1hr 58mins
Dir: Guy Hamilton
Starring: Robert Shaw and Harrison Ford

During the Second World War Commandos are sent to blow up a bridge in Yugoslavia

This war film is loosely based on Alistair MacLean’s 1968 novel of the same name and is a sequel to the 1961 film The Guns of Navarone. Although the majority of the film was set on the continent there is a railway scene that was filmed in Britain that features railway stock largely out of sync for a Second World War movie. The scene takes place in a goods yard at night where the commandos smuggle themselves onto a freight train, hiding inside modern BR-designed freight vans. This was filmed at the Royal Naval Dockyard (South Yard) Devonport, Plymouth, and VBA 4-wheeled van No.200425 is prominent along with others, including VCA No.200328 and various mineral wagons. The letters P.S.T.O(N) can be seen on several internal user vehicles, this stands for ‘Principal Supply and Transport Officer (Navy)’. Identifiable wagons in this series include Nos.151 and 451 both 7-plank opens, a 4-plank bogie open tube No.336, and No.695, a small four-wheel flat. There is a locomotive as well in the opening shot when one of the dockyard’s fleet of F.C. Hibberd 4wDM ‘Planet’ shunters trundles past with a couple of wagons. Built in 1955 or 1956, the locomotive is too young for a film set in WWII, but since when has continuity ever mattered!!

The dockyard scenes open with this view of a 4wDM shunter passing the camera. The German Armed Forces cross applied to the bonnet makes it look vaguely German, but it is in fact one of Devonport Dockyards diminutive little ‘Planet’ shunters built by F.C. Hibberd & Co Ltd of Park Royal, London, in 1955/56. The exact ID of the loco can not be ascertained. The dockyard had 10 of them!!
British Commandos make their way to the freight train, formed of a distinctly British array of wagons!
This atmospheric view looking the other way shows more freight stock
Franco Nero watches over proceedings as the train moves off behind him. Note the exhaust on the left, almost certainly emanating from another ‘Planet’ diesel.