LYR electric units

LYR electric units

The Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway electrified urban railway lines in Liverpool and Manchester in order to improve the service offered against the competition being put up by new electric tramways.

Liverpool electrification

In Liverpool, the 600 V DC third rail system was adopted. The first line to be converted was between Liverpool Exchange and Southport in March 1904. Liverpool to Aintree followed in 1906, and the line to Ormskirk followed later. Electricity was generated at the LYR's own power station in Formby.

A variety of electric multiple units was used on these routes. The first batch of 50 cars usually operated as four-car units formed of a Trailer First (TF) and a Trailer Third (TT) between two Driving Motor Brake Third (DMBT) cars. All cars had wooden bodies on steel underframes, were 60 feet (18 m) long and 10 feet (3 m) wide, and the driving motor cars weighed 44 tons, the trailer cars 26 tons.

Further cars (to different designs) were ordered as further lines were converted and services enhanced. In total, the LYR had 64 DMBT cars, 51 TT cars, 41 TF cars and 3 luggage vans. The LYR also owned 12 lightweight cars in order to operate over the Liverpool Overhead Railway.

These units were replaced by the London, Midland and Scottish Railway in the 1930s with new stock that was later classified by British Rail as class 502.

In addition, an experimental electric locomotive (rebuilt from a steam locomotive of 2-4-2 wheel arrangement) was introduced in 1912 for goods traffic. This had four 150 horsepower motors (total 600 hp) and could pick up current from the third rail on the main line or from overhead wires in the Aintree and North Mersey yards. It was scrapped in 1919.

Manchester electrification

From 1913 to 1917, an experimental electric service operated between Bury and Holcombe Brook. The equipment was provided by Dick, Kerr & Co. of Preston, which was developing its products for overseas sales. The system used was 3.5 kV DC overhead electrification, and two two-car units formed of a Driving Motor Brake Third (DMBT) and a Driving Trailer Third (DTT) were built at the LYR Newton Heath works for the service. Despite these tests, the LYR decided to proceed with the electrification of the Manchester to Bury line using a 1200 V DC side-contact third rail, opened in 1916, and the following year the branch to Holcombe Brook was converted to the same system. Electricity was generated at the LYR's power station at Clifton, where a four-wheel battery electric shunter was used (withdrawn 1946).

In contrast to the Liverpool electric multiple units, the stock used on this line was of all-steel construction. 66 cars were built at Newton Heath works and operated in five-car units, formed DMBT + TT + DMBT + TF + DMBT. Each car was 67 feet 7 inches (20.6 m) long and 9 feet 4 inches (2.8 m) wide; the driving motor cars weighed 54 tons and the trailer cars 29 tons.

These units were withdrawn in 1959 and scrapped, being replaced by British Rail with new stock that was later designated Class 504.

Only 2 bogies survived. These were used as "temporary" bogies around the Bury depot during times when the wheels of Class 504 units were removed for maintenance. When the depot closed in 1991, the bogies were cut up and dumped in a skip.

ee also

* Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway
* History of rail transport in Great Britain


*Holt, D. (1992) "Manchester Metrolink", UK Light Rail Systems No. 1, Platform 5 Publishing, ISBN 1-872524-36-2, p. 8 (photograph p. 9)
* Nock, O.S. (1969) "The Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway - A Concise History", Ian Allan, ISBN 0-7110-0130-8, p. 68-76 and p. 139-143

External links

* [{BE85DAE1-7206-F10E-CADC-D226BE691EA1}&SearchString=rail&source=Search&viewby=images Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Electric Locomotive]

* [{8CEFDE54-CA35-9E87-4036-4322E8C40CE8}&s=S1&SearchString=1997-7059_HOR_F_2297&source=Search&viewby=images&cntRead=0&cntDebate=0&cntDCBooks=0&cntDC

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