Oh those tickets are big!

I was reminded today of a comment often heard when people looked at the display on the walls of Orton Mere station.

We had pictures of various things on the wall, amongst them were pictures of old tickets enlarged to A4.

One off the most common comments we heard was:-

“Oh look how big tickets were in the old days!”

Most were amazed when we told them that they had been enlarged so they were easier to see, I could never imagine anybody walking round with an A4 sized ticket in their pocket.

Ghost train: Northampton to Peterborough.

I received this from Mark Hernandez Deputy Editor of Nene Steam. My thanks to him for this contribution.

I’ve seen the video above shared on a few local railway groups I belong to on social media and by a lot of NVR volunteers so I got in contact with James, the young lad who created it . He kindly agreed to a short Q&A over email which I’ve included below.

Hi Marc. No problem. I am glad you like the vid it is probably the longest I have made in this format! (Ghost Train)I’ll try and answer as best I can.

Q – What made you decide to produce a then and now animated journey on the Northampton-Peterborough railway? I take it’s part of a series you’ve been doing of lost/closed railways

A –  I chose the Northampton – Peterborough line in part via a suggestion from one of my followers. Every now and then I will throw a poll or question as to where I should explore next with my various projects – after I had produced several “Ghost Train” films in this style it was recommended that I take a look at the Northampton to Peterborough line. On quick inspection I discovered some interesting changes to the local landscape. (A lot of the track seems to be cutting through water/ lakeland in many places.) I myself am not a local being based in North Norfolk.  However I am always interested in dramatic change from anywhere in the country and railways provide a striking albeit poignant one. 
Q – Have you got any local connections to the original railway or ‘Nene Valley’ area?

A – I have not been to the Nene Valley but no doubt its on the to do list after all these lockdowns!
Q – Can you briefily talk us through the process of how you created the video? Time it took etc
A – I split into phases with these films. First I research the stations along the route – what images are available to use etc then I plot the route out on both the old map and the modern day. I then synchronize the two so they work in tandem with one another. I can then animate the train and add in any extra “cutscenes” showing the on the ground locations as they are now. True trainiacs will note that the locomotive I have been using isn’t authentic to the line but that is more a limitation of my resources and should be taken as illustrative of the route rather than a reflection of the original railway. I can usually get one of these done in a matter of a few days – with the pandemic I have had more time than usual to devote to such projects!
If you could link to my youtube channel that would be a great help. https://www.youtube.com/c/JamesFoxTimeTravelArtist/  Let me know if there are any other questions and I will try  and answer as best I can!

Please visit the James Fox YouTube channel. The history of the railway and its social implications are my areas of interest, so I personally found this video very interesting.

Jason’s Picture of the month.

This is the first in a regular series of images from Jason Isaac who did the three part article on photographing along the line.

© Jason Isaac

71000 Duke of Gloucester stands alongside Standard 5 73050 City of Peterborough at Wansford during the 2011 Steam Gala.

Is it a dirty job on the footplate?

Now that’s a question I have been asked on a regular basis.

The answer is it depends on what you think is dirty.

Here is a picture of Harry Baldwin back in 2009, he was a cleaner on steam locos. I often commented the loco was cleaner than he was!!

© Robert Maskill

Great Northern Lamp

Just a couple of images of a Great Northern Railway Company lamp from New England I photographed a few years ago.

Not the greatest of images but they do show the lamp and also it’s identification plate.

© Robert Maskill
© Robert Maskill

Does the river flood very often?

One question that I have often been asked over the years, especially when it was raining was does the river flood very often?

The answer is yes it does on a regular basis and depending on the amount of rain the level of the river can change dramatically.

This year Nene Park was quoted as saying that it’s one of the worst winters yet for flooding.

Here are three pictures taken a few years ago at Orton Mere showing how the river can overflow and how close it can get to the station.

The lock at Orton Staunch © Patrick Knight
© Patrick Knight
© Patrick Knight

The above show the waters flooding immediately behind platform 2.

As a visitor said to me a few years ago. It makes a change from photographing trains.

Jason’s NVR Photo Guide.

Part Three – Overton to Peterborough Nene Valley.

In this final third chapter I will be showing you the popular spots to watch trains between Overton and Peterborough Nene Valley having covered Yarwell to Overton in Chapters 1 & 2. With a public footpath practically paralleling the whole railway all the way from Wansford to Peterborough there are plenty of good public places to view the railway from. 

We start this chapter at the yacht club crossing just to east of Overton station situated on a curve it is a popular spot to see trains while out walking in the Ferry Meadows country park.

71000 Duke of Gloucester heads away from Ferry Meadows station as it was then called heading for Peterborough October 2011.

© Jason Isaac

3F 47406 heads for Wansford October 2018

© Jason Isaac

Orton Mere foot crossing and station are popular spots to watch trains especially on Gala days when the passing loop at the station is being used.

Prototype High Speed Train Class 41 on the trailing end of a class 56 as it heads for Wansford April 2016.

© Jason Isaac

Double header combination Coal Tank 1054 & Pannier Tank 1501 exchange staff with the signalman as they depart Orton Mere for Wansford during the 2015 Steam Gala.

© Jason Isaac

Deltic 55022 Royal Scots Grey passes 46100 Royal Scot which had just come off the main line.

© Jason Isaac

73050 City of Peterborough arrives at Orton Mere in snowy conditions February 2012. 

Class D306 Class 40 Atlantic Conveyor departs Orton Mere for Wansford during spring the 2010 Spring Diesel Gala.

© Jason Isaac

Old friends reunite former Somerset & Dorset locos resident Standard 5 73050 City of Peterborough passes visiting 9F 92212 at Orton Mere station during the Steam Gala 2014. 

© Jason Isaac

Longville Junction along with Castor Bank one the two most popular spots on the railway to see trains going past its here where the fletton loop diverges off. Even though the 2 tracks are actually 2 single lines Longville Junction has got that main line look about it with double track.

D1062 Western Courier passes Longville Junction during the 2010 Autumn Diesel Gala, note how different the crossing use to look like before it was remodelled.

© Jason Isaac

4464 Bittern passes Longville Junction with train for Peterborough during the 2012 Steam Gala.

© Jason Isaac

Class 31452 passes by with a train for Peterborough during the 2016 Spring Diesel Gala.

© Jason Isaac

Austreity 75008 Swiftsure passes Longville with a Santa Special for Peterborough November 2016.

© Jason Isaac

60009 Union of South Africa opens up for a run past the junction during a photo charter September 2017.

© Jason Isaac

One last good spot before we reach Peterborough the foot crossing at Wharf Road is always is good spot to see trains departing Peterborough especially if you are filming.

Large Prairie 4141 departs Peterborough for Wansford March 2013.

© Jason Isaac

Lastly we reach the end of the line at Peterborough Nene Valley station.

4936 Kinlet Hall runs round at Peterborough during the 2011 Steam Gala.

© Jason Isaac

A4 4464 Bittern is uncoupled at Peterborough during the 2012 Steam Gala. 

© Jason Isaac

Well that’s end of the three parts off photographing along the NVR I hope you have enjoyed reading them.