering 23 locomotives, with the intention of overhauling some of them for use in Europe and the UK. 86248 and 86250 were sold to Hungarian private open access freight operator Floyd, and were delivered in February and May 2009, becoming Hungarian class 450. Trials with these locos were successful and up to eight further locos will be exported: delivered so far are 86232 (April 2010), 86218 (February 2011), 86215 (May 2012) and 86217 (February 2013).
Also during 2009, Europhoenix prepared 86205 and 86260 for use by Electric Traction Ltd as "commercial" locomotives to supplement "preserved" locomotives 86101 and 87002. Becoming 86701 and 86702 respectively, they have been approved for use at 110 mph.
Since general withdrawal from service in 2005, a number of the poorest quality 86/2s have been scrapped, including 86258, the conversion project being abandoned. The Class 86 situation in July 2012 was as follows:
- 86/1: 1 in traffic with The AC Locomotive Group/Electric Traction (86101)
- 86/2: 1 in traffic with Les Ross (86259), 1 preserved by The AC Locomotive Group/Electric Traction (86213), 8 stored (of which 4 are expected to be exported to Hungary), 1 being used as a spares source
- 86/4: 1 preserved by The AC Locomotive Group/Electric Traction (86401), 1 being used as a spares source by Electric Traction (86424)
- 86/5: 1 in traffic with Freightliner
- 86/6: 16 in traffic with Freightliner
- 86/7: 2 in traffic with Electric Traction
- 86/9: 2 stored, not being used
86233 was sent to Bulgaria in October 2012 for use by open access freight operator Bulmarket as a spares donor for 87009, 87017, 87023 and 87025.
86621 was scrapped at LNWR Crewe in April 2013.
Hungarian open access freight operator Floyd received two further operational locomotives in August 2013 (86228 and 86242) and also 86424 for use as a spares donor.
86401 was selected for preparation for mainline operation for the Serco Caledonian Sleeper contract, moving to Leicester TMD in February 2015, then via Loughborough (for repainting) and on to Willesden in June 2015.
86246 was moved to Willesden TMD in June 2015 to act as a spares donor.
The Class 86 situation in June 2015 was as follows:
- 86/1: 1 in traffic with The AC Locomotive Group/Electric Traction (86101)
- 86/2: 1 in traffic with Les Ross (86259), 1 preserved by The AC Locomotive Group/Electric Traction (86213), 5 stored, 2 being used as spares donors.
- 86/4: 1 being prepared for mainline use by The AC Locomotive Group/Electric Traction (86401)
- 86/5: 1 in traffic with Freightliner
- 86/6: 15 in traffic with Freightliner
- 86/7: 2 in traffic with Electric Traction
- 86/9: 2 stored, not being used
86401 performed a solo main line test run from Willesden TMD to Watford Junction, Euston and back to Willesden on 4th August 2015. After a further test run, from Willesden to Bletchley and back, 86401 worked its first commercial train in preservation, 5M16 empty coaches from the Lowland Caledonian Sleeper, from London Euston to Wembley Inter City Depot on the morning of 8th August 2015.
The 2000 re-gearing conversion 86501 was converted back to standard 86/6 86608 in March 2016.
In March 2016 a further series of sales of Class 86 locomotives was announced. 86213, 86231, 86234, 86235, 86701 and 86702 were sold to Bulmarket in Bulgaria. 86229 and 86251 were sold to Freightliner for spares. 86246 remained at Willesden TMD as a spares donor.
The Class 86 situation in early April 2016 was as follows:
- 86/1: 1 in traffic with The AC Locomotive Group/Electric Traction (86101)
- 86/2: 1 in traffic with Les Ross (86259); 4 sold for export; 3 being used as spares donors
- 86/4: 1 in traffic with The AC Locomotive Group/Electric Traction (86401)
- 86/6: 16 in traffic with Freightliner
- 86/7: 2 sold for export
- 86/9: 2 stored, not being used
In November 2016, 86246 was moved from Willesden TMD via Wembley to the C.F.Booth scrapyard at Rotherham. 86902, resident at the same scrapyard since January 2014, was cut up there in November 2016.
