Weekly Roundup

  • Weekly Roundup – 17-Oct-21

    Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7018 runs non-stop through the delightful Crowcombe Heathfield station while heading for Dunster on 16th October 2021 with the last ‘excursion special’ of the 2021 season. Photo by Tim Edmonds © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7018 crosses Ker Moor, heading for Dunster with the 1135 Bishops Lydeard to Dunster excursion service, enjoying blue skies and warm sunshine on Saturday 16th October 2021. Photo by Tony Latham © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    The last of the diesel-hauled ‘excursion’ specials for the 2021 season ran yesterday, Saturday 16th October 2021 and haulage was provided by Beyer-Peacock Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 including an extension to Norton Fitzwarren on the return leg of the journey. The weather was excellent with blue skies and warm sunshine for most of the journey, marking a great end to a sucessful season.

     

    The 59-year-old loco performed admirably and provided some great sights for photographers along the length of the line, including Norton Fitzwarren. We only have space to include some of the many excellent photos that we have been sent, and more can be found on the wsr.org.uk website by clicking this link. Many thanks to all who sent photos of this event !

    ‘Hymek’ D7018 stands at Blue Anchor as BR(W) 4-6-0 7828 ‘ODNEY MANOR’ approaches with a return working from Dunster. Video by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7018 prepares for the shunt-release operation at Dunster West on Saturday 16th October 2021. Photo taken from the cab of Class 03 D2133 while at standstill by driver Robin Fisher © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D7018 captured just after departure from Blue Anchor with the 1325 return service from Dunster to Norton Fitzwarren, heading for Horse Parks and the climb to Washford, on Saturday 16th October 2021. Photo by Tony Latham © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D7018 stands at Norton Fitzwarren platform before uncoupling and running around her train via Barnstaple Junction and the East Chord for the last leg of the ‘excursion special’ on Saturday 16th October 2021. Photo by Ian Monkton © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    MANY THANKS to all who have worked so hard to deliver this running program and also to those who bought a ticket or merchandise during this 2021 running season, and in doing so contributed to making the case for more diesel-hauled services on the WSR next year !

     

    LOCO NEWS:

    Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – some great news this week – the VERY FIRST brand new parts were fabricated for the body repairs, using steel that has been purchased using the funds raised by the D1010 RESTORATION APPEAL. Thank you very much !

    The photos below show the progress that has been made in making a replacement valance for the buffer beam of the loco. The heavily corroded original part can be seen in the first photograph. Each end of the loco carries two such valances, each a mirror image of the other.

    D1010 – inside view of one of the heavily corroded buffer beam valances. Pictured at Williton on 16th October 2021 by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D1010 – buffer beam valance components being prepared by Colin F at Williton on 16th October 2021. Photo by Leroy Ford © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D1010 – the replacement buffer beam valance framework assembly has been created on the bench with authentic shape and detail by Colin F at Williton on 16th October 2021. Photo by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Some readers have expressed concern after seeing last week’s photos of heavily corroded parts in the cab floor structure of D1010, but please be reassured that the corrosion affects some small parts of what is a very large locomotive, and all such parts can be restored or replaced as part of the project.

     

    Here is another area that will be receiving attention – the horns are mounted in the cab roof and water ingress over the years has corroded the horn enclosure so that rainwater was getting into the cab. This repair will involve some more cutting and welding, but this is straightforward repair work that is to be expected in a loco of this vintage. It’s another task that needs to be done, but it is nothing to worry about.

    D1010 – the roof-mounted air horn enclosure in Cab B has corroded at the edges and is no longer watertight. Repairs will involve cutting out the corroded section and welding new metal into place. Pictured at Williton on 9th October 2021 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 ‘Westerns’ 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 D1010 to full operational condition.

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) – an update will be provided next week.

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) – no change this week.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – we have been advised that this loco will have to wait her turn in the ‘Swindon Shed’ where she needs to go over the pit for the bogies to be disconnected before the body can be lifted. This work will be delayed by higher priority work that has to be performed by the WSR Restorations team in that area of the ‘Swindon Shed’, but we still hope to have our work done by Spring 2022 so that the loco can perform on the WSR in her 60th year since introduction to BR service.

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 was powered up and exercised in the yard at Williton on 16th October 2021, to keep her in full working order pending her bogie suspension spring replacement work. The loco was pictured in the yard as her slightly younger sister D7018 passed through Williton with the last ‘excursion special’ of the 2021 season. Photo by Josh Brinsford © CC BY-NC 3.0  

     

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – we have more progress to report this week as the team prepares the frames for re-wheeling the loco. The frames were given a coat of grey undercoat by Colin G while the hornguides were measured up by Simon and Terry for bearing clearance adjustments to be made. This rapid progress has been made possible by the donations of the many ‘Teddy Bear’ supporters who have contributed to the D9518 Restoration AppealThank you very much !

    D9518 frames get a coating of grey undercoat from Colin G at the Swindon Shed in Williton as the diminutive Ruston 0-4-0DM number 200793 looks on. Photo taken on 16th October 2021 by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518 brake components awaiting glass bead blasting and painting before being re-fitted to the loco frames. Photo taken at Williton on 16th October 2021 by Terry Deacon © 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 is based at the Kent & East Sussex Railway for the rest of this year and is now back in action after receiving attention to her engine governor.

     

    Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – this loco remains stuck at Bishops Lydeard waiting for instructions for her move to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Unfortunately this running season has passed us by and the loco hasn’t been able to work (or earn). We really hope that this issue is resolved soon and the loco can move to the NYMR as planned.

     

    Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 – no change this week.

     

    Many thanks to all of our volunteers who are hard at work cleaning, painting, maintaining, restoring, managing and fund raising for our fleet of heritage locomotives !

     

     

    BOOK REVIEW – we have been made aware of several new books that have been announced recently, the subjects of which are likely to be highly relevant to our supporters. The titles are:

    Subject Publisher Expected date
    BR Class 15 and 16 diesel-electric locos  Pen & Sword 30-Dec-2021
    BR Class 14 diesel-hydraulic locos – Vol. 1 Pen & Sword 30-Mar-2022
    Preserved diesel-hydraulic locos Author – Fred Kerr Early 2022

    Many thanks to Neale Long for making us aware of these forthcoming publications. We will provide more information ASAP.

     

    And speaking of new publications, our DEPG 2022 CALENDAR is now IN STOCK in glossy A3 landscape format. Here’s a summary of the 12 high-resolution photos that have been so kindly donated by our members and supporters this year:

    There is an animated video on our website that steps through the calendar month-by-month, so CLICK HERE to view the animation.

    We have been able to keep the price the same as last year, so the calendar will again cost the princely sum of £1 per month, so we think that is a bargain that is not to be missed. Click here to order your copy while stocks last.

     

    ON SHED – staying with the theme of last week’s photo by Alan Walker showing two Class 14s and a Class 37 on a mixed freight from Healey Mills to Hull, we have another very rare photo that was also captured by Alan, this time on 1st September 1967 in which two Class 14s are clearly working very hard on the climb from Featherstone (Yorkshire) in the direction of Hull:

     

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bears’ D9543 and D9549 haul a mixed freight in the direction of Hull on 1st September 1967, while these two locos were based at Hull Dairycoates depot. Photographed at Featherstone, Yorkshire by Alan Walker ©

     

    Many thanks to Alan for sharing these very rare photos with us; it is much appreciated.

     

    DEPG NEWS – The Autumn ‘work week’ starts on Saturday 30th October and runs until Sunday 7th November, so we welcome volunteers old and new to come along during that week and help us with tasks that are both loco-related and infrastructure-related. We look forward to seeing you.

    We are gathering information and articles for the next edition of the DEPG Newsletter, so please let me know if you have a story to contribute or if you have suggestions for content that you would like to see included. We have a DEPG Board Meeting scheduled for next Saturday 23rd October, so if you have questions that you would like to put to the Board, please let me have your questions ASAP.

     

    DEPG WEBSITE: Please take a look at our online store – we now have our new 2022 CALENDAR and the newly-added PRE-OWNED BOOKS (there are plenty more yet to be added so keep an eye on this product category) and much more. Thanks in advance ! We intend to add DEPG beanie hats and DEPG fleece jackets soon, but please let us know if there is something else that you think we should be offering.

     

    WSR NEWS: There has been some highly visible progress on the Seaward Way Level Crossing and several photos have appeared on wsr.org.uk including the following:

    The new level crossing equipment has been installed at Seaward Way, providing tangible evidence of the progress that has been made in the background over the preceeding months. We hope to see Minehead re-connected in the very near future. Photo taken on 15th October 2021 by Keith Sanders © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    No doubt the good people of Minehead will be very pleased to see the progress and will be looking forward to through services being restored for the opening of the 2022 season. We have certainly missed being able to run to Minehead this year and we are ready to play our part in providing ‘diesels to the seaside’ in 2022.

     

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  • Weekly Roundup – 10-Oct-21

    Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7018 runs across Blue Anchor level crossing at the tail end of the 1405 Dunster to Norton Fitzwarren service (headed by WSR 2-6-0 ‘Mogul’ 9351) on 1st October 2021. Photo by Steve Edge © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7018 stands at Crowcombe Heathfield with the 1230 Bishops Lydeard to Dunster (for Minehead) service on the very wet second day of the Autumn Steam Gala, on 2nd October 2021. Photo by Joseph Hart © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    After the intensive timetable of the previous weekend, the WSR has returned to the ‘RED’ timetable for the remainder of October, with the addition of some ‘Quantock Belle’ dining services and some Steam Experience Courses. The Diesel Experience Courses will not restart until next year because the heritage freight train is stranded at Minehead until the Seaward Way level crossing is re-opened. Click here for an update on the Seaward Way project.

    There is only one diesel-hauled ‘excursion’ special remaining this season, and it will run on this coming Saturday 16th October with haulage to be provided by Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 including an extension to Norton Fitzwarren on the return leg of the journey. This is going to be a great opportunity to get some diesel-hydraulic haulage and listen to that Maybach Music, so please come along and ride the ‘excursion’ special on Saturday 16th October.

     

    MANY THANKS to all who have bought a ticket or merchandise during this 2021 running season and in doing so contributed to making the case for more diesel-hauled services on the WSR next year !

     

    LOCO NEWS:

    Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – this week, as the depot was closed to the public, we were able to make noise and make more progress on D1010, the first task being to remove the seats from the ‘B’ end cab and lift the floor panels so that the sub-frame that supports the cab could be inspected. The subframe is supported by four sets of columns and the frontmost set had corroded away many years ago and had been replaced by new box-section supports. However, our inspection showed that the second-from-front row of supports have now corroded away and have to be replaced, but the third and fourth rows are OK. This is important information because it tells us how much disaasembly we have to do to be able to get at the corroded supports to perform the repairs.

    The photo of the corroded support may look bad, but it is just a very small piece of metal in a very large locomotive, so it will be dealt with as soon as we can clear the area around it.

     

    D1010 cab B driver’s seat has been removed to allow the cab floor to be lifted. The lifted section is shown alongside, leaning against the cab wall. Pictured at Williton on 9th October 2021 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D1010 cab B secondman’s seat has been removed to allow the cab floor to be lifted. One of the lifted sections is shown alongside, leaning against the cab wall. Pictured at Williton on 9th October 2021 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D1010 cab B second row subframe supports have been completely eaten away and will need to be replaced. To the right of the support are two electrical wiring conduits, both of which are also in the final stages of dissolving. Pictured at Williton on 9th October 2021 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D1010 cab B third row subframe supports are rusty but still capable of doing their job. The ‘1010 B’ identification tag dates back to the original construction that took place at Swindon Works in 1962. Pictured at Williton on 9th October 2021 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 ‘Westerns’ 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 D1010 to full operational condition.

