Monday, 31 October 2016

Progress Monday 31st October

Halloween involved an early start which turned into a busy day at the railway; the morning's cold, thick mist gave way to warm sunshine by the afternoon
and this brought out a few visitors who enquired about the train services

A large team was present as Catheryn was reunited with her wheels and some major parts involving a large, high tech crane, the VCT were at Wirksworth working on the miniature railway woodwork and Derek and Dan were busy with their project      

Sunday, 30 October 2016

Progress Sunday 30th October 2016

Dear all,

You know, I can remember a time when running a train on this railway after the clocks had changed would be a complete waste of time with us possibly not carrying a single passenger. It shows just how far we have come because today was bustling with good numbers of the train all day. It was also the 'value added' areas that did well today - the shops and the buffet. In fact the buffet looked full all day, starting with a group of 19 cyclists (no we don't have enough stands for 19 bikes) and just continuing from thereon in. 

Quite a lot of shunting took place today to prepare the area for Cathryn to have a lift tomorrow but work continued on the P Way Bubble. The No.2 side (west) is now in undercoat and the south end cab is almost complete. The dome was returned to the vehicle last week following repair of all of the metal supports underneath. The bottom of the cab has had the bottom 4 inches repaired too as the steel was rotten. This included the superstructure underneath as well as the sheet.

Work continued on the Derby Lightweight power car with various components being cleaned up and painted, primarily surrounding the EP valve and air systems. The Centre Car had a step board replaced. The Standard Class Mk2 coaches electrics were tinkered with after the power outage earlier in the week.

So there we have it, the final Sunday operation of the 2016 season. I think it's interesting to look back on what has happened this season because when we started, Sundays was one of the worst days of the week but a combination of factors including a change in the timetable to a later start, has helped to make them at least on a par with Saturdays and Tuesdays. 

Leigh


Saturday, 29 October 2016

Progress Report Saturday 29th October 2016

Dear all,
Our royal train was in operation today on the scheduled Duffield service which enjoyed exceptionally good passenger numbers through out the day.

Down the yard the DMU team split into three groups working on the 'Barry Bubble', Derby Lightweight and Faraday. The Santa train also received an examination in preparation for its busy December schedule and the LMSCA were working on the BSK window mouldings. Tim Oaks's team were also gainfully employed with the 'Duke'. In the training room a small group from the British Railways Amateur Radio Club set up a temporary broadcasting station.

Richard undertook a number of yard tours today which were popular with guests young and old and his French was tested somewhat  by a small group of French visitors. If anyone knows the French term for wooden railway sleeper replacement he would be grateful to hear from you for future reference! We were also pleased to play host to a number of enthusiasts from other heritage railways in the region.

Down at Shottle the Oddingley signal box had it windows boarded up. My thanks to Stuart who stepped in today at short notice to cover due to Operational staff sickness.

Today's train service was supported by the EVRA shop, model railway and Pullman Buffet. Please remember to vote for our Barry the 'Bubble' restoration project in the Aviva Community Awards, there is still time to cast ALL of your TEN votes using the link below.


All the best, Tom 



Sent on the move with my iPad Pro   

Friday, 28 October 2016

Progress Friday 28th October 2016

Dear all,

Fairly mild for the time of year so it was perfect for a Drive a Diesel Experience using the Bubble in the morning and the Class 33 in the afternoon. Thanks to the Lewis and Richard duo who so excellently look after the guests and also to Eric for his lunches.

The Infrastructure Manager was out and about in the shed area marking out the area to be dug on the extension. Derek was working inside their BSK. 

But that's about it! There wasn't that many people on site today.

I'll leave you with a photo of the Class 33 passing Shottle on the experience earlier.

Leigh

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Progress Thursday 27th October 2016

Dear all,

A modest day on the trains today after the relative bustle of the last two days, but quietly profitable all the same.

Work continued on 50170's exam so that it's all cleared for the Santa season and the blue/grey twin set received a bodyside wash. LJ Breeze had an air leak attended to which was causing annoyance.

The PW gang had a tidy up after recent work in the yard and work continued inside the BSK.

I leave you with the sunset at Wirksworth this evening.