In Bulgaria, some of the class 86 exports for Bulmarket completed their conversions. This included replacement of their SAB resliient wheels with solid wheel pans, and fitting of the "freight" (22/65) gear ratio. To avoid conflict with the former Danish EA Class locomotives, which already use the Bulgarian Class 86 series, initially the UK exports took the number series from 87701 onwards. First to be converted were 86701 (to 87701), 86702 (to 87702), 86213 (to 87703) and 86235 (to 87704). However by early 2017 there had been a change of heart, and the former class 86s started to be renumbered again as Bulgarian Class 85. 87701 (former 86701) became 85001, 87702 (former 86702) became 85002, 87703 (former 86213) became 85003 and 87704 (former 86235) became 85004; all retained their nameplates as exported. In addition, the conversion of 86231 was completed, the loco becoming 85006 and carrying the "Lady of the Lake" nameplates, completing what British Rail failed to do many years ago. Later in 2017, the former 86234 was also converted, to 85006, but remaining un-named.
In Hungary, during 2018, the former 86424 was put into working order as 450 009.
86901 was moved to Sandbach and scrapped there in June 2018.
Following completion of the Caledonian Sleeper contract in October 2019, there was little prospect of further work for 86101 (and 87002), and both were sold to Locomotive Services Ltd (LSL) in November 2019. 86401 was sold to West Coast Railways in February 2020.
The Class 86 situation in early May 2020 was as follows:
- 86/1: 1 in traffic with Locomotive Services Ltd (86101)
- 86/2: 1 in traffic with Les Ross (86259)
- 86/4: 1 in traffic with West Coast Railways (86401)
- 86/6: 14 in traffic and 2 stored with Freightliner
There are 9 operational 86s in Hungary, plus 6 operational 86s in Bulgaria (and one as a spares donor). All these are now using solid wheel pans and have the freight gear ratio, so are effectively 86/6s; most also have two pantographs. By way of a summary, the exported 86s have been renumbered as follows. Note that in Bulgaria class 86 had already been used for the former Danish EA class locomotives, hence the initial use of class 87 (which was then seen to be a mistake) then class 85.
|Last UK Number||Country||First Export Number||Later Export Number||Latest UIC Number||Name Carried|
|86213||Bulgaria||87 703||85 003||91 52 00 85 003-9||Lancashire Witch|
|86215||Hungary||450 005||-||91 55 0450 005-8||-|
|86217||Hungary||450 006||-||91 55 0450 006-6||-|
|86218||Hungary||450 004||-||91 55 0450 004-1||-|
|86228||Hungary||450 007||-||91 55 0450 007-4||-|
|86231||Bulgaria||85 005||-||91 52 00 85 005-4||Lady of the Lake|
|86232||Hungary||450 003||-||91 55 0450 003-3||-|
|86234||Bulgaria||85 006||-||91 52 00 85 006-2||-|
|86235||Bulgaria||87 704||85 004||91 52 00 85 004-7||Novelty|
|86242||Hungary||450 008||-||91 55 0450 008-2||-|
|86248||Hungary||450 001||-||91 55 0450 001-7||-|
|86250||Hungary||450 002||-||91 55 0450 002-5||-|
|86424||Hungary||450 009||-||91 55 0450 009-0||-|
|86701||Bulgaria||87 701||85 001||91 52 00 85 001-3||Orion|
|86702||Bulgaria||87 702||85 002||91 52 00 85 002-1||Cassiopeia|
In February 2021, Freightliner stored all their 86/6 locomotives in sidings in Basford Hall yard. That ended the regular usage in the UK of this class of locomotives.
86101, 86259 and 86401 continue to operate occasional charter trains with LSL, Les Ross (for WCRC) and WCRC respectively.
86401 in RES livery
Despite carrying the number 86001 for part of its life, this loco was not even remotely the first class 86! It was built by English Electric at Vulcan Foundry and introduced as E3199 (second-last in the original numbering sequence - but not even remotely the second-last loco built) in January 1966. E3199 led an unremarkable early career: first allocated to the ACL, or 'AC Lines', code. Following the opening of Willesden Depot, all the 86s were transferred to the London shed.
When TOPS renumbering was carried out, E3199 became the first of the subclass 86/0, numbered 86001 in May 1973. While about half the class was modified with flexicoil suspension and resilient wheels and became Class 86/2, the remaining locos were unmodified and were renumbered into the 86/0 series. E3199 was likely to have been outshopped in the early version of Rail Blue (Monastral Blue?) in the "electric blue" style; it was later repainted into standard Rail Blue with full yellow ends.