     

    We also want to share some news about similar work that is being performed on D1048 ‘WESTERN LADY’ at the Midland Railway in Butterley, Derbyshire. This information came to us via the excellent newsletters from the Western Locomotive Association (WLA) and the photograph below was taken by WLA member Adrian Worgan during a recent visit to the MR-B. Many thanks to Adrian and the WLA for updating us on the progress with D1048.

    Crewe-built Class 52 D1048 ‘WESTERN LADY’ undergoing cab end repairs at the Midland Railway in Butterley Derbyshire. Photograph taken during a recent visit to Butterley by Adrian Worgan © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) – this loco is stabled at Williton and will undergo some maintenance work during the next few weeks while sister D6575 remains on ‘Thunderbird’ duty at Bishops Lydeard.

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) pictured while stabled at Williton during the very wet weather on the second day of the Autumn Steam Gala, 2nd October 2021. Photo by Josh Brinsford © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) – this loco was also in use at the recent Autumn Steam Gala and is currently stabled at Bishops Lydeard to cover any duties that may arise.

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) crosses Lower Ker Moor on the approach to Blue Anchor at the tail end of the 1020 Dunster to Bishops Lydeard service on Friday 1st October 2021, the best weather day of the Autumn Steam Gala. Photo by Steve Edge © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – this loco is waiting patiently for her turn in the ‘Swindon Shed’ where she needs to go over the pit for the bogies to be disconnected before the body can be lifted. This work is pencilled-in for the ‘work week’ that will take place in the first week of November, subject to space being available in the ‘Swindon Shed’.

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 was open to the public but did get many visitors during the very wet weather on the second day of the Autumn Steam Gala, 2nd October 2021. Photo by Josh Brinsford © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – this loco is booked and is being readied for the last ‘excursion’ special of the 2021 season that will run this coming Saturday 16th October and will include an extension to Norton Fitzwarren. Please do try to come along if you can. Tickets are available via this link or by clicking on the ticket graphic below (this is a link to the WSR website):

     

     

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – we have some MAJOR progress to report on this loco this week because the team led by Ryan Pope at WSR Restorations have completed the rivetting work and the hornguides are now back in the frames and preparations are being made to re-wheel the loco. This is great news and has been made possible by the donations of the many ‘Teddy Bear’ supporters who have contributed to the D9518 Restoration AppealThank you very much !

    D9518 hornguides were rivetted in place by the WSR Restorations team at the Swindon Shed in Williton. Photo taken on 9th October 2021 by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518 frames and hornguides being prepared for re-wheeling at the Swindon Shed in Williton. Photo taken on 9th October 2021 by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518 sandboxes and electrical enclosures get a coat of gloss from Roy J at Williton on 9th October 2021, with the loco cab providing the backdrop. 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 is based at the Kent & East Sussex Railway for the rest of this year and is expected to be back in action during this coming week after receiving attention to her engine governor.

     

     

    Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – this loco remains stuck at Bishops Lydeard waiting for instructions for her move to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Unfortunately this running season has passed us by and the loco hasn’t been able to work (or earn). We really hope that this issue is resolved soon and the loco can move to the NYMR as planned.

     

     

    Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 – the engine governor override lever has now been repaired by John C so attention has moved back to bodywork repairs that need to be completed while the loco is residing inside the loco shed.

    Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH number 578 (ROF 1) with the engine doors removed to reveal the Paxman 6RPHL V6 diesel engine at Williton on 9th October 2021. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Many thanks to all of our volunteers who are hard at work cleaning, painting, maintaining, restoring, managing and fund raising for our fleet of heritage locomotives !

     

     

    BOOK REVIEW – after covering two new books during the last two weeks, we will skip this feature this week and just use the space for a brazen plug for our 2022 calendar using this new image by DEPG Publicity Officer Mark Bladwell:

    Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7018 displays ‘2022’ as a reminder to everyone to get their DEPG 2022 calendars on order while stocks last. Photo taken at Williton on 5th October 2021 by Mark Bladwell © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    And here it is, our DEPG 2022 CALENDAR is now IN STOCK in glossy A3 landscape format. Here’s a summary of the 12 high-resolution photos that have been so kindly donated by our members and supporters this year:

    We have also produced an animated video that steps through the calendar month-by-month, so CLICK HERE to view the animation.

    We have been able to keep the price the same as last year, so the calendar will again cost the princely sum of £1 per month, so we think that is a bargain that is not to be missed. Click here to order your copy while stocks last.

     

     

    ON SHED – last week’s photo of three Class 14s at Gloucester Horton Road depot on their way to Hull Dairycoates depot triggered several responses from readers who remembered the transfer of 33 Class 14 locomotives to the Eastern Region in 1967. We received this response from WSR Director of Mechanical Engineering Bob Meanley: 

    “The photo of the ‘Teddy Bears’ at Gloucester reminds me that I saw several train loads of them passing through Tamworth whilst en route to Hull. By the time that they got to us, they were usually formed up with a couple of vans between each engine to spread the load on bridges. That wasn’t always the case as I recall that we occasionally had trains of anything up to 5 light loco’s coupled together on balancing turns from Saltley to Toton. The most I saw were three 9F’s coupled up to two 8F’s. I recall one Saturday afternoon when a train of ‘Teddy Bears’ came through headed unbelievably by a ‘Hymek’. We did have a couple of previous occasions where ‘Hymeks’ got through to Derby but it was very very rare. The ‘Hymek’ must have been taken off at Toton, I would think, as it came back light engine some hours later.”

    Many thanks to Bob for sharing this information with us all. We also have a photo of a transfer move from Alan Walker, showing a Class 37 hauling a mixed goods train but with two class 14s included in the mix! Quite a rare treat for the Eastern Region photographers of the day.

    Class 37 D6736 (37036, 37507, 37605) hauls a mixed freight from Healey Mills (Wakefield) towards Hull on 5th July 1967 with two Class 14 ‘Teddy Bears’ D9548 and D9512 en route to Hull Dairycoates depot. Photographed at Featherstone, Yorkshire by Alan Walker ©

     

    Many thanks to Bob and Alan for sharing this information, it is much appreciated

     

    DEPG NEWS – we continue to focus on preparing the locos and the depot for the upcoming winter period, ensuring that the right locos are in the right places for the work that is planned to take place over winter. The Autumn ‘work week’ starts on Saturday 30th October and runs until Sunday 7th November, so we welcome volunteers old and new to come along during that week and help us with tasks that are both loco-related and infrastructure-related. We look forward to seeing you.

     

    DEPG WEBSITE: Please take a look at our online store – we now have our new 2022 CALENDAR and the newly-added PRE-OWNED BOOKS (there are plenty more yet to be added so keep an eye on this product category) and much more. Thanks in advance ! We intend to add DEPG beanie hats and DEPG fleece jackets soon, but please let us know if there is something else that you think we should be offering.

     

    WSR NEWS: The unofficial WSR news and information site wsr.org.uk carries a news item giving feedback on the questions that were raised during the recent AGM of the WSR. The information has been provided by the WSR and is available by clicking this link. Many thanks to Steve Edge for his excellent website and for the work that he does to make it the go-to source for WSR news and photographs.

     

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  • Weekly Roundup – 03-Oct-21

    Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7018 at Blue Anchor at the tail end of 1405 Dunster to Norton Fitzwarren service (headed by WSR 2-6-0 ‘Mogul’ 9351) while BR(W) 4-6-0 7822 ‘FOXCOTE MANOR’ stands alongside at the head of the 1320 Bishops Lydeard to Blue Anchor service (the loco will run around her train after the other train has departed). Photo by Tom Courtney © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Last weekend, the DEPG was busy supporting the home steam fleet with their AUTUMN STEAM GALA and the event went pretty much to plan, apart from the weather. Friday was the best day weather-wise and Sunday was OK in between the showers, but Saturday was very wet all day and made photography quite challenging. We had to substitute Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) for Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 on the Sunday due to operational issues, but we can confirm that the loco is OK and will be able to take part in the last of the booked diesel-hauled services for this season, the ‘excursion’ special on Saturday 16th October.

     

    Here are some pictures of the AUTUMN STEAM GALA event, snapped during the drier moments:

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 is powered up at 0620 on the first day of the event to start the pre-heater that warms the engine before it is started up. This process takes around 90 minutes and is essential to ensure a clean startup and smooth running of the Bristol-Siddeley Maybach MD870 engine. Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 has started up and has shunted Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048, not visible in this view) out of her way so that she can escape the South Yard at Williton to take her position at the head of the 0924 Williton to Bishops Lydeard service. Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Williton Railcam capture showing six locomotives – clockwise L-R, ‘Hymek’ D7017 is stabled outside the Old Goods Shed, Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) is stabled outside the ‘Swindon Shed’, sister D6575 (33 057) leaves with the train for Dunster from Platform 1 while at Platform 2, GWR 2-6-2T 5199 forms the rear of the ‘Local’ to Bishops Lydeard which will be hauled by ‘Hymek’ D7018 (to save a positioning move). The WSR’s 2-6-0 ‘Mogul’ 9351 forms the tail of the Dunster service (she will haul the train back from Dunster). Capture courtesy of Railcam UK and the WSR.

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) at the head of the 0850 Bishops Lydeard to Dunster service (where a heritage bus service will provide a connection to Minehead). At the rear of the train is the WSR’s 2-6-0 ‘Mogul’ 9351 (she will haul the train back from Dunster). Photo by Steve Edge © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    WELL DONE to all who planned, prepared and delivered this excellent event and to those that had to endure poor weather conditions while doing so. The sights and sounds of the intensive workings were a delight! Thanks also to those who bought a ticket or merchandise and in doing so contributed to the success of the event !

     

    The RAILCAM UK team continue to post videos on their YouTube channel using material that they gathered during the recent Mixed Traction Weekend. The footage that was filmed from Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) during her trip around the East Chord at Norton Fitzwarren is very rare and particularly interesting.

    Visit their YouTube video page and choose the section of the line that interests you the most, then take a virtual ride by clicking on the relevant video. Some of their videos have already received more than 10,000 views and this is providing excellent exposure for the whole WSR family. DID YOU KNOW that the RAILCAM UK operation is entirely funded by subscribers, with no corporate sponsorship at all ? These webcams have to be bought, installed, maintained, managed and in many cases, the internet data service has to be provided as well, so hats off to RAILCAM UK for making it all happen and bringing the railway to those who are unable to attend in person. JOIN THEM and subscribe to help them expand their activities.

     

    LOCO NEWS:

    Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – as the depot was open to the public for the Autumn Steam Gala, the ongoing and tedious work of stripping the ‘Prestolith’ filler from the bodyside of the loco had to be restricted (it is both noisy and dusty work), so the opportunity was taken to address some specific features of the bodyside that were crying out for attention. A curious feature that was added to the class after construction is an inspection door that allows access to the brushgear of the compressor. This takes the form of a vertically-oriented ‘letterbox’ that is just big enough to allow the cover to be removed from the compressor motor so that the brushes can be cleaned, inspected and replaced, as necessary. This feature received a clean-up and a coat of primer. It will receive attention to the surface finish when the bodyside repaint takes place.

