Saturday, 31 July 2010
Friday, 30 July 2010
Thursday, 29 July 2010
Wednesday, 28 July 2010
Tuesday, 27 July 2010
Monday, 26 July 2010
Sunday, 25 July 2010
I speak to you now from the parlour of the Whore and Trumpet (A
Marston's House), where the exhausted undermanagement is soaking its
feet in linseed oil, asafoetida and gunpowder.
An astonishing and hugely successful event was witnessed this weekend,
the best we have ever had, with an amazing combination of buses, steam
engine, railcars and washing up (the Izzie and Natalie show). Grateful
and extensive thanks to all concerned in any way with this event, which
is the best we have ever had and is a credit to all concerned, not least
the bus organiser Geoff Clark.
The interesting mix of the railcar service to Idridgehay, classic buses
there and back and a steam service to Ravenstor proved an absolute
winner and gave us much valuable experience for next week's steam
I commend everyone involved.
All the best,
Saturday, 24 July 2010
Friday, 23 July 2010
A day of preparation for this weekend's big Transport weekend.
IMT carried out temporary repairs to an accommodation crossing north of Idridgehay, as well as carrying out emergency repairs to fencing on the Racing straight . There had been numerous reports over the last week of sheep baaing the way' although Hylton reckoned that one cheeky ewe kept looking at him with a sheepish grin on her face!
The DMU team were out in strength ensuring that trains were assembled, and prepped ready for the services. The Inspection saloon had more TLC to the interior and the window openings.
Much tidying up and emptying of the car park ready for the anticipated hoards.
At Duffield, the main line platform as well as our estate was weed treated to try to keep on top of growth.
This weekend is the first of three busy weekends, with many classic coaches and buses coming to the railway for a big event. Steam will also be present. Next weekend and the following ones are our first big steam events, when an historic steam loco makes its first visit here and big crowds are expected.
Thursday, 22 July 2010
Wednesday, 21 July 2010
A day of loading materials for next week's blockade at Duffied Tunnel.
20 concrete sleepers were loaded, 4 rails retrieved from the Incline store, and a host of old crossing timbers were all loaded onto the Sturgeon. Three wagons of stone were also delivered (eventually). Tony tapped and dyed preused fishplate bolts and created a supply for next week.
The team had a good day, with the work being completed by mid afternoon. This allowed for train prepping and the Komatsu being taken to Duffield.
Elsewhere, work started on clearing out another coach, (Was it the BSK?) which may be required fairly soon for service. Further shunting was carried out to start getting things ready for this weekend's special event with a host of vintage buses turning up, along with a service steam train.
Tomorrow will be a long day, the works train will have to leave by 0915. It will be split at Shottle, more materials will be loaded at Shottle. The train will then travel to Duffield, where some more
shunting will be required. The entire train will be unloaded, with rail drops north and south of the tunnel. The old crossing timbers will be laid out along the rear of the platform, and 28 concrete sleepers will be loaded. At the end of that, LJB will return to Wirksworth Light Engine.
Monday, 19 July 2010
Sunday, 18 July 2010
A rather damp start which cleared later. The passenger service carried
on steadily, though sheep on the line were again an intrusive problem
for every train south of Callow Park, despite the best efforts of the
train crew and Sheep Wrangler Woodhouse. The Day with a Driver had come
up from Kent, had a jolly time and inspected a number of our quality
vehicles including LJ Breeze.
In the engineerium the DMU team's regular scrubbers were at it again,
with a couple of welcome new faces, and the floor of the middle
compartment of the Met Cam centre car is coming along a treat; in
passing the forklift battery was charged. The steam team proceeded with
work on Henry Ellison and a great deal of banging could be heard down
Around the station a trench in the Clochemerle area was tarmacked. For
those of you who don't have short term memory loss... Er...Um... Oh yes,
those of you who don't have short term memory loss, will recall that
last year the conscripts were detailed to paint the three Dogfish. This
was rather a long running saga, every heritage railway usually has three
dogfish (a wagon for carrying and dropping ballast) and they are
universally scrubby. This is because they are a complicated wagon and
consequently a cow to paint. However, the conscripts persevered and
today the final paint was applied to these wagons as well as their
decals, copied from the originals photographed before the painting
began. We can't really say this is an expert job, Michaelangelo never
having painted a Dogfish, but the end result is at least presentable.
The usual unofficial naming issue was considered but as no-one could
immediately think of a threesome apart from in their DVD collection, the
prize will have to go to Mr Stokes for Hughie, Dewie and Lewie.
All the best,
Friday, 16 July 2010
Thursday, 15 July 2010
Wednesday, 14 July 2010
Tuesday, 13 July 2010
Monday, 12 July 2010
Sunday, 11 July 2010
Another warm and delightful day. At Duffield the platform grew some more
under the careful hands of MT Enterprises (yards and paths quoted for).
Our Turkish guests proceeded with sleeper work at Hazelwood and with
underframe cleaning, scraping and rust removal on the Met Cam Centre Car
at Wirksworth, having sampled the famous Wirksworth Kofta Meatballs last
night (shortly to be featured on Freeview: "Dining in strange houses"
which shows just after "World's Most Amazing Police Teabreaks").