The 86/0s were downgraded to 80 mph locos to reduce track wear, and this made them more suitable for freight use. 86001 was soon fitted with 34-way jumper cables for multiple-working with other 86/0s and 87s. Whilst a number of 86/0s were converted to 86/3s in the early 1980s, 86001 was not one of them, and had to wait until December 1986 for refurbishment and renumbering to 86401. Again, the number did not indicate by any stretch that it was the first 86/4 created - plenty of others were running whilst the loco was still 86001!
The 86/4 refurbishment was more-or-less to the same standards as the 86/2s, with flexicoil suspension and SAB resilient wheels fitted. With this, 86401 was once more a 100 mph locomotive.
The loco's conversion coincided with the inauguration of electric passenger services to Cambridge, and for the launch 86401 was outshopped in full Network SouthEast livery - the only AC electric locomotive so treated. It was named "Northampton Town" in May 1989, while in use on the famous "Cobbler" Northampton commuter services. Despite its NSE branding, 86401 could be seen all over the BR AC electrified network, working as far north as Glasgow and Mossend.
After the sectorisation of BR, 86401 became the property of the Parcels division, later Rail Express Systems (RES), and was repainted into their red and grey livery around 1992, losing its name at about the same time. Some reports suggest that the loco also carried the plain parcels livery for a short time. Following privatisation, 86401 passed to EWS and received their red and gold livery in October 1998 when it was named "Hertfordshire Rail Tours".
Like 86213, 86401 was one of the exhibits at the Crewe Electric Depot Staff Open Day in November 2001, alongside 82008 and 83012 from the AC Loco Group's fleet.
Withdrawal came in December 2002 and the loco was eventually offered for sale in 2004. It was purchased in June 2004 through the Group's 86/87 Project
86401 prior to the naming ceremony at Crewe Works in 2005
86401 was purchased in June 2004 by the Group's 86/87 Project. It remained at Crewe Electric for about 12 months before being moved to the LNWR workshops and repainted into Network SouthEast colours. The repaint was sponsorship by the Webb Crewe Works Open Weekend Committee, and the loco was renamed "Northampton Town" at the Crewe Works Open Days in September.
Following a brief period in store at LNWR Crewe, the loco was moved to Long Marston for a full E-exam: unfortunately problems were found with one of the wheelsets. While replacements were being sourced, it was moved to Willesden TMD to act as a shunting and train heat supply loco.
86401 was moved to LNWR Crewe in February 2011 to receive replacement bogies from 86424, returning to Willesden in March 2012.
In February 2015 it was announced that 86401 would be restored to full main line running order, to provide support for 86101 and 87002 on the Serco Caledonian Sleeper contract. 86401 was moved from Willesden to the former Leicester TMD in February 2015 to allow the significant amount of work to be carried out. As well as receiving a full E-exam the loco has had work carried out on the body and sanding system. To comply with the latest main line requirements the loco has also been fitted with a Vacuum Circuit Breaker, OTMR (Data Recorder) and GSM-R radio.
On 12th May 2015 86401 was moved to the Wabtec (Brush) works at Loughborough for repainting into the Serco Caledonian Sleeper colour scheme; then on 29th May 2015 the loco was moved to Wembley Inter City Depot to visit the wheel lathe there. 86401 was later moved the short distance to Willesden TMD for final commissioning to be carried out
The "Northampton Town" name plates were removed and replaced in May 2015 by "Mons Meg", the name of a mediaeval bombard (cannon) on display at Edinburgh Castle.
86401 performed a solo main line test run from Willesden TMD to Watford Junction, Euston and back to Willesden on 4th August 2015.
After a further test run, from Willesden to Bletchley and back, 86401 worked its first commercial train in preservation, 5M16 empty coaches from the Lowland Caledonian Sleeper, from London Euston to Wembley Inter City Depot on the morning of 8th August 2015.
With the introduction during 2019 of the new Mk.5 Sleeper Carriages, which 86401 cannot haul, there was no longer a requirement for the locomotives to be hired for the Serco Caledonian Sleeper workings. 86401's last Sleeper working was on 6th March 2019, when the loco worked 5M11 from Euston to Wembley Inter City Depot.
A number of avenues were explored across the UK industry in hope that further contracted work could be found for the main line fleet. As this became increasingly unlikely alternate options were considered. The priority was continued operation in the UK. On 14th February 2020 the sale of 86401 to West Coast Railway Company (WCRC) was announced with immediate effect.