    D1010 compressor brushgear access hatch before a cleanup at Williton on 2nd October 2021. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D1010 compressor brushgear access hatch after a cleanup by Ian F at Williton on 2nd October 2021. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Another target was the ‘FIRE PULL’ fittings, one on each side of the loco, where the glass covers had been allowing water to get inside, resulting in corrosion. The covers were removed for renovation and the fittings were cleaned and undercoated to prevent further deterioration. They will get more attention at a later date.

    D1010 fire pull fitting in need of a cleanup at Williton on 2nd October 2021. Photo by Leroy Ford © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D1010 fire pull fitting after a cleanup by Ian F at Williton on 2nd October 2021. The surfaces will be cleaned up further before the bodyside repaint takes place. Photo by Leroy Ford © 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 ‘Westerns’ 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 D1010 to full operational condition.

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) – this loco was on standby at Williton for the duration of the Autumn Steam Gala.

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) – this loco was in action on each day of the Autumn Steam Gala.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – this loco is waiting patiently for her turn in the ‘Swindon Shed’ where she needs to go over the pit for the bogies to be disconnected before the body gets lifted. This work is pencilled-in for the ‘work week’ that will take place in the first week of November, subject to space being available in the ‘Swindon Shed’. 

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – this loco is booked for the last ‘excursion’ special of the season that will run on Saturday 16th October and will include an extension to Norton Fitzwarren. Please do try to come along if you can. Tickets are available via this link or by clicking on the ticket graphic below (this is a link to the WSR website):

         

     

     

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – more progress on this loco as major components are readied for re-assembling to the frames once they are re-wheeled:

    D9518 frames after receiving a coat of primer at Williton on 2nd October 2021. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    The restored battery boxes and corner steps for D9518 received a coat of primer at Williton on 28th September 2021. Photo by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    The brake cross shaft holder drop arm of D9518 after application of some heat to assist in removing a seized bolt at Williton on 28th September 2021. Photo by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    New brass bearing for the brake cross shaft of D9518 is ready to be inserted into its housing at Williton on 28th September 2021. Photo by Terry Deacon © 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 is based at the Kent & East Sussex Railway for the rest of this year, but she has run into a patch of trouble and she has not been available for service on more than one occasion. The source of the fault has been traced to a failed diaphragm inside the engine governor. The governor is the device that regulates the engine speed in relation to load by controlling the flow of fuel, so it is quite a complex assembly. A spare diaphragm has now been fitted and the loco is ready to return to service while sister loco D9504 is undergoing heavy overhaul.

    Archive photo of the engine governor of D9526, pictured at Williton on 4th June 2011. Photo by Simon Purvis © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – this loco remains stuck at Bishops Lydeard waiting for instructions for her move to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Unfortunately this running season has passed us by and the loco hasn’t been able to work (or earn). We really hope that this issue is resolved soon and the loco can move to the NYMR as planned.

    BR-Brush Class 47 47077 (D1661, 47613, 47840) ‘NORTH STAR’ remains at Westridge Shed, Bishops Lydeard pending her move to the NYMR. Pictured with the reflection of Class 09 D4107 in her TOPS data panel on 18th September 2021 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 – the engine governor override lever has now been repaired by John C so attention has moved back to bodywork repairs that need to be completed while the loco is residing inside the loco shed.

     

    Many thanks to all of our volunteers who are hard at work cleaning, painting, maintaining, restoring, managing and fund raising for our fleet of heritage locomotives !

     

     

    BOOK REVIEW – this week, we have a another book review report that has been provided by longtime member and regular contributor Neale Long, covering a new book entitled Tribute To The Western Region Hydraulics by Tom Heavyside, published by Stenlake.

    Here is Neale’s report:

    “This small 56-page softback landscape book by well known Bolton railway photographer Tom Heavyside stemmed from his numerous visits to the south of the country chasing the remaining steam locomotives then still in service. Fortunately for us, this enabled him to assemble a collection of monochrome photographs covering diesel-hydraulic operation on British Rail from their earliest years right through to the end on that fateful day in February 1977.

    The book therefore consists of a collection of largely unpublished photographs covering most of the principal diesel-hydraulic types in a variety of differing liveries and locations. Mainly though not exclusively of one picture per page, Tom’s photographs provide an excellent  snapshot of the era from the very start with the D6300s (there is also a shot at Barry of D601) and D800s concluding with some shots of the final class 52 railtours with D1023 ‘WESTERN FUSILIER’.

    Informative and accurate captioning together with a nice overview as an introduction all help in making this a thoroughly enjoyable and inexpensive product which all diesel-hydraulic enthusiasts will want to add to their libraries. There are any number of really interesting images captured by Tom’s camera, but two really stand out as worthy of mention, firstly a shot of D1025 ‘WESTERN GUARDSMAN’ leaving Stratford upon Avon on a LCGB charter for Newport via Honeybourne and Toddington (part of which is the now preserved GWSR) and secondly a shot of ‘Hymek’ D7084 banking a ‘Warship’-hauled freight train at Whiteball.

    This is a nicely compiled collection of photographs by Tom Heavyside for sale at the bargain price of £11.95 which I unreservedly recommend. The author in his introduction now wishes he had paid more attention to the diesel hydraulics, easy to say with hindsight, but in the event he still managed to capture some great images – for which we should all be grateful.”

    Many thanks to Neale for providing us with this review. This book is available from the WLA website – click this link.

     

    While on the subject of publications, the DEPG 2022 CALENDAR is now IN STOCK in glossy A3 landscape format. Here’s a summary of the 12 high-resolution photos that have been so kindly donated by our members and supporters this year:

    There is an animated video on our website that steps through the calendar month-by-month, so CLICK HERE to view the animation.

    We have been able to keep the price the same as last year, so the calendar will again cost the princely sum of £1 per month, so we think that is a bargain that is not to be missed. Click here to order your copy while stocks last.

     

    ON SHED – while gathering some background for the restoration appeal for D9518 recently, my eye was drawn to this photo of Gloucester Horton Road depot by well-known photographer and writer Norman Preedy. The line-up of ‘Teddy Bears’ includes (L-R) D9527, D9514 and our own D9518, along with an unidentified ‘Hymek’ and a North-British D63xx Type 22. The three Class 14s were on their way to Hull Dairycoates depot because there was no work for them on the Western Region at that time. They didn’t last long at Hull before being sold to the National Coal Board (NCB) at bargain prices, and sent to Ashington Colliery, Northumberland, where they worked until the early 1980s.

    Class 14s D9527, D9514 and D9518 (L-R) pause at Gloucester Horton Road Depot on 4th July 1969 while on their journey to Hull Dairycoates Depot. A blue ‘Hymek’ is just visible on the far left and a NBL Class 22 D63xx is on the right of the picture. Photo by the late Norman Preedy ©

     

    DEPG NEWS – the focus this month is going to be preparing the locos and the depot for the upcoming winter period, ensuring that the right locos are in the right places for the work that is planned to take place over winter. The Autumn ‘work week’ starts on Saturday 30th October and runs until Sunday 7th November, so we welcome volunteers old and new to come along during that week and help us with tasks that are both loco-related and infrastructure-related. We look forward to seeing you.

     

    DEPG WEBSITE: We reported low sales from our online store in September, probably as a result of all the events taking place all around the country, but that month is behind us now, so we need a BUMPER sales month to make up for it. So, please TAKE A LOOK – we now have our new 2022 CALENDAR and the newly-added PRE-OWNED BOOKS (there are plenty more yet to be added so keep an eye on this product category) and much more. Thanks in advance ! We intend to add DEPG beanie hats soon, but please let us know if there is something else that you think we should be offering.

     

    WSR NEWSThe latest communications from the WSR tell us that the railway has performed well with respect to its financial targets, and after all of the hard work that has been done this year, this is very good news indeed! It certainly provides a lot of encouragement and motivation for all staff and volunteers to continue the work towards recovery. We are all hoping for a more ‘normal’ 2022 season, that’s for sure.

     

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  • Weekly Roundup – 26-Sep-21

    This coming weekend is the AUTUMN STEAM GALA and we are delighted to be able to support this event by providing our Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7018 on all three days, Friday 1st, Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd October. The ‘Hymek’ will be working in ‘top-and-tail’ mode with WSR 2-6-0 ‘Mogul’ 9351 and the ‘Hymek’ will be hauling the train from Bishops Lydeard to Dunster (with bus connection to Minehead) with the ‘Mogul’ attached at the rear for hauling the train back to Bishops Lydeard. The ‘top-and-tailed’ service will extend to Norton Fitzwarren once on Friday afternoon and twice per day on Saturday and Sunday.

    Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7018 stands at Bishops Lydeard station with a service for Norton Fitzwarren on Saturday 18th September 2021. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    The unique WSR 2-6-0 ‘Mogul’ 9351 undergoes planned boiler maintenance at Minehead on 17th September 2021. This loco will be running ‘top-and-tail’ with ‘Hymek’ D7018 on all three days of the AUTUMN STEAM GALA. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    WSR timetable links for the three days are as below:

    Friday 1st October 2021 : https://www.west-somerset-railway.co.uk/timetables/view/167

    Saturday 2nd October 2021 : https://www.west-somerset-railway.co.uk/timetables/view/170

    Sunday 3rd October 2021 : https://www.west-somerset-railway.co.uk/timetables/view/171

    Please try to attend and/or support this event if you can. Hopefully, the weather will also be supportive because the intensive timetabling will allow some great photo opportunities.

     

     

    The RAILCAM UK team have been busy posting videos on their YouTube channel using material that they gathered during the recent Mixed Traction Weekend. Their camera was mounted on the lamp bracket of the leading locomotive, so the journey from Bishops Lydeard to Dunster was filmed from the bufferbeam of BR(W) 4-6-0 7828 ‘ODNEY MANOR’. The return journey and the extension to Norton Fitzwarren was filmed from Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) and some very rare footage was filmed from sister loco D6566 (33 048) during her trip around the East Chord while she ran around her train at Norton Fitzwarren.

    Their videos have been separated into bite-sized chunks and are being released on a progressive basis between now and Friday 1st October. Visit their YouTube video page and choose the section of the line that interests you the most, then take a virtual ride by clicking on the relevant video.

    Some of their videos have already received more than 10,000 views and this is providing excellent exposure for the WSR and the supporting groups. DID YOU KNOW that the RAILCAM UK operation is entirely funded by subscribers, with no corporate sponsorship at all ? These webcams have to be bought, installed, maintained, managed and in many cases, the internet data service has to be provided as well, so hats off to these guys and their colleagues for making it all happen. JOIN THEM and subscribe to help them expand their activities for our further enjoyment.

     

     

    Last week, we covered the sad news about the engine mishap that prevented the Diesel Traction Group’s Class 52 D1015 ‘WESTERN CHAMPION’ from starring on a PATHFINDER RAILTOURS special from Eastleigh via Gloucester to Kingswear and return.  One man’s loss is another man’s gain, as the saying goes, and in this case it was the two GBRf-liveried Class 50s from the ‘Fifty Fund‘ that hauled the tour, which comprised a rake of 12 Mark 1 coaches. The 5,400 hp consist was captured at the start of the sea wall at Dawlish Warren, running exactly to time:

    English Electric Class 50 50007 ‘Hercules’ leads sister 50049 ‘Defiance’ at the head of the CHAMPION TORBAY EXPRESS on a dull Saturday 25th September 2021 as they roar past the camping coaches at Dawlish Warren. Photo by Natalie Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

     

    LOCO NEWS:

    Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – work continues on stripping the loose ‘Prestolith’ filler from the bodyside of the loco so that corrosion repairs can be made and the loco repainted. This is easier said than done on a locomotive of such dimensions and scraping can only be done for a while before fatigue sets in, so this task is going to take a while!

