Saturday, 30 March 2019

Progress Report Saturday 30th March 2019

Dear All,

Derbyshire's favourite branch line basked in glorious spring sunshine today with Iris ably coping with visitor numbers. Our passengers and crew were greeted with a friendly chat and free cake on arrival at Duffield station as part of Duffield Good Neighbour Week. Ron and Kyle carried out an array of tasks on the miniature railway as they maintained the track in between carrying paid passengers.

Down the yard much preparation was taking place with our diesel fleet as the team prepares for the April Gala. The LMSCA and Duke Restoration Group were also busy on their respective projects. Eric H set about tidying the narrow gauge station and found some remedial work that will need to be undertaken before opening to the public.

Today's train service was supported by the Association shop, Cafe and booking hall staff together with a train crew of Rob, David and Richard.

Don't forget to put your clocks forward this evening!

All the best, Tom

Wednesday, 27 March 2019

Progress Wednesday 27th March 2019

Dear all,

Quite a busy day today for a Wednesday. We had an early start as we hosted one of our testing customers for a demonstration day to their potential clients of a new signalling system based on taking tried and tested token machines and modernising them to operate digitally using 4G. The system, known as DiBloC, is an impressive bit of kit. The project has been headed up by Robin Lee in his day job, more well known to those around the railway for programming our online roster many moons ago. We trundled to Duffield to pick up the first round of clients, where a presentation and demonstration took place before coming to Wirksworth for further demonstrations. The clients were then treated to a buffet lunch. This was repeated for a second wave of clients in the afternoon. Thank you to those who helped put on the day.

At Wirksworth there was another testing customer using the incline as well as activity in the car park as the PW gang had a brief rest from track work to tackle the boating lake. It looks as though there has been a satisfactory conclusion although we won't know until it rains I suppose.

Coach examinations are under way by the maintenance team ahead of the running season quickly approaching and the Shottle Box team were making the most of the good weather by painting the box exterior.

Leigh

Sunday, 24 March 2019

Progress Report Sunday 24th March 2019

Dear all,

As we arrived on site this morning we were greeting with glorious sun shine although out of the sun it was a little chilly round the Shottle loop..so to speak.

Mainline services were today provided by Railcar Iris crewed by Chris, John and Will who reported modest loadings during the day. The catering team provided refreshments to our guests and the book shop was open offering its usual range of Railway related goodies.

Out of site of our visitors the Engineerium was a positive hive of activity, paint was being applied to the Bubble car, work continues a pace on the Derby Lightweight Trailer car and carriage restoration work was also in full swing. 

Locomotive 73210 Selhurst which had been in Winter storage was prepared for the new season and after several pre-flight checks started with great enthusiasm spending several hours in the yard purring away while minor faults were located and rectified, towards the end of the day it was taken on a short test run up the Incline which was completed without incident.

As commented by Tom in yesterday report the oil pressures have barely dropped after last weeks Gala but attention has turned fully to our next event being the Spring Diesel and Ale Bash over the last weekend of April. Initial plans were put together in the afternoon for requested traction, running orders and initial staff rosters constructed. It should be recorded the amount of effort that goes into staging these events in terms of prepping the locomotives and rolling stock, organising the staff and running orders for the weekend. 

My thanks go to everyone involved in todays proceedings and I leave you with a picture of Class 73 Selhurst during todays tests...

Regards

P

Progress Report Saturday 23rd March 2019

Dear All,

We enjoyed a very pleasant day down at Derbyshire's favourite branch line with 'Iris' in service on the Duffield line. Down the yard some work continued on the diesel locomotives in preparation for the forthcoming Gala. Andy D could be found in the narrow gauge talking tunnel making more adjustments to the electronics. At Duffield the station manager was busy tidying the garden and planting. (photo attached). The miniature railway was open for business and carried quite a few of our younger visitors. Today's service was supported by the Association shop, cafe and booking hall staff and a big welcome to Mark who has jointed the team at Wirksworth Station.