86401 had travelled 17669 miles in 4 years as a main-line-registered Electric Traction Ltd. locomotive.
|Original BR TOPS Number||86001|
|Second BR TOPS Number||86401|
|Network Rail TOPS Number||86401|
GENERAL DETAILS - CLASS 86/4
|Type / Class||AL6 / 86|
|Original BR 1957 Number Series||Various from E3101-E3200|
|BR TOPS Original Number Series||86001-86048, later 86001-86039.|
|BR TOPS Renumbered||86001-86010, 86030-86039, 86311-86329|
|BR TOPS Renumbered||86401-86439|
|Builder||BR Doncaster (E3101-E3140), English Electric, Vulcan Foundry (E3141-E3200)|
|Electrical Equipment Manufacturer||AEI / English Electric|
PRINCIPAL DIMENSIONS - CLASS 86/4
|Weight In Working Order||83 - 84 tonnes|
|Length Over Buffers||58' 6"|
|Width||8' 8 1/4"|
|Height Over Body||12' 4 1/4"|
|Height Over Pantograph (lowered)||13' 0 1/4"|
|Wheelbase||43' 6 1/8"|
|Bogie Wheelbase||10' 9"|
|Bogie Pivot Centres||32' 9"|
|Wheel Diameter||3' 9 1/2"|
|Minimum Curve||6 chains|
PERFORMANCE DETAILS - CLASS 86/4
|Maximum Speed||100 mph|
|Maximum Rail Horsepower||5900 hp at 38 mph|
|Maximum Tractive Effort||58000 lb|
|Continuous Tractive Effort||20000 lb at 67 mph|
|Brake Force||40 tons|
|Electric Train Heating Index||74|
EQUIPMENT DETAILS - CLASS 86/4
|Transformer and Control Gear||Oil cooled, High-Tension tap changer.|
|Rectifier Type||Air cooled silicon semi-conducting|
|Bogie Type||Fabricated steel, Alsthom & Flexicoil suspension|
|Circuit Breaker Type||Air Blast, later Vacuum. 86401: Vacuum.|
|Traction Motor Type||AEI 282 AZ 4-pole (900hp)|
|Traction Motor Drive||Single reduction gear|
|Pantograph Type||Originally 90 fitted with Stone Faiveley AMBR Mk1 "bicycle frame" and 10 with AEI "cross-arm". Later various swaps. Some fitted with Brecknell-Willis "high-speed" pantograph. 86401: Brecknell-Willis "high-speed" pantograph.|
|Locomotive Brake Type||Air and Rheostatic|
|Train Brake Type||Air and Vacuum, some later air only. 86401: air only.|
|E (1965)||86/0 (1973)||86/2 (1973)||86/1 (1974)||86/3 (1980)||86/4 (1985)||86/5 (1988)||86/2 (1989)||86/6 (1989)||86/4 (1992)||86/6 (1993)||86/7 (2009)||86/9 (2004)||Last Number||Export Number||Builder||Build Date||Intro||Status||Notes||Name|
|E3101||86252||86252||Doncaster||Jan-65||Aug-65||Scrapped 2002: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||The Liverpool Daily Post (1980-2000)|
Sheppard 100 (2000-2001)
|E3105||86030||86430||86430||Doncaster||Feb-65||Jun-65||Scrapped 2005: CF Booth, Rotherham||Scottish National Orchestra (1987-1991)|
Saint Edmund (1996-2002)
|E3106||86214||86214||Doncaster||Feb-65||Jun-65||Scrapped 2006: Ron Hull Jr, Rotherham||Originally allocated name 'Sanspareil'.||Sans Pareil (1981-2005)|
|E3107||86248||86248||91 55 0450 001-7||Doncaster||Mar-65||Oct-65||Exported 02/2009: Hungary||Sir Clwyd County of Clwyd (1981-?)|
|E3109||86016||86316||86416||86616||86416||86416||Doncaster||Apr-65||Jun-65||Scrapped 2005: CF Booth, Rotherham||Wigan Pier (1984-1992)|
|E3110||86027||86327||86427||86627||86627||Doncaster||Apr-65||Jun-65||The Industrial Society (1985-1999)|
|E3111||86024||86324||86424||86424||91 55 0450 009-0||Doncaster||May-65||Jun-65||Exported 08/2013: Hungary|
|E3112||86006||86406||86606||86606||Doncaster||May-65||Aug-65||Scrapped 2007: Ron Hull Jr, Rotherham|
|E3113||86232||86232||91 55 0450 003-3||Doncaster||May-65||Aug-65||Exported 04/2010: Hungary||Harold Macmillan (1979-1990)|
Norwich Festival (1990-1995)
Norwich & Norfolk Festival (1995-1998)
Norwich & Norfolk Festival (2001-2005)
|E3114||86020||86320||86420||86620||86620||Doncaster||May-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2007: Ron Hull Jr, Rotherham||Philip G Walton (1998-scrap)|
