Beyer Peacock Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 was again working the Minehead to Bishops Lydeard return service on both Saturday and Sunday 2nd/3rd July 2022. This drone image capture shows the loco and six-coach train climbing out of Bishops Lydeard, having just crossed Watersmeet Bridge (where the B3224 to Exmoor leaves the A358) on the return leg of the second round trip on the Sunday. Photo by Don Bishop © CC BY-NC 3.0
Another enjoyable weekend with ‘Hymek’ D7018 working the Minehead to Bishops Lydeard diagram (two round trips totalling 80 miles), the weather starting wet but ending with glorious sunshine and clear skies – what else would we expect for July !
Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 waits for the token at the delightful and colourful Williton station as the steam-hauled service to Minehead arrives at platform 1. The ‘Hymek’ will take a break for the next two weekends and hand the baton over to the ‘Cromptons’. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0
For our next two running dates, Sat/Sun 09/10 and 16/17 July, the ‘Hymek’ is taking a well-earned rest. Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) is currently in position at Minehead and is expected to haul these services, although Class 33 volunteer loco manager Ian has requested that the loco be swapped with D6575 (33 057) for the weekend of 16/17 July to even up the running hours (each loco needs an ‘A’ exam every 50 hours). If this change takes place, we will publish the change via our DIESELGEN email bulletin service.
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 by the WSR and via DIESELGEN as soon as possible. MANY THANKS for supporting this year’s DIESEL RUNNING program on the WSR.
DIESEL RUNNING DATES – we now have a dedicated page on our website and we update it on a regular basis to provide a quick and easy reference to PUBLIC SERVICE 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.
This last weekend was the launch of the restoration project for Railbus W79978 which is based at Hayes Knoll on the Swindon & Cricklade Railway. The Railbus had been prepared for a weekend of demonstration running, but this was curtailed after the first few runs on the Saturday due to sticking valves in the compressed air system – an issue that affects most rail-based machines that do not get used regularly. The restoration project will resolve all such issues, but the disappointment of DEPG member and Railbus owner Martin Rouse must have been palpable, after the massive effort that was made to get the machine into demonstration fitness, with several succesful runs having taken place on the Friday. We empathise, having been there many times ourselves.
Railbus W79978 had to be shunted by diminutive Fowler 0-4-0DM 21442 ‘Woodbine’ after failing during its demonstration running at Hayes Knoll on the Swindon & Cricklade Railway on 2nd July 2022. Click here to read more about this vintage machine. Photo by Martin Rouse © CC BY-NC 3.0
All was not lost, because Railbus W79978 was put to good use as a static exhibit where the public could enter and view the interior – which included an information stand that also offered some DEPG merchandise in the form of our D1010 booklet and D7018 booklet. Many thanks to Martin for keeping the DEPG in mind and making the most of this opportunity to remind Swindonians about the existence of the DEPG.
Railbus W79978 was open to visitors at Hayes Knoll on the Swindon & Cricklade Railway on 2nd/3rd July 2022 and included an information stand that offered DEPG booklets, membership forms and Newsletters alongside other fund-raising items. Photo by Martin Rouse © CC BY-NC 3.0
OTHER NEWS: We hosted two visitors from YOUCHOOS on Sunday 3rd July and the WSR kindly issued a cab pass so that they could travel in the cab of ‘Hymek’ D7018 to record the sounds of the loco in operation; not just the engine, but every small detail such as doors opening and closing, engine starting and the sound of controls being moved. The reason – YOUCHOOS provide electronic sound cards to railway modellers so that their miniature locos can sound like the real thing. We hope to provide a link to the finished product as soon as it is ready.
Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – our CAMPAIGN for CAMPAIGNER continues to receive donations and sponsorship of patches, and we now have quite a backlog of patches to engrave. The holdup has been the need to have the patches prepared sufficiently to allow the engraving to work well and provide a proper lasting mark on the metal itself, not just a mark through paint or filler. We still have plenty of patch areas to engrave, but here’s an example of a BIRTHDAY PRESENT WITH A MASSIVE DIFFERENCE:
Many thanks to the photographers who shared their work under a Creative Commons licence for this not-for-profit DEPG-themed birthday card. The proceeds were allocated to the D1010 Restoration Fund. © CC BY-NC 3.0
D1010 now carries an engraving commorating the 30th Birthday of Christopher Schiller, thanks to the support of father and DEPG member Ken. Many thanks to all who have supported and continue to support D1010 ! Photo taken at Williton on 25th June 2022 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0
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.
Continued progress on D1010 has now reached a milestone as Colin and his team have completed ALL BODYWORK REPAIRS ON THE ‘A’ SIDE OF THE LOCOMOTIVE and have now turned their attention to the ‘A’ cab front. The photos below tell the story. Work also took place on the headcode boxes, removing the layers of old paint, attending to corrosion and overhauling the mechanisms so that the roller blinds can actually roll ! There is a lot to do on this massive and complex locomotive, so PLEASE DO COME ALONG AND HELP IF YOU CAN !
D1010 – this view of the cab roof on the secondman’s side at ‘A’ end shows a cracked weld that ran almost to the centre of the roof, allowing rainwater to enter and slowly rot the skin, especially in the corners. Photo taken at Williton on Monday 27th June 2022 by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0
D1010 – the damaged skin was removed and the support structure beneath was found to be in good condition, avoiding the need for further peeling. Photo taken at Williton on Monday 27th June 2022 by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0
D1010 – the big hole that had existed in this corner has now been repaired. The inner weld will be dressed after the windscreen has been removed (the window seals are known source of water leakage). Photo taken at Williton on Tuesday 28th June 2022 by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0
D1010 – the cab roof has now been repaired – another task that can be ticked off the list. Many thanks to Colin and his assistants Geoff and Tim for this superb work. Photo taken at Williton on Tuesday 28th June 2022 by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0
D1010 – the headcode boxes are getting attention from Bob and Gordon so that they can be re-fitted to the already completed ‘B’ end of the loco. Photo taken at Williton on Saturday 2nd July 2022 by Andy Royal © 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 or click on the image below for more details !
NOTE: EVERYONE WHO HAS ALREADY DONATED £25 OR MORE SINCE JULY 2021 HAS BEEN RECOGNISED and has been 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 will be in use for three days this week hauling a freight train in association with the training of three qualified steam locomotive drivers who want to add the Class 33 diesel to their driving portfolios. The freight movements will be performed under the supervision of WSR Traction Inspector John Leach and details can be found in our latest DIESELGEN posting.
Class 33 D6575 (33 057) – this loco is currently at Bishops Lydeard, fresh from an ‘A’ exam and available for service after having received attention to one of her exhauster contactors during her recent visit to Williton.
Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – in a demonstration of the close co-operation between all restoration teams at Williton, Saturday 2nd July saw a re-organisation in the loco shed that allowed Class 14 D9518 to be moved further into the shed so that D7017 could be brought inside as well. This was done to allow the roof of the ‘Hymek’ to be removed to gain access to the engine components that need to be lifted out through the roof aperture. The prospect of having to do this outdoors during seagull nesting season was too dangerous (and unsanitary) to contemplate!
Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 was shunted into the loco shed on number 3 road at Williton on Saturday 2nd July so that her roof can be removed and the large and heavy engine components lifted out, to allow access to the cylinder head. Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 (ROF1) provided the tractive effort, seen here in the careful hands of Martin Howard. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0
Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 was moved inside the loco shed on number 3 road at Williton on Saturday 2nd July so that her engine repairs can be progressed without the participation of the local seagull population. A nice touch is the illumination of the road indicator (orange arrow, top left) that was acquired from Bristol Bath Road depot, although we suspect that Martin already knew which road he was to choose – it would be the one with the open door! Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0
Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – as covered earlier, this loco is stabled at Minehead and is next due to perform on the 10:00 and 14:30 Minehead to Bishops Lydeard return services on Sat/Sun 23rd/24th July. Keep an eye on our DIESEL RUNNING DATES page for updates or join the DIESELGEN email bulletin group (which also includes information about non-public services, where the information is available to us sufficiently in advance).
Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – progress was affected this week due to the need to re-organise the items that were lined up on number 3 road in the shed, to make space for ‘Hymek’ D7017, but the restoration team did manage to fit in some feats of progress such as re-mounting the cooler group on the ‘long end’ of the loco while preparing the brake system components for re-installation. The below photos show the ‘before and after’ sequence on number 3 road in the loco shed:
D9518 – the loco frames get towed out of the shed so that the cab assembly can be moved outside and sheeted over, hopefully for no longer than the next few weeks. Volunteer Andy P can be seen in the foreground, working on the brake rigging components. Pictured at Williton on Saturday 2nd July 2022 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0
D9518 – the ‘new order’ on number 3 road in the loco shed – the Class 14 cab has been moved outside and the loco frames have been moved forward so that ‘Hymek’ D7017 can be fitted in and the shed doors closed. This will allow the engine repair work to continue without restrictions. Pictured at Williton on Saturday 2nd July 2022 by Martin Howard © 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‘.
Click on the image to find the options for supporting D9518.
Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – this loco is still in demand and performing well on the Kent & East Sussex Railway. The recent substitution for an unavailable steam engine has resulted in more running and more hours. Excellent !
Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – the loco has been ‘in the works’ at Grosmont on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway and the latest news is that the triple pump has now been replaced, which is a very difficult task on a dual-braked Class 47 because of the seriously over-crowded equipment room that the loco type ended up with, so well done to the team at Grosmont ! 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 Saturday 25th June 2022 alongside visiting SRPS Class 37 37403 (D6607). Photo by Luke Wayman © CC BY-NC 3.0
Class 47 47077 (D1661, 47613, 47840) ‘NORTH STAR’ had her reconditioned triple pump installed at Grosmont – which is no mean feat on a dual-braked Class 47 – and was undergoing static testing on Saturday 25th June 2022. Photo by Luke Wayman © CC BY-NC 3.0
Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 – as pictured previously, this little loco has again been proving her worth during depot shunts, although she failed to start at first, due to a faulty non-return valve in her fuel pump. This delayed proceedings for a while, but was resolved in time for the job to be completed, although it did result in some late dinners for several of our volunteers!
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 – we don’t have time for a new book review this week, but we do now have stock of these three books by Anthony P. Sayer – each one is well worth acquiring. The recent visit of Class 17 ‘Clayton’ D8568 to the WSR has prompted us to obtain stock of the excellent book that was featured in a book review by Neale Long back in August last year. The book review has been posted on our website so please click here to read it and then buy the book from our online store. We are offering this £40 epic for a discounted price of £36 which is the same price as being offered by the publisher. THANK YOU VERY MUCH to Neale Long for providing us with a detailed review of this book.
PLEASE NOTE that we can supply any book from PLATFORM 5 or PEN & SWORD or AMBERLEY via our online store. If the title that you want is not listed on our webstore, just email us or use our CONTACT FORM to tell us what you want and we will arrange it, the profit margin on the sale going to the LOCO FUND OF YOUR CHOICE.
Don’t miss these two excellent new titles, the profits from which will go to the D9518 Restoration fund:
ON SHED – we will have to skip this feature this week, but we will be back with a new thread next week.
DEPG NEWS – the new online membership system has now been updated to allow the use of card payment and Apple Pay, in addition to PayPal, so this system will be the preferred way of renewing membership in future. Our website will be updated ASAP.
One important point to note is that all members who wish to continue using the previous paper-based system can continue to do so. Our new membership secretary CHRIS SHIELDS will write to members when their memberships are due for renewal and payment can be made by cheque via post as previously. Please send all communications to our Williton address – click this link to our About Us page.
MANY THANKS to Chris for taking on more work for the benefit of the DEPG !
WSR NEWS: the next event on the WSR 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 and his 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.
Between now and then, the WSRA will be hosting the long-awaited return of the STEAM RALLY at Norton Fitzwarren, so keep these dates free and make a plan to attend what promises to be a very enjoyable event !