Recognition and Equipment information

Following the successful introduction of the General Motors Class 59s in the UK 1986, the then British Rail Railfreight sector became aware just how far behind its operation was in terms of heavy-haul diesel power. Its fleet was predominantly old, inefficient and very unreliable. Railfreight's Trainload divisions all wanted to invest in new locos and, with this in mind, funding was authorised to develop a new Type 5 diesel loco, designated Class 60.
The BRB went to competitive tender on August 10, 1987 for the fleet of 100 machines, valued at around £125 million. Bids had to be received by November 7, of the same year. Six firms were invited to tender but only three positive bids were received, these were from Metro-Cammell, Brush Traction and GEC Transportation. The Metro-Cammell bid was actually a nonstarter; it offered a MetroCammell body with an option of traction packages, many untried, and could not offer performance guarantees as stipulated by the contract. GEC, which was the front-runner for a long time, was to go into partnership with General Motors and offer a state-of-the-art Class 59, built in the UK. GM did not submit a direct tender, as the company thought that the political climate of the day would preclude such an order going to a US company. If the GM/GEC deal had won the order, the locomotives would probably have been constructed at the then BREL Crewe Works, which already had a partnership agreement with GEC for the construction of the Class 91 electric locos. However, the eventual winner of the Class 60 contract was Brush. This option offered a locomotive powered by either a Mirrlees or Ruston engine, and used separately-excited (Sepex) traction control, as previously tested on the final Class 58. The contract for the 100 strong fleets was formally placed on May 17, 1988.
Brush used its Loughborough plant for assembly, with bodyshells fabricated by Procor of Horbury and delivered pre-painted to Brush. Assembly was carried out in revamped erecting shops, with the locomotives emerging in the then standard triple grey livery, offset by the Trainload sector logos. The first loco, No. 60001, carrying the name Steadfast, was handed over to Railfreight on June 30, 1989 and driven under its own power to Toton.
During early deliveries many problems were identified; many involved computer software, but others involved bogie and structural defects. At one time the build was almost cancelled, and for many months in 1990/1 a large number of locos remained at Loughborough part finished. Eventually, after some 16 months, the problems were ironed out, and the fleet settled down to provide a stable operating platform. The original division between operating sectors was: Trainload Coal — 35; Trainload Construction—25; Trainload Metals—22; and Trainload Petroleum — 18. However, by the time the fleet entered service, this was largely changed, and soon the Trainload businesses gave way to shadow privatisation and the formation of Loadhaul, Transrail and Mainline Freight.
With the launch of the three 'shadow' private companies, five locomotives were repainted in the highly distinctive Loadhaul black and orange colours, while three were finished in the aircraft blue livery of Mainline Freight. Transrail did not adopt a new livery. Most of the Class 60s had lost their Trainload sub-sector decals by the mid-1990s, in favour of business branding.
As part of the privatisation of Britain's railways, all the Trainload operations were purchased by American controlled English, Welsh & Scottish Railway (EWS), the entire fleet becoming EWS property. The company's distinctive maroon and gold livery was first applied to No. 60019 at Brush in May 1996, and by the end of 2001 around 40% of the fleet had been repainted. Many of the original historical names applied to the fleet have now been removed, and some now carry business-related names. Originally all 100 locos were allocated to Toton, but now locos are spread throughout the country.

Viewed from its cooler group end, No. 60074 is seen painted in triple grey livery with Mainline Freight bodyside branding. Originally, when built, the entire fleet of 100 Class 60s were named, however over the years many de-namings and re-namings have taken place. Access to internal equipment on this fleet is via removable roof sections and twin opening doors in each side. No. 60074 is illustrated at Toton. CJM.

The Class 60 fleet are externally very basic, with an uncluttered front end. The main equipment items are:-
A-warning horns, B-multiple control jumper socket (behind door, cable stowed in engine compartment), C-marker, head and tail light cluster (2), D-draw hook with coupling, E-air brake pipe, F-main reservoir air pipe, G-obstacle deflector plate, H-cab air ventilation intake, I-sand box, J-windscreen wipers. Loco No. 60019 is illustrated. CJM.

With its No. 2 end closest to the camera, No. 60019 shows the first version of EW&S livery, later repaints omitted the ampersand from the initial's which read EWS. The 100 strong Class 60 fleet can be found working throughout the EWS network and due to their haulage capacity are normally seen on the heavier freight flows. The fleet are allocated to Cardiff Canton, Toton, Eastleigh, Thornaby and Immingham. No. 60019 is seen at the Brush Works in Loughborough. CJM.

During the period of shadow privatisation operation a couple of locos emerged in Loadhaul black and orange livery, which looked very smart on this body design. With a matt black finish, No. 60059 is seen from the single grille side from No. 1 end. CJM. For the 2000 open weekend at Old Oak Common depot, EWS agreed to repaint No. 60081 in a mock Great Western Railway green livery, and rename it Isambard Kingdom Brunel. The loco also had cast EWS logos and brass coloured horns fitted in keeping with past Great Western tradition. The last three digits of its number 081 were also applied in GW style on the front end. In resplendent condition the loco is seen at Old Oak Common. CJM.

As part of EWSs policy to twin with some of its larger customers, a pair of Class 60s were finished in British Steel livery in the 1990s, this was changed in 2000 to a Corus silver grey, as shown here on No. 60033 outside Toton depot in November 2000. The loco is seen from its No. 2 end. CJM.

A small number of Class 60s also emerged in Mainline Freight aircraft blue, as shown here on No. 60044 passing Dawlish with the up 'Silver Bullet's' to Scotland. This colour scheme suited the profile of the box-like body structure of the Class 60 well. CJM.