Reality Check

Reality Check class profiles

HM169 4-BEP Reality Check Feature Premium

Reality Check: The 4-BEP EMU

During the 1950s and 1960s the Southern Region massively extended its electrified network, and in doing so introduced a number of new classes of Electric Multiple Unit, with one of the least numerous of these being the 4-BEP which was designed to provide catering on services on the South Coast lines. EVAN GREEN-HUGHES looks into the history of this small but unusual class.

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Hitachi IEP Class 800

Launched with a massive fanfare in 2017, the Hitachi Class 800 and its derivatives are set to become the predominant express train in use in this country. EVAN GREEN-HUGHES looks into the development of this futuristic unit.

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Reality Check: The ‘Coronation Scot’

The 1930s saw remarkable advances in railway technology, which produced improved journey times and better comfort for travellers. One of the most progressive trains of this time was the London Midland & Scottish Railway’s ‘Coronation Scot’ - an initiative that war cut short, as EVAN GREEN-HUGHES explains.

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Derby’s Class 25/3

Perhaps one of the most recognisable diesel locomotives of the 1960s was the popular and versatile Class 25, a design that reached its best with its final version, the 25/3, which first appeared in 1965, as EVAN GREEN-HUGHES describes.

Class 37/4 Reality Check Feature Premium

Electric Train Heat Class 37/4

EVAN GREEN-HUGHES

The Class 37 is nearing its 60th birthday and continues in daily use on the national network. One of the most useful variants is the ‘37/4’, which was upgraded to supply Electric Train Heat in the 1980s. EVAN GREEN-HUGHES looks at the development and life of this 31 strong sub-fleet.

EVAN GREEN-HUGHES
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The Brush Class 31

One of the most recognisable and longest-lived of the Modernisation Plan diesel locomotives is the Brush Type 2, which later became much better known as the Class 31. EVAN GREEN-HUGHES examines this design, which despite its longevity has not been without its problems.

HM166 Reality Check Feature Premium

Thompson's ‘A2/2s’ and ‘A2/3s’

Although the ‘Pacifics’ of the LNER are generally considered to be some of the best-looking locomotives ever built, there was one batch of locomotives that defied this rule. EVAN GREEN-HUGHES and ANDREW RODEN look into the history of the ‘A2/2s’ and ‘A2/3s’ which, while they looked ungainly, were an intelligent response to wartime pressures.

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The GWR railcars

The Great Western Railway is more often remembered for its fleet of copper-capped chimney steam locomotives rather than for technological innovation - but in fact the company was amongst the first to introduce viable diesel traction, in the form of a series of self-propelled railcars, as EVAN GREEN-HUGHES explains.

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Vossloh’s Class 68

Although the Class 68 has been with us for only three years, it has already amassed a considerable following. EVAN GREEN-HUGHES takes a closer look at this handsome and groundbreaking locomotive, which is set to be an industry standard for many years to come.

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S&D '7F' 2-8-0s

Throughout the history of the railways there have been many small classes of locomotive designed for specific tasks but, as EVAN GREEN-HUGHES describes, few have gained the popularity of the former Somerset and Dorset '7F' 2-8-0s.