Remember the Thumpers Dvd: DEMUs




Looking at diesel electric multiple units commonly known as Thumpers which were introduced by British Rail in 1957 for use on Southern Region non-electrified lines.

We start with footage dating from 1969 with units operating shortly prior to closure of Swanage branch.

Then we see operation from the mid 1980s of six-car units working the line between Tonbridge, Tunbridge Wells and Hastings before it was electrified in May 1986.

Onto 1993 sees unit 1001 working in a two-car formation on preserved Kent and East Sussex Railway.

Further features include final day workings on East Grinstead line and Uckfield line including a journey between Crowborough and Uckfield.

Thumpers are then shown in scenes dating 1998 and 2003 working between Ashford International and Hastings.

Filmed over thirty years, this programme tells the story of one of Britain’s unusual forms of traction.

The DEMU was adopted by British Rail (Southern Rail) to eliminate steam trains.

The first samples had narrow bodies needed for restricted tunnels.

Fred Ivey’s films show them in many locations and then the last trip before retirement.

Looking at the famous Unit 1001 as they are seen working on London Transport afterwards and the Kent & East Sussex Railway (K&ESR) in 1993.

A second type, the ‘Hampshire’ is seen working the Swanage branch before closure.

Here also is the last DEMU day at East Grinstead.

Today they work the Uckfield line and Hastings to Ashford.

Extensive coverage of these trains is shown, as they are scheduled to be replaced very soon.

Meanwhile samples of the original narrow-bodied stock work occasionally to Hastings and we end with a trip to London.

Also a look at the farewell tours around the county.

Colour film.

Informative commentary throughout.

Produced 2004.

Approx. 80 minutes.

This dvd is being sold on behalf of and with full permission of Online Video.