|E3115||86003||86403||86603||86603||Doncaster||Jun-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2005: CF Booth, Rotherham||Component Recovery 2002-2005: Wigan CRDC|
|E3116||86238||86238||Doncaster||Jul-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2005: Boreham Scrap Co, Boreham||European Community (1986-scrap)|
|E3117||86227||86227||Doncaster||Jul-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2005: Ron Hull Jr, Rotherham||Originally allocated name 'Lady of the Lake'.||Sir Henry Johnston (1981-2002)|
Golden Jubilee (2002-scrap)
|E3118||86041||86261||86261||Doncaster||Jul-65||Sep-65||Scrapped 2004: CF Booth, Rotherham||Driver John Axon GC (1981-1992)|
The Rail Charter Partnership (1997-2004)
|E3119||86229||86229||Doncaster||Jul-65||Sep-65||Stored: Long Marston||Sir John Betjeman (1983-1998)|
Lions Club International (1998-2003)
|E3120||86019||86319||86419||86419||Doncaster||Jul-65||Sep-65||Scrapped 2003: Crewe ETD||Post Haste 150 Years of Travelling Post Offices (1990-1993)|
|E3121||86241||86508||86241||86241||Doncaster||Aug-65||Sep-65||Scrapped 2003: Crewe ETD||Glenfiddich (1979-scrap)|
|E3122||86012||86312||86412||86612||86612||Doncaster||Aug-65||Oct-65||Elizabeth Garrett Anderson (1983-present)|
|E3123||86015||86315||86415||86615||86415||86615||86615||Doncaster||Aug-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2007: Ron Hull Jr, Rotherham||Rotary International (1984-scrap)|
|E3124||86035||86435||86635||86635||Doncaster||Sep-65||Oct-65||Awaiting scrapping: Crewe LNWR|
|E3125||86209||86209||Doncaster||Oct-65||Nov-65||Scrapped 2005: Boreham Scrap Co, Boreham||City of Coventry (1979-2004)|
|E3126||86231||86231||85005||Doncaster||Oct-65||Nov-65||Exported 04/2016: Bulgaria||Originally allocated name 'Lady of the Lake', then 'Lord Stamp'.||Starlight Express (1984-2002)|
Lady of the Lake (2017-present)
|E3127||86240||86240||Doncaster||Oct-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2005: Ron Hull Jr, Rotherham||Originally allocated name 'Sir Clwyd County of Clwyd'.||Bishop Eric Treacy (1979-2002)|
|E3128||86013||86313||86413||86613||86613||Doncaster||Oct-65||Nov-65||County of Lancashire (1985-1999)|
|E3129||86205||86503||86205||86701||86701||85001||Doncaster||Oct-65||Nov-65||Exported 04/2016: Bulgaria||City of Lancaster (1979-2003)|
|E3131||86222||86502||86222||86222||Doncaster||Nov-65||Jan-66||Scrapped 2003: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||Fury (1979-1987)|
Lloyds List (1987-1989)
Lloyds List 250th Anniversary (1989-1994)
Clothes Show Live (1994-scrap)
|E3132||86221||86221||Doncaster||Nov-65||Dec-65||Scrapped 2003: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||Vesta (1979-1987)|
BBC Look East (1987-2003)
|E3133||86236||86236||Doncaster||Nov-65||Dec-65||Scrapped 2003: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||Josiah Wedgwood Master Potter 1736-1795 (1980-scrap)|
|E3134||86224||86224||Doncaster||Nov-65||Dec-65||Scrapped 2006: Ron Hull Jr, Rotherham||Caledonian (1979-1998)|
|E3135||86040||86256||86256||Doncaster||Dec-65||Jan-66||Scrapped 2006: Ron Hull Jr, Rotherham||Originally allocated name 'BBC Pebble Mill'.||Pebble Mill (1981-2005)|
|E3136||86044||86253||86901||86901||Doncaster||Dec-65||Dec-65||Stored 2014: CF Booth, Rotherham||Network Rail Load Bank Conversion.||The Manchester Guardian (1980-2004)|
Chief Engineer (2005-present)
|E3137||86045||86259||86259||Doncaster||Jan-66||Jan-66||Preserved 2005: Private Owner||Peter Pan (1979-1995)|
Greater Manchester The Life & Soul Of Britain (1995-2002)
Les Ross (2002-2003)
Les Ross (2007-present)
Peter Pan (2015-present)
|E3138||86242||86242||91 55 0450 008-2||Doncaster||Dec-65||Jan-66||Exported 07/2013: Hungary||James Kennedy GC (1981-2002)|
Colchester Castle (2002-?)
