Weekly Roundup – 22-Oct-23

Weekly Roundup – 22-Oct-23

Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 was pictured at Williton on Saturday 21st October 2023, coupled up to Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) and waiting for Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 to join the consist for a combined test run to Bishops Lydeard and back. Photo by Jon Tooke © CC BY-NC 3.0 


It is ‘thumbs up’ from Tom on Saturday 21st October 2023 as he prepares to couple Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 to Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) in advance of the test run to Bishops Lydeard and back. Photo by Jon Tooke © CC BY-NC 3.0 


Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 was pictured at Westridge Steam Shed, Bishops Lydeard on Saturday 21st October 2023, together with Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526, both positioned over the pit for an underframe inspection. Class 33 ‘Cromptons’ D6575 (33 057) (L) and  D6566 (33 048) (R) wait on the south side and will later return to Williton as part of the 4-loco consist. Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0 



We are very pleased to report that Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 and Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 both enjoyed a successful test run to Bishops Lydeard and back on Saturday 21st October. The outbound trip from Williton included Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) for ‘insurance’ and to act as a load (the engine was running but the loco was not providing any power), with the ‘Hymek’ doing the work. The intention was to leave D6566 at Bishops Lydeard to take over the role of Duty Loco from sister D6575 (33 057), who was due to return to Williton for winter maintenance and attention to leaking exhaust manifold gaskets.

In the event, D6566 was showing a low coolant level and the team decided to take her back to Williton for topping up and a leak check, so the return run was VERY unusual in that it included BOTH ‘Cromptons’ and turned some heads as the rare 4-loco consist passed by, with the ‘Teddy Bear’ having a proper workout !

Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 was the workhorse for the return leg of the journey from Bishops Lydeard to Williton, a task that she completed easily and without fuss. Pictured from the cab on Saturday 21st October 2023 by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0 



The last public services of the 2023 season will run this coming weekend under the BLUE timetable and will feature steam haulage in both directions. As a fitting tribute to those volunteers from all across the ‘WSR family’ that have passed away this year, both trains on Sunday 29th October will carry a wreath in remembrance of those who gave so much of their time, effort and skills for the causes that they loved.



MIKE EVANS 1959-2023 R. I. P.

We are saddened to report that we lost DEPG volunteer MIKE EVANS on Saturday 21st October after he had endured a long and arduous battle with cancer. He passed away just a few weeks before his 64th birthday.

Mike was born in Cardiff but lived near Newton Abbot where he worked as a surveyor for the local authority. His love for diesel-hydraulics was legendary and he was often to be found working on one of our Class 14 ‘Teddy Bears’ or on D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’. Mike was a good all-rounder and would lend a hand to any project that needed his help, and he was even caught working on a ‘Crompton’ once or twice !

A natural prankster with a passion for gadgets of all sorts, Mike will be sorely missed by all of his friends at Williton, but most of all by his loving family.

With sincere thanks for years of work for the DEPG in support of diesel-hydraulic preservation. Rest In Peace.


Here are just a few of the many images showing Mike at work for the benefit of the DEPG. He will definitely be missed.

Above: Mike and Warren (L-R) at work on the engine of D9526 at Williton on 11-Mar-17 (TD)

Above: Mike doing DEPG sales stand duty at the Newton Abbot Railway Exhibition on 04-Dec-21 (AR)
Above: Mike tides up after needle gunning the bodyside of D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ at Williton on 26-Feb-22 (AR) Above: Mike outdoors, needle gunning the bodyside of D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ at Williton on 26-Mar-22 (AR)
Above: Paul C and Mike (L-R) at Williton on 02-Apr-22 working on D7017 bogie parts (AR) Above: Mike and Terry (L-R) hold up a tarpaulin as a background for a photo of the electrical cubicle of D9518 at Williton on 03-Dec-22 (AR)
Above: Mike shows off his brand new DEPG hi-viz jacket at Williton on 31-Dec-22 (AR)  

Photos by Terry Deacon and Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0



Bristol Siddeley Maybach MD870 exhibit

Last week, we reported that the DEPG had just taken delivery of a wonderful exhibit that was previously on display in the ROLLS-ROYCE HERITAGE TRUST museum in Coventry, showcasing the fine work that was done in the 1950s and 60s by Bristol Siddeley Engines Limited when they took on the licence manufacture of the Maybach high-speed diesel engine family. The photos below show the size and magnificence of this 87-litre beauty, which includes a cutaway section and an electric motor that rotates the engine slowly, so that the inner workings can be studied.

