Depot news – week ending 13-Dec-20

Depot news – week ending 13-Dec-20

Last Saturday, after a long and hard day of work by our volunteers and by Matt Brewer of the WSR Infrastructure team, the large and heavy components of our fully-dismantled Class 14 D9518 were moved out of the Old Goods Shed. This allowed the scaffolders to start their work.

Some photos of that Herculean effort were provided by our Chairman, Martin Howard, as follows:

The WSR RRV assists with the relocation of D9518’s bonnet on 5th December 2020. Photo by Martin Howard (c) CC BY-NC 3.0


The WSR RRV doing the heavy lifting inside the Old Goods Shed on 5th December 2020. Photo by Martin Howard (c) CC BY-NC 3.0


This weekend, the webcam capture below (dated Saturday 12 December 2020) shows the new scaffolding protecting the platform from debris risk and also shows the cab structure from D9518 outside the shed and under tarpaulins for the winter.

In the foreground, Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) prepares to depart for Bishops Lydeard (BL) with the return leg of the FIRST SANTA EXPRESS of the 2020 season!

Class 33 D6575 (33 057) is ready to depart from Williton with the return leg of the first SANTA EXPRESS of the 2020 season on 12th December 2020. Webcam image (c) by Railcam UK and the WSR.

Because of the need to run strictly to time to ensure that the Covid-19 precautions at BL are as effective as possible, the first SANTA EXPRESS of the day is “top-n-tailed” to make light work of the climbs to Crowcombe Heathfield, even on a wet and slippery railhead.

The ‘Crompton’ is seen in the below web capture returning the special to BL, after which she came off the train and went to Westridge shed to stand-by in case she was needed later in the day (she wasn’t). Note that a traction engine has been positioned near the platform to give additional interest to the families on board the special. It’s another fascinating machine from the old days!

Class 33 D6575 (33 057) leads the return leg of the first SANTA EXPRESS into Bishops Lydeard station on 12th December 2020, passing a Traction Engine. Webcam image (c) by Railcam UK and the WSR.


CONGRATULATIONS to the WSR and all of the volunteers from so many support groups within the “WSR family” who have worked so hard to re-open the railway and bring revenue-earning trains back again. Great job !

Thanks again to Railcam UK and the WSR for installing and operating these webcams. They really do help us all keep in touch with what is going on at the WSR. Links to the Railcams can be found on the website and are also provided below:




DEPG LOCO WORKINGS: As reported last week, D6575 was in use for crew training purposes, creating some rare and welcomed photo opportunities. The image below was captured by well-known photographer, author and journalist Peter Nicholson and we are grateful to him for sharing this with us:

Class 33 D6575 (33 057) runs around its train at Williton on 5th December 2020. Photo by Peter Nicholson (c) CC BY-NC 3.0


As stated earlier, the ‘Cromptons’ will be supporting the first SANTA EXPRESS workings of each operating day, departing BL at 1100 for Williton (WN) and departing WN at 1150 to arrive back at BL at 1222. Some seats are still available on these special workings, so go to the WSR events website for more details.

For advance notification of DEPG diesel loco workings, join the DIESELGEN mailing list.

No update about the status of our fleet this week –  this is because our focus continues to be on the Old Goods Shed, so all other work has had to be suspended for the time being.

Many thanks to all of our volunteers for working in cold and wet conditions to get these tasks done !

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