|E3139||86043||86257||86257||Doncaster||Jan-66||Feb-66||Scrapped 2003: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||Snowdon (1981-scrap)|
|E3140||86046||86258||86501||86258||86258||Doncaster||Jan-66||Mar-66||Scrapped 2009: EMR Kingsbury||Originally allocated name 'Ben Nevis' - reported as being carried for a few days in 1981 before removal. Was earmarked for conversion to a battery-electric 'Green Goat' prototype, but project was cancelled.||Ben Nevis (1981-1981)|
Talyllyn - The First Preserved Railway (1984-2001)
Talyllyn 50 Years of Railway Preservation 1951-2001 (2001-2002)
|E3141||86208||86208||EE/VF 2nd||Jan-66||Feb-66||Scrapped 2003: Crewe ETD||City of Chester (1979-scrap)|
|E3142||86047||86254||86254||EE/VF 2nd||Feb-66||Feb-66||Scrapped 2004: CF Booth, Rotherham||William Webb Ellis (1980-?)|
|E3143||86203||86103||86103||EE/VF 2nd||Mar-66||Mar-66||Scrapped 2002: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||Andre Chapelon (1981-scrap)|
|E3144||86048||86260||86702||86702||85002||EE/VF 2nd||Mar-66||Mar-66||Exported 04/2016: Bulgaria||Originally allocated name 'Driver W A Oakes GC'.||Driver Wallace Oakes GC (1981-2003)|
|E3145||86014||86314||86414||86614||86414||86614||86614||EE/VF 2nd||Mar-66||Mar-66||Frank Hornby (1986-2001)|
|E3146||86017||86317||86417||86417||EE/VF 2nd||Apr-66||Apr-66||Scrapped 2004: CF Booth Rotherham||The Kingsman (1985-1993)|
|E3147||86211||86211||EE/VF 2nd||Apr-66||Apr-66||Scrapped 1986: BREL Crewe||Colwich crash (1986).||City of Milton Keynes (1982-scrap)|
|E3148||86032||86432||86632||86632||EE/VF 2nd||Apr-66||Apr-66||Brookside (1987-1999)|
|E3149||86246||86505||86246||86246||EE/VF 2nd||Apr-66||Apr-66||Stored: CF Booth Rotherham||Originally allocated name 'Scafell Pike'. Spares source.||Royal Anglian Regiment (1985-2005)|
|E3150||86202||86102||86102||EE/VF 2nd||Apr-66||Apr-66||Scrapped 2005: Caerwent||Robert A Riddles (1981-2005)|
|E3151||86212||86212||EE/VF 2nd||Mar-66||Apr-66||Scrapped 2011: EMR, Kingsbury||Static carriage heating duties East Ham (FM Rail). Originally allocated name 'City of Edinburgh'.||Preston Guild (1979-1992)|
Preston Guild 1328-1992 (1992-2003)
|E3152||86023||86323||86423||86623||86623||EE/VF 2nd||May-66||May-66||Scrapped 2010: Crewe LNWR|
|E3154||86042||86255||86255||EE/VF 2nd||May-66||May-66||Scrapped 2002: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||Penrith Beacon (1980-scrap)|
|E3155||86234||86234||85006||EE/VF 2nd||May-66||May-66||Exported 04/2016: Bulgaria||J B Priestley OM (1980-2002)|
Suffolk - Relax, Refresh, Return (2002-2005)
|E3156||86220||86220||EE/VF 2nd||May-66||Jul-66||Scrapped 2003: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||Goliath (1979-1987)|
The Round Tabler (1987-2002)
|E3157||86021||86321||86421||86621||86621||EE/VF 2nd||May-66||Jul-66||Scrapped 2013: Crewe LNWR||London School of Economics (1985-scrap)|
|E3158||86223||86223||EE/VF 2nd||May-66||Jul-66||Scrapped 2011: EMR, Kingsbury||Hector (1979-1987)|
Norwich Union (1987-2005)
|E3159||86028||86328||86428||86628||86428||86628||86628||EE/VF 2nd||May-66||Jul-66||Aldaniti (1984-present)|
