Railway Performance Society Magazine - Milepost

Milepost Magazine

'Milepost' is the quarterly magazine of The Railway Performance Society, issued in January, April, July and October every year.

It is published in A5 format and usually runs to 72 pages of news and articles. See below for the contents of our last three issues.

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Browse below to see a summary of articles published in the last few editions of Milepost.



In the April magazine, Martin Robertson covers the WCML, ECML, Trans Pennine, Cross Country and Scotrail services in his article on Fastest Times. Paul Walker describes his travels on the ECML which he covered on two “All Line Railrovers” in 2018. Bill Hemstock describes peak operations on the Underground, and Richard Neville Carle travels around London on modern stock. Nigel Smedley explains the operation of EMT trains during the Derby closure and the diversions via the Erewash Valley line in 2018. 

“Swedebasher” describes the multiple duties of the V2 station pilots from the 1940s and 1950s

 Bill Long describes the Austria’s new Westbahn railway. 

Our correspondence columns cover a considerable number of topics, including the power of steam, the achievement of average speeds of 60mph by steam and 100mph by modern stock. Paul Jeffries expands on his experience of modern travel in Canada. 

In the News section we cover recent rail-tours by Classes 47, 67 and 68, and Flying Scotsman and Tornado. Baard Covington describes the introduction into service of the Class 717s on the Great Northern lines.



In the January 2019 edition (Milepost 39¾) Martin Robertson covers both the East and West Coast main lines, Southern services to the south coast, the Edinburgh-Aberdeen route, the Festiniog railway and the Madrid-Alicante route in Spain. We look at recent developments around the introduction of the IETs, including the electrical services from Didcot to Swindon, and onwards to Bristol Parkway. Bill Hemstock compares IETs on the Berks and Hants line with Class 165s, and Frank Collins looks at their introduction in Cornwall (and also the 2+4 HSTs)

Derek Wilson recalls his travels behind Class 20s on rail tours from the 1980s onwards.

Andrew James recalls services around Market Harborough in steam days. 

Alan Varley describes the cross-country services in France, from Lyon to Montpellier and Toulouse, and from Nevers to Bourges and St Pierre des Corps Peter Smith remembers his travels in North America between New York and Toronto and from Toronto and Vancouver. 

There is considerable correspondence covering a number of steam topics that have appeared in recent magazines. 

An unusual run behind an XC HST from Bristol to Birmingham is described by David Adams, and David Ashley reviews the recently-introduced Virgin services from Blackpool to Euston. 

There are also two supplements covering our Mass Timing Days in July 2018 from Reading to Bristol and Cardiff

 In the October magazine David Ashley reviews recent developments with the IETs on the GW main line, and Sean Emmett covers their introduction into the south west (as a supplement).Virgin Driver describes Voyager driving techniques on the north Wales main line to Bangor. Martin Robertson covers WCML, GW, TPE and Scotrail in his Fastest Times article. Frank Collins covers recent developments with electric traction between Glasgow and Edinburgh and between Preston and Blackpool. David Adams describes driving techniques following the introduction of EMUs on services to Bromsgrove and on the Lickey Incline. John Rishton covers an XC service with an unusual stopping pattern from Exeter to Bristol.  

Swedebasher describes experimentation with gas turbine locomotives in the 1950s and compares subsequent performance with Class 52 diesel hydraulics. Noel Proudlock recalls his journeys to work behind Class 31/4s in the 1980s. 

Following the publication of the "final years of BR steam" supplement in July, members recall their final journeys: Frank Price describes the Belfast Boat Express in 1968, Sandy Smeaton on the WCML north of Carlisle and Derek Wilson on the ECML in 1962/63.Frank Price commemorates the 50th anniversary by travelling behind Galatea over the S&C line. Sean Emmett covers Clan Line's exploits in the south west this summer

David Lloyd-Roberts describes his German journeys in 2017



In the July 2018 edition, Martin Robertson reviews recent fast runs on the WCML, XC services on the ECML, Class 185 from Leeds to Huddersfield, Class 158 on the West Coastway line, Class 175 on the North and West route, Eurostar to St Pancras, and Scotrail in the central belt and the Highland Line.

Virgin Driver explains in detail the driving techniques for Class 390s on the WCML. Frank Collins describes his travels early in 2007, and it's interesting to compare what has changed over the intervening years. 

Derek Wilson describes his travels on excursions and charters in the 1980s and covers the Cambrian line, the Redmire branch, the WCML and his travels in Ireland and on the KWVR.

Michael Rowe covers steam operations in the south west on lines long since closed. This covers the MSWJ, the Salisbury and Dorset Junction Railway, the Taunton to Barnstaple line, the LSWR route from Plymouth to Okehampton, services in north Cornwall and trains out of Ilfracombe. 

Overseas, Alan Varley covers the routes from Paris to Bordeaux and Mulhouse to Troyes and Strasbourg. Ian Umpleby continues his travels in Switzerland, this time in summer. 

Following earlier correspondence, David Maidment describes his notable 200,000 miles of steam travel between 1951 and 1968

We look at the use of WCRs diesel locomotives on the Windermere branch in June. Paul Jeffries describes a trip in Canada where trains running 30 hours late is commonplace. We look again at recent developments with the GWR IETs, and describe the initial problems with the introduction of the Thameslink timetable. We finish with some recent steam runs from Sean Emmett in the south-west. 

In the "End of British Steam" supplement we look, on a regional basis, the final two years of British steam with over 230 logs and cover:

 The Fifteen Guinea Special

Eastern Regions: ECML with A1, A3, A4s and visitors 

London Midland Region: WCML with Royal Scots, Black 5, Duchesses Britannias and visitors, and on the Cumbrian lines 

Midland Main line with Royal Scots and Britannias 

Scottish Region between Buchanan St and Aberdeen via Forfar 

Western Region on main lines and the Cotswolds line with Castles, Kings, Granges, Counties, Halls and visitors 

Settle & Carlisle and Yorkshire We cover a number of lines with various classes of locomotives.

Rail Performance Data Foundation Logs Database

The Rail Performance Data Foundation (RPDF) owns the database on behalf of the RPS. The database contains almost half a million entries dating from Rocket's performance in the Rainhill Trials in 1829 to the present day. Use of data is free to members and available to others on payment of a small fee. For more information on the database click here

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