    D1010 bodyside showing multiple layers of paint on top of the ‘Prestolith’ filler (the grey layer) that dates back to 1962, when it was applied at Swindon Works to smooth the bodyside during loco construction. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D1010 cab at ‘A’ end, devoid of route indicator boxes and marker lights to allow easy access to the inside of the cab structure. The peak above the cab window also needs attention but there is enough to do at the lower level to keep us busy for a while. Photo by Gordon Crook © 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 ‘Westerns’ 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 D1010 to full operational condition.

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) – after doing some fine work during the Mixed Traction Weekend, this loco received some newly refurbished brake system components on Saturday and passed the subsequent brake test with flying colours. The loco remains ready for service if called upon. Here are some pictures:

    D6566 (33 048) driver’s brake valve was replaced with a refurbished part at Williton on 25th September 2021. The ‘reset’ button for the Automatic Warning System (AWS) can be seen in the foreground. Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D6566 (33 048) automatic brake valve (sometimes referred to as the ‘triple valve’) replaced with a refurbished part at Williton on 25th September 2021. Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D6566 (33 048) brake valve timing blocks were replaced with refurbished parts at Williton on 25th September 2021. Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) – this loco also performed really well during the Mixed Traction Weekend and remains at Bishops Lydeard as the ‘Thunderbird’ loco, on standby in case of any difficulties with the rostered locos.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – this loco is waiting patiently for her turn in the ‘Swindon Shed’ where she needs to go over the pit for the bogies to be disconencted before the body gets lifted. This work is pencilled-in for the ‘work week’ that will take place in the first week of November, subject to space being available in the ‘Swindon Shed’.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – this loco has been racking up the miles and bringing visitors from far and wide as she has performed on the ‘excursion’ specials and during the Mixed Traction Weekend already this year. Her next appearance is at the Autumn Steam Gala and she is also booked for the last ‘excursion’ special of the season that will run on Saturday 16th October. Please do try to come along for that event if you can. Tickets are available via this link or by clicking on the relevant ticket graphic below (these links are to the WSR website):

     

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – work continues apace on the restoration of this loco, with volunteers working on the frames and the cab structure in parallel. The repairs to the battery box have moved along to the stage where the extensively repaired box has now been bead blasted and painted in primer, allowing the team to move on to the second box and the various other parts.

    The rebuilt battery box for D9518 receives a coat of primer at Williton on 14th September 2021. Photo by Terry Deacon © 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 is based at the Kent & East Sussex Railway for the rest of this year, where she is covering for sister loco D9504 who is undergoing heavy overhaul.

     

    Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – this loco remains stuck at Bishops Lydeard waiting for instructions for her move to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Unfortunately this running season has passed us by and the loco hasn’t been able to work (or earn). We really hope that this issue is resolved soon and the loco can move to the NYMR as planned.

    BR-Brush Class 47 47077 (D1661, 47613, 47840) ‘NORTH STAR’ remains at Westridge Shed, Bishops Lydeard pending her move to the NYMR. Pictured on 17th September 2021 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Andrew Barclay 0-4-0DH 578 – last but not least, this little diesel-hydraulic loco developed an air leak that needed to be repaired before the loco could be used again, so this was dealt with on Saturday. Attention then moved to the engine governor override lever that is used when starting the engine. This lever is used to command the governor to admit more fuel, so it is basically a hand throttle that is used when getting the engine started from cold. At the far end of the lever, there is a pin that has sheared off, preventing the lever from functioning, so Neil and John C set about repairing it. This will take some time because it is quite inaccessible! 

    Andrew Barclay 578 engine governor override lever can be seen inside the yellow oval. The green START button is above and these two controls are used when starting the engine from cold. Photo taken at Williton on 25th September 2021 by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    BOOK REVIEW – this week, we have a book review report that has been provided by longtime member and regular contributor Neale Long, covering a new book entitled Liveries of The WR Diesel Hydraulics by Russell Saxton, published by Key Publishing (Britain’s Railways Series Volume 21).

    Here is Neale’s report:

    “In the latest of Key Publishings’ Britain’s Railways Series, Russell Saxton explores in detail all the liveries carried by British Rail’s Diesel Hydraulic fleet from 1958 to 1977. Illustrating all major and most minor variations in this 96 page A5 format book. 

    Russell has brought together an eclectic mix of mainly unpublished photographs to tell the story of the many livery variations found on all the Diesel Hydraulic locomotives. A short introduction sets the scene for six chapters:

    • D600 ‘Warships’
    • D800 ‘Warships’
    • The ‘Westerns’
    • Class 22
    • The ‘Hymeks’
    • Class 14

    Essentially the author succeeds in providing a detailed and accurate study of the many liveries carried by these much admired and missed locomotives. This being achieved through the use of 150 images and informative captioning, all of which make for a most useful reference for railway modeller and historian alike. Inevitably the classes which had greater livery variations i.e. classes 42/43 and 52 receive more detailed attention than those that didn’t, i.e. class 14, but that is a reflection of which classes lasted longer than others. The photographs pleasingly, for this reviewer, are wide ranging in location, so it’s good to see some images of D800’s in South Wales, an area not normally associated with the class, and on the Southern Region. The author’s efforts in searching out many previously unpublished photographs is to be commended and will surely be appreciated by the many diesel hydraulic enthusiasts. Just to whet the appetite, a  couple of gems I’ve picked out are the photograph of a maroon half yellow D1042 Western Princess backing on to 1V95 1725 Manchester Piccadilly – Cardiff, a service viewed at Gloucester by the reviewer on many occasions, and a Derek Jones photograph of four class 22’s lined up on Gloucester Horton Road Depot, again something this reviewer well recalls.

    It would of course be remiss of me not to mention a couple of illustrations of the Group’s locomotives, there are cabside close up photographs of both D7017 and D7018, the former illustrating the removed alloy numbers and their replacement by vinyl numbers and the latter illustrating the chalked ‘NB’ indicating an inactive train heating boiler. Additionally, D9518 is illustrated behind fellow class member D9514 on Gloucester Horton Road Depot .

    Overall, I can recommend this publication to all modern traction enthusiasts whether diesel hydraulic enthusiasts or not. Noticeable too is the general improvement in photographic reproduction from earlier volumes. Retailing at £15.99, this represents good value and a worthy addition to any modern traction enthusiasts library.”

     

    Many thanks to Neale for providing us with this review.

     

    While on the subject of publications, the DEPG 2022 CALENDAR is now available in our trademark glossy A3 landscape format. Here’s a summary of the 12 high-resolution photos that have been so kindly donated by our members and supporters this year:

    There is an animated video on our website that steps through the calendar month-by-month so CLICK HERE to view the animation.

    We have been able to keep the price the same as last year, so the calendar will again cost the princely sum of £1 per month, so we think that is a bargain that is not to be missed. Click here to order your copy while stocks last.

     

     

    DEPG NEWS – we are very pleased to announce that a new secondman course has started under the expert guidance of John Leach, and we currently have all six available places filled and training is in progress. We have been short of train crew all year so it is very encouraging to see new faces learning the route and studying the rule book with a view to becoming passed secondmen then training for driving positions. Many thanks also to John for his willingness to share his vast knowledge for the benefit of others.

     

    DEPG WEBSITE: We have to report that online sales in the month of September have been DISMAL, maybe because of the number of galas at which the various preservation groups were busy selling their wares for their own fundraising purposes, all of which is commendable. However, it leaves us with little income from our store this month, so please TAKE A LOOK and BUY SOMETHING so that we can have some income as well. Apologies for being blunt, but we now have our new 2022 CALENDAR and the newly-added PRE-OWNED BOOKS (there are plenty more yet to be added so keep an eye on this product category) and much more. Thanks in advance !

     

    WSR NEWS: The latest edition of the WSR’s ‘THE PLATFORM’ newsletter has been released and includes plenty of news from all around the railway, including information about the Seaward Way Level Crossing project. It was also great to read that Ryan Pope and Rich Hiscox have both been promoted in recognition of their knowledge, skills and hard work on all kinds of projects over the years, so well done guys !

    Here’s a link to ‘THE PLATFORM’ on the WSR website (click on the image below):

     

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  • Weekly Roundup – 19-Sep-21

    Friday 17th and Saturday 18th September saw the return of gala-style running on the West Somerset Railway during the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND that involved our ‘Hymek’ D7018 plus our two Class 33 ‘Cromptons D6566 (33 048) and D6575 (33 057) along with steam in the form of BR(W) 4-6-0 7828 ‘ODNEY MANOR’ and GWR 2-6-2T 5199 operating an intense timetable that kept the line busy and brought back the feel of previous galas.

    Each day included trips along the full length of the line, from Norton Fitzwarren (the junction with the Bristol to Exeter main line) to Minehead, some 23 miles distant, but with the last mile and a half being operated by a fleet of heritage buses (some open top, some accessible). The last section of the line is currently closed due to upgrading of the Seaward Way level crossing, so to keep the schedule brisk during these two days, each train serving Dunster was ‘top-and-tailed’ to allow a quick turnaround.

    BR(W) 4-6-0 7828 ‘ODNEY MANOR’ at the head of the 1230 departure from Bishops Lydeard to Dunster which will then connect with a heritage bus service to Minehead. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) at the tail of the 1230 departure from Bishops Lydeard to Dunster to allow a quick turnaround at Dunster. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    The ‘Top-and-Tailed’ services provided plenty of photo opportunities for locos to be side by side at the platforms – here are some of those unusual views:

    A ‘Type 3’ gathering with Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) on the left (the ‘up’ direction towards Bishops Lydeard) and Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 on the right (the ‘down’ direction towards Minehead) at Blue Anchor on 17th September 2021. Photo by Barrie Childs © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) is at the tail end of the 1230 service to Dunster on Saturday 18th September 2021 as sister loco D6566 (33 048) prepares to depart with the 1225 service to Norton Fitzwarren. Photo by Josh Brinsford © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    The services that were not ‘top and tailed’ did not go beyond Blue Anchor, thereby allowing the train loco to run around to haul the train back toward Bishops Lydeard, and in most cases continued to Norton Fitzwarren where the loco again detached to run around using the East Chord (marked as ‘East’ in the diagram below):

    Map 10, Dene Bridge to Norton Fitzwarren, an extract from the WSR Rule Book Maps as displayed on the wsr.org.uk website © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Beyer-Peacock Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 leaves the platform at Norton Fitzwarren to run around her train via Barnstaple Junction then the East Chord to Allerford Junction then back on to her train at the platform on 18th September 2021. Photo by Josh Brinsford © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    For more pictures from this event, follow this link to the wsr.org.uk website picture page: http://cgibin.wsr.org.uk/cgi-bin/gallery.cgi?h=The+Mixed+Traction+Weekend+2021&t=mtw2021pix

     

    The webcams were very heavily patronised during the two day and we were very pleased to have the guys from RAILCAM UK along with us for both days, providing live streaming video (where 4G signal strength allowed it) and capturing video for the whole length of the line (from Norton Fitzwarren to Dunster) using their lamp-bracket-mounted camera, visible in the photograph below:

    The RAILCAM UK team Jamie, Andrew and Mike (clockwise from the left) alongside their remote-controlled camera that was mounted on the lamp bracket of BR(W) 4-6-0 7828 ‘ODNEY MANOR’ for the journey from Bishops Lydeard to Dunster on 18th September 2021. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    The RAILCAM UK team travelled the length of the line on Friday and Saturday and also visited the engineering facilities at Minehead and Williton. Their work was live streamed to thousands of people, many of whom were not able to visit the event in person but were able to participate via the Railcam YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/RailcamUKLive

    Go to their channel and scroll down to see the multitude of videos of the event that have been posted, some with more than 10,000 views already ! This is excellent exposure for the WSR and has ensured that tens of thousands of people will be aware of the work that has been and is being done to bring the WSR back to the forefront of the heritage railway sector. Many thanks to all who helped to make their visit a success !