Leigh

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Progress Wednesday 26th October 2016

Hi all

Today saw the last Wednesday service train for this Year which was handled by our single railcar W55006. Good numbers were reported which is very pleasing for this time of year
Down at Shottle our first signalbox was delivered but it was not without problems due to lorry plus load being too wide for the gate. The signalbox was lifted over the gate and reloaded for stabling further down the yard
The new bucket for the forklift eventually arrived but that did not seem to fit correctly. Not a good day !! The Royal two car set received a long deserved wash

All for now

Mike   

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Progress Tuesday 25th October 2016

Hi all

Although temperatures have dropped a little the hours when the sun was out were quite warm and being School half term the passenger loadings were above average. A coach party which travelled from Duffield helped to increase the coffers
The PWay team prepared the entrance at Shottle for the delivery of Oddingley Signalbox tomorrow. This involved removing vegetation to our tight site entrance. On returning to Wirksworth they continued re sleepering road 2
The Steam team prepared Barclay Henry Ellison for a boiler washout and the wheels carrying Cathryn's frame were oiled ready for it's lift Monday ontoit's wheels
Met Camm 50170 received part of it's B exam prior to becoming Santa's Grotto
The My Test track business hosted two RRV's for 1530 testing in Wirksworth Yard
A very busy day and thanks to all concerned

Regards

Mike


Little & Large

Dear all
 
Two machines on test today hosted by Eric Boultbee. One of the customer's team first visited us in 2002 making him one of our very first test customers - there's loyalty for you.
 
From the studios of Cecil B de Miller here is a moving record of the vehicles:-
 
 
Martin

Monday, 24 October 2016

Progress report Monday 24 October 2016

A genteel day down at the railway; the flail had some routine fitting attention and was then in action on the incline; the VCT dealt with the Land Rover's fuel needs and cleared some of their work sites in the deep south and a test customer arrived with a large machine, trolley and a lot of weights    

Just a reminder  - we have bid for an AVIVA Community Grant that has successfully gone through to the second round and now relies on the number of votes it receives to progress. Please support it by going to the link below and voting for us 

The voting process is very simple and easy. After registering or connecting via Facebook you can use the slider to cast up to ten votes (please!) Votes from family and friends are also important  




Any help you give us will be really appreciated

Many thanks
Eric B
 

Sunday, 23 October 2016

Progress Sunday 23rd October 2016

Dear all,

A day where yet again the Sunday is busier than the Saturday, with pleasing passenger numbers all day and the coach party on the last train providing the icing on the bun. 

The Maintenance and Restoration Team's were in full flow. Well, more accurately, the tea was in full flow and the biscuits weren't far behind. Some work was done on Faraday as well as Barry the Bubble, where the south end dome was being prepared for returning to the vehicle. Further work to the Derby Lightweight jumpers took place as they prepare to convert the vehicle from Yellow Diamond to Blue Square multiple working. 50253's examination was completed from yesterday and this vehicle is all ready to carry the big man in red.

Tim's car was spotted but it was all quiet when I walked past.

Leigh

Saturday, 22 October 2016

Progress Report Saturday 22nd October 2016

Dear All,

We enjoyed lovely Autumn weather today down at Derbyshire's favourite branch line. The valley with its beautiful golden vistas was a joy to behold in the sun and many of our customers commented on how much they had enjoyed the scenery. The royal train set provided today's traction to Duffield and visitor numbers were higher than expected compared to this time last year.

Congratulations to Dave Hourd and Arron Crawford who were passed out as 'third men' today. I hope they have a long and enjoyable career with us. At Duffield our new booking office was open to the public today for the first time. I'm reliably informed the Commercial Manager is pleased with its first day sales! I am also told that the booking hall will feature as part of the BBC's East Midlands Today weekend roundup.

In the maintenance shed at Wirksworth work continues at a pace on the 'Duke's' restoration with final touches of paint being applied to the chassis and the valve glands packed (picture attached).The DMU team were gainfully employed on an 'A' examination for 50253, the Derby Lightweight set having attention to its electrical jumpers and Faraday received some welding. The LMSCA worked on two projects; the BSK bodywork receiving attention and the BTO had its toilet partitions installed. Earlier in the day a team of contractors took various samples of the Dust Dock which are required to be sent for analysis before demolition. It was good to see a small team of enthusiasts commence work again on the miniature railway. Today they lifted the 5 1/2 inch track in preparation for laying new 7 1/4 inch track which is planned to extend beyond the bridge.

Today's service was supported by the EVRA shop and model railway. The catering team between services could be found creating a rather spooky buffet in readiness for next weekend. I am told the blood soup is a speciality not to be missed!

