Locomaster Profiles

37901 Mirrlees Pioneer Unplugged Extra

Code: LM015
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The second in this re-mastered series of re-releases on DVD is a 'Wired for Sound' cab ride aboard one of the Mirrlees-powered Class 37/9s on a journey through the most easterly valley of South Wales, which was filmed in September 1997. The 18-mile branch line from Park Junction to Ebbw Vale (which has since closed) is one of the most scenic routes in the region and boasts a series of taxing gradients. What better way to enjoy this challenging route than on a loaded steel train from Llanwern with traction provided by 37901 Mirrlees Pioneer!

Not only has the programme now been digitally re-mastered for a greatly improved picture, but this DVD also contains a 30-minute bonus feature entitled RUSTON AWAY. Previously unreleased, this is a 'Wired for Sound' cab ride on board Ruston-engined 37906 when it visited the Mid Hants Railway diesel gala in March 2000.


The four Mirrlees-engined Class 37/9s are renowned for their 'sewing machine' quietness - no noise, no thrash. But this is a 37/9 as you've never heard it before - running on full bore with its exhaust silencer removed! Give it a heavy load and a challenging route, and this machine becomes the perfect candidate for a "Wired for Sound" extravaganza! The results are spectacular as the heavy-weight 37 struggles to haul its 913-tonne load up the valley on a glorious summer morning in September 1997.

37901 sets off from Llanwern with the 6B09 to Ebbw Vale on a 22-mile journey which takes a staggering 95 minutes! After easing out of British Steel's Llanwern complex and passing through Newport, the train diverges from the South Wales main line at Gaer Junction. From there, the route is seriously uphill all the way.

Lime Kiln Junction marks the start of the 8-mile section to Aberbeeg which has now been singled. The last five miles from Aberbeeg boasts a gradient of 1 in 80, on which the train travels no faster than 12 mph - despite a wide - open power handle! The journey ends at the Stop Board at Ebbw Vale, where the loco has to re-start on a gradient of 1 in 75.

Climb aboard the footplate of Mirrlees Pioneer for an audio experience that has to be heard to be believed!


A previously unreleased 'Wired for Sound' cab ride on board Ruston-engined 37 906 when it visited the Mid Hants Railway diesel gala in March 2000. This exceptionally LOUD locomotive is featured on the uphill climbs from Alresford to Ropley and Four Marks and also from Alton up to Four Marks. Like its companion loco in the programme, 37 906 is also minus its exhaust silencer. You have been warned!

Produced by - Locomaster Profiles
Running time - 110 Minutes
DVD only

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