The DTG’s unique Class 17 ‘Clayton’ D8568 was pictured while running around her train at Minehead on Saturday 18th June 2022 to position for the second round trip of the day. BR(W) 4-6-0 7822 ‘FOXCOTE MANOR’ can also be seen in this picture, with Barclay 0-4-0DH 579 (ROF 2) stabled beyond. Photo by Josh Brinsford © CC BY-NC 3.0
The 10:00 and 14:30 Minehead to Bishops Lydeard return services were hauled by the unique ‘Clayton’ Class 17 D8568 on Saturday 18th June 2022. The 900 hp loco had to work hard to haul a rake of six Mk.1 coaches, giving passengers a chance to experience both the sight and sound of this rare beast with both of her Paxman 6ZHXL six-cylinder engines running at maximum power. The loco has performed faultlessly during her time on the WSR and has been a popular attraction, drawing visitors from all over the country to experience the combination of the ‘Clayton’ and the challenges of the Minehead branch. The loco will soon be leaving the WSR and heading back to her regular home on the Chinnor & Princes Risborough Railway but we hope to see her back again for a future gala event.
The DTG’s unique Class 17 ‘Clayton’ D8568 was tasked with six Mark 1 coaches for the scheduled Minehead to Bishops Lydeard return services on Saturday 18th June 2022. The unique profile of the locomotive is captured by this view of the consist approaching Sampford Brett bridge after departing from Williton. Photo by Keith Fender © CC BY-NC 3.0
The DTG’s unique Class 17 ‘Clayton’ D8568 also boasts a massive cab, the largest of any diesel that ever ran on BR. Strangely, it only has two seats, diagonally opposite, one for each driving direction. The secondman either has to stand on the right hand side of the cab, or rotate the vacant driving seat and sit in the ‘back row’ with a severely impaired view of the line ahead. Photo taken at Bishops Lydeard on Saturday 18th June 2022 by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0
For our next two running dates, Sat/Sun 25/26th June, it will be the turn of Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 to haul the two return services that originate at Minehead, so make the most of this opportunity to hear the ‘Maybach Music’ and come along to the WSR and take a ride. The loco is currently stabled at Williton but will be towed to Minehead on Thursday this week so that she will be in position to start her 80-mile diagram on Saturday. The ‘Hymek’ will then remain at Minehead for the following weekend’s services before returning to Williton.
The BLUE timetable applies and can be found by clicking this link or by visiting our new DIESEL RUNNING DATES page. Any additional or updated information will be announced via DIESELGEN as soon as possible.
Beyer Peacock Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 was hard at work on all three days of the Diesel Gala and closed the show by hauling the last train of the gala from Minehead to Bishops Lydeard on Saturday 11th June 2022. Pictured approaching Williton from the Minehead direction by Paul Clark © CC BY-NC 3.0
One of our youngest DEPG members is Josh Brinsford and at the age of 13 he has already published more than 750 videos on YouTube and TikTok. Here’s another example of his work – click on this link to YouTube or click on the image below.
This video runs for 40 minutes and covers two of the three gala days. Many thanks to Josh for sharing his work with us.
DIESEL RUNNING DATES – we have created a new page on our website and we will be updating it on a regular basis to provide a quick and easy reference to diesel running for the whole of the 2022 season. We will be adding the link to all of our most-visited pages soon, but meanwhile the link can be found on our home page or by looking under the DIESELGEN menu header.
The usual caveats of loco availability apply, but we will be aiming to deliver the above program of running with the locos indicated and we will provide as much advance notice of any change as possible, using our DIESELGEN and Twitter feeds, so please sign up to keep up to date.
A forthcoming event has been brought to our attention by DEPG member Martin Rouse who is also the proud owner of a 1958-vintage ‘Railbus’ that was built by AC Cars Ltd for use on the BR Western Region. This rare machine is based on the Swindon & Cricklade Railway and is about to undergo a complete restoration. The restoration project is going to be launched at the S&CR Diesel Gala on 2nd and 3rd July where locomotives of classes 03, 08, 09 and 73 will be active. Click here or on the image below for more information about W79978 that has been provided by Martin.
Upon completion of the restoration, it would be great to see this wonderful machine in action on the WSR, perhaps operating a shuttle service between Minehead and Blue Anchor. Now there’s a thought !
Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – our CAMPAIGN for CAMPAIGNER has been boosted by donations and by sponsorship of patches, but WE STILL NEED YOUR HELP, so click on the images below for an update of fundraising status or to make a donation. We are making steady progress on the restoration of this massive locomotive but we have a lot of expenses ahead of us, so we need to keep our fund raising effort going for a while longer yet. We know that times are hard, but please do what you can to help.
Further progress on D1010 during the last few weeks has seen the completion of the repair on the secondman’s side window surround and handrail attachment at the ‘A’ end of the locomotive (currently the ‘Minehead’ end). The side windows had to be removed so that we could get access to the corroded steelwork beneath, but as the photos show, there was not much steel left underneath – but there is now !
