Posts Tagged ‘Skierniewice’

Ty2-911 to visit Skierniewice tomorrow

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Ty2-953 hauling Chabowka’s vintage goods train at Raba Zaryte on 2 August 2006 at the Parowozjada steam gala. Photo BTWT.

There will be a rare occasion to see a working Ty2 at Skierniewice tomorrow. The locomotive and vintage train from Chabowka will be electric hauled from just outside Krakow to Piotrkow Trybunalski. If all goes well the train will then be steam-hauled from Piotrkow to Skierniewice. The train is due to depart Piotrkow about 12:00 (this time is very approximate) and arrive at Skierniewice at 14:45. The depot itself (with its recently refurbished turntable) will be open to the public from 18:15 to 20:00 when there will be a film show. The locomotive, train and actors dressed up as Polish volunteer soldiers will be commemorating the 90th anniversary of the Battle of Warsaw – a key event in securing – for 20 years at least – Poland’s newly found independence.

So if you live near Warsaw, take the day of work. Tell SWMBO that you are taking the children mushroom picking and secure a good vantage point along the line between Piotrkow and the junction at Koluszki. After the train passes you will have ample time to explore the woods and hunt for mushrooms, before taking the kids for a Pizza and moving on to Skierniewice shed. After photographing Ty2-911 on the Skierniewice, you may have to take the little horrors home, but if they are older they may well be interested in staying for the film show Polonia Restituta which will be shown at 20:00hrs in the depot. It you just cannot get to Skierniewice,you’ll have a chance to see the loco at the warsaw Railway Museum on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning.

And yes I know that Ty2s were built from 1942 onwards and that the Battle of Warsaw was faught in 1920. It appears that the locomotive that was originally booked for the leading role in the commemoration events – Chabowka based Ol12-7 had failed at the last minute.

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Koluszki inspection

Monday, 25 May 2009

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Warsaw – Lodz railway modernisation
Stage 1 – Skierniewice Lodz

The railway line between Warsaw and Lodz is being modernized in stages. Stage 1, the rebuilding of the line between Skierniewice and Lodz Widzew, was started in July 2006 and completed on 16 June 2008. The cost of the project was 905,151,233 PLN, of which 678,863,425 PLN was funded by the European Regional Development Fund and 226,287,508 PLN by the Polish Government. At the time, the project was billed by PKP as the biggest infrastructure in Poland.

We took our Chief Engineer to Koluszki1 station, the site of a major junction on the line, and recorded his comments.

All photographs were taken on Sunday 24 May, 2009. Click twice on the pictures for a magnified view.

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The new platform for the Warsaw – Lodz services is on the left. Other trains use the older platform on the right.

The Lodz platform on the left seems OK, but read on. The platform on the right – rebuilt in the 1970s – has been resurfaced but not raised. The new platform awnings constructed on both platforms stop about a metre short of the platform edge and don’t reach as far as the subway or the ticket office.

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The view to Warsaw

The main line for Warsaw trains appears to be well laid out for 160 km/h running. But what is the lady with the shopping trolley doing on the staff crossing? And why is there no warning device which is activated when a train is about to cross.

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The view to Lodz

Once again, the lines for the Lodz services seems well laid out. The tracks to Tomaszow Mazowiecki and Piotrkow Trybunalski less well so.

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Wroclaw-bound train arrives at Koluszki

Let’s hope that the lady with the trolley is clear of the crossing. Clicking the picture for an enlarged view shows that one of the ‘main lines’ is in fact a badly aligned dead end and that Warsaw bound trains leaving the Lodz platform road have to negotiate a couple of crossovers to reach the running line.

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Weeds sprouting up in the newly laid sidings.

It would appear that the reused ballast has not been properly cleaned and screened.

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The white line is disintegrating.

The home-made concoction of cement and paint has not lasted one winter! The appropriate material for the job is thermoplastic paint.

Overall, this seems to have been a modernisation carried out on the cheap where a glossy appearance took precedence over functionality.

It would have been appropriate to conclude this article with a Google Maps view of Koluszki station, but unfortunately in the satellite photography purchased by Google, Koluszki station is under a cloud!

