Printout of a story from The Last Main Line:

The Midland Interlopers

Britain's railways were Nationalised in 1947, and the old London Extension became part of British Railways' Eastern Region. During this time, the former LNER locomotives maintained the services but, when the Midland Region took control in the late 1950's, the LNER types were replaced by ex-LMS designs. The most prolific of these was Sir William Stanier's 'Black 5' 4-6-0's, which were the LMS equivalent of the Gresley V2 or the Thompson B1. Throughout the later years of the London Extension, the Black 5's (so named because they were of the Class 5 power rating and always painted black) handled the greater percent of trains on the line until services were withdrawn in 1966. This example is No. 45062, heading a football special through Whetstone on 25th May 1963.

Ex-LMS Black 5, No. 44984, leaves Leicester Central on the last through working to Marylebone - the 17.15 from Nottingham on the 3rd September 1966. To honour the occasion, a wreath was hung on the front of the locomotive's smokebox. This locomotive was a last minute replacement for another class member, hence No. 44984 was in a filthy external condition. However, it kept to time to London and also on the last working out of Marylebone to Manchester later that night.

Although not regular performers on the London Extension like the Black 5's, Stanier's 5XP 'Jubilee' express passenger 4-6-0's did make several appearances on the line for special trains. The Jubilee's were William Stanier's development of Henry Fowler's 'Patriot' 4-6-0's, and were once the top link locomotives of the London, Midland & Scottish Railway (LMS). The Jubilee seen to the right is British Railways No. 45622, NYASALAND. The photograph shows the locomotive at the head of a train, loaded with football fans full of anticipation, as it headed south through Whetstone to the 1963 F. A. Cup final between Manchester United and Leicester City. The Leicester fans were to be disappointed as Manchester United won 3-1 - Dennis Law scoring one of their goals.