9th December 2017: E18 haulage in Germany (now 243 005)

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E18 047 (118 047) at Hamburg Hbf, 09/05/09 (JW)

Important Update 25/11/17 – The organisers have unfortunately had to concede that E18 047 will not be ready in time to work the tour, and therefore the motive power will instead be 243 005, the 33-year-old ex-DB class 143 electric loco preserved by the DB Museum.  Proceeds will go towards repairing the E18.

Saturday 9th December 2017 sees a 78 year old electric loco make one of its occasional mainline passenger outings.

The E18 class was built for the pre-war Deutsche Reichsbahn and with the interesting wheel arrangement of 1-Do-1 – spoked wheels at that! – they have next to nothing in common with the electric locos of today, visually at least.

There are 6 survivors from this class of 55 machines.  All but one are static exhibits in museums – the exception being E18 047 (DB 118 047), which is owned by the DB Museum and kept in mainline condition under the care of the “Traditionsgemeinschaft Bw Halle P e. V.” in Halle (Saale).  Notably, this loco entered traffic on 12th August 1939 – less than a month before the outbreak of World War 2.

E18 047 currently has just one railtour advertised this year – for Saturday 9th December 2017.  This is being promoted by the Traditionsgemeinschaft Halle (link) and will allow it to stretch its legs properly, running from Leipzig Hbf (depart 07:00) via the direct route over the hills via Probstzella to Bamberg (for a 7hr 30min break) and Nürnberg Hbf (5hr 45min), before returning as outward.  Fares start at €79.

This tour is one of many organised to visit the huge number of Christmas markets in Germany, so are especially family-friendly!  Bamberg is especially worth a visit – the whole city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is particularly renowned for its beer!

What can I combine it with?

The next day (Sunday 10th December) sees a class 232 “Ludmilla” diesel loco work an 08:14 Erfurt Hbf to Goslar and 18:08 return charter for the bargain fare of €33, operated by Bahn-Nostalgie Thueringen (link).

The above is a link to a video on YouTube by Bahnatiker showing it on railtour duty five years ago.

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