D1010 – as per the repair technique that was used on the driver’s side, the strength has been restored by welding new steel into the vertical stanchion which in turn provides support to the horizontal window frame section. The handrail attachment area was also repaired and the handrail welded over by Colin. Photo taken at Williton on Monday 30th May 2022 by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0
D1010 – the secondman’s side at ‘A’ end has now been repaired at top and bottom and the window frame can now be cleaned up and re-installed. Geoff has worked on the team restoring D1010 since Didcot days and his help is very much appreciated ! Photo taken at Williton on Tuesday 7th June 2022 by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0
To support the work that is progressing in multiple areas on D1010, we launched our CAMPAIGN for CAMPAIGNER by offering ‘SPONSOR A PATCH’ where you can donate in support of the bodywork repairs that are taking place on D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ and HAVE YOUR NAME ENGRAVED ON THE SPONSORED PATCH or PART.
For the sum of £25, this scheme offers you a chance to sponsor the restoration of this much-loved locomotive, with your personal contribution being recorded and documented on a set of drawings that will be made available at our Williton depot on running days and open days. For those who prefer to remain anonymous, a unique reference number will be allocated and engraved instead.
See our CAMPAIGN for CAMPAIGNER web page for more details !
NOTE: EVERYONE WHO HAS ALREADY DONATED £25 OR MORE SINCE JULY 2021 WILL BE RECOGNISED and will be allocated an appropriate area on one of the patches or parts that have already been applied to the loco. Donations of smaller sums that accumulate to £25 are also eligible, so donate what you can when you can, and we will keep track of your total donations. Use our CONTACT FORM if you want to register your previous donations to D1010 for this campaign.
Class 33 D6566 (33 048) – this loco spent the weekend at Williton where she was subjected to an ‘A’ exam after accumulating 50 hours of running since her previous exam. The exam involves inspection and testing and the loco also benefited from an engine room cleanup, thanks to John C, Tom and Ian. This loco will tow ‘Hymek’ D7018 to Minehead on Thursday and will then move to Bishops Lydeard to take up the role of standby locomotive and will also be used to provide a training platform for three qualified steam locomotive drivers who want to add the Class 33 diesel to their driving portfolios.
Class 33 D6575 (33 057) – this loco is currently at Bishops Lydeard but will move to Williton on Thursday for an ‘A’ exam to be performed and to undergo replacement of one of her exhauster contactors. The loco is currently running with only one exhauster operational, so additional time is needed to release the vacuum brake on the train after a station stop (normally, the second exhauster is used to boost the rate of vacuum creation at peak demand times). Ian has already arranged a spare part and will perform the repair during the coming weekend, to allow the loco to be available for service if required.
Trainee DEPG secondman Warren has the best view as Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) enters Blue Anchor station where it will cross with the 09:35 Minehead to Norton Fitzwarren service that is headed by Class 17 ‘Clayton’ D8568. Photo taken on Saturday 11th June 2022 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0
Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – work has begun on gaining access to the number 1 cylinder head so that the joint ring can be replaced and any other issues attended to. The work involves draining the coolant into a storage container for re-use at a later date, then removal of the roof section, the intercoolers and air intake ducting, the cambox and finally the errant cylinder head. More news on this next week.
Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – this loco performed well throughout the diesel gala and is next due to perform on the 10:00 and 14:30 Minehead to Bishops Lydeard return services on Sat/Sun 25/26th June and 2nd/3rd July. The ‘Hymeks’ are rarely outstationed at Minehead, so it will also be a treat for visitors to see D7018 stabled at Minehead throughout the week.
Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – the team has been progressing the repair and refurbishment of the many small parts that go together to form the major sub-assemblies of this locomotive. The task of acquiring replacement couplings for the generator drive shaft is also in progress in the background. These couplings are still in production but are now made in the USA, which means that the dimensions are still in inches, which is quite convenient for the pre-metrication ‘Teddy Bear’.
D9518 – the reconditioned Reavell exhausters are being detailed by Andy P to define the pipework functions according to the standard colour definitions – white for air or vacuum, pink for lubricating oil. The ‘before’ and ‘after’ white vacuum pipework tells the story. The rectangular tank on top of the exhauster functions both as the lubricating oil reservoir and the oil separator that prevents excessive quantities of oil from being blown out of the exhaust silencer. Pictured at Williton on Saturday 4th June 2022 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0
D9518 – the manufacturer’s nameplate on the side of the generator is well worn and difficult to read, but the date of 1964 is clear enough in the lower right corner. This type C12W generator was manufactured by the curiously-named ‘Lancashire Dynamo & Crypto Company’ of Trafford Park, Manchester that was absorbed into AEI in 1967, becoming part of GEC later that same year. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0
This loco is the subject of a fundraising appeal so please follow this link to find out more. We need your help ! In addition to funds, we also need plenty of HANDS. If you love the ‘Teddy Bears’ and you are not already a member of the DEPG, please join us so that you can become one of the team that is going to return D9518 to full operational condition as ‘NCB No. 7‘.
Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – this loco will again be in use during this coming week on the Kent & East Sussex Railway. The latest news is that loco has now clocked up more than 400 hours of use and continues to be well looked after by the Class 14 experts at this railway, assisted by our own Class 14 volunteer team leader Simon Purvis from time to time. One widely-reported duty that she performed on 25th May was the move of 1872-built Stroudley ‘Terrier’ Class A1X number 70, named ‘POPLAR‘ from Tenterden to Rolvenden, as pictured below:
Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 was in charge of moving 1872-built Stroudley Class A1X ‘Terrier’ number 70 ‘POPLAR’ from Tenterden to Rolvenden on Wednesday 25th May 2022, seen here at Henry’s Crossing, Tenterden. Photo by Jake Lewis © CC BY-NC 3.0
Last week, we reported that D9526 had encountered some starting trouble that had been already been rectified by Mike and his team on site, but it resulted in damage to the starter motor. We were ready with a spare reconditioned motor from stock and Simon attended last weekend to swap the motors over. The loco is now back to starting easily (and quietly) and the worn motor will be sent to our friends at ICS in Preston for them to give it a thorough overhaul.
Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 has been fitted with the reconditioned starter motor that was recently overhauled by ICS of Preston and is now starting easily and quietly again. Photo by Simon Purvis © CC BY-NC 3.0
Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – this loco is currently at Grosmont on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, where she is undergoing a triple pump change and the completion of some overhaul tasks. The work is progressing well and we hope to get news of her being out on a test run soon.
Class 47 47077 (D1661, 47613, 47840) ‘NORTH STAR’ was pictured in the yard at Grosmont on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway on 8th June 2022 in the company of B1 61264 and WD 3672 and Class 24 D5061. Photo by DEPG member Martin Fisher © CC BY-NC 3.0
Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 – no change this week, but this little loco will soon be put to work shunting the yard because ‘Hymek’ D7017 needs to be positioned under the 10-ton crane so that her roof can be lifted off.
If you can help by donating your time, then please JOIN US and come along to the depot for an introduction to what we do and how we do it. We currently have people on site from Saturday through to Tuesday and we can open on other days if we can be sure of getting at least two volunteers on site at all times, so there is plenty of scope. We have tasks of all types to suit most capabilities, both skilled and unskilled.
Many thanks to all of our volunteers who give up so much of their time to work on the cleaning, painting, maintaining, restoring, managing and fund raising for our fleet of heritage locomotives !
BOOK REVIEW – Volume 2 of the Class 14 study by Anthony P. Sayer has now been released and we have copies available for sale at £27 per copy. We also have the excellent Volume 1 of the study available at the same price. We have received a book review from regular contributor Neale Long and we have created a page on our website to do it justice. Click here for Neale’s book review.
Many thanks to Neale for taking the time to prepare a detailed book review for us.
All profits from the sale of the above two books will go to the D9518 Restoration Fund
ON SHED – the recent visit of Class 17 ‘Clayton’ D8568 has created a wave of interest in the class and we have received some very interesting photos as a result. Here’s one from regular contributor Barry Gay, taken at a time when the whole class had been withdrawn from service and were in store, awaiting a decision about their future. In the end, all except D8568 were cut up for scrap; some were only three years old.
This photograph shows four Class 17 ‘Claytons’ in the old steam shed at Ardrossan Harbour, approximately 35 miles southwest of Glasgow. The picture is dated 8th July 1972 and the photographer counted 22 of the Class in store at that location on that day, all waiting for a decision on their future. In the end, all except D8568 were cut up for scrap. Photo by Barry Gay © CC BY-NC 3.0
DEPG NEWS – the Board will meet at Williton on Saturday 25th June at a slightly later time than usual because some Board members will be working the first leg of the ‘Hymek’-hauled service out of Minehead that morning. The synopsis of the previous meeting has been overlooked in all of the excitement of the diesel gala, but will be sent out in a separate email to all members for whom we hold a valid email address. Hard copies will be included in the next Newsletter mailing (August).
AN IMPORTANT NOTE FOR YOUR DIARY – the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the DEPG is scheduled to take place on the afternoon of Saturday 3rd September 2022, at Williton. All members have been advised via the May Newsletter mailing. The AGM document package will be sent out in August along with the next Newsletter.
The DEPG will host a visit from the WELLS RAILWAY FRATERNITY on Wednesday 22nd June 2022 when approximately 25 members of that group will tour our depot as part of their visit to the WSR. We look forward to meeting them and showing them around our depot.
WSR NEWS: the next event will be the ‘FORTIES WEEKEND‘ that takes place from Saturday 10th through Sunday 11th September when the DEPG facility at Williton will again be open to the public, complete with ROD SAUNDERS model railway sales stand. Please make a plan to come along to this event in support of both the WSR and the DEPG. Timetables for planned diesel running are now being published via our new DIESEL RUNNING DATES page and any updates will be shared via our DIESELGEN email bulletin service.