|E3160||86036||86436||86636||86636||EE/VF 2nd||Jun-66||Oct-66||Scrapped 2005: CF Booth Rotherham|
|E3161||86249||86249||EE/VF 1st||Jan-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2005: JT Landscapes, MoD Caerwent||Polmadie driver training loco.||County of Merseyside (1981-scrap)|
|E3162||86226||86226||EE/VF 1st||Jan-65||Aug-65||Scrapped 2011: EMR, Kingsbury||Mail (1979-1984)|
Royal Mail Midlands (1984-1996)
Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1996-2002)
|E3163||86018||86318||86418||86618||86618||EE/VF 1st||Jan-65||Aug-65||Scrapped 2005: CF Booth Rotherham|
|E3164||86225||86225||EE/VF 1st||Feb-65||Aug-65||Scrapped 2006: Ron Hull Jr, Rotherham||Originally allocated names 'Lion', 'Mentor' and 'Meteor'.||Hardwicke (1980-2005)|
|E3165||86215||86215||91 55 0450 005-8||EE/VF 1st||Feb-65||Aug-65||Exported 05/2012: Hungary||Originally allocated names 'Novelty' and 'Comet'.||Joseph Chamberlain (1981-1996)|
Norwich Cathedral (1996-1997)
Norwich & Norfolk Festival (1998-1999)
The Round Tabler (2003-2005)
|E3166||86216||86216||EE/VF 1st||Feb-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2002: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal.||Originally allocated names 'City of Edinburgh' and 'Hardwicke'.||Meteor (1979-scrap)|
|E3167||86228||86228||91 55 0450 007-4||EE/VF 1st||Apr-65||Aug-65||Exported 07/2013: Hungary||Vulcan Heritage (1980-present)|
|E3168||86230||86230||EE/VF 1st||Apr-65||Jun-65||Scrapped 2011: EMR, Kingsbury||The Duke of Wellington (1981-1997)|
|E3169||86239||86507||86239||86239||EE/VF 1st||Apr-65||Jun-65||Scrapped 1997: Crewe ETD||Stafford crash (1996).||L S Lowry (1980-scrap)|
|E3170||86002||86402||86602||86602||EE/VF 1st||Apr-65||Jun-65||Scrapped 2010: Crewe LNWR|
|E3171||86011||86311||86411||86611||86411||86611||86611||EE/VF 1st||May-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2004-2005: Crewe Works||Norton Bridge crash (2003)||Airey Neave (1983-2003)|
|E3172||86233||86506||86233||86233||EE/VF 1st||May-65||Jun-65||Exported 10/2012: Bulgaria||Laurence Olivier (1980-2002) Alstom Heritage (2002-2003)|
|E3173||86204||86204||EE/VF 1st||Jun-65||Aug-65||Scrapped 2003: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||Prototype 'flexicoil' suspension test loco in 1970s. Used for pre-HST high-speed testing, early 1970s. British rail speed record holder - 129mph, c1973-1976.||City of Carlisle (1978-scrap)|
|E3174||86022||86322||86422||86622||86622||EE/VF 1st||Jun-65||Aug-65||10/2021: On loan to Crewe Heritage Centre|
|E3175||86218||86218||91 55 0450 004-1||EE/VF 1st||Jul-65||Oct-65||Exported 02/2011: Hungary||Planet (1979-1993)|
Harold Macmillan (1993-1997)
Year of Opera and Musical Theater 1997 (1997-1998)
NHS 50 (1998-2005)
|E3176||86007||86407||86607||86607||EE/VF 1st||Aug-65||Aug-65||The Institution of Electrical Engineers (1987-1997)|
The Institution of Electrical Engineers (1998-2000)
|E3177||86217||86504||86217||86217||91 55 0450 006-6||EE/VF 1st||Jul-65||Aug-65||Exported 02/2013: Hungary||Originally allocated names 'Comet' then 'Novelty'.||Comet (1980-1985)|
Halley's Comet (1985-1994)
City University (1994-?)
