The second half of the 1980s saw Redland use the Speedlink wagonload network to distribute roof tiles across the country. David Ratcliffe details the history of this short-lived but highly modellable freight flow.
THE growth of British Rail’s fast overnight Speedlink wagonload service attracted a number of new traffics to rail. One of these was the movement of roof tiles from Stirling to Gateshead Old Shops, where Redland had opened a distribution depot, the working commencing in 1985.
Five OAA open wagons already equipped with 10 load-securing winches each side were further modified with end extensions to carry the tiles. Repainted in Redland’s green livery with black and red lettering, the OAAs were forwarded from Stirling as far as Mossend in the consist of 6O56, the 15.10 Dundee to Dover.
They then went forward to Tyneside on another trunk Speedlink service, 6E86/19.20 Mossend to Parkeston Quay, which ran via the Tyne Valley line and Tyne Yard. Final delivery was by 9P06, the 06.45 local trip from Tyne Yard to Tyneside Central Freight Depot, with the Class 03 or 08 shunter based at the latter location placing the wagons in the nearby Old Shops sidings.
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