Tuesday, 17 November 2009
Okay this is not cataloguing in the strictest sense but the task of converting the one line of entry in the descriptive list of The Forsythe Collection into one sheet for each entry is making progress. A team of Graham Cornish (doing the donkeywork), myself and Tim Procter have now tackled about 40 of the 633 headings and December's date is scheduled. I was at the museum yesterday and my incidental gossip is limited to noting how the HST prototype power car had moved back to where it was in June. Since in September it had been right over the far side of the Great Hall, no-one should underplay what one imagines the heavy gang get up to the in dead of the night. Re-arranging the display with the frequency that this implies means undertaking some very detailed shunts. Quite fun to watch and photograph one I imagine. I was travelling East Coast the Monday after the Friday night before. In other words National Express East Coast was no more. Instead I was collecting the first issues of East Coast (by DOR or Directly Operated Railways) material. York was left on the 15.55, the 14.00 ex London Kings Cross to Aberdeen, the Aberdonian. Already this was a complete HST rake in the new Purple trim East Coast livery. Rather nice really. However, think about it, here was one of the crack trains of the day linking the two great capitals of the Island and it was a 31 year old HST train. Wonderful trains, yes, but what are we to make of state transport policy when from a 1919 start, it took till 1991 to get the wires to Edinburgh and still in 2009 they do not go beyond. The new livery East Coast train articulates the fact that Britain's premier main line has been in commercial chaos ever since Sea Containers owners of GNER went belly up in 2006. How the Japanese, the French, the Germans and even the Spanish will all smile knowingly at this situation.