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The emu depot opened in 1949, on the north side of the main line, 8 miles from Liverpool Street station, west of Seven Kings station. In connection with the changeover to 25 kv, an additional larger shed was opened in November 1960. 86259 was one of a handful of 86’s to arrive on the Great Eastern, after electrification was activated between Colchester and Ipswich. It was allocated to Ilford in March 1985. “Peter Pan” made its own little bit of history on April 11th 1985, when, on a test run, it became the first-ever ac loco to reach Ipswich! After 6 months, 86259 was back at Willesden, returning to Ilford for just a month in summer 1987. Then, in January 1988, the loco was back at Ilford, where it stayed until August. There was a return to Willesden for a couple of months, and then a final re-allocation to Ilford in October 1988, to stay for nearly 2 years working on the now fully electrified London-Norwich and London-Ambridge Services. 86259 left Ilford for the last time on August 12th 1990.

No photographs of 86259 on Ilford Depot have come to light but if any site visitor is aware of any I would be grateful if they would get in touch with me (see contact page).

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