Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) was pictured when arriving at Bishops Lydeard station on Saturday 3rd June 2023 with an equally smart-looking loco, the visiting Class 25 D7659 (25309, 25909) alongside. The ‘Crompton’ wins because she has silver buffers! Photo by Josh Brinsford © CC BY-NC 3.0
Preparations are well underway for the WSR’s SUMMER DIESEL FESTIVAL that starts on THURSDAY this week, featuring a very interesting combination of visiting locomotives in addition to those of the home fleet. Two of the three visitors have arrived already (D7659 as seen above and 33 002 as seen below) and the remaining two will arrive tomorrow. The home fleet is all set except for some test work that is pending on D7018, but work is in hand to get her ready in good time for her booked turns on Friday. We ARE expecting D7018 to operate as booked during the gala. Here’s the latest information:
And at Bishops Lydeard today, 33 002 (D6501) ‘Sea King’arrived from Buckfastleigh for her first visit to the WSR.
Here’s a REMINDER …
The 2023 SUMMER DIESEL FESTIVAL that takes place on the WSR on Thursday 8th June through to Saturday 10th June. This is going to be an excellent event, so GET YOUR TICKETS NOW and enjoy the early discount. Here’s the list of visiting locos:
Click here or on the ticket image below to get more details and/or buy a ticket. Special rates apply for 5 to 15 year olds on Saturday 10th June BUT ONLY IF ADVANCE PURCHASED – see the notes on the WSR website booking page or click on one of the images below. We hope to see you at the WSR for what is going to be an excellent event !
The QUANTOCK BELLE dining set will be in use and will be offering their legendary BREAKFASTS in addition to BREAKFAST BAPS, so make your reservation when you book your advance ticket. Click here or on the image below and select the QUANTOCK BELLE BREAFAST ADD-ON:
The GAUGE MUSEUM at Bishops Lydeard has just unveiled their LOCO OF THE MONTH and the honours go to our very own Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017, so be sure to visit the museum on Platform 1 at Bishops Lydeard and also view the MODEL RAILWAY that will be running an early 1960s diesel-themed layout for the duration of the gala event. MANY THANKS to the West Somerset Railway Heritage Trust for supporting the diesel gala in such a positive way.
The generous dimensions make this storyboard both easy to find and easy to read. This and the diesel theming of the Gauge Junction Model Railway make the GAUGE MUSEUM well worth a visit ! Photo by the WSRHT © CC BY-NC 3.0
The BLUE timetable runs throughout June, featuring diesel haulage each weekend, with visiting Class 25 D7659 (25 309, 25 909) in use on Sunday 11th June and again on 24/25th June, and a Class 35 ‘Hymek’ working in between on 17/18th June. For details of planned DIESEL-HAULED public services, see the DIESEL RUNNING DATES page on our website.
Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – the loco has been prepared for the ‘great outdoors’ and will be emerging from the Loco Shed at Williton some time tomorrow (Wednesday 7th) and will be placed on display for the whole of the diesel gala. Her ‘A’ cab will be open to visitors and we will also be engraving more names on her bodyside as we catch up with the SPONSOR A PATCH donations that have continued to come through in support of the D1010 RESTORATION APPEAL.
In between all of the preparation, we have still been making progress on the restoration and we will cover this in more detail after the gala. We have revised the schedule for her RETURN TO SERVICE as follows (for details, join the DEPG and read the article in our quarterly Newsletter):
To continue our rate of progress requires FUNDING and we give our thanks to everyone who has supported D1010 by sponsoring or donating during these difficult times. If you are able to do so, please SPONSOR A PATCH because there is plenty of recently-added metal that still needs engraving. Photographs and certificates of sponsorship will be sent out to all who have sponsored this phase of the restoration work, and we are applying more resources to catch up with this obligation and deliver the documents. Click the image below to sponsor a patch. Thank you in advance for your support !
Class 33 D6566 (33 048) – fully serviceable, and available for the gala.
Class 33 D6575 (33 057) – fully serviceable, and available for the gala.
Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – fully serviceable, and available for the gala.
Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – this loco continued to receive attention last weekend as we resolve some issues that have kept her confined to barracks so far this year. The work is close to completion and we ARE expecting this loco to be available for the gala (she is booked to appear on Friday 9th). Here’s a few photos to show what has been going on:
D7018 – the transmission that was last used in 1995 was opened up by Martin and Peter to check some details around the reverser actuator linkage. Pictured at Williton on Saturday 3rd June 2023 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0
D7018 – a view of the Mekydro transmission looking down while the engine is running. The transmission fluid can be seen splashing against the inside of the perspex window that has been fitted to aid fault-finding. Solenoid (orange cylinder) R1 commands ‘reverse’ direction and solenoid R2 commands ‘forward’ direction. Pictured at Williton on Saturday 3rd June 2023 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0
D7018 – the Bristol Siddeley Maybach MD870 V-16 engine was running sweetly during the transmission testing work that took place at Williton on Saturday 3rd June 2023. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0
Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – more progress in multiple areas, but no photographs this week as we focus on gala preparations. This loco will be available for viewing at Williton and volunteers will be on hand to answer questions and provide details about the restoration project.
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 fully operational condition as ‘NCB No. 7‘.
Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – fully serviceable, and available for the gala.
Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – undergoing repairs to a broken cylinder head stud and a leaking turbocharger plenum chamber at Grosmont works of the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. We will bring more details of the work being undertaken as soon as possible.
Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 – fully serviceable, and this loco will be on static exhibition at Williton throughout the gala.
If you can help by donating your time to any of these projects, 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 will skip this feature this week and come back to it after the gala.
ON SHED – a quick ‘picture search‘ on the excellent ‘wsr.org.uk website run by Steve Edge revealed the following view of Class 14 ‘Teddy Bears’ D9526 and D9551 at Minehead in the Autumn of 1983, almost FORTY YEARS AGO. We will be able to see these two locos in action together again during the gala. The background at Minehead has changed considerable since!
DEPG NEWS – the Summer 2023 edition of the DEPG Newsletter has been distributed to DEPG members and should by now have been delivered, either electronically or in paper form. Please let us know if you are a member but have not received your copy.
The Newsletter includes a reminder that this is the last week in which RAFFLE TICKETS for the DEPG SUMMER DRAW can be purchased, because the draw will take place on SATURDAY 10th June at approximately 3pm at Minehead. Please click here or on the image below to buy your tickets. MANY THANKS for supporting the DEPG !
The DEPG depends on the support of all of our members so please make sure that your membership is up to date. If you are not sure about your membership status, please click here or on the image below to access your membership record via MEMBERMOJO.
KEY DATES for your diary:
WSR SUMMER DIESEL FESTIVAL: Thursday 8th through Saturday 10th June 2023
WSRA AUGUST STEAM RALLY: Saturday 5th and Sunday 6th August at Norton Fitzwarren
DEPG 50th ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATIONS : Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd September 2023.