The passenger service had another excellent day. Around the yard, the
Duty Conscript moved several scrap sleepers to the fire and re-filed
some decent ones. The steam engine received work to its brake handle, a
day's work to be precise. At the north end of platform 1, the newly
opened multi-million pound clochemerle facility was launched and will
shortly be promoted by the Marketing Department as "Tarry Gardens, Home
of the Portaloo".
In the engineerium, a large number of greasy engineers poked, prodded
and assessed the black locomotive, better known by its popular but
slightly long name as: "Martin Bromley, Master of the Universe". After
this ritual poking, "routine maintenance" as it is called in engineering
circles, the locomotive was duly started and promptly evacuated the
entire contents of a wet and greasy funnel all over the shirt of the
nearby Rev Lidgett, who had the misfortune to be downwind at the time,
and to whom all invoices for dry cleaning should now be addressed.
All the best,
Friday, 9 July 2010
Thursday, 8 July 2010
Wednesday, 7 July 2010
A productive day at the southern end of the empire.
The Platform rebuilding dept, started uploading type 1 at Duffield, they removed cables which were in troughing in the platform, with one cable being rerouted to the Relay room, whilst another to the NR platforms will be buried - NR and their agents have been contacted but show little interest in assisting, these cables should have been removed in March. The long dead TC cables have been removed, the signal at the south end of the platform has been removed to a safer place. A start was made on lifting out the troughing and storing it ready for its new position at the rear of the platform.Hopefully a start will be made on installing the first coping stone tomorrow. The Dumper truck is back from the dead and is zooming around again.
The Per way team carried on sleeper changing and managed 27, another team continued fishplate greasing and have now reached Bluebell Wood South.
Some minor repairs to the yard shunters, according to Will.
We welcomed a new volunteer in the Booking Hall today, Nico Van Wyk (a laugh, a joke , a platform ticket and a tooth extraction).
Tomorrow is a very busy day, all personnel or team leaders to ring Martin and have phones available at all times, We have a coach charter, a 1530 whole line test, a team of Korean S&T engineers visiting, in addition to our own activities. The works train to recess onto the platform line at Duffield as the 1530 test vehicle may turn around on the Loop.
Tuesday, 6 July 2010
A day of end to end running transferring supplies. The Works train ran to Shottle to collect more sleepers dropped there yesterday, these then ran south and were all unloaded around mp 134. Whilst the per way team had been waiting, they had dug out many more sleepers and managed to lay 30 this afternoon and have now reached 134. This means that there is now less than one mile left to be resleepered. The next batch of rotters was also marked up ready to be changed, this takes us to 134 1/4, from where we can see Hazlewood, and the finish line.
The Works train then returned the empty flat wagons to Wirksworth and returned with the Rudd loaded with 16 tons of Type 1, to be used on Duffield platform, this train then went to Duffield. On the platform front, the team pointed up the existing platform and carried out repairs where required. There is now 100' of platform wall to be made ready tomorrow for the first batch of coping stones to be laid.
The VCT, between travelling to allow other trains to pass, continued work at F5, and also burnt some precut brash and had a tidy around Old Lane Bridge, south of Idridgehay. The flail was in use and made two passes between Gorsey Bank and Derby Road bridge, trimming the new growth.
The DST continued with stripping down Henry Ellison, the second steam loco. They also cleaned No 3 and carried out work on the Lubricator. They also had a sort out of bits at the rear of the shed.
The Carriage team continued on the work of restoring the Third Open, with more panelling and interior side planking being added.
The Passenger services dept were in full swing and a steady trickle of visitors kept them awake.
Monday, 5 July 2010
Sunday, 4 July 2010
A lovely sunny day for the most part. Today's activities included
platform rebuilding down at Duffield with just under 30ft completed by
MT Cement and Engine Driving Limited. Work continued in the vicinity of
Shottle where the spacings of 12 lengths of rail were adjusted and
further technical work on the track was excellently accomplished between
milepost 136 1/4 and 136 1/2.
Back in Wirksworth our 2 duty conscripts set about clearing the car park
embankment, painted the middle yard gate, also the steps to the museum
brakevan and finally marked out some more of the car park, and following
consultation of The List, platform 1 edge was pressure washed.
Stokes Enterprises completed the work on the shed container roof and
took the day with a driver on Hydra, who was most entertained by the
dipstick. The passenger service had a steady day as well.
In the engineerium cleaning continued on No3 as did further work on the
lubricator. The little mentioned (in these annals) slightly bigger
brother of Brian Harrison, Henry Ellison, whose stripping has begun,
advanced further with the removal of the front buffers. Henry is now
front bufferless (as well as boilerless, cabless and tankless).
The LMSCA also did some stripping of their own with the removal of old
varnish off some of the woodwork in their TSO, a vehicle which is
In station work, the approach road was cleansed of loose grit at the
south end and more of this will be removed section by section as time
permits to restore a firm surface for the better grip of passing
horseless bicycles, particularly the blue ones. A poster board was
erected at Duffield to display our good work across the line to the
Network Rail platforms and our Railway name boards and the down slow
running-in board were also replaced as well as an un-announced
inspection by the Passenger Manager who did some research into toilets
All the best,
Saturday, 3 July 2010
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