60001 Steadfast, fresh from Brush Works Loughborough, stands gleaming on June 30th 1989.
Image - Craig Simmons
60001 - 25 years young!
On June 30th 1989, pioneer Class 60 no. 60001 was handed over to British Rail. With the order being placed a little over 13 months previous, it was a great acheivement having 60001 arrive exactly on time. Delivered in Railfreight Construction livery, the locomotive was named " Steadfast " that very morning by the Director of Railfreight, Colin Driver, and Raymond Wynn, who was the eventual winner of a competition run internally by BR to suggest a name for the first machine.
60001's first journey came shortly after, with a short trip from Loughborough to Toton TMD. After that, Steadfast made her way to the Derby Technical Centre in order to begin a busy schedual of acceptance trials.
All was not good though, as minor technical and numerous teething troubles plagued the new machines. These problems would lead to, in some cases, massive delays in entry to service with some so problematic that they would take around a year to have everything ironed out!!!
A good example of the above delays are with 60001 herself, taking more than 2 years to be accepted into traffic!
She remained in traffic with BR, then EWS, until an engine failure forced her out of traffic in 2006.
Dumped at Toton TMD for the next 6 years, at one stage even up for sale, 60001 has since been overhauled and returned to traffic in 2013 sporting DBS Red livery, although sadly without the Steadfast nameplates.
60001 is expected to be in traffic for at least the next 7 - 10 years.
60001, then named The Railway Observer, stands at Clay Mills in 2005
Image Craig Adamson