Finally some of you may not know but our railway has been shortlisted for an Aviva community award (£5,000) and the winner will be selected by number of votes received. Naturally, we believe we have the winning submission with the restoration of the 'Barry Bubble' for our Permanent Way volunteers to enjoy a comfortable ride down the line and to have somewhere to keep dry and warm in inclement weather. Below is a link to enable you to vote. You have ten votes in total and it would be fabulous if not only you,  but all your family and friends took five minutes to register all 10 votes for our project. Voting is only open for a 7 day window so please vote as soon as you can.

Many thanks and all the best,

Tom






Progress Report Saturday 22nd October 2016

Dear All,

We enjoyed lovely Autumn weather today down at Derbyshire's favourite branch line. The valley with its beautiful golden vistas was a joy to behold in the sun and many of our customers commented on how much they had enjoyed the scenery. The royal train set provided today's traction to Duffield and visitor numbers were higher than expected compared to this time last year.

Congratulations to Dave Hourd and Arron Crawford who were passed out as 'third men' today. I hope they have a long and enjoyable career with us. At Duffield our new booking office was open to the public today for the first time. I'm reliably informed the Commercial Manager is pleased with its first day sales! I am also told that the booking hall will feature as part of the BBC's East Midlands Today weekend roundup.

In the maintenance shed at Wirksworth work continues at a pace on the 'Duke's' restoration with final touches of paint being applied to the chassis and the valve glands packed (picture attached).The DMU team were gainfully employed on an 'A' examination for 50253, the Derby Lightweight set having attention to its electrical jumpers and Faraday received some welding. The LMSCA worked on two projects; the BSK bodywork receiving attention and the BTO had its toilet partitions installed. Earlier in the day a team of contractors took various samples of the Dust Dock which are required to be sent for analysis before demolition. It was good to see a small team of enthusiasts commence work again on the miniature railway. Today they lifted the 5 1/2 inch track in preparation for laying new 7 1/4 inch track which is planned to extend beyond the bridge.

Today's service was supported by the EVRA shop and model railway. The catering team between services could be found creating a rather spooky buffet in readiness for next weekend. I am told the blood soup is a speciality not to be missed!

Finally some of you may not know but our railway has been shortlisted for an Aviva community award (£5,000) and the winner will be selected by number of votes received. Naturally, we believe we have the winning submission with the restoration of the 'Barry Bubble' for our Permanent Way volunteers to enjoy a comfortable ride down the line and to have somewhere to keep dry and warm in inclement weather. Below is a link to enable you to vote. You have ten votes in total and it would be fabulous if not only you,  but all your family and friends took five minutes to register all 10 votes for our project. Voting is only open for a 7 day window so please vote as soon as you can.

Many thanks and all the best,

Tom







Thursday, 20 October 2016

Progress Thursday 20th October 2016

Hi all

EVRA's BSK departed to an outside contractor for bodywork repair and the fitting of vacuum brakes and steam heat
The PWay team replaced a broken fishplate at Jebbs Lane
The DMU and Maintenance teams spent the whole day shunting Wirksworth Yard. The 'Royal' DMU set were coupled after An exam on 51073 and the three car green set were coupled ready for Santa. These vehicles are all thoroughly checked  especially the heaters, of which there are six, ready for a very gruelling Santa Season

All for now

Mike


 
 

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Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Progress 19th October 2016

Hi all

The new booking office at Duffield was officially opened today. A train departed at 1115 from Wirksworth to Duffield for a 1200 ceremony which was attended by all staff who were involved in the buildings erection and people who made donations plus other dignatories. A buffet in the Pullman Buffet followed on the return to Wirksworth. The BBC and ITV attended so watch out for the broadcast !!
My Test Track hosted a company for the third day of testing. The first RR vehicle which was a large van failed due to its inability to stay on the track and the second, a lorry was out of
gauge and would not go under the bridge on line 2

All for now

Mike





    

A tight fit

Dear all
 
Whilst all the celebrations were at Duffield today our test customer was undertaking his third day with us with mixed results. The EVRA BSK has also been readied for departure tomorrow for a commercial exterior restoration. The photos show the BSK ready for departure and one of today's two test vehicles.
 
The video shows both test vehicles and the return of the Duffield Booking Hall opening charter train.
 
 
Martin

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Progress Tuesday 18th October 2016

Hi all

Todays service was handled by our bubble car 55006 and the rain did not seem deter a fair number of passengers supported by the model railway, EVRA shop and Pullman Buffet
One of our test customers occupied line 2 for most of the day showing a hauled rail  flaw detection trolley to it's customer Tube Lines
The steam team successfully fitted new springs to Barclay Henry Ellison' safety valves
The PWay team removed another panel of track from Taylor's siding to enable the cement mixer to deliver concrete to the bases for the new Maintenance Facility extension

All for now

Mike

A Milestone

Dear all
 
The other great stride foward yesterday was the first physical sign of the enlargement of the Maintenance Facility. The end product will be greatly improved working conditions for those involved in restoration and maintenance with an opportunity for the public to see behind the scenes.
 