We are very grateful to the ROLLS-ROYCE HERITAGE TRUST for donating this  engine to the DEPG. Former DEPG Chairman BOB TILLER was instrumental in securing this marvellous exhibit for the DEPG and he also very kindly donated the considerable transportation cost of moving this 6-ton artefact from Derby to Williton. We hope to repay his kindness by having the engine on display in our future Williton museum area, for the benefit of future generations.

This giant 87-litre Bristol Siddeley Maybach V-16 diesel engine dominates the temporary storage area at Williton and will certainly be a major feature of our planned future exhibition area. Pictured at Williton on 21st October 2023 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0


The exhibition engine features several cutaway areas protected by transparent covers, and is powered by a small electric motor so that it can be turned slowly to show the inner workings. How about that ! Pictured at Williton on 21st October 2023 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0



Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – the new bearings are on order for the ‘A’ transmission, so while we wait for them to arrive, the team has moved on to the cleanup and inspection of the casings and the oil pipework, in preparation for the reassembly operation. The loco has now been moved back into the loco shed, which will be a blessing for Ian F and Roy, as they have been struggling with the inclement weather which slows down the progress of their bodywork tasks. The weather has also prevented us from marking the many patches that have been sponsored of late, for which we are very grateful. Hopefully, we will catch up this weekend.

D1010 – the loco was moved into the loco shed by D9526 on Saturday 21st October and will remain under cover until 23rd December 2023, after which the space is needed for one of the ‘Cromptons’. Photo by Jon Tooke © CC BY-NC 3.0 


D1010 – the inside of the top casing of ‘A’ transmission has been badly affected by condensation corrosion. This will be cleaned up after removal of the hydraulic pipework. Pictured at Williton on Monday 16th October 2023 by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0 


D1010 – the high pressure oil injection equipment was put to use on the reverser shaft from ‘A’ transmission at Williton on Monday 16th October 2023. This will allow the bearing beneath the double-helical gear wheel to be replaced. Photo by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0 


There are still some patches waiting for sponsors at the ‘B’ end of the loco, so GET IN QUICK TO HAVE YOUR NAME ENGRAVED before Roy and Ian reach this end. Many thanks to those who placed their orders during the last few weeks.

Having the loco outdoors has generated an increased interest in our SPONSOR A PATCH scheme, with several more patches being engraved with their sponsor’s names or messages. This initiative remains the single most successful fund-raising activity and has allowed us to make significant progress with the restoration work. PLEASE CONTINUE TO HELP US FUND THIS PROJECT.

Photographs and certificates of sponsorship will be sent out to all who have sponsored the restoration work, but we are still short of volunteer resources and have not yet been able to catch up with this obligation and deliver the documents. Apologies for the delay, we will get it done ASAP. Click the image below to sponsor a patch. Thank you in advance for your support and your patience!

See our CAMPAIGN for CAMPAIGNER web page for more details. We still have a lot of work to do on this massive locomotive, so PLEASE DO COME ALONG AND HELP IF YOU CAN !



Class 33 D6566 (33 048) – this loco has now taken on the role of ‘Duty Loco’ and will soon move to Bishops Lydeard to cover the Christmas workings.

The Class 33 ‘Crompton’ pairing of D6566 (33 048) on the left and D6575 (33 057) on the right was the result of the former having to return to Williton for precautionary attention to lower-than-desirable coolant levels. Pictured shortly after arrival from Bishops Lydeard on Saturday 21st October 2023 by Jon Tooke © CC BY-NC 3.0 


Class 33 D6575 (33 057) – this loco returned to Williton on Saturday 21st October to undergo winter maintenance, including an overhaul of her exhaust system.


Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – as previously reported, the test run was successful and this loco is close to being returned to service.

Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 was pictured at Williton on Saturday 21st October 2023, shortly after returning from her successful test run to Bishops Lydeard and back. Photo by Jon Tooke © CC BY-NC 3.0 


Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – this loco is waiting patiently for work to be completed on sister D7017.


Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – work continues on the restoration of the cab assembly and the replacement of the electrical wiring loom that runs inside the driver’s ‘desk’. The Class 14 team is currently sharing its time between this project and the 1000-hour service on sister D9526, so we would welcome additional help to keep both sets of tasks moving along. Just respond to this email if you feel that you could help. Thanks !

D9518 – the view towards the ‘B’ end (short end) shows just how complex a kit of parts it is. Pictured at Williton on Saturday 21st October 2023 by Martin Howard  © CC BY-NC 3.0


D9518 – the view towards the ‘A’ end (long end) shows many more parts being gathered for re-fitting at the appropriate time. Pictured at Williton on Saturday 21st October 2023 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 fully operational condition as ‘NCB No. 7‘.


Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – as already reported, this loco completed her test run successfully on Saturday 21st October and is now classified as fully serviceable again. The loco will remain at Williton until needed at Bishops Lydeard in the New Year.

D9526 performed well during her test run and is now classified as fully serviceable. The loco is seen in the South Yard at Williton on Saturday 21st October 2023 in the company of Class 33 ‘Cromptons’ D6566 (33 048), D6575 (33 057) and D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ on No. 1 road, and on No. 3 road we see Barclay 578 (ROF1) standing in front of Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018. Photo by Jon Tooke © CC BY-NC 3.0


Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – this loco is undergoing a ‘top end’ engine overhaul at Grosmont Works on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Photos will be provided ASAP.


Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 – this loco now looks the part, wearing her 1970s cabside markings as ‘R. O. F. BRIDGWATER No. 1‘. The number of drivers trained to drive this powerful little loco will be increased in the coming weeks to give more flexibility at the depot and allow locos undergoing maintenance to be repositioned more frequently.

Barclay 578 (ROF1) was pictured in the South Yard at Williton on Saturday 21st October 2023, proudly wearing her new cabside lettering. Photo by Jon Tooke © CC BY-NC 3.0


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 have just added a new title to our online store and we now have stock available of the THIRD VOLUME in the very successful ‘THE BEATEN TRACK’ series by Andy Chard, published by Platform 5. These popular books are very interesting, very well produced and are selling quickly. Click here or on the image below to buy this book from our online store.


Also available via the DEPG ONLINE STORE is this sought-after new book by former BR apprentices Mike Woodhouse and Graham Howell describing the ‘PYRAMID OF DIESEL HYDRAULICS‘ that comprise the D600, D800, D1000, D6300, D7000 and D9500 series of locomotives (classes 41, 42/43, 52, 22, 35 and 14). This book has been selling like hot cakes and has already had to be reprinted to meet the demand !

Available from the DEPG from Friday 20th October for £15 plus £3.50 P&P. Click here or on the image below to order this book.

We will be featuring a book review from regular contributor NEALE LONG in next week’s roundup.


ON SHED – sorry, but we will need to skip this popular feature this week due to lack of space.


DEPG NEWS – A BOARD MEETING will take place tomorrow, Saturday 28th October 2023, starting at 1300. The synopses of previous meeting are running late and will be distributed next week to DEPG members for whom we hold email address details. Apologies for the delay.

We have sadly lost several fine and capable volunteers this year, so we have to acknowledge that we are feeling the pressure. The activities at the DEPG continue to place significant demands on our volunteers and we need to share the load among more hands. This does not just apply to the maintenance and restoration of our locos, but it also applies to the hidden background tasks such as running the online store, producing the newsletters, publishing booklets, handling the pre-owned books and selling them to raise funds. If you have some time and feel able to help, please let us know by responding to this email or by clicking this link to use our online CONTACT form. We look forward to hearing from you !


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 MEMBERMOJOThank you very much !



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