All the best, Tom




Friday, 22 March 2019

Progress Friday 22nd March 2019

Dear all,

Not too many on site today but good progress was made down in the Maintenance Department with W55006 going towards the Maintenance Facility to have some leaky gutters attended to. In the process, the fibreglass roof domes were given a good clean.

Another team worked on a blowing injector on 50170s No.2 engine before attending to a faulty horn on the same vehicle.

A new starter motor has been fitted to shunter Tom but this work is not complete yet and therefore it remains unavailable at the moment but will hopefully be back in service soon.

Leigh

Saturday, 16 March 2019

Progress Report Saturday 16th March 2019

Dear All,

It was day one of our Multiple Memories Weekend and  as the day progressed the heavens opened. I must pay tribute to the train crew teams, crossing keepers and Shottle ground frame operators. Despite the terrible conditions they ensured the safe operation of our railway as well as making sure the trains ran to the scheduled timetable.  Visitor number were good given the weather and I received some nice comments on how clean and warm our trains were and the quality of the Cafe's bacon butties.

Down the yard the 8F Support Team held a meeting and restoration continued on the Duke. Judging by the state of Tim's hands, I gather it was painting the cab. Ron was in attendance on the miniature railway clearing the track of leaves before the weather made such work impossible. Supporting today's gala was the Association shop, station cafe and the booking hall staff.

Galas provide a wonderful opportunity to showcase everything that is good about our railway but we should not forget the hard work that goes on behind the scenes by the different departments of our railway as together they combine to provide an enjoyable and successful day out for our visitors. I'm proud to say the wet weather did little to dampen the enthusiasm of our volunteers today and lets hope for kinder weather tomorrow!

All the best,

Tom


PS Today's photo was provided by Arran Crawford

Progress Report Saturday 16th March 2019

Dear All,

It was day one of our Multiple Memories Weekend and  as the day progressed the heavens opened. I must pay tribute to the train crew teams, crossing keepers and Shottle ground frame operators. Despite the terrible conditions they ensured the safe operation of our railway as well as making sure the trains ran to the scheduled timetable.  Visitor number were good given the weather and I received some nice comments on how clean and warm our trains were and the quality of the Cafe's bacon butties.

Down the yard the 8F Support Team held a meeting and restoration continued on the Duke. Judging by the state of Tim's hands, I gather it was painting the cab. Ron was in attendance on the miniature railway clearing the track of leaves before the weather made such work impossible. Supporting today's gala was the Association shop, station cafe and the booking hall staff.

Galas provide a wonderful opportunity to showcase everything that is good about our railway but we should not forget the hard work that goes on behind the scenes by the different departments of our railway as together they combine to provide an enjoyable and successful day out for our visitors. I'm proud to say the wet weather did little to dampen the enthusiasm of our volunteers today and lets hope for kinder weather tomorrow!

All the best,

Tom


PS Today's photo was provided by Arran Crawford



Friday, 15 March 2019

Progress Friday 15th March 2019

Dear all,

Very much a day of preparation for this weekend's Multiple Memories event. The DMUs were washed on the outside and cleaned on the inside and prepared for the weekend. The box van which is acting as a prototypical tail load at the weekend was also washed and positioned.

The Class 33 had some final fettling and testing pending returning to service following a B4 exam which featured replacement main generator brush gear and brake blocks as well as oil change, filter change and refurbished injectors.

Stokes Enterprises wrestled with the faulty mess room door latch and succeeded after about 3 hours. The stranger jobs are sometimes the most important.

Leigh

Sunday, 10 March 2019

Progress Report Saturday 9th March 2019

Dear All,

Typically, the weather played a significant part in today's events with Wirksworth station experiencing hail showers, rain, intermittent gusts of wind and periods of glorious sunshine! Iris undertook the Duffield service and we enjoyed improved visitor numbers mainly due to our current Groupon offer. Richard was on hand to provide his on train narrative of the history of the railway as well as providing ad hoc yard tours.

Down the yard much activity was taking place in preparation for next weekend's Multiple Memories DMU Gala. The Duke's restoration team were also in attendance and Tim will post a progress report later. Ron & Kyle could be found undertaking preparatory tasks to facilitate the relocation of the Miniature railway carriage shed to enable a turntable to be constructed. If anyone can lend any assistance with this project I'm sure Ron would be grateful for any offer of help.

