An unidentified Class 37 heads west from March
A Class 37 heads west(?) away from a misty March(?) with a freight train made up of vans. I think this photograph was taken by Peter Collins at March station in the early 1970s; but it would be nice to get some confirmation from folks.
I remember a few van trains from my early train spotting days in Thurston, but not many and I haven’t found a Working Timetable from the early 1970s yet to attempt to identify the train. If anybody can help with an identification that would be appreciated. Given the area, I assume that the train contains vegetables from East Anglian farmers (or possibly sugar beet), but again any ideas would be gratefully received. The split-headcode loco looks relatively clean, so this suggests a recent repaint in BR Blue.
The photo would have been taken when March was still a major concentration point for freight in to and from East Anglia. Container trains to Felixstowe were still relatively low in number as the port had yet to go through its major expansion, although there is a photograph in Peter’s collection of a Class 47 hauling a freightliner away from March station to the east.
The photograph will feature in a book (or possibly two) that Peter and I are preparing at the moment which will feature photographs from the 1970s of British Rail in its most fragile state after the end of steam. Working practices had yet to be modernised, timetables were pretty much the same as in 1968 the only thing being the change to diesel and electric traction. Further announcements will be made soon as to the availability of the book, so watch this space!