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Tamworth field trainspotting


knowlegable brummie
A gang of us 11/12 year olds use to go every week from King's Norton Station to Tamworth or Rugby. Reading all the replies has brought back vivid images but I have lost all my records. I certainly remember our excitement seeing a Princess or Coronation Class - thanks for jogging my memory

brenda barr

master brummie
My late brother Harvey Barr spent a lot of his teen train spotting years at Tamworth l remember him cycling to Tamworth weekly sometimes dailey in the late 40's.....l wonder if any of you silver surfers remember him????....Harvey passed away in 2006 but was a trainspotter to the end,l know he kept all his ref books etc, Harvey passed his passion on to his son Russell who is just as keen as hid dad was.....Brenda


master brummie
If I remember correctly it was 1/10d return from New Street to Tamworth. One of the cries I recall was "Double on the Clanger!" I watched the Royal Train double-headed screaming through. Pulled by Duchess of Sutheralnd and Duchess of Hamilton.


master brummie
One shilling and fourpence ha'penny return when I used to go....I recall there was uproar brcause it had risen from One Shilling and Three pence....what a rip off we thought....but it was super fun and I'm so pleased I was able to be involved....my mom would go mad when I returned...rather mucky after a day there.... 8.45 am train out to catch the 9'o clock stopper....and back at 6.30pm often pulled back by a 'Jube' ...Galatea pulled us back once.... Happy Days

Ray Griffiths

master brummie
Hi Mike.

Wasn't Galatea written off in crashat Sutton Coldfield or was it at Kingsbury i feel sure it was in a crash.

Ex trainspotter


master brummie
Not in 1954 when we were behind it......I think in the past few recent years parts were robbed off it for another restored loco

Ray Griffiths

master brummie
It's remains har at Carnforth awaiting restoration, parts was take to refrbish Leander, the boiler was a Tysley 2000 before being shipped north.


mike jenks

master brummie

Still at after 50 odd years. Within the David Hey archives some super Pictures of
Tamworth. Do you remember that goat.
I can still see a huge column of brand new 92000 class around 17 all going
on the Hi Level from Derby Works to Saltley.

Happy Days, Still go to the Cafe on the Low Level

Mike Jenks

Ive re attached my file on trainspotting


master brummie
Mike, is it a while since you have been then, unless the new build has opened , the cafe has been closed for the last 6 months. There is a new one opening, that will front onto platform one and from what info we can gather will be a newsagent too. Lets hope they have their eye to business though, as the last one didn't open until after 8!
There are still lots of trainspotters at Tamworth though, especially on the occasions there is a steam train going over the 19 Arches on the high level line.

norfolk brummie

gone but not forgotten
Browsing through "Trains", I came across this thread, which brought back many happy memories. During the 1940'sI would often bike to Tamworth, spending many happy hours in "the field". Complete with sandwiches and "pop", watching the West Coast main line expresses. Now in my 80's, I was fortunate enough to see a fully streamlined Coronation class engine pulling an express train. It was dirty and un kept, but a wonderful sight. I seem to recall that we called them "semi's" due to the fact that their streamlining had been removed, revealing a slanted fire box front. I believe that all of these "semis" were later converted to a full frontal boiler. As a "Brummy" we had the wonderful privilege, before 1948 nationalisation, of having both LMS & GWR lines through our city. I often also engine spotted on the old New Station & Snow Hill station (a one penny platform ticket usually did the trick), or at Small Heath station railway bridge. Coronations; Jubilees; Scots; Kings; Castles; Saints; and other classes of locomotives. I loved them all. On a couple of occasions, again in the 1940's, I was lucky enough to have a tour around Tyseley Loco Shed. This was in the days when the "on shed" locos would be driven almost up to the fencing that separated the shed from the Warwick Road. 21st century railways are much cleaner, faster, but somehow, not so exciting to an old man. Sorry - gone off thread a little. Tamworth was great fun.


Brummie babby
To my recall....anything spotted in the distance with 'blinkers' on it there would be a cry by the ''''experts'''' ?? as Semi....it got everyone's attention I guess that's why !!! 'main to local' was another cry...I do recall 'copping' Silver Jubillee' on that once....my eyes like chapel hatpegs at the chromed numbers and nameplate...what day!!! shortly after that was followed by a scottish Duchess 'cop' and City of Birmingham......I must try to sort out some photos....I do still have a couple of black & whites and some in the 1970's before the by pass was put in.....the old LMS warehouses I know I have a shot of.... All the Best.....Mike

Coped Silver Jubilee double heading Semi Hereford, great cop.

Austin K2

master brummie
What happy memories this has brought back to me.
Standing there in that field in the late forties early fifties, good times.
Train spotters today just cannot have the pleasure we had with those magnificent steam engines.

anvil man

master brummie
img038.jpgimg040.jpgThe cover of my 1948 Train Spotters book and a glimpse of the train numbers I spotted at Tamworth (hope the second pic comes out OK!)


master brummie
Hi Anvil,

I notice you coped quite a few Scottish jubes in 1948. I started in 1953 and never saw many Scottish jubes or semis at Tamworth LL, just a couple of Scottish jubes on the high level.


perry commoner

master brummie
Yes I too spent many happy hours in the field at Tamworth between 1953 and 1960. In the early days we caught the 09..00 train from New Street to Tamworth and a stopping train home at about 16.30 via Whitacre etc back to New Street. After I started work and acquired a bicycle, having Wednesday afternoons off, I would cycle from my work in Sutton Coldfield to spend the afternoon at Tamworth.

I have several photos taken from the field at Tamworth and submitted them with an article about 'the field' to a national railway magazine but sadly, it was rejected.

There were many trainspotting sites around the country used by local enthusiasts especially in Lancashire and all are foundly remembered by the local fraternity. I am convinced that there is a story worthy of publication in this subject and I am sure that I am not alone in being able to recall many memories of those days. After all it is a social history that has all but disappeared.


master brummie
Hi Perry, I used the same train but got on and off at Saltley Station. Some years ago I suggested to the editor of 'Steam Days' that they should Commission an article about the Tamworth Field in the 50's even suggested the title 'Steam Days at Tamworth' nothing materialised.



Super Moderator
Staff member
pistonvalve, perry commoner and others obviously have images and words remembering the Tamworth field. Why doesn't someone take the bull by the horns and start a website dedicated to this subject? Even within the confines of this Forum there are clearly several potential contributors all with unique and unpublished information; and there must be many more elsewhere who would also be happy to share their treasures.

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mike jenks

master brummie

Amazed how few Photo exist of the Field from our Famous brownie Cameras.
Yes the Field was a centre of our World for Years. I left the field in 1959 shortly
before I started work. I dont remember many wet days.
Generally speaking Scots Shedded Engines were changed at Crewe for journeys North or South.
Its up to us as you say Chris.

Mike Jenks.


master brummie
When I was about 12/13 the school world seemed divided into train spotters and the rest (bus spotters were a sub species). Never got it myself as I was more into girl spotting (a precocious youth) but one could never doubt their enthusiasm. I see the fascination is still alive and well,very interesting.


master brummie
Well pipmk, I found train spotting just about affordable on my meagre pocket money. Girl spotting - I have done a bit of that too, but over the years its cost me mega-bucks. spotters beware!!