    DID YOU KNOW that the RAILCAM UK operation is entirely funded by subscribers, with no corporate sponsorship at all ? These webcams have to be bought, installed, maintained, managed and in many cases, the internet data service has to be provided as well, so hats off to these guys and their colleagues for making it all happen. JOIN THEM and subscribe to help them expand their activities for our further enjoyment.

     

    WELL DONE to all who planned, prepared and delivered this excellent and enjoyable event, which ran ON TIME and without any technical hitches. Thanks also to those who bought a ticket or merchandise and in doing so contributed to the success of the event !

     

    Now for the sad news – last week, we announced that we changed the date of the next ‘Hymek’-hauled service from Saturday 25th September to Saturday 16th October to prevent a clash with the return to mainline running of the Diesel Traction Group’s Class 52 D1015 ‘WESTERN CHAMPION’ on a PATHFINDER RAILTOURS special from Eastleigh via Gloucester to Kingswear and return.

    Sadly, this magnificent machine developed engine trouble that resulted in an engine seizure after successfully hauling a cement train on a test run on the mainline between Avonmouth and Gloucester, the sight of which was an absolute treat in itself.

    Class 52 D1015 ‘WESTERN CHAMPION’ leading a GBRf Class 66 (66719) on the climb at Brentry Bank, Bristol when working the 6M42 0920 Avonmouth to Penyffordd cement working on 16th September 2021 as part of a mainline test run which sadly resulted in damage to one of her Bristol-Siddeley Maybach MD655 engines. The Class 52 worked the freight as far as Gloucester. Photo by Graham Perry © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    The DEPG joins with ‘Western’ and ‘hydraulic’ fans all over the country in expressing our support for all of our friends at the DTG who must be going through agony after suffering this setback. We feel their pain – but we all need to look beyond this, to look forward to the day when we see D1015 in her rightful place, back out on the mainline once again.

     

    LOCO NEWS:

    Given the efforts of the last few days, we won’t have time for a detailed roundup of loco news this week, but we will be back to normal format in time for next weekend. Rest assured that progress is still being made in the background.

     

    BOOK REVIEW – As announced last week, the DEPG 2022 CALENDAR is now available and the first copies will be mailed out during this coming week. Here’s a summary of the 12 high-resolution photos that have been so kindly donated by our members and supporters this year:

    There is an animated video on our website that steps through the calendar month-by-month so CLICK HERE to view the animation.

    We have been able to keep the price the same as last year, so the calendar will again cost the princely sum of £1 per month, so we think that is a bargain that is not to be missed. Click here to order your copy while stocks last.

     

    DEPG WEBSITE: Now updated with the new 2022 CALENDAR and the newly-added PRE-OWNED BOOKS (there are plenty more yet to be added so keep an eye on this product category).

     

    WSR NEWS: The next event that is coming up in two weeks time is the AUTUMN STEAM GALA during which we will be providing our Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 in support of the four steam locos that will be operating a 3-day gala schedule. This will be another opportunity to enjoy haulage behind D7018 before her final scheduled run of 2021 that will take place on Saturday 16th October (re-scheduled from the 25th September).

     

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  • Weekly Roundup – 12-Sep-21

    The major event this week has been the ‘1940s weekend‘ during which we provided our Class 33 ‘Cromptons D6566 (33 048) and D6575 (33 057) operating in Top-and-Tail mode for the ‘Watchet Shuttle’ services that have operated four times each day between Bishops Lydeard, Watchet and return. When combined with the steam-hauled trains that worked through Watchet to Dunster (with heritage bus connections to Minehead), it gave visitors seven opportunities per day to get to Watchet to enjoy the 1940s-themed displays and stalls.

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) leads the shuttle service towards Watchet on 11th September 2021 as sister loco D6566 (33 048) goes along for the ride. The ‘tail-end charlie’ will haul the working back to Bishops Lydeard. ‘Hymek’ sisters D7017 and D7018 hide behind the decorated fence. Image capture by Railcam UK and the WSR ©

    Many thanks to Railcam UK and the WSR for providing these webcam services !

    The webcams showed that the event was well patronised without being over crowded and the weather also co-operated, which made for a very pleasant day out by the seaside:

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) rounds the corner at Splash Point with the shuttle service to Watchet on 11th September 2021 with sister loco D6566 (33 048) at the rear to provide the motive power for the journey back to Bishops Lydeard. Photo by Keith Fender © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    WELL DONE to all who planned, prepared and operated the various attractions that were spaced out along the line and stayed late to tidy up afterwards. Thanks also to those who bought a ticket or merchandise and contributed to the success of the event !

     

    We are now looking forward to our main event of this year, the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND that will take place on this coming Friday 17th and Saturday 18th of September. This will feature our two ‘Cromptons’ plus ‘Hymek’ D7018 and will include running to Norton Fitwarren in the afternoons. Here’s a link to the detailed timetables, as posted in a recent DIESELGEN bulletin. The timetabling is quite intense and has plenty of interest for fans of both types of traction, so please do try and come along to support the event if you can.

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) leads sister loco D6566 (33 048) on the climb out of Williton towards Crowcombe Heathfield on an empty stock positioning move on 2nd November 2020. The Mixed Traction Weekend also features double-headed ‘Cromptons’ on the 1545 from Norton Fitzwarren to Dunster and return on Friday afternoon 17th September. Photo by Peter Nicholson © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    An important point regarding our fifth and final diesel-hauled ‘excursion‘ that was planned for 25th September this year; we have had to change the date of this ‘Hymek’-hauled service to Saturday 16th October because the return to mainline running of the Diesel Traction Group’s Class 52 D1015 ‘WESTERN CHAMPION’ has been scheduled for the 25th September, with a PATHFINDER RAILTOURS special from Eastleigh via Gloucester to Kingswear and return.

    We know that many of our members and regular supporters will be either riding behind or watching this magnificent loco as she returns to the mainline after a long absence, so we cannot operate a viable service on the same day.

    If you have already booked tickets for the ‘Hymek’-hauled ‘excursion’ on the 25th, the WSR ticket office will be in touch with you soon. We thank you for your support and offer our apologies for the change of date and ask for your understanding. We hope that you will be able to join us on the 16th October instead.

     

    A very big THANK YOU to all who have bought and are buying tickets in support of our 2021 diesel-hauled services, and an equally big thank you to all of the volunteers who have been and are involved in putting on the shows !

     

    If you have a question, please reply to this email or fill in the contact form on our website. Please help us and help the WSR make these diesel-hauled services a success by buying a ticket to ride !

     

     

    LOCO NEWS:

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – as a correction to the information that was included in the previous roundup; the pair of calibrated fuel pumps have not yet been fitted to the loco because they were not available in time, but a complete set of overhauled injectors were fitted to the loco at the KENT & EAST SUSSEX RAILWAY last weekend. The fuel pumps will be fitted at the next opportunity.

    Class 14 D9526 is safe and sound inside the carriage shed at Tenterden on the K&ESR on 2nd September 2021 while resident D9504 undergoes preparation for a heavy overhaul alongside. Photo by Simon Purvis © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – our ‘celebrity’ remains marooned at Bishops Lydeard because of delays in obtaining permission for her oversize road haulage move from Bishops Lydeard to Pickering on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. We are still waiting for the date and route information. As soon as we know, it will be shared via a DIESELGEN bulletin.

     

     

    Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – we continue to receive donations towards the restoration of this much-loved loco and we would like to say a big THANK YOU to all who have contributed to the fund to support the £100,000 restoration of D1010.

    Our attention remains fixed to making progress with the bodywork repairs so the various grilles and vents were inspected over the weekend and a list of required repairs was drawn up. Work continues on the removal of loose filler on the side that was not restored during the loco’s time at Didcot. We intend to restore the bodywork in sections and paint the loco in undercoat, pending an overall gloss coat upon completion of all other work.

    Meanwhile, arrangements are being made for the ‘B’ end Voith L630rV transmission converter rail to be sent to a specialist firm for separation and internal inspection. More on this exciting news at a later date when the arrangements have been firmed up.

    We intend to raise £100,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:

    After selecting a donation link, you will then be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you want to donate. Please remember to select the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM GovernmentThank you very much for supporting the D1010 Restoration Appeal !

     

    In addition to funds, we also need plenty of HANDS. If you love the ‘Westerns’ 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 D1010 to full operational condition.

     

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – no change expected until our Autumn Work Week (30-Oct through 07-Nov) which is when we hope to start on the bogie spring change project.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – this loco is ready for the Mixed Traction weekend 17-18 September.

     

     

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – we are very happy to report that donations to our D9518 restoration fund continue to build and we would like to say a big THANK YOU to all who have contributed to the fund to support the £10,000 restoration of D9518.

    Our Class 14 team are making significant progress on several fronts as can be seen from the photos below:

    D9518’s restored battery box is now ready for primer and undercoat at Williton on 11th September 2021. Photo by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518’s corroded cab door frame was repaired by Colin F on 11th Setember 2021 and is now ready for priming and undercoat. Photo by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518’s electrical cubicle is undergoing careful and thorough restoration at Williton in the hands of John C. Photo taken on 11th September 2021 by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518’s frames are in the Swindon Shed at Williton and are seen undergoing preparation for a repaint with work being progressed by long-time member and volunteer Andy P on 11th September 2021. Photo by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    We intend to raise £10,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:

    After selecting a donation link, you will then be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you want to donate. Please remember to select the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM GovernmentThank you very much for supporting the D9518 Restoration Appeal !

    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 operational condition – and see her haul passenger coaches for the first time in her life!

     

    Andrew Barclay 578 (ROF 1) – this loco is receiving attention for an air circuit fault that is preventing the main reservoir from charging. More news will be provided on this issue when fault-finding progresses.

     

    Many thanks to all of our volunteers who are hard at work cleaning, painting, maintaining, restoring, managing and fund raising for our fleet of heritage locomotives !

     

    BOOK REVIEW – it may not be a book but it is printed, so we will cover it under this heading! We are pleased to announce that the DEPG 2022 CALENDAR is at the printers and we hope to receive quantities this week, in time for the Mixed Traction Weekend event. Here’s a summary of the 12 high-resolution photos that have been so kindly donated by our members and supporters this year:

    Here is an animated video that steps through the calendar month-by-month:

     

    We have been able to keep the price the same as last year, so the calendar will again cost the princely sum of £1 per month, so we think that is a bargain that is not to be missed. Click here to order your copy while stocks last.

