Weekly Roundup – 19-May-24

Weekly Roundup – 19-May-24

Class 47 47077 (D1661, 47613, 47840) ‘NORTH STAR’ has been busy on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway in recent weeks due to a temporary shortage of serviceable steam locos. Pictured in the sunshine at Grosmont on 15th May 2024 by Michael David Stuart © CC BY-NC 3.0 


The countdown to the WSR’s SUMMER DIESEL FESTIVAL is well under way and the preparation of our locos and our Williton facilities has become the focus of our activities, as it does at this time every year. This year, we will be placing additional interesting exhibits in our yard, including major components that have been removed from Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ during her overhaul. We will also have locos of several different classes on shed for cab visits, so be sure to allow time to visit our depot and take a close look at the displays. NEW FOR 2024, our lineside viewing area will be set out with chairs and tables where visitors can relax and enjoy drinks and snacks from the mobile catering van ‘Irie 7’. We look forward to seeing you at Williton in two weeks time !



The next scheduled diesel running will take place on Saturday and Sunday 25th/26th May when Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33057) will be back in action on the 80-mile diagram that starts from Minehead at 10:00 under the BLUE timetable. This loco will also cover the weekend duties on the 1st and 2nd of June.

Then there is the WSR’s SUMMER DIESEL FESTIVAL with an ADDITIONAL GUEST for Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th in the form of a GWR ‘Castle’ HST set, courtesy of GWR and certain to be the subject of much discussion regarding the DEPG’s possible role in preserving one of these sets for the long term.

The Gala TIMETABLES are now available on the WSR website – click this link then select the date of interest then click on VIEW TIMETABLE or click on the links below to download a pdf of the timetable page:



PDF – FRIDAY 7th June


PDF – SUNDAY 9th June


The mixed traction offering on Sunday 9th has now been firmed up and EXPANDED with three visiting forms of traction in use: the Class 46, the Class 50 and the HST, in addition to both of our Class 33s, so this will be a very interesting day in itself and a great way to end the gala. WELL DONE to the WSR for making this happen – we now need YOUR support to make it a financial success !


Beyond the gala, Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 has been rostered for two weekends in June, the 15/16th and the 29/30th being under the BLUE timetable with 80-mile diagrams both days, originating from Minehead. Keep an eye on our DIESEL RUNNING DATES page for details of diesel-hauled public services and sign up to our DIESELGEN email bulletin service to get advance notice of non-public service running. 



The Diesel & Electric Preservation Group are collecting Coins and Banknotes from anywhere in the world, modern and any vintage, as part of their fund raising activities.

We can use any of the following:
– The old (large) 50p, 10p and 5p, together with ½ p
– Old £1 coins together with any old £1, £5 and £10 notes
– Euros & Cents; US, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand Dollars / cents coins and notes
– Pre-decimal coins (pre 1971)
– Isle of Man, Guernsey and Jersey coins and notes.
– In fact, any coins and notes from around the world.

A collection jar is at Williton Depot but we will be happy to receive items in the post. Contact Mark at publicity@depg.org  or write to Mark at The Old Goods Shed, Williton Station, Somerset, TA4 4RQ

Please bring your old coins and notes along to the ‘SUMMER DIESEL FESTIVAL‘ and donate in support of the DEPG. Thanks !




WSR DIESEL GALA 2024 – Thursday 6th through Saturday 8th JUNE

The WSR’s Diesel Gala will take place from Thursday 6th through to Saturday 8th June with mixed traction running on Sunday 9th, hopefully with at least one of the visiting locomotives at work. Our Williton depot will be open to the public from Thursday through Sunday, with a number of unusual and interesting exhibits on display. We are also offering a viewing area with a mobile catering van, so make a plan to spend an hour or two at Williton !

The visiting locomotives are:

MAKE A NOTE OF THESE DATES and do your best to attend. It is definitely going to be a great event !