Martin

Progress Monday 17th October

 

Martin's video covers much of the activity at Wirksworth with our customer trialling their vehicles on the incline with very heavily loaded trolleys.   

Early morning saw the delivery of a flail for the Komatsu as well as furniture and till equipment for Duffield Booking Hall 

In the deep south the VCT worked between Hazelwood and Duffield 

Derek and Dan were creating a great deal of dust in the BSK as they continued their coachwork


Monday, 17 October 2016

A Weighty Occasion

Dear all
 
Much activity with our customer demostration their Unimog for certification involved many 2 tonne concrete blocks. Also shown is Mike Billing's studying the manual of his shiney new flail.
 
The heavy weight train in action:-
 
 
Martin

Saturday, 15 October 2016

Progress Saturday 15th October 2016

Dear all,

A very busy day in the Gem of the Peak with the car park full well before lunch. It was packed with people going to the Model Exhibition in the town and riding on the trains.

Down the yard, the apprentice was working on 51073 cleaning the underframe components and the Derby Lightweight Preservation Society held their AGM.

Duffield Station had activity too, with the remainder of the blinds being fitted and lots of trunking being put in by the electrician.

This evening we hosted another of our successful and popular Jazz and Chips Evening Land Cruise trains. Thanks to all who helped with this.

Leigh

Friday, 14 October 2016

Progress Friday 14th October 2016

Dear all,

Another good day of progress today inside the new Booking Office at Duffield with the team constructing the kitchen units and fitting the work top. This area isn't a food kitchen but just facilitates the teas and coffees at the station. Also, the majority of the new roller blinds were fitted to the windows which have been custom made to fit the windows. The new clock (heritage look) compliments the original Duffield name boards.

We also welcomed a Drive a Diesel Railcar Experience guest who enjoyed his time thanks to Chris and Richard. This also acted as a useful taxi for the plethora of packaging that new things come in these days.

In the Wirksworth Booking Office there were smiles as a rather large Santa booking came in from a local establishment, helping things along nicely.

Cheers,

Leigh

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Progress Thursday 13th October 2016

Dear all,

I spent all day at Duffield where there was activity on the new Booking Office. This morning we took delivery of the kitchen units which will enable teas and coffees to be made. They look very good and hopefully they'll be installed tomorrow. This afternoon, the electrician was in full flow trunking out.

In the chilly north, we welcomed a new testing company who has 12 trailers and 200t worth of weights to test so it was quite busy!

Leigh

From Road to Rail

Dear all
 
A look at today's test vehicle as it is unloaded and moved into rail mode. In the background is some of the equipment that is being assembled for further testing next week. A very busy Car Park.
 
 
Martin
 

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Progress Wednesday 12th October 2016

Hi All

The PWay team worked between the showers and replaced a cracked fishplate at Gorsey Bank and continued re sleepering line 2
Barcay No 3 went to Duffield to collect the water tank before the winter and this run was used to pass out some firemen
The DMU duo completed the A exam on railcar W50173 ( The Royal Celebrity )
Dave Newby replaced two water heaters so the Ladies and staff toilet have hot water. For our female staff and passengers a hand dryer was installed in the ladies. My paper towel bill will soon be down to zero !!

All for now
Mike



Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Progress Tuesday 11th October 2016

Hi all

The worsening of the weather and cooler temperatures kept passengers away from visiting the Railway and our service train carried lower numbers
Early morning activities were hectic in the the lower yard when IRIS arrived but was the wrong way round after it's visit to the Dean Forest Railway. A large area was cleared of vehicles etc to enable the haulier to complete a full circle.
Our Test Track business hosted a Company testing a trolley which required a large weight so the new Forklift was very useful
The PWay team continued resleepering Road 2
Shottle Station had two Cycle racks installed by our engineering team

All for now

Mike 


The Lady is for turning

Dear all
 
Iris returned from her visit to the Dean Forest Railway today and required turning before unloading. There are views of our new fork lift assisting with the discharge and the passing of the Steam Team's wheelbarrow!
 
