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Type HA / Class 71

Class 71 animation

photograph: Mike Morant collection

E5009 photographed in platform 1 at Victoria on 23rd September 1972.

This 24-strong class of Darlington-built electric locomotives was initially introduced by the BR Southern Region in 1959 in connection with the Kent Coast electrification scheme, and they were originally numbered E5001 to E5024. Under TOPS they became class 71. They were designed with a maximum rail horse power of 3000 at 59.3 mph to haul freight trains up to 900 tons and passenger trains up to 700 tons. In order to overcome the problems with "gapping" on the third rail due to the relatively short distance between collector shoes booster equipment as originally applied to Southern Railway electric locomotives CC1/2 and 20003 was fitted, but it was of a larger capacity than these earlier locomotives. Due to safety problems when working in sidings a pantograph was also fitted. These locomotives were built with load bearing underframes, the bodywork not being designed to take any major stresses. Another feature is the use of 4ft diameter spoked wheels and a comparatively long bogie wheelbase of 10ft 6in (matched by the WR's Warship class).

The main workload of this class was intended to be freight, but they are perhaps best known for hauling two of the Southern Region's most celebrated passenger trains "The Golden Arrow" and "The Night Ferry". The high power of these locomotives was useful on these very heavy trains.

Although this class had a successful performance record with low maintenance costs, the amount of freight hauled on the SR fell off, first causing 10 to be placed in store, then in 1967 10 (not necessarily those in store) were converted into class 74 electro-diesels. Unfortunately the class 74 was not as successful as the class from which it originated. All remaining members of class 71 were withdrawn in 1977 but E5001 remains having been preserved by the National Railway Museum.  Having been in store at Crewe for an extended period E5001 headed back home and arrived at Stewarts Lane on 1 May 2001 for assessment for possible main line recertification for use on VSOE services.

he National Collection's HA was on display during Railfest in June 2004 where it formed part of the "Cab-It" activity allowing visitors to inspect the inside, in this case being stewarded by knowledgeable members of the Southern Electric Group.

Click on the thumbnails for a larger image.
  • E5020
    Stewarts Lane
    HA NºE5020 photographed at Stewarts Lane in the company of Bulleid/Raworth "Booster" Nº20003.
    Photograph: Mike Morant collection.
  • Goods
    Class 71 in corporate blue livery hauling a short freight. The 4D headcode indicates a Hither Green - Sidcup - Chatham - Dover working.
    Photograph by Michael Taylor.
  • E5001
    The NRM's preserved Class 71 NºE5001 seen at Waterloo during a Network Day on 1st October 1988.
    Photograph by Colin Duff.
  • B side
    A view of the "B" side of NºE5001.
    Photograph by Colin Duff.
  • Golden
    NºE5001 is seen here outside the NRM's York complex in Golden Arrow guise.
    Photograph by Mike Glasspool.
  • E5001
    Crewe Works
    NºE5001 in Crewe Works. Jonathan reports that not all eight wheels were spoked (as when originally built) indicating that at some time in the past plain disc replacements were used on the class.
    Photograph by Jonathan Hall.
  • E5001
    Crewe Works
    Another photo of NºE5001 in Crewe Works.
    Photograph by Jonathan Hall.
  • E5001
    Under some OHL
    NºE5001 under the wires - but not Southern wires! Photographed at a Bescott Open Day on 9th October 1988.
    Photograph: Mike Morant collection.
  • Driver's
    This is the driver's desk side of one cab.
    Photograph by Colin Duff.
  • Headcode
    Railfest provided a rare opportunity to inspect the workings of the headcode box (and display favourite headcodes!)
    Photograph by Colin Duff.
  • Second
    man's side
    This is he second man's side of the cab, which has limited controls for shunting purposes.
    Photograph by Colin Duff.
  • Central
    The central compartment of the loco looking over the traction motor blower towards the exhauster apparatus and electrical cabinets.
    Photograph by Colin Duff.
  • Booster
    This is the booster apparatus, the motor is closest to the camera, followed by two flywheels and then the generator.
    Photograph by Colin Duff.
  • Blower
    The traction motor blower.
    Photograph by Colin Duff.

This page was last updated 27 July 2004

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