An additional bonus on Saturday 8th June will be a presentation by former BR Fleet Manager GEOFF HUDSON entitled ‘FIFTY YEARS WITH FIFTIES‘, taking place inside Williton Diesel Depot with 50033 (D433) ‘Glorious’ stabled outside the shed as a backdrop. Click here or on the image below for more information about this special event.



Last summer’s DEPG Raffle was reasonably successful and resulted in donations to our two main restoration projects D1010 and D9518 totalling around £1000, but this year we want to DO MUCH BETTER and we have opted for cash prizes that will be of interest to all.

As you will see from the ticket image above, the draw will be made on the Saturday 8th June at Williton Diesel Depot at 16:00 on the DEPG sales stand inside the main shed. Click here or on the ticket image to buy your tickets online, or use our CONTACT FORM to request paper tickets by post. THANK YOU IN ADVANCE FOR YOUR SUPPORT !



Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – the two Bristol Siddeley Maybach MD655 engines have now been disconnected and are ready to be lifted out of the loco. We will need to hire a mobile crane to do the lifting, but first we need to prepare two engine stands upon which the engines can be placed and still be transportable by forklift. The ‘A’ engine needs attention to three leaking cylinder head rings and the ‘B’ engine needs a new oil drain fitting, so these relatively minor maintenance tasks will be fitted in around the major task, which is the bogie overhaul.

As previously reported, our objective is to lift the loco body and roll out the bogies for overhaul, then lower the body onto stands. When completed, this will result in a sight NOT SEEN SINCE BR SWINDON IN THE SEVENTIES. After putting in a considerable effort to get the work done sooner, we have accepted that we cannot get this work done safely before the diesel gala, but we are aiming at lifting the loco later in June.

Following up on the work started by volunteers James and Thomas, the ‘Tuesday Team’ carried on and cleaned up the other seven lifting points, so we are now ready to fit the complete set of eight lifting brackets that have kindly been loaned by the WLA (only four of which are being planned for use for the lift, but we like to keep our options open).

Gordon and Ian continued their work on the many sub-assemblies that need attention and Steve progressed with the electrical repairs, so a busy time was had by all. A big THANK YOU to all of our volunteers for progressing these tasks.

D1010 – a view of a lifting bracket in position under one of the eight lifting points on the locomotive body. This view shows the 73mm (2.8″) diameter through hole in the bracket that will be used in conjunction with a 50-ton ‘D’ shackle when the loco is lifted. Many thanks to the WLA and DTG for the loan of these essential pieces of specialised hardware. Pictured at Williton on Tuesday 14th May 2024 by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0 


D1010 – the valances were removed from the lower front of each end of the loco so that they could be painted internally. These assemblies were repaired extensively and in some cases re-manufactured by Colin F in 2022 so we need to look after them. Pictured with Ian F at Williton on Saturday 18th May 2024 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0 


As stated previously, we will need MORE HANDS to help us get the work done. If you want to see this locomotive back on the rails soon, then PLEASE COME ALONG AND HELP US WITH THIS WORK ! There is a wide range of tasks that need to be done, so simply reply to this email or use the CONTACT FORM on our website if you can lend a hand.


Sponsorships for patches on D1010 continue to come in, for which we are VERY grateful indeed. We have many more patches waiting for sponsors, so please support the CAMPAIGN for CAMPAIGNER and click here or on the image further below to get your name engraved into the metal of the locomotive. We will be having another engraving session this coming weekend.

Sponsorship includes a photograph and a certificate via email, but we can print the certificates on photo paper and mail them out upon request, in which case we will be asking for an additional £2.50 donation per certificate to cover photo paper, ink and postage. We can even put them in frame for you.

The drawings that have been developed in parallel will provide a formal record of the position of each sponsored patch and this will allow sponsors to look up the location of their patch when they visit the depot at Williton during the WSR SUMMER DIESEL FESTIVAL. THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR YOUR SUPPORT – and your PATIENCE !

Click the image below to sponsor a patch:

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 09 D4107 (09019) – this loco is stabled at Bishops Lydeard and is in regular use as the station pilot.


