British Rail Class 205

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British Rail Class 205
205009 at London Victoria.jpg
Class 205, no. 205009 at London Victoria on 15 August 2003, with a service to Uckfield. This service no longer runs, with all trains to Uckfield now diverted to London Bridge. 2004 was the final year of service of these elderly units. This unit is now preserved on the Eden Valley Railway.
In service 1957–2004
Manufacturer BR Eastleigh
Number built 34 trainsets
Formation 2/3 cars per trainset
Operator Southern
Specifications
Car length 19.51 m (64 ft 0.1 in)
19.34 m (63 ft 5.4 in)
19.51 m (64 ft 0.1 in)
Width 2.8 m (9 ft 2.24 in)
Maximum speed 75 mph (121 km/h)
Weight 56 t (55.1 long tons; 61.7 short tons)
30 t (29.5 long tons; 33.1 short tons)
32 t (31.5 long tons; 35.3 short tons)
Prime mover(s) English Electric 4SRKT Mark II (4-cylinder diesel)
Power output 600 shp (450 kW) at 850 rpm
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Class 205, no. 205032 at London Bridge on 15th August 2003, with a service to Uckfield. These units have now been replaced on Southern by new Class 171 Turbostar units. This unit is now preserved on the Dartmoor Railway.

The British Rail Class 205 (or 3H) diesel-electric multiple units were built by BR at Eastleigh from 1957–1962. They were replaced by Turbostar units. The fleet's lifespan was 47 years.

Description[edit]

This class of unit were built in four different batches for use on different lines.

The first batch of units, numbered 1101–1118, was built in 1957 as two-car units and classified as 2H. They were built for services in Hampshire on the non-electrified routes between Portsmouth Harbour, Salisbury and Andover and between Alton, Winchester and Southampton Terminus. The first units entered service in September 1957. However, due to increasing passenger numbers, all eighteen units were strengthened to three cars in 1958 and 1969, with the addition of a centre trailer, and therefore were reclassified as 3H units. Upon the introduction of TOPS they were reclassified as Class 205. Some of these were later converted back to 2 car sets, but they retained their Class 205 designation.[1]

The second batch of 2H units, numbered 1119–1122, was built as 2-car units in 1958. These units were built for services on the Marshlink Line from Hastings to Ashford, and associated branch lines. These units remained as two-car sets until 1979, and were reclassified as Class 204 upon the introduction of TOPS. In May 1979, following the disbandment of the four Class 206 units, they were strengthed to three cars and redesignated as Class 205s.[1]

The third batch of units was built as three-car sets in 1959, and numbered 1123–1126. These units were built to supplement the first batch on services in Hampshire. Collectively, the first and third batches are often called Hampshire sets. The final batch of units, numbered 1127–1133, was built in 1962 as three car sets. These units have some detail differences from the earlier batches, such as a different internal layout, and smaller route indicators (compare the two photos). They were built for services from Reading to Salisbury, and other services in Berkshire. The final batch of units is sometimes referred to as Berkshire sets.[1]

Technical details[edit]

Power car (one per set)

  • Introduced: 1957
  • Weight: 56 t (55.1 long tons; 61.7 short tons)
  • Engine: English Electric 4-cylinder type 4SRKT Mark II of 1,000 bhp (750 kW) at 850 rpm (600 shp or 450 kW)
  • Transmission: Electric, two English Electric type EE507 traction motors rated at 186 hp (139 kW) each.
  • Maximum tractive effort: 12,500 lbf (56 kN)
  • Driving wheel diameter: 42 in (1,067 mm)
  • Coupling code: Standard 'Buck eye' compatible with contemporary Class 20x and 4xx units.
  • Train heating: Electric

Number 1129 was experimentally fitted with a Dorman 12QTCW V-12 diesel engine of 725 shp (541 kW)

Operations[edit]

The first examples of the class entered service in September 1957 after a month of testing. They were initially used on services linking Portsmouth and Southampton to Salisbury, as well as those between Southampton and Portsmouth Harbour and from Southampton to Alton/Andover. Journey times were around two-thirds of those required by the steam locomotives which the units replaced. The new services proved so popular that the class was temporarily taken off the route to Alton and Andover to provide extra capacity on the other lines prior to the fitting of a third carriage to the first 18 units.[1]

The delivery of the second batch of four units saw the class introduced to the Marshlink Line between Ashford and Hastings. These units also ran on the Bexhill West Branch Line and the short line to New Romney and Littlestone-on-Sea, and a Sunday-only service on the Fawley Branch Line. All of these routes except for the Marshlink Line had been closed by 1967, by which time the route between Reading and Salisbury was also operated by the class. The units also operated on the Wareham to Swanage route from 1966 until its closure in 1972. Other routes served included the Steyning Line between Brighton and Horsham, which closed in 1967; the Cuckoo Line, which closed in 1968; the Lymington Branch Line, which was served by the units for two months in 1967 prior to its electrification; and some journeys on the Oxted Line, which was also served by the newer Class 207 units. In 1973 some services from Portsmouth to Bristol Temple Meads and Weston-super-Mare were converted to Class 205 operation.[1]

The electrification of the line to East Grinstead in 1987 saw the majority of the class withdrawn. Those which survived largely operated on services from Ashford to Hastings and from London to Uckfield. The privatisation of British Rail in 1995/6 saw the surviving Class 205s, most of which now carried Network SouthEast livery, pass to the new Connex South Central franchise.[1]

In 1966, unit number 1102 was used in the film "The Great St. Trinian's Train Robbery".