     

    We have now added some of the donated PRE-OWNED BOOKS to our online store, so take a look at these newly-added titles in case they are missing from your collection:

    Title Author Price Notes
    The Power of THE 50s John Vaughan £10 Some marks on jacket
    I tried to run a railway Gerard Fiennes £10 Second edition 2016, as new
    British Railways Stinks Dave Smith and colleagues £10 2019, as new
    BREL Locomotive Works John Vaughan £10 Faded spine, otherwise fine
    Diesels on the Regions – LMR Gavin Morrison £10 Faded spine, otherwise fine
    The Western Class 52s Norman Preedy £12.50 2015, as-new
    The Class 47 Years Bernard Mills £12.50 2017, as new
    British Rail Main Line Locomotives Pip Dunn £20 2013, as new
    Class 50 Life and Times Colin J Marsden £20 1991, but in brand new condition

    All of these books have been kindly donated by members and supporters and ALL PROCEEDS from the sale of pre-owned books goes directly to the D1010 restoration fund. Please reply to this email or use our contact form if you have books that you would like to donate. We welcome your donations!

     

    ON SHED: we will need to skip this feature this week, but we hope to include it again next week.

     

    DEPG NEWS: We can now focus on the remainder of our running season, the highlight of which is the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND this Friday 17th and Saturday 18th September. This running opportunity will feature an extension to Norton Fitzwarren to provide both additional mileage and additional interest from this little-used section of the line and also includes an evening journey to Blue Anchor and back behind D7018. This is our big event of this year and we will have a sales stand at Bishops Lydeard and at Williton, so PLEASE COME ALONG AND SUPPORT US AND THE WSR !

     

    DEPG WEBSITE: Now updated with the new 2022 CALENDAR and the newly-added PRE-OWNED BOOKS (there are plenty more yet to be added, so keep an eye on this product category).

     

    WSR NEWS: The Chairman of the WSR, Jonathan Jones-Pratt, has written to all staff and volunteers thanking them for their massive contribution in delivering a successful summer season so far, with the main events of the season still to come, namely the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND and the AUTUMN STEAM GALA.

    This is great news and provides encouragement and further motivation to all those across the whole WSR family of organisations who have been working so hard to overcome the constant challenges of the last year or two. Well done to all !

     

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  • Weekly Roundup – 04-Sep-21

    Apologies for the roundup being late this week. This is because the Annual General Meeting of the DEPG took place last Saturday 4th September and a summary of that event was reported as a priority.

    For the roundup, let’s start with a reminder that this coming weekend will see the return of the very popular ‘1940s weekend‘ events on the WSR and as in previous years, the DEPG are delighted to be able to play a supporting role. This year, we will be providing our two Class 33 ‘Crompton’ diesel-electrics, D6566 (33 048) and D6575 (33 057) so please do try and get along to this event if you can. Click here for timetable details.

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) is being “guarded” by Guard Steve Bailey at Crowcombe Heathfield station during the ‘1940s weekend’ event on 16th September 2018. Photo by John Blackmore © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    We are also looking forward to our main event of this year, the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND that will take place on Friday 17th and Saturday 18th of September. This will feature our two ‘Cromptons’ plus ‘Hymek’ D7018 and will include running to Norton Fitwarren in the afternoons. Here’s a link to the detailed timetables, as posted in a recent DIESELGEN bulletin. The timetabling is quite intense and has plenty of interest for fans of both types of traction, so please do try and come along to support the event if you can.

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 arrives at Stogumber station during the ‘1940s weekend’ event on 14th September 2019. Photo by Sylvia Way © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    A very big THANK YOU to all who have bought and are buying tickets in support of our 2021 diesel-hauled services, and an equally big thank you to all of the volunteers who have been and are involved in putting on the shows !

     

    If you have a question, please reply to this email or fill in the contact form on our website. Please help us and help the WSR make these diesel-hauled services a success by buying a ticket to ride !

     

    LOCO NEWS:

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – this loco has been fitted with a set of calibrated fuel pumps and injectors and has undergone a 50-hour inspection, so she is now ready for action again at the KENT & EAST SUSSEX RAILWAY. The loco was given a short test run and the previous issue of temperature imbalance between the two banks of the Paxman ‘V6’ engine has been resolved. The swift corrective action protected the engine from possible damage and will allow volunteer Class 14 loco manager Simon and his team the chance to relax a little and put their focus back on D9518.

    Class 14 D9526 undergoing test running at Tenterden on the K&ESR on 4th September 2021 with the diminutive Class A1X ‘Terrier’ 2678 (aka ‘Knowle’, a former Minehead resident, but not on the WSR ….) alongside on a service train. Photo by Simon Purvis © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 14 D9526 (on the right) undergoes a 50-hour check at Tenterden on the K&ESR while sister loco D9504 (on the left) undergoes heavy maintenance alongside. Photo by Simon Purvis © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

     

    Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – our ‘celebrity’ remains marooned at Bishops Lydeard because of delays in obtaining permission for her oversize road haulage move from Bishops Lydeard to Pickering on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. The latest indications are that the NYMR still want the loco and will most likely decide to move her by rail, but we do not have the date or route information yet. As soon as we do, it will be shared via a DIESELGEN bulletin.

     

     

    Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – we continue to receive donations towards the restoration of this much-loved loco and we would like to say a big THANK YOU to all who have contributed to the fund to support the £100,000 restoration of D1010.

    Our total contributions to this fund (as at the end of August) are approaching £6,000 comprising almost £3,000 from donations and £3,000 from specific D1010-related purchases from our online store. We are also holding several pledges of financial support that are contingent on progress being made with investigations, and the value of these pledges is more than £15,000 taking our fund-raising efforts towards £21,000 so we are making respectable progress.

    The work on the bodyside is moving along and we have not encountered any unexpected issues so far. The cab ends remain the areas where most of the welding work is required, but we are moving carefully to ensure that we do not create additional work for ourselves when cutting out the corroded metal. We are in the process of formulating a plan for the repair work. Meanwhile, as a guide to the internal structure below the outer skin, the ‘B’ end cab now carries a photo that was taken during the construction of the class at Crewe Works (the first 30 locomotives were built at Swindon, the remainder at Crewe):

    The ‘B’ end cab of D1010 now carries a photo showing the internal support structure of the locomotive, to provide guidance to our volunteers. Photo taken at Williton on 4th September 2021 by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    A photo showing the internal support structure of the D1000 series locomotives provides guidance to our volunteers. The photo was taken at Crewe Works in 1963 and was provided by member Phil Gray © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    We intend to raise £100,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:

    After selecting a donation link, you will then be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you want to donate. Please remember to select the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM GovernmentThank you very much for supporting the D1010 Restoration Appeal !

     

    In addition to funds, we also need plenty of HANDS. If you love the ‘Westerns’ 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 D1010 to full operational condition.

     

    Class 33 D6566 (33 048) – this loco has now moved from Williton to Bishops Lydeard to be ready for use during the forthcoming ‘1940s weekend’.

     

    Class 33 D6575 (33 057) – this loco is stabled at Bishops Lydeard, ready for use during the forthcoming ‘1940s weekend’.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – no change this week – this loco is waiting for its turn to go into the Swindon Shed for bogie disconnection and lifting to replace the weak leaf spring. We are hoping to make a start on this work in late October/early November, depending on availability of space in the Swindon Shed.

     

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – we are very happy to report that donations to our D9518 restoration fund continue to build and are now approaching the £4,000 mark. This allows us to proceed with some of the subcontract specialist processes that are required for re-wheeling the frames and getting the loco mobile again.

    Meanwhile, progress continues on the reconstruction of the cab and the puzzle of the curved parts that we featured last week can now be explained by the following shot of the cab, showing the curved step that allows the cab door to open inwards.

    D9518’s cab entrance floor is formed by a temporary piece of plywood as the curved step gets welded into place at Williton on 4th September 2021. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518’s cab was moved out of the main shed at Williton on 4th September 2021 to allow the AGM to take place. This photo shows volunteer Colin F hard at work on the cab floor repairs. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518’s wheel sets were on the move at Williton on 4th September 2021 with the motive power provided by Martin Howard and John Leach. The quality of the NCB blue gloss paint finish is a testament to the meticulous work performed by Colin C. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518’s wheel sets are now fully restored in NCB blue and are ready for installation into the loco’s frames. Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 also enjoys the sunshine at Williton on 4th September 2021. Photo by Andy Royal © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    We intend to raise £10,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:

    After selecting a donation link, you will then be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you want to donate. Please remember to select the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM GovernmentThank you very much for supporting the D9518 Restoration Appeal !

    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 operational condition – and see her haul passenger coaches for the first time in her life!

     

    Andrew Barclay 578 (ROF 1) – this loco is undergoing bodywork repairs prior to priming and painting. The livery chosen for this loco will be the Government-standard (in 1972) deep bronze green that the loco carried during her days in service at the Royal Ordnance Factory (ROF) in Puriton, near Bridgwater, Somerset.

    Many thanks to all of our volunteers who are hard at work cleaning, painting, maintaining, restoring, managing and fund raising for our fleet of heritage locomotives !

     

    BOOK REVIEW – we will skip this feature due to lack of time this week, but we can tell you that we have received further contributions to our stock of PRE-OWNED BOOKS and we now have  a temporary backlog of work to inspect them, photograph them and put them on our online store. All such books have been donated by members and supporters and ALL PROCEEDS from the sale of pre-owned books goes directly to the D1010 restoration fund. Please reply to this email or use our contact form if you have books that you would like to donate. We welcome your donations!

     

    ON SHED: this week, we have a change of theme as we feature a photo from regular contributor Alan Walker, showing North British Loco Co. Class 22 D6353 and Beyer-Peacock ‘Hymek’ D7074 stabled on the turntable roads at Old Oak Common depot near Paddington. Neither of these locos lasted very long in service, with the ’22’ being cut up when only 7 years old. The ‘Hymek’ almost made it to 10 years in service and then remained extant for another three years after withdrawal, lanquishing in the scrap line at Swindon.

    Class 22 D6353 and Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7074 stabled on the turntable roads at Old Oak Common depot in the evening of Saturday 13th May 1967. Photo by Alan Walker © CC BY-NC 3.0

    Many thanks to Alan for sharing his photos with us.

     

    DEPG NEWS: Following the AGM that was held on the 4th September and has been reported separately, we can now focus on the remainder of our running season, the highlight of which is the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND on Friday 17th and Saturday 18th September. This running opportunity will feature an extension to Norton Fitzwarren to provide both additional mileage and additional interest from this little-used section of the line and also includes an evening journey to Blue Anchor and back behind D7018. This is our big event of this year and we will have a sales stand at Bishops Lydeard and at Williton, so PLEASE COME ALONG AND SUPPORT US AND THE WSR !

               

     

    DEPG WEBSITE: Our next new product will be the 2022 calendar, for which we have now received many high quality photos, so thank you very much if you have contributed. The calendar is at the printers and we hope to have it ready for sale at the Mixed Traction Weekend event. More news on this in the next roundup.

     

    WSR NEWS: The WSR are operating public services to Minehead via a connecting bus service between Dunster and Minehead, so please support these services by buying tickets to ride!

    Don’t forget to read about the WSR appeal by clicking this link – this appeal also needs our support because we need a thriving railway to run on !

