Ford every stream


Teignmouth, United Kingdom

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Wall Art


Artist's Description

Possibly the hardest task I’ve ever set myself when it comes to artwork, this scene took pretty much six hours of being sat in the same position, I’m surprised I haven’t got DVT! And after all that work, and all that painting, I can’t say I’m particularly proud of it. I mean it’s not my worst piece, but it’s certainly not my favorite.

This piece depicts a Regional Railways liveried Class 150/2 crossing Calstock Viaduct on the border between Devon and Cornwall, whilst working a stopping train up the Gunnislake Branch from Plymouth. I must admit there are few greater pleasures in life than driving around this region of Devon and Cornwall on the banks of the mighty River Tamar, where there are many great picnic locations and lavish country houses, including Buckland Abbey, the former home of Sir Francis Drake, and Cotehele House, the home of Sir Piers Edgcumbe in the late 1400s.

Surprisingly, the Tamar Valley Line from the former junction station at Bere Alston to Gunnislake and it’s original terminus at Callington was never as busy as the London and South Western Railway’s mainline route from Exeter to Plymouth via Okehampton and Tavistock, from which this line diverged at Bere Alston. Yet in 1968 this vital route was closed under Beeching even though it was a major arterial line and served as an excellent diversionary route to Plymouth in the event of trouble on the Sea Wall, whilst the Gunnislake Branch, which at it’s peak only saw three or four trains a day, was only curtailed back as far as Gunnislake.

Today the route sees near enough and hourly service, operated by Class 150 and 153 units of First Great Western ownership. Built by BREL in 1985 the Class 150’s were constructed to replace the ageing 1st Generation stock, primarily Class 105s, 101s and 117s. It was quite late in the day before these units made a widespread appearance here in Devon and Cornwall, being brought in to help replace the highly unsuccessful Class 142 Pacer units built by British Leyland (you just have to see that name appear and you know trouble’s afoot). Today the Class 150 forms the backbone of a majority of services in the Southwest of England, with a large influx of the class appearing in 2009 after London Overground replaced it’s units with Class 172 Turbostars on the Barking to Gospel Oak workings.

This picture is largely based on the fascinating shot by Chris Livings, which can be found here: <a href="">

Artwork Comments

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