The IVA88 Exhibition

During the early summer of 1988 the International Traffic and Transport Exhibition was held in Hamburg, Germany. BR was asked to participate and sent a representative train of vehicles to the exhibition.
  • Class 89 co-co AC electric locomotive (89 001) from Hornsey

  • Class 90 bo-bo AC electric locomotive (90 008) from BREL Crewe Works

  • Class 91 bo-bo AC electric locomotive (91 003) from BREL Crewe Works

  • Class 150/2 2-car Sprinter DMU (52263/57263) from Cardiff Canton Depot

  • 2 x BREL coaches (99523 and 99520) from the BREL 'International' Train'  from  Litchurch Lane Works, Derby

  • 2 x 4-wheel former SR vans from Eastleigh (889009 and 889015) as match vehicles and fitted with BSI couplers to match the Sprinter . These have recently been acquired by the South Devon Railway.

As part of the initial trials, the train was brought to Old Dalby for some braking tests to be conducted. This was because the Sprinter DMU was not capable of being braked, as its electrically-controlled Westcode system was incompatible with the normal air-controlled brakes. Hence it was through-piped with the train's brake pipe and ran unbraked.

The train ran at up to 60 mile/h on the tests and this was the ruling speed for the trip to Germany.

Near Stanton Tunnel On Friday 20th May 1988 the ensemble is pictured at the south end of Stanton Tunnel heading towards Old Dalby

Author's collection

Match wagon One of the match wagons ADB889015 in its distinctive livery stands outside the goods shed at Old Dalby. On the left is the Sprinter and on the right, one of the International coaches


Top of the straight

The Class 89 poses for the photographer at the top of the Widmerpool straight at the head of the IVA88 special train. 

Author's collection

Stanton Tunnel

The locomotives posed at the south end of Stanton Tunnel - the class 47 was out of site


Class 89 leading

A close up of the locos headed by the class 89


International coach

The opposite end of the train reveals the two BREL 'International' coaches. If you would like to see a few more pictures and some info about the 'International' Train then look here

Author's collection

Marshalling for return A view of the train at Old Dalby having completed the brake tests.

Author's collection

Three locos

The class 89 heads the rake of three locos during re-marshalling of the train in the loop at MP 111, just to the south of the Control Centre.

The train was being re-marshalled for the return to the RTC as it was always run with the locomotives at the head. Class 47 No: 47561 is propelling them

Author's collection

Waiting to go home The three locos sit in the sunshine awaiting the rest of the train


Class 89 leading Looking from the other direction the train takes shape

Author's collection

Class 89 close up A close up of the class 89

Author's collection

Ready to go home The class 47 is about to haul the assembled train off the loop onto the main test line. It will then propel the train off the test track onto the main line at Melton Jcn.


IVA88 match wagon The IVA88 match wagon B889015 restored in its original BR livery at the South Devon Railway on 17th August 2008


The train left England on 23rd May returning on 17th June1988.

For more details of its journey across Europe and back see the IVA 88 page on my 'Train Testing' site

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