    All members of the WSR family have to do what we can to help and one easy way is to make a donation via the WSR website. Another way is to ensure that all of the timetabled services are a commercial success, so please buy a ticket if you can.

     

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  • Weekly Roundup – 29-Aug-21

    The weekend after next will see the return of the the very popular ‘1940s weekend‘ events on the WSR and as in previous years, the DEPG are delighted to be able to play a small part, even though our locos were just a glint in their respective designer’s eyes during WW2. This year, the event will be supported by our two Class 33 ‘Crompton’ diesel-electrics, D6566 (33 048) and D6575 (33 057) so please do try and get along to this event if you can. Click here for the 1940s WEEKEND timetable details.

    S&DJR Class 7F 2-8-0 53808 stands at Williton station on 13st September 2019 with a ‘wartime freight train’ as Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 stands in the South Yard. Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) can just be seen in the distance in front of the Goods Shed and the boiler of GWR 4-6-0 7027 ‘THORNBURY CASTLE’ also gets into the picture, on the far right. Photo by Gordon Crook © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Our projects continue to progress, as below, but the key news this week is the release of the timetables for the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND that will take place on Friday 17th and Saturday 18th of September. This will be the WSR’s first true ‘hop-on-hop-off’ event since 2019 and will feature our two ‘Cromptons’ plus ‘Hymek’ D7018 and will include running to Norton Fitwarren in the afternoons. Here’s the outbound part of the timetables to whet your appetite (click the images to go to the WSR website timetable pages to keep up with any updates):

    The timetabling is quite intense and has plenty of interest for fans of both types of traction, so please do try and come along to support the event if you can.

    A very big THANK YOU to all who have bought and are buying tickets in support of our 2021 diesel-hauled services, and an equally big thank you to all of the volunteers who have been and are involved in putting on the shows !

    If you have a question, please reply to this email or fill in the contact form on our website. Thanks ! Please help us and help the WSR make these diesel-hauled services a success by buying a ticket to ride !

     

     

    OTHER LOCO NEWS:

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – this loco remains out of action at the KENT & EAST SUSSEX RAILWAY because of an issue with the fuel injection system. The spare fuel pumps and injectors have been sent from Williton to a specialist company for calibration and balancing, and will then be sent to the K&ESR for installation into the loco. Hopefully, this will resolve the issue and allow the loco to return to service.

     

    Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – our ‘celebrity’ remains marooned at Bishops Lydeard because of delays in obtaining permission for her oversize road haulage move from Bishops Lydeard to Pickering on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. The latest indications are that the loco will now be moved by rail, but we do not have the date or route information yet. As soon as we do, it will be shared via a DIESELGEN bulletin.

    Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ remains in the bay platform, next to the signal box at Bishops Lydeard on 24th August 2021. Photo by Charlie Cox © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – we continue to receive donations towards the restoration of this much-loved loco and we would like to say a big THANK YOU to all who have already contributed to the fund to support the £100,000 restoration of D1010.

    Yesterday, the engine at ‘A’ end was started up as part of the investigation into an electrical sub-system issue that had prevented the engine from running during the ‘yard shunt’ in June. Although a temporary repair has been made to allow the engine to run, a permanent repair will be needed before the loco returns to service. Here’s a short video covering the engine run, thanks to Martin and Leroy for providing the video clips:

     

    We intend to raise £100,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:

    After selecting a donation link, you will then be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you want to donate. Please remember to select the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM GovernmentThank you very much for supporting the D1010 Restoration Appeal !

    In addition to funds, we also need plenty of HANDS. If you love the ‘Westerns’ 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 D1010 to full operational condition.

     

    Class 33 D6566 (33 048) – this loco is stabled at Williton, ready for use during the forthcoming ‘1940s weekend’.

     

    Class 33 D6575 (33 057) – this loco is stabled at Bishops Lydeard, ready for use during the forthcoming ‘1940s weekend’.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – no change this week – this loco is waiting for its turn to go into the Swindon Shed for bogie disconnection and lifting to replace the weak leaf spring. We are hoping to make a start on this work in late October/early November, depending on availability of space in the Swindon Shed.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – after standing-in for a steam locomotive last weekend, this loco is at Williton and is being made ready for her next turn of duty which is planned for the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND of Friday 17th and Saturday 18th September.

     

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – we are very happy to report that donations to our D9518 restoration fund continue to build and as a result, the Board has approved the re-installation of the springs, hornguides and wheels. This specialised riveting and alignment work will be performed by WSR Restorations at the Swindon Shed, Williton.

    This week, attention has turned to the many parts required for the restoration of the cab assembly. Several edges of the sheet steel components have completely corroded away, making identification difficult. The parts being repaired in the below photos are from the cab door wells, where the cab doors open inward to reveal a step up to the cab floor above. The photos of the excellent work being done by Colin F will hopefully make more sense when we can show the repaired parts being re-fitted to the cab structure. 

    D9518’s heavily corroded cab door wells in obvious need of repair at Williton on 28th August 2021. Photo by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518’s cab door well metalwork replacement in progress at Williton on 28th August 2021. Photo by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518’s cab door wells repaired at Williton on 28th August 2021. Photo by Colin Foxhall © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    In preparation for the rebuilding of the Paxman 6YJXL diesel engine, the ‘turnover’ stand has been cleaned up and painted in readiness for the V6 engine to be installed. This stand allows the three-tonne engine to be positioned securely and safely as it undergoes disassembly, inspection, repair and re-assembly. 

    D9518’s Paxman 6YJXL engine turnover stand cleaned and painted and ready for use at Williton on 10th August 2021. Photo by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    We intend to raise £10,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation :

    After selecting a donation link, you will then be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you want to donate. Please remember to select the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM GovernmentThank you very much for supporting the D9518 Restoration Appeal !

    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 operational condition – and see her haul passenger coaches for the first time in her life!

     

    Andrew Barclay 578 (ROF 1) – this loco is undergoing bodywork repairs prior to priming and painting. The livery chosen for this loco will be the Government-standard (in 1972) deep bronze green that the loco carried during her days in service at the Royal Ordnance Factory (ROF) in Puriton, near Bridgwater, Somerset.

     

    Many thanks to all of our volunteers who are hard at work cleaning, painting, maintaining, restoring, managing and fund raising for our fleet of heritage locomotives !

     

    BOOK REVIEW – long-term member and regular contributor Neale Long has brought our attention to a number of new books that should be of great interest to our readers. The titles are as follows, and we need readers to provide us with book reviews ASAP so that we can share opinions about these new publications. Here goes:

    Many thanks to Neale for bringing these books to our attention.

     

    Check out growing number of PRE-OWNED BOOKS that are available from our online store. All such books have been donated by members and supporters and ALL PROCEEDS from the sale of pre-owned books goes directly to the D1010 restoration fund. Please reply to this email or use our contact form if you have books that you would like to donate. We welcome your donations!

     

    ON SHED: last week, we asked readers to try and spot D9526 among a group of 10 Class 14’s on shed at Bury Bolton Street shed on the East Lancs Railway for the 50th anniversary of the introduction of the Class. Our own loco was fairly easy to spot because she was the only one wearing the logo of her previous owner, Blue Circle Industries, as in this photo below:

    Our D9526 carries the Blue Circle logo at Rawtenstall on the East Lancashire Railway on 24th July 2014. Photo by Simon Purvis © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Of the 56 locomotives produced by Swindon Works, all but 8 went on to work in industry after their short career on BR and many including our own D9518 and D9526 worked into the 1980’s doing hard labour in less than ideal settings.

    Many thanks to Simon for sharing his photos. If you were at the 50th anniversary bash and if you have a story to tell, then we would love to hear from you.

     

    DEPG NEWS: Following the success of the ‘excursion’ season so far, we can now focus on selling tickets for the fifth and final run, which takes place on Saturday 25th September with haulage from our Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 with an extension to Norton Fitzwarren on the return leg. The ticketing links for this service is below (this is a link to the WSR website):


    IN ADDITION TO THE ABOVE, our diesels will be in use for the ‘1940s WEEKEND on Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th of September and again for the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND on Friday 17th and Saturday 18th September. This running opportunity will feature an extension to Norton Fitzwarren to provide both additional mileage and additional interest from this little-used section of the line. We will also be operating a diesel during the AUTUMN STEAM GALA (believe it or not!) on Friday 1st October and Saturday 2nd October (probably D7018). Mark the dates in you diary !

    Below are links to the WSR website:

           

     

    OTHER DEPG NEWS: Our Williton Diesel Depot will be the venue for the forthcoming Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the DEPG, taking place at 1430 this coming Saturday 4th September. Only fully paid-up members can vote at the AGM so please renew your membership online by clicking this link.

     

    DEPG WEBSITE: Our ONLINE SHOP IS NOW LIVE so go ahead and visit our store! Our next new product will be the 2022 calendar, for which we have now received many high quality photos, so thank you very much if you have contributed. We have made the selection and the calendar will be at the printers during the coming week.

     

    WSR NEWS: The WSR are now operating public services to Minehead via a connecting bus service between Dunster and Minehead, so please support these services by buying tickets to ride!

    Don’t forget to read about the WSR appeal by clicking this link – this appeal also needs our support because we need a thriving railway to run on !

    The WSR’s Class 03 shunter D2133 awaits its next shunting duty at Dunster West Sidings in the afternoon of Friday 27th August 2021. Photo by Paul Fleet © CC BY-NC 3.0

    All members of the WSR family have to do what we can to help and one easy way is to make a donation via the WSR website. Another way is to ensure that all of the timetabled services are a commercial success, so please buy a ticket if you can.

     

    Go to previous Weekly Roundup post

    Go to Depot news

    Go to Join Us page

    Go to Welcome page

    Go to Home page

     


  • Weekly Roundup – 22-Aug-21

    After a very wet and unseasonal start to the day, the 60th birthday special for our two Class 33 ‘Cromptons’ ran between Bishops Lydeard and Dunster yesterday with the best loading yet achieved on our diesel-hauled ‘excursion’ trains, so a BIG THANK YOU to everyone who came along for the celebration and to everyone involved in the preparations that went on behind the scenes.

    The locos performed admirably and gave a very good account of themselves (as usual) with D6575 (33 057) hauling the train to Dunster and D6566 (33 048) hauling for the return leg.

     

    Also notable on Saturday was the first official duty as “passed secondman” for 18-year-old Tom Courtney, who is also a member of the volunteer team that looks after these 60-year-old machines and keeps them in fine form, so CONGRATULATIONS and THANKS to Tom!

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) arrives at Dunster Station at the head of the ‘Crompton 60th birthday special’ on Saturday 21st August 2021. Sister loco D6566 (33 048) was attached at the rear of the train and hauled the train on the return journey to Bishops Lydeard. Photo by Dave Fowler © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) positions at Bishops Lydeard ‘up’ siding while shunting her train on Saturday 21st August. Photo by secondman Tom Courtney © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    An additional bonus last Saturday was the substitution of ‘Hymek’ D7018 for the steam loco on the 12:35 service to Dunster (with onward heritage bus connection to Minehead) and the return working, due to an issue that had arisen with the booked steam loco and could not be resolved in time for her duty. The sight and sound of the ‘Hymek’ hauling six coaches was picked up by several members and supporters including Mark Ireland who released the following video of D7018 at Stogumber. Many thanks to all who have provided us with their photos and videos!