Supporting today's service were the Association shop, Cafe, and booking office staff.

All the best, Tom

Friday, 8 March 2019

Progress Friday 8th March 2019

Dear all,

Fairly quiet on site today. The Maintenance Team made the most of the dry weather early on by pulling 53599 out of the Maintenance Facility for a clean down following the corridor end rebuild.

Derek was seen painting in the BSK(K) in Platform 1 and work continued on the Derby Lightweight trailer car.

The techy ones paid a visit to Duffield late in to try and investigate a receipt printer issue. Whether it is fixed or not remains to be seen.

Leigh

Monday, 4 March 2019

Progress Report Sunday 3rd March 2019


Hi all,

A rather wet and blustery day as Storm Freya gave her best, thankfully not creating any real issues for us, merely a small branch which was dealt with by our train crew. Quite understandably passenger numbers were low with the given forecast so with this opportunity the catering department took to further planning upcoming events with several exciting possibilities! Watch this space!

Down the yard, work continued on E53599 after major corridor end repairs were undertaken, with its return to service only a couple of weeks away, the vehicle was given a light examination and a few minor electrical issues fixed. Returning into the maintenance facility when the weather turned to have further corridor components re-fitted. Ben continued working on the Derby Lightweight trailer car restoration. And Oliver started the long process of de-winterisation on our diesel loco fleet, starting with 31601.

Team Station Building were also in today, making good progress with the interior fit out as the building nears exterior completion of Phase 1.

My thanks today for our volunteer teams, train crew, catering, booking offices and EVRA shop.

All the best

Joe.

_._,_._,_._,_._,_

Sunday, 3 March 2019

Progress Report Saturday 2nd March 2019

Dear All,

It was good to see the return of class 122 'Bubble Car' W55006 to regular service today after a lengthy stay in the maintenance facility. The attached photo of the unit shows a different weather picture of the the same time last year of the train crew, taken on a wintry Wirksworth station platform. Interestingly, Chis Beale was the rostered driver again today. Congratulations to Bob Yarnall who successfully completed his 'third man' assessment. The Duffield service enjoyed moderate passenger numbers and Richard could be found undertaking his ever popular yard tours in between train services at Wirksworth Station. A comprehensive re-stocking of the Association shop was undertaken by Pat and Ron could be found with Kyle undertaking more maintenance tasks on the miniature railway as well as carrying a few passengers. Eric Hills, our Volunteer Liaison Officer was busy inducting new volunteers and it would seem by the number of new Association joiners that the recent Volunteer's Day has been an unqualified success.

Down in the maintenance facility the class 33 had new main generator brushes fitted and some attention was given to a problematic DMU corridor connection. Today's service was supported by the Association shop, miniature railway, station cafe and booking hall staff.

All the best, Tom

Progress Report Saturday 2nd March 2019

Dear All,

It was good to see the return of class 122 'Bubble Car' W55006 to regular service today after a lengthy stay in the maintenance facility. The attached photo of the unit shows a different weather picture of the the same time last year of the train crew, taken on a wintry Wirksworth station platform. Interestingly, Chis Beale was the rostered driver again today. Congratulations to Bob Yarnall who successfully completed his 'third man' assessment. The Duffield service enjoyed moderate passenger numbers and Richard could be found undertaking his ever popular yard tours in between train services at Wirksworth Station. A comprehensive re-stocking of the Association shop was undertaken by Pat and Ron could be found with Kyle undertaking more maintenance tasks on the miniature railway as well as carrying a few passengers. Eric Hills, our Volunteer Liaison Officer was busy inducting new volunteers and it would seem by the number of new Association joiners that the recent Volunteer's Day has been an unqualified success.

Down in the maintenance facility the class 33 had new main generator brushes fitted and some attention was given to a problematic DMU corridor connection. Today's service was supported by the Association shop, miniature railway, station cafe and booking hall staff.

All the best, Tom