Class 33 D6566 (33 048) – this loco was in use on Sunday 19th May on the 12:30 Bishops Lydeard to Minehead and return service, after which the loco headed for Williton with the Empty Coaching Stock (ECS) and then handed the baton to sister D6575 (33 057) who worked the ECS forward from Williton to Minehead to position the stock in preparation for the start of the BLUE timetable on Tuesday 21st May.

D6566 (33048) – this loco was in use on public services on Sunday 19th May and then worked the Empty Coaching Stock from Bishops Lydeard to Williton later in the day. Pictured approaching Nornvis Bridge on 19th May 2024 by Bernard Bates © CC BY-NC 3.0 



Class 33 D6575 (33 057) – currently stabled at Minehead, this loco will operate the weekend services from Minehead on the 25th and 26th May and again on the 1st and 2nd June. See our DIESEL RUNNING DATES page for details.


Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – this loco is ready to return to service apart from a very short list of minor issues that will be addressed at Williton over the next few weeks, an oil change being one of the tasks that has now been completed. We have rostered this loco for two weekends of public services in June, the first being 15/16th June and the second being 29/30th June, under the BLUE timetable. Additional dates will be allocated ASAP. Keep an eye on our DIESEL RUNNING DATES page or sign up to our DIESELGEN email bulletin service to get the news as soon as it is released.

D7017 – Ashley supervises the process as the compressed-air-operated pump transfers the fresh oil from the barrel into the engine. Pictured at Williton on Saturday 18th May 2024 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0


Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – the ‘transmission team’ have made further progress in the disassembly and inspection of the transmission, this week reaching down as far as the final drive housing. When separated from the main housing, it became apparent that two dowels, each of 20mm diameter (3/4″) had sheared off, no doubt due to overstress resulting from the control issue that allowed a direction change to take place when the conditions were not right for it. Further investigations will be made and an action plan will be developed to allow this damage to be repaired using parts from our spares stock.

D7018 – the bulk of the main housing became apparent when it was lifted from the final drive housing at Williton on 13th May 2024. Volunteer Geoff was guiding the huge casting as it was being lifted. Photo by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0


D7018 – the marker arrow shows the direction of the overstress that caused the 20mm diameter steel dowel pin to shear. Pictured at Williton on 13th May 2024 by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0


Although we hope to be able to use spare parts that we have available, we will still need to replace seals, bearings, gaskets as necessary and we also need to drain the oil and have new oil available. All of these things cost money. PLEASE HELP by making a donation of £10 or by buying our 64-page A4 HYMEK D7018 BOOKLET (£10) which covers the history of this locomotive from build through to her return to service in 2019 following her major overhaul. THANK YOU VERY MUCH !

Click here or on the image above to order your copy of our ‘HYMEK D7018’ booklet, available for £10.


Click here or on the donation image above to go to the donations page on our website. If you feel able to donate more than £10, simply increase the quantity when on the donations page. Thank you in advance for your support !


Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – the work on the cab restoration continues to move forward with more parts being re-installed every week, after they have been careful overhauled in the workshop. The electrical re-wiring has also progressed and more wires appear every week ! Here’s a few of the areas of progress in pictures:

D9518 – the handbrake wheel has now been re-installed in the cab after being restored in every detail The handbrake indicator has also been restored and is correctly showing ‘handbrake off’. Pictured at Williton on Saturday 18th May 2024 by Colin Girle © CC BY-NC 3.0


D9518 – the cab structure received more attention from Andy P and the many coats of old paint were uncovered, the green being from BR days and the blue from NCB days. Pictured at Williton on Saturday 18th May 2024 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 fully operational condition as ‘NCB No. 7‘.



Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – this loco is now stabled at Williton and is ready for action. Keep an eye on our DIESELGEN postings for details of any workings involving this locomotive.


Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – this loco has worked several services between Pickering and Grosmont on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway recently and we continue to received plenty of feedback on our social media channels, proving that this loco is actually the most popular member of our entire fleet ! We would welcome some more photographs though !


Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 – this useful little loco continues to be busy almost every Saturday, handling the various shunt moves in the yard.


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 – both of our recently-added books are selling very well and making useful contributions to our loco funds, so if you haven’t already got your copy, then click on the images below to go to our online store to get yours now !

Price : £19.95

Click here for a link to the DEPG online store

Price : £17.50

Click here for a link to the DEPG online store


The new book by BERNARD MILLS is a very nice piece of work and is available at £19.95 per copy. We have now replenished our stock so that we can continue to meet the demand. This book provides ESSENTIAL READING for anyone interested in diesel-hydraulics and diesel-electrics of the South-Western varieties.

We also recommend the new book by ROGER GEACH entitled HYDRAULIC MEMORIES’ and we have a BOOK REVIEW from regular contributor Neale Long on this title, and have posted it to our website; click on this link to find out what Neale thinks of this new book.


In the pre-owned category, we have posted several new titles and they are selling as fast as we are posting them, so PLEASE DONATE YOUR SURPLUS BOOKS so that we can replenish our stocks and keep the funds flowing in. Click HERE for our contact form.

All monies gathered from the sale of pre-owned books go directly to DEPG funds for the upkeep of our locomotive fleet, so we would like to say thank you very much to all who have donated and all who have purchased from our online store. Check our online store regularly and change the ‘default sorting’ to ‘sort by latest‘ to keep an eye on new postings.

Price : £17.50

Click here for a link to the DEPG online store

Price : £10.00

Click here for a link to the DEPG online store



ON SHED – last week, we featured two photos from the 1980s photo album of ROB CRISPIN to remind ourselves of the abundance of motive power at BESCOT YARD in the West Midlands. My own experience was that the locos were plentiful but often too far away to be positively identified, but Rob has shown solid evidence to the contrary in the two photos that we share this week. Rob’s narratives have been included below each of his photographs. Many thanks to Rob for sharing his photos with us all. 

Above – I’m providing this photo to show how accessible Bescot locos could sometimes be!!! I’m also providing it as my only example I have of an undated, unlabelled photo! It was literally labelled, “Bescot”. I think I can spot 5 different classes of locomotives and at least two people closer than they should have been to them…..I will guess at 1982. Photo and narrative by Rob Crispin © CC BY-NC 3.0

Above – 58009 stabled at Bescot on 16th April, 1984 next to a Ford Escort 1.3 estate and a Triumph Dolomite Sprint. The Class 58 was just over a couple of months old at the time and was exported to France in 2009. The Ford was likely to have been scrapped around the turn of the century, but the Triumph is still taxed and MOT’d until October 2024!!! Photo and narrative by Rob Crispin © CC BY-NC 3.0

Above – 56048 and 25279 stabled at Bescot on 29th July, 1982. The Class 56 was scrapped almost 15 years ago, but 25279 is based at the East Lancashire Railway. Photo and narrative by Rob Crispin © CC BY-NC 3.0


DEPG NEWS – the infrastructure improvements continue at Williton, the most recent being the cleaning and painting of the loco shed floor, in time for the ‘open shed’ event from 6th through 9th June

Williton Depot – the floor in the loco shed has been cleaned and the repainting has begun with the green ‘keep clear’ corridor clearly depicted in bright green. Photo by Paul Tucker © CC BY-NC 3.0


Thank you very much to all of the new members and new volunteers who have come forward to help and support the DEPG during the last few months. We certainly are very grateful of the additional help !


The DEPG is entirely run by volunteers and we need to expand our volunteer numbers if we are going to be able to continue making progress on so many fronts simultaneously. If you have some time and feel able to help, please let us know 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 JOIN US and if you are already a member, please make sure that your membership is up to date. If you want to join or are not sure about your membership status, please click here or on the image below to open MEMBERMOJO. It is very quick and easy, and does not require you to remember yet another password. Thank you very much !


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