Thursday, 29 March 2012

Progress Thursday 29th March 2012

Dear all
Another very pleasant day where much was achieved. The PWT scoured Wirksworth and its environs for parts that would contribute to the Shottle loop project and managed to locate a surprising amount of useful material. The Komatsu was put to use tidying up the tipping areas below Cromford Road that had absorbed the clay and used ballast from the Railvac demonstrations. Our Komatsu then loaded the ballast left in the Car Park into the Dogfish yielding some two and a half loads which will be applied to our main line. (This is finest quality pink granite ballast that will please Bob Swepstone no end)
The First Open benefited from another fine day and its release from the painting exercise is planned for next week. A tremendous achievement by John Allsop and a great credit to him for working in all weather conditions to complete this worthwhile project. John Birkinshaw and helpers approached the end of the Buffet Car reconfiguration that will transform what we can offer there. This vehicle will recommence trading this weekend and will be fine tuned ready for the Easter holidays. I think everyone will be quite taken by this transformation.
The VCT returned to the east side of the line north of Shottle and had a four fire day with six of the team being in attendance. This area of solid blackthorn is back breaking work requiring fence restoration after the mast of foliage has been tackled. Each time our passengers go down the line the compliments flow for all this endeavour.
The dmu team performed very useful maintenance work as a speedometer was replaced on one vehicle and the vacuum exhaust valve on another. We forget that all these vehicles are over 50 years old and need tlc to maintain their amazing availability and reliability. The first delivery of recovered seats for 51505 were the first class squabs which look absolutely marvellous and lift this vehicle to new heights of luxury.
The LMSCA inched forward with the welding of floor supports as the BTO project progresses. I can't wait for the return of an operational LMS Stanier coach after all the misery of the fire.
A tinge of sadness as the Railvac departed together with its supporting workshop container whilst marvelling again at the skills of Allelys and their team.
The Booking Hall further revised the web site with our additional train section and dealt with an inordinate number of phone calls, most of which were productive in some way or another.