Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7018 runs through Williton non-stop en route from Bishops Lydeard to Dunster on Saturday 31st July 2021 as sister ‘Hymek’ D7017, Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 and BRCW Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) look on with envy. Webcam image courtesy of Railcam UK and the WSR ©
Saturday 31st saw another successful day out on the WSR with Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 hauling an excursion service between Bishops Lydeard and Dunster. Although passenger loading was lighter than the previous week, the service still made a positive contribution to both the WSR and DEPG funds, so a big THANK YOU to all who bought a ticket and rode the train.
Extension to Norton Fitzwarren was not possible on the 31st July because a steam loco had arrived from Southall in preparation for a mainline run from Taunton on the following day. The visiting loco had to occupy the Norton Fitzwarren section to turn around and take on coal, so that whole section of line was unavailable to us. However, on Saturday 7th August, we are going to be extending through to Norton Fitzwarren and tickets have been selling well, so BUY YOUR TICKET NOW !
With her engine running after taking some ‘exercise’ in the South Yard at Williton, D7017 watches her sister D7018 approaching with the return leg of the Dunster excursion on 31st July 2021 with D6566 (33 048) also in view. Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0
Some questions have been raised by our followers and travellers, so this would be a good time to answer those questions:
Q: Why do we have to disembark at Dunster? It would be great to have some haulage behind Class 03 D2133, even if it is only for a short distance.
A: The rule book does not allow passengers to be on board when shunting a train. We will raise the possibility of future Class 03 haulage with the WSR and the Gala Planning Team for possible inclusion in a 2022 event. Thanks for your suggestion !
Q: Why did the service on 31st July end after returning from Dunster when it could have included an additional run to Williton and back ?
A: The timetable has been studied several times to try and find paths for a service extension, but the timings ended up with lengthy waiting periods and a late return to Bishops Lydeard, which would not suit passengers who had onward bus and train connections. We will run to Norton Fitzwarren when we can, and we will be doing so on the 7th August and the 25th September (and probably on 17/18 September as well).
If you have a question, please email me or fill in the contact form on our website. Thanks !
OTHER LOCO NEWS:
Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – after clocking up 50 hours of use during her first few weeks at the KENT & EAST SUSSEX RAILWAY, we have been advised that this loco is booked as traction for public services on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd of August, so we hope to be able to share some photos of this running soon. Well done D9526 !
Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – our ‘celebrity’ remains at Bishops Lydeard because of delays in obtaining permission for her oversize road haulage move from Bishops Lydeard to Pickering on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Last week, we prepared the loco for a possible rail move, but we have now been advised that the loco will probably be moving by road. We do not have the date or route information yet, but when we do, it will be shared via a DIESELGEN bulletin.
Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – many thanks to all who have contributed to the appeal for funds to support the £100,000 restoration of D1010 – we are very appreciative of your support. We have had a great start, but we have a long way to go, so please keep the funds rolling in !
In parallel with the work on the bodysides, our volunteers have started assessing the amount of work required to repair the loco cabs as this is the area that has suffered the worst of the corrosion. The route indicator boxes and sandbox filler trims were removed last week and the side access panels have been removed this weekend, allowing a closer inspection to take place.
We intend to raise £100,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:
After selecting a donation link, you will be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you are able to donate. Please remember to add the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM Government. Thank you very much for supporting the D1010 Restoration Appeal !
In addition to funds, we also need plenty of HANDS. If you love the ‘Westerns’ and you are not already a member of the DEPG, please consider joining so that you can become one of the team that is going to return D1010 to full operational condition.
While on the subject of ‘Westerns’, take a look at these pictures of a new product release by MASTERPIECE MODELS. These highly detailed ‘O’ gauge models were brought to our attention by Bob Meanley, whom we would normally associate with his preservation work on Tyseley’s ‘Halls’ and ‘Castles’ …. could it be that he has a soft spot for ‘Westerns’ ?
Fantastic models, well done to Masterpiece Models and thanks to Bob for bringing them to our attention.
Class 33 D6566 (33 048) – this loco is stabled at Williton and is fully operational and available for standby duty. DATE FOR YOUR DIARY – our two ‘Cromptons’ will be working an ‘excursion’ special on Saturday 21st August in top-and-tail mode to celebrate their 60th birthdays !
Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – this loco is waiting for its turn to go into the Swindon Shed for bogie disconnection and lifting to replace the weak leaf spring. The opportunity was taken to start her up on 31st July 2021 and give her some ‘exercise’ in the confines of the South Yard at Williton. The passengers on the ‘Hymek’-hauled ‘excursion’ had the additional treat of two helpings of ‘Maybach Music’ as the locos passed at Williton.
Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – we are very happy to report that donations to our D9518 restoration fund have had a great start and that we are now able to fund the re-installation of the springs, hornguides and wheels. This specialised riveting and alignment work will be performed by WSR Restorations at the Swindon Shed, Williton.
We intend to raise £10,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:
After selecting a donation link, you will be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you are able to donate. Please remember to add the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM Government. Thank you very much for supporting the D9518 Restoration Appeal !
Here’s some photos of last week’s progress on this loco:
Colin F hard at work on battery box components at Williton on 31st July 2021. Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0
If you love the ‘Teddy Bears’ and you are not already a member of the DEPG, please consider joining so that you can become one of the team that is going to return D9518 to operational condition – and see her haul passenger coaches for the first time in her life!
Andrew Barclay 578 (ROF 1) – this loco is undergoing bodywork repairs prior to priming and painting. The livery chosen for this loco will be the Government-standard (in 1972) deep bronze green that the loco carried during her days in service at the Royal Ordnance Factory (ROF) in Puriton, near Bridgwater, Somerset.
Many thanks to all of our volunteers who are hard at work cleaning, painting, maintaining, restoring, managing and fund raising for our fleet of heritage locomotives !
BOOK REVIEW – we deviate from the usual style of book review to say CONGRATULATIONSto well-known railway author BERNARD MILLS on the occasion of his retirement from railway service at Newton Abbot station after more than 56 years ! What a fantastic achievement !
Bernard was unable to attend his retirement party because of having to isolate at home in advance of carpal tunnel surgery, but his cake was delivered to him and it appears to be quite appropriately decorated !
We have several of Bernard’s titles waiting to be added to our PRE-OWNED BOOKS category on our online store. All such books have been donated by members and supporters and ALL PROCEEDS from the sale of pre-owned books goes directly to the D1010 restoration fund. Please reply to this email or use our contact form if you have books that you would like to donate. We welcome your donations!
ON SHED: picking up on photos of Didcot Railway Centre that we featured a few weeks ago, we have now received several photos from readers who captured our ‘Hymek’ D7018 on film while she was undergoing restoration at Didcot in the 1980s. Here are the pictures:
D7018 undergoing radiator grille repairs while at Didcot, with D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ in green livery standing behind. The headcode 3B22 was probably set by members of the GWR 2-8-0 number 3822 preservation group to advertise their presence nearby! Photo taken on 5th June 1986 by Neil Carr © CC BY-NC 3.0
Many thanks to Alistair and Neil for sharing their photos with us all. We welcome all contributions of photos or stories and we will try to include them when we can.
DEPG NEWS: Following the success of the first two runs of ‘Hymek’ D7018, we can now focus on selling tickets for the third run, which takes place this coming Saturday 7th August.
A reminder of the running days follows (all are Saturdays):
- 07 August – ‘Hymek’ D7018, with an extension to Norton Fitzwarren
- 21 August – Crompton pair, top and tail, celebrating their 60th birthdays!
- 25 September – ‘Hymek’ D7018, with an extension to Norton Fitzwarren
The ticketing links for these services are as below (these are links to the WSR website):
IN ADDITION TO THE ABOVE, we have been advised that our diesels will be in use for the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND on 17-18 September, the timetable for which has not yet been released. This new running opportunity will feature an extension to Norton Fitzwarren to provide both additional mileage and additional interest from this little-used section of the line. We will send out a DIESELGEN bulletin as soon as we have timetable details. Mark the date in you diary !
OTHER DEPG NEWS: August is approaching and all members need to have their memberships up to date in order to be eligible to vote at the forthcoming Annual General Meeting (AGM). Please renew your membership online by clicking this link.
As a REMINDER – the date for the next AGM is set for the afternoon of Saturday 4th September. Formal notices will be sent to all registered paid-up members during the coming week.
DEPG WEBSITE: Our ONLINE SHOP IS NOW LIVE so go ahead and visit our store!
WSR NEWS: The WSR are now operating public services to Minehead via a connecting bus service between Dunster and Minehead, so please support these services by buying tickets to ride!
The trespass notice positioned just beyond Dunster station dates back to the times of the ‘Railway Executive’ of the British Transport Commission that took control of the railways following the Transport Act of 1947. Minehead can be seen in the distance as the ‘shunt release’ takes place for the return journey to Bishops Lydeard. Photo by Derek Thompson © CC BY-NC 3.0
Don’t forget to read about the WSR appeal by clicking this link – this appeal also needs our support because we need a thriving railway to run on !
All members of the WSR family have to do what we can to help and one easy way is to make a donation via the WSR website. Another way is to ensure that all of the timetabled services are a commercial success, so please buy a ticket if you can.