|E3178||86244||86244||EE/VF 1st||Jul-65||Aug-65||Scrapped 2003: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||The Royal British Legion (1981-scrap)|
|E3179||86207||86207||EE/VF 1st||Jul-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2006: Ron Hull Jr, Rotherham||City of Lichfield (1981-2005)|
|E3180||86008||86408||86608||86608||EE/VF 1st||Jul-65||Oct-65||Re-geared and renumbered as 86501 from 2000 to 2016||St John Ambulance (1987-1999)|
Crewe Basford Hall (2000-2000)
|E3181||86243||86243||EE/VF 1st||Jul-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2004: CF Booth Rotherham||The Boys' Brigade (1983-1993)|
|E3182||86245||86245||EE/VF 1st||Aug-65||Sep-65||Scrapped 2010: EMR, Kingsbury||Originally allocated name 'Scafell Pike'.||Dudley Castle (1984-1998)|
|E3183||86251||86251||EE/VF 1st||Aug-65||Oct-65||Stored: Long Marston||The Birmingham Post (1980-2002)|
|E3184||86206||86206||EE/VF 1st||Sep-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2004: Sims Metals Cardiff||City of Stoke on Trent (1978-2003)|
|E3185||86005||86405||86605||86405||86605||86605||EE/VF 1st||Sep-65||Oct-65||Intercontainer (1992-1996)|
|E3186||86025||86325||86425||86425||EE/VF 1st||Sep-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2005: CF Booth Rotherham||Saint Mungo (1995-2003)|
|E3187||86034||86434||86634||86634||EE/VF 1st||Sep-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2005: CF Booth Rotherham||University of London (1986-1997)|
University of London (1998-1999)
|E3188||86031||86431||86631||86431||86631||86631||EE/VF 1st||Aug-65||Oct-65||Scrapped 2004-2005: Crewe Works||Norton Bridge crash (2003).|
|E3189||86250||86250||91 55 0450 002-5||EE/VF 1st||Oct-65||Nov-65||Exported 05/2009: Hungary||The Glasgow Herald (1980-1998)|
Sheppard 100 (2003-?)
|E3190||86210||86902||86902||EE/VF 1st||Oct-65||Nov-65||Scrapped 2016: CF Booth Rotherham||Network Rail Load Bank Conversion. Originally allocated names 'City of Preston', 'Lady of the Lake' and 'Hardwicke'.||City of Edinburgh (1979-1994)|
C.I.T. 75th Anniversary (1994-2003)
Rail Vehicle Engineering (2004-scrap)
|E3191||86201||86101||86101||EE/VF 1st||Oct-65||Nov-65||Preserved 2005: AC Locomotive Group; sold to Locomotive Services Ltd 2019||Sir William A Stanier FRS (1978-2005)|
Sir William A Stanier FRS (2006-present)
|E3192||86247||86247||EE/VF 1st||Dec-65||Dec-65||Stored: Crewe Basford Hall||Spares source.||Abraham Darby (1981-2003)|
|E3193||86213||86213||85003||EE/VF 1st||Dec-65||Dec-65||Exported 04/2016: Bulgaria||Lancashire Witch (1981-present)|
|E3194||86235||86235||85004||EE/VF 1st||Oct-65||Jan-66||Exported 04/2016: Bulgaria||Novelty (1979-1990) Harold Macmillan (1990-1992) Crown Point (1992-2005) Novelty (2016-present)|
|E3195||86026||86326||86426||86426||EE/VF 1st||Dec-65||Dec-65||Scrapped 2005: CF Booth Rotherham||Pride of the Nation (1998-2002)|
|E3196||86219||86219||EE/VF 1st||Dec-65||Dec-65||Scrapped 2002: Easco, Immingham Railfreight Terminal||Phoenix (1979-scrap)|
|E3197||86237||86237||EE/VF 1st||Oct-65||Jan-66||Scrapped 2004: Sims Metals, Cardiff||Sir Charles Halle (1983-1993)|
University of East Anglia (1993-scrap)
|E3198||86033||86433||86633||86633||EE/VF 1st||Jan-66||Jan-66||Awaiting scrapping: Crewe LNWR||Wulfruna (1985-scrap)|
|E3199||86001||86401||86401||EE/VF 1st||Jan-66||Feb-66||Preserved 2004: AC Locomotive Group; sold to West Coast Railways 2020||Northampton Town (1989-1991)|
Hertfordshire Rail Tours (1998-2003)
Northampton Town (2005-2015)
Mons Meg (2015-present)
|E3200||86029||86329||86429||86429||EE/VF 1st||Jan-66||Feb-66||Scrapped 1986: BREL Crewe||Colwich crash (1986).||The Times (1985-scrap)|