1 Pronounced “COLL-OO-SH-KI”.

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Skierniewice Saturday open day

Friday, 6 June 2008

See the hidden treasures in the Skierniewice roundhouse
(more Skierniewice photos by Kacper Moscicki here)

Poland’s oldest railway society, Polskie Stowarzyszenie Milosnikow Kolejowych, is holding an open day at its Skierniewice Roundhouse tommorrow (7 June). PSMK have gathered an amazing collection of historic rolling stock at the Roundhouse. As well as some 70 units of rolling stock, PSMK have a large collection of smaller items and documents. The latter are not on display to the public at the moment. Some of the most valuable exhibits include:

  • Restored 1913 Wittfeld accumulator railcar – only survivor;
  • The only example in Poland (one of only five European survivors) of a 1910 Wagon Lits restaurant coach built from teak, identical to the vehicle in which the WW I truce was signed in 1918;
  • One of two survivors in Poland of a 1907 wooden Prussian 4-axle express passenger coach;
  • One of the two Polish survivors of a 1906 Prussian 4-axle compartment coach with side doors (typical of passenger trains on Warsaw – Lodz line until the end of 60s);
  • Sole surviving coach from the pre WW II government train;
  • First government train coach built in Poland after WW II;
  • The only surviving passenger coach from the first electric railway on present-day Polish territory (Wabrzezno – Wabrzezno Miasto railway) built in1898;
  • The oldest Polish diesel railbus built in 1938.

So if you live near Warsaw, get the kids up early on Saturday morning and head off down to Skierniewice. Get the wife to drop you to at one of Warsaw’s main railway stations, Wschodnia, Centralna or Zachodnia. She gets to keep the car all day and the kids will love the journey by train!

More information:

Mystery train

Saturday, 17 May 2008

The Mystery Train at the Warsaw Railway Museum
(Robert Dylewski) Click on photo for close up.

The Polish government train came to the Warsaw today. You didn’t know that the Polish government had their own train? Well, not to worry, the government probably doesn’t know either. The last time it was used as intended was before General Jaruzelski declared martial law in 1981. During the martial law era, the government was too afraid of its own people to risk going around by train and since then the habit of using fast cars and planes has stuck. So the train has languished unloved and forgotten. One carriage has gone to PSMK’s railway museum in Skierniewice, another is in Chabowka, another has been ‘adopted’ by a retired railwayman. Occasionally, the odd coach or two is dusted down and used for some private special excursion.

So what was the train doing in Warsaw? Was the Polish Minister of Transport entertaining his German opposite number prior to the sale of the profitable bits of the PKP empire to Deutsche Bahn? Are Mr and Mrs Peter Philips planning a quiet railway honeymoon in Poland? Is the President entertaining his mother in law?

It hurts us to admit it, but we don’t know! There a bottle of Zubrowka for anyone who manages to find out and tell us before midnight (Polish time) today.

What to do this weekend?

Thursday, 8 May 2008

A guided tour of PSMK’s collection of vintage rolling stock (photo PSMK)

If you missed the Wolsztyn celebrations because of family commitments, we offer our sincere commiserations and suggest that now is the time to start planning that surprise cruise for the wife next May bank holiday. Meanwhile, why not visit the former steam locomotive depot at Skierniewice this Saturday when PSMK (the Polish Association of Railway Enthusiasts) is holding the first of its 2008 open days? Warning, the depot will only be open from 11.00 to 14.00 hrs. From the outside the Skierniewice depot looks derelict, but inside in an absolutely priceless collection of vintage rolling stock.

Leave the car at home. Skierniewice is only 50 minutes by train from Warsaw West station and Przewozy Regionalne, the semi-fast train operator offers various discounts for travel in family-sized or larger groups.

A list of all the PSMK open days in 2008 can be found on the Association’s website here.

Skierniewice Success!

Saturday, 8 March 2008

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Ok1 guest at Skierniewice Open Day 22 September 2007

In contrast to the unrelieved gloom of my usual fare, I thought I would brighten up your weekend by writing about the Polskie Stowarzyszenie Milosnikow Kolei, The Polish Association of Railway Enthusiasts and their wonderful railway museum at Skierniewice. The PSMK were set up in 1987 (two years before the collapse of communism) and since then have been assiduously collecting historic rolling stock, railway artefacts and documents. In 1991 the locomotive depot at Skierniewice was closed and the site started degrading. The takeover of the depot by the Association was first mooted in 1992. Thanks to the Association’s efforts the depot was listed as a historic monument in 1994 and the removal of artefacts and machinery from the site ceased. In 2002 the formalities were complete and the Association became the proud owners of the depot.

Much remains to be done and the depot roof will need rebuilding. But the great achievement of the Association is that they have secured the ownership of the site and cannot, as has happened elsewhere, be thrown out at the whim of the local council. The Association have a very informative website and have made a good start at getting the material translated into English. The list of exhibits has not yet been translated, but the details can readily be deduced.  Skierniewice is only 65 kilometres from Warsaw and enjoys an excellent rail service. A list of open days in 2008 is available here.