The final units, nos. 205001/009/033 were withdrawn in mid-December 2004.

Fleet details[edit]

Key: In service Withdrawn Preserved Rebuilt Reformed Departmental Use Scrapped


Unrefurbished Class 205/0[2]

Unit No. Batch Year Built Final Livery DMBSO TSO DTCsoL Withdrawn Status
New Old
205001 1101 Batch 1 1957 Connex 60154 60650 60800 12/2004 Preserved, at The East Kent Railway
205002 1102 Batch 1 1957 NSE 60155 60651 60801 1991 Scrapped
- 1103 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60102 60652 60802 1979 Converted to Class 204 no. 1403
- 1104 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60103 60653 60803 1979 Converted to Class 204 no. 1404
205005 1105 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60104 60654 60804 08/1987 Scrapped
205006 1106 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60105 60655 60805 09/1987 Scrapped
205007 1107 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60106 60656 60806 09/1987 Scrapped
- 1108 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60107 60657 60807 1979 Converted to Class 204 no. 1401
205009 1109 Batch 1 1957 Connex 60108 60658 60808 12/2004 Preserved at the Eden Valley Railway
205010 1110 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60198 60659 60809 09/1987 Scrapped
- 1111 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60110 60660 60810 1980 Preserved at the Epping Ongar Railway
205012 1112 Batch 1 1957 Connex 60111 60661 60811 02/2004 Scrapped 2005
- 1113 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60112 60662 60812 04/1986 Scrapped
205014 1114 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60113 60663 60813 10/1989 Scrapped
205015 1115 Batch 1 1957 NSE 60114 60664 60814 10/1993 Scrapped
205016 1116 Batch 1 1957 NSE 60115 60665 60815 08/1994 Scrapped
205017 1117 Batch 1 1957 Blue/Grey 60116 60666 60816 09/1987 Scrapped
205018 1118 Batch 1 1957 Connex 60117 60674 60828 08/2004 Preserved
205019 1119 Batch 2 1958 Blue/Grey 60118 60653 60818 08/1987 Scrapped
205020 1120 Batch 2 1958 Blue/Grey 60119 60652 60819 09/1987 Scrapped
205008 1121 Batch 2 1958 NSE 60120 60657 60820 10/1993 Preserved
- 1122 Batch 2 1958 Blue/Grey 60121 - 60821 See Class 204 (never officially classified as a 205)
205023 1123 Batch 3 1959 NSE 60122 60669 60822 01/1999 Preserved
205024 1124 Batch 3 1959 NSE 60123 60668 60823 07/2000 Scrapped
205025 1125 Batch 3 1959 Connex (now in BR Green) 60124 60670 60824 05/2004 Preserved at Mid-Hants Railway.
205026 1126 Batch 3 1959 Blue/Grey 60125 60671 60825 11/1990 Scrapped
205027 1127 Batch 4 1962 NSE 60145 60672 60826 08/1994 Sandite unit 930301
205028 1128 Batch 4 1962 Connex 60146 60673 60827 11/2004 Preserved at Dartmoor Railway
205029 1129 Batch 4 1962 BR Green 60147 60667 60817 1994 Scrapped after Cowden rail crash
205030 1130 Batch 4 1962 Blue/Grey 60148 60675 60829 11/1992 Scrapped
205031 1131 Batch 4 1962 Blue/Grey 60149 60676 60830 07/1993 Sandite unit 930301
205032 1132 Batch 4 1962 Connex 60150 60677 60831 10/2004 Preserved at Dartmoor Railway Operational
205033 1133 Batch 4 1962 Connex 60151 60678 60832 12/2004 Preserved, at The Lavender Line


Refurbished Class 205/1

Unit No. Batch Year
Converted
Final Livery DMBSO TSO DTSOL Withdrawn Status
205101 1111 Batch 1 1980 NSE 60110 60660 60810 1995 Converted to 205205


Refurbished Class 205/2

Unit No. Batch Year
Converted
Final Livery DMBSO TSOL DTSOL Withdrawn Status
205205 205101 Batch 1 1995 Connex 60110 71634 60810 07/2004 Preserved at Epping Ongar Railway


Departmental Units

Unit No. Batch Year
Converted
Final Livery DMB T DMB Withdrawn Status
930301 951069 Batch 4
(*Batch 1)
1993 Railtrack Brown 977939
(60145)
977870
(60660*)
977940
(60149)
- Withdrawn

Preservation[edit]

Due to a generous disposal policy by Porterbrook Leasing, nearly all of the final units in service were preserved. The only unit not preserved was no. 205012, which had poor bodywork and donated its engine to the only surviving unrefurbished Class 207 unit.

Models[edit]

An OO gauge kit is available from DC Kits. Dapol announced (May 2008) that a limited edition OO RTR model (to be followed by an N gauge version) of the Class 205 would be produced in collaboration with Kernow Model Rail Centre.[3] Manufacture was switched to Bachmann in March 2010[4] and the model was released in February 2013.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Welch, Michael (2004). Southern DEMUs. Capital Transport. pp. 12–19. ISBN 1-85414-287-9. 
  2. ^ Withdrawal dates from H. Longworth, British Railways First Generation DMUs, 2011 Oxford Publishing Company ISBN 978-0-86093-612-1
  3. ^ http://www.dapol.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=249&Itemid=64
  4. ^ http://bachmann.co.uk/pr1.php?id=268
  5. ^ http://www.kernowmodelrailcentre.com/page/61/Class_205_Thumper_Unit

External links[edit]