 
Martin
 

Sunday, 9 October 2016

Progress Sunday 9th October 2016

Dear all,

Yet again Sunday was busier than Saturday with satisfying loadings on all three trains today. Not record breaking numbers by any stretch but most satisfactory for October. Quite a few visitors today were travelling on vouchers issued by a well known internet site which is great because it proves they are doing their job! Indeed, this also helps out the buffet which also had a very strong day's trading assisted by some bikers dropping in on their way through the town.

Down the yard, the Class 33 had it's speedo remedied and work continued on stripping the underframe of the Derby Lightweight power car. The PW Bubble had the north end cab assessed for which bit of metal to repair first following the removal of the fibreglass dome yesterday.

Something was occurring on the Duke to keep Tim busy all day but you'll have to excuse my ignorance. Perhaps he'll pop up and fill you in!

Leigh

Saturday, 8 October 2016

Progress Report Saturday 8th October 2016

Dear All,

It was a busy time down at Derbyshire's favourite branch line today with the Wirksworth to Duffield service enjoying good passenger numbers for the time of year. Welcome to Arran Crawford who has joined the operational staff team as a third man and congratulations to Howard Lucas who was in charge of his first train today as a fully qualified guard.

Down the yard this morning the Board of Wyvernrail PLC held it's monthly meeting in the training room and in the afternoon members of the L.M.S.C.A were in attendance for their annual general meeting. The DMU team set about steam cleaning the chassis of the Derby Lightweight together with the permanent way 'Bubble' which received some welding and had its northerly dome removed to allow further inspection. The class 119 also received attention and was made ready for an 'A' examination. Rob and Aubrey undertook a number of shunts to ensure the three car DMU is readily accessible in preparation for next weekend's model railway exhibition and Jazz and chips evening.

The Wirksworth booking hall was busy too taking bookings for Santa trains and the Jazz and chips special next. Down at Duffield Leigh continued the new booking office 'shop fit' in preparation for next week's grand opening (picture attached). Today's service was supported by the Pullman Buffett, EVRA shop and model railway.

Have a pleasant evening,

Tom




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Friday, 7 October 2016

Progress Friday 7th October 2016

Dear all,

I was the only one on site until half 10 when Derek rolled up to make some new condensation drains for the BSK. He was shortly followed by a new volunteer, who had popped along for his Induction.

Things soon got more exciting by mid-afternoon as we welcomed a coach party who enjoyed tea and biscuits in the Pullman, followed by a chartered return to Ravenstor and a single to Duffield. They made their onward journey to Derby by East Midlands Trains. Thanks to everyone who offered their assistance with this.

Leigh

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Progress Thursday 6th October 2016

Dear all,

A nice sunny autumnal day but fairly sedate too. The maintenance types were out in force completing the A exam on 55006 and also removing the oil filters from LJ Breeze to take them to a supplier for a match. These are now becoming very rare but fortunately some were bagged for delivery next week.

Bits and bobs of progress on the new Booking Office at Duffield took place whilst the Wirksworth Booking Office dealt with a pleasing number of Santa bookings (for the time of year).

Leigh

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

A Departure

Dear all
 
Our Wirksworth & District Tram departed for Derby today to receive some weather proofing and a new design of bogie. It will hopefully return after modifications that will allow it to climb West End with confidence.
 
The haulier seemed less than confident and the process took up most of the day resulting in a departure during the school run!
 
Part of the process is here:-
 
 
Martin

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Progress Tuesday 4th October 2016

Hi all

The service today utilised Met Camms  50253 and 51505,  not a normal combination being green and blue units but 51505 has some repairs which needed running in
Good passenger numbers were recorded and the Model Railway and EVRA shop supported the service
The PWay team had track patrols covering most lines and some long timbers on a turnout on the Maintenance Facility were re timbered
The Steam Team fired up Henry Ellison to check the safety valves and in the process a fireman was examined on proficiency
Railcar 55006's A exam was progressed with more ticks in the boxes

All for now

Mike

  

 
  

Saturday, 1 October 2016

Progress Saturday 1st October 2016

    
The cooler weather didn't affect our visitors today as we hosted passengers from around the country in our warm, comfortable trains. We were also pleased to welcome visitors from other railways. One such group took the opportunity to try the local beverage in Duffield (and a packet of cheese and onion) prior to returning on the last train. Although our southern terminus experienced thunderstorms, the rain very kindly waited until two minutes after we locked up before drenching Wirksworth  

More woodwork was undertaken for our coaching stock; Barry 55027 was fettled and Tim and team were making progress with valve connecting rods in the maintenance shed
Richard conducted several yard tours throughout the day
Enquiries for Santa trains continued and the model railway, buffet and booking halls all supported todays services