     

     

    Special thanks also to RAILCAM UK for setting their railcams to ‘capture’ mode so that we could create a video of the event using the railcams at Bishops Lydeard, Crowcombe Heathfield, Williton and Blue Anchor. The footage is currently being edited and will be released later this week. Meanwhile, here are some stills to whet your appetite:

    Class 33 D6575 (33 057) hauls the 60th birthday ‘special’ non-stop through Williton on Saturday 21st August 2021 with sister D6566 (33 048) trailing. Image by Railcam UK and the WSR ©

     

    Unique WSR ‘Mogul’ 2-6-0 9351 waits at Williton for ‘Hymek’ D7018 to clear the section and release the token so that she can continue on the return leg of her journey on Saturday 21st August 2021. Image by Railcam UK and the WSR ©

     

    Many thanks to Railcam UK and the WSR for providing these webcam services.

    Our next scheduled diesel-hauled services are during the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND (Friday 17th and Saturday 18th September) where all three of our available locos will be in service on an intensive timetable.

     

    A very big THANK YOU to all who have bought and are buying tickets in support of our 2021 diesel-hauled services, and an equally big thank you to all of the volunteers who have been and are involved in putting on the shows !

     

    If you have a question, please reply to this email or fill in the contact form on our website. Thanks ! Please help us and help the WSR make these diesel-hauled services a success by buying a ticket to ride !

     

    OTHER LOCO NEWS:

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – this loco is currently out of action at the KENT & EAST SUSSEX RAILWAY because of a misfire that developed last weekend. The loco has racked up almost 100 hours of work at the K&ESR but showed signs of a temperature difference between ‘A’ bank and ‘B’ bank of her Paxman 6-cylinder V-type engine and this developed into a misfire shortly afterwards. The spare fuel pumps and injectors have been sent from Williton to a specialist company for calibration and balancing, and will then be sent to the K&ESR for installation into the loco. Hopefully, this will resolve the issue and allow the loco to return to service.

    Class 14 D9526 waits for ex-Longmoor Military Railway Hunslet ‘Austerity’ 0-6-0ST number 25 to pass at Wittersham Road Station on 2nd August 2021. Photo by Jacky Duncan © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – our ‘celebrity’ remains marooned at Bishops Lydeard because of delays in obtaining permission for her oversize road haulage move from Bishops Lydeard to Pickering on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. The latest indications are that the loco will now be moved by rail, but we do not have the date or route information yet. As soon as we do, it will be shared via a DIESELGEN bulletin.

     

    Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – we continue to receive donations towards the restoration of this much-loved loco and we would like to say a big THANK YOU to all who have contributed to the fund to support the £100,000 restoration of D1010. We have had a great start, but this is a big project so please keep the funds rolling in. Rapid progress towards our fund-raising target will result in rapid progress on the restoration work because we can engage sub-contract specialists who can work on the loco 5 days a week, not just on Saturdays.

    DEPG volunteer Gordon carefully chips away the life-expired Prestolith filler from the bodyside of D1010 at Williton on 21st August 2021. Photo by Leroy Ford © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    DEPG volunteer Ian F also hard at work removing the life-expired Prestolith filler from the bodyside of D1010 at Williton on 21st August 2021. Photo by Leroy Ford © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    We intend to raise £100,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:

     

    After selecting a donation link, you will then be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you want to donate. Please remember to select the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM GovernmentThank you very much for supporting the D1010 Restoration Appeal !

    In addition to funds, we also need plenty of HANDS. If you love the ‘Westerns’ 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 D1010 to full operational condition.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – no change this week – this loco is waiting for its turn to go into the Swindon Shed for bogie disconnection and lifting to replace the weak leaf spring. We are planning to make a start on this work in late October/early November.

     

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – we are very happy to report that donations to our D9518 restoration fund continue to build and as a result, we are now able to approve the re-installation of the springs, hornguides and wheels. This specialised riveting and alignment work will be performed by WSR Restorations at the Swindon Shed, Williton.

    This week, our ‘Tuesday Team’ were concentrating on gathering the many parts required for the restoration of the cab assembly. Each part has to be positively identified then cleaned up, repaired as necessary then painted prior to starting the re-assembly work. Meanwhile, the frames await their turn for the rivetting work that will then allow the re-installation of the wheelsets. There’s plenty to be done, that’s for sure.

    D9518 frames mounted on trolleys in the Swindon Shed at Williton for alignment and rivetting of the hornguides (one of which is shown in light green primer) as a precursor to the installation of the wheelsets. Pictured on 3rd August 2021 by Terry Deacon © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    We intend to raise £10,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:

    After selecting a donation link, you will then be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you want to donate. Please remember to select the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM GovernmentThank you very much for supporting the D9518 Restoration Appeal !

     

    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 operational condition – and see her haul passenger coaches for the first time in her life!

     

    Andrew Barclay 578 (ROF 1) – this loco is undergoing bodywork repairs prior to priming and painting. The livery chosen for this loco will be the Government-standard (in 1972) deep bronze green that the loco carried during her days in service at the Royal Ordnance Factory (ROF) in Puriton, near Bridgwater, Somerset.

     

    Many thanks to all of our volunteers who are hard at work cleaning, painting, maintaining, restoring, managing and fund raising for our fleet of heritage locomotives !

     

     

    BOOK REVIEW – instead of a book review, we will use this space to cover something new and different that may open up another avenue for fund-raising via our webstore. Member and volunteer Wendy has produced a piece of artwork that has been used to create greeting cards with a DEPG theme, her first featuring Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) on a crew refresher special working approaching Williton in May of this year. Wendy has also donated her original artwork and it will be auctioned at the forthcoming AGM to raise funds for the DEPG.

    Class 33 ‘Crompton’ D6575 (33 057) captured approaching Williton in May 2021 in this print from an original artwork by Wendy Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Many thanks to Wendy for her initiative to both expand our range of DEPG-themed products and contribute to our fund-raising efforts. Much appreciated !

     

    Check out growing number of PRE-OWNED BOOKS that are available from our online store. All such books have been donated by members and supporters and ALL PROCEEDS from the sale of pre-owned books goes directly to the D1010 restoration fund. Please reply to this email or use our contact form if you have books that you would like to donate. We welcome your donations!

     

     

    ON SHED: continuing with our theme from the last few weeks, here’s another photo of Bury Bolton Street shed on the East Lancs Railway for the 50th anniversary gathering of preserved Class 14s including our own D9526. Although ten locos gathered for the celebration, one loco developed a fault and was unable to participate in the running that day, the culmination of which was nine Class 14’s coupled together at the head of a passenger train ! 

     

    Ten preserved Class 14s including our own D9526 on shed at Bury Bolton Street on 24th July 2014. Photo by Simon Purvis © CC BY-NC 3.0

    Can you tell which of the locos in this photo is D9526 ?

    Many thanks to Simon for sharing his photos, more of which will be shared next week. If you were there and if you have a story to tell, then we would love to hear from you.

     

     

    DEPG NEWS: Following the success of the ‘excursion’ season so far, we can now focus on selling tickets for the fifth and final run, which takes place on Saturday 25th September with haulage from our Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 with an extension to Norton Fitzwarren on the return leg. The ticketing links for this service is below (these are links to the WSR website):

     

    IN ADDITION TO THE ABOVE, we have been advised that our diesels will be in use for the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND on Friday 17th and Saturday 18th September, the draft timetable for which was reviewed at a Gala Planning Meeting recently, the details of which should be released this week. This new running opportunity will feature an extension to Norton Fitzwarren to provide both additional mileage and additional interest from this little-used section of the line. We will send out a DIESELGEN bulletin as soon as we have timetable details. We will also be operating a diesel during the AUTUMN STEAM GALA (believe it or not!) on Friday 1st October and Saturday 2nd October (probably D7018). Mark the dates in you diary !

     

     

     

    OTHER DEPG NEWS: Board member and Treasurer Julien Weston also completed his secondman training last week and joined the ranks of ‘passed secondmen’. This is an important step on the path to driving our locomotives, to eventually boost our number of qualified drivers.

    One important date for the diaries of all volunteers is the FIRST WEEK OF NOVEMBER because we are planning a WILLITON WORK WEEK so that we can make significant progress on major projects, including D7017.

     

    REMINDER: This coming Friday 27th August is the closing date for attendance, apologies, nomination and proxy forms to be returned to Ian Robins, our company secretary, in preparation for the forthcoming Annual General Meeting (AGM). Only fully paid-up members can vote at the AGM so please renew your membership online by clicking this link.

    The date for the next AGM is set for 14:30 on Saturday 4th September, at Williton Diesel Depot.

     

     

    DEPG WEBSITE: Our ONLINE SHOP IS NOW LIVE so go ahead and visit our store! Our next new product will be the 2022 calendar, so if you have photos that you would like us to include, please let me know ASAP because we will be making our final selection during this coming week. Thanks !

     

     

    WSR NEWS: The WSR are now operating public services to Minehead via a connecting bus service between Dunster and Minehead, so please support these services by buying tickets to ride!

    Don’t forget to read about the WSR appeal by clicking this link – this appeal also needs our support because we need a thriving railway to run on !

     

    The WSR’s Class 03 shunter D2133 hauled the empty coaching stock that delivered passengers to Dunster towards Minehead as part of the shunt-release operation that allows the train engine to change ends. The sleeper barrier marking the limit of operation can be seen in the distance on this bright and sunny Sunday 8th August 2021. Photo taken while stationary by driver Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    All members of the WSR family have to do what we can to help and one easy way is to make a donation via the WSR website. Another way is to ensure that all of the timetabled services are a commercial success, so please buy a ticket if you can.

     

    Go to previous Weekly Roundup post

    Go to Depot news

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    Go to Welcome page

    Go to Home page


     

  • Weekly Roundup – 15-Aug-21

    D6566 (33 048, left) and D6575 (33 057, right) pictured at Williton during a rare and much appreciated moment of winter sunshine on 31st December 2020. Photo by Ian Robins © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    After three successful ‘excursion’ specials that have been hauled by ‘Hymek’ D7018, the next special which runs this coming Saturday 21st August will be a commemoration of the 60th BIRTHDAYS of both D6566 (33 048) and D6575 (33 057). These two locos will be working in top and tail mode so that the leading loco will be hauling an equivalent load of between 5 and 6 coaches, typical of their workload on passenger services such as Cardiff-Crewe and Cardiff-Portsmouth Harbour in the ’80s. This will allow a decent volume of ‘Sulzer sound’.

    As a special arrangement for this service, a birthday cake is being provided by the loco owners and arrangements are being made for tea and coffee to be available, so please BUY A TICKET and come along to support these hard-working locomotives if you can.

    The departure time from Bishops Lydeard will be 11:35 for the trip to Dunster where the trailing locomotive will take the lead for the journey back to Bishops Lydeard, arriving at 14:40. Extension to Norton Fitzwarren will not be possible on the 21st August because the Norton Fitzwarren section is in use that day for other services.

    Our two ‘Cromptons’ each worked on the mainline for more than 35 years before being sold into preservation. The table below gives the vital statistics and shows the longevity of this well-designed and well-built class of ‘very useful locomotives’:

    ‘D’ number TOPS number Manufacturers Serial number Date into traffic Date withdrawn Date into service on WSR

    Length of service

    D6566 33 048 DEL170 26-AUG-61 13-FEB-97 25-OCT-97

    TOTAL: 54 years 3 months

    D6575 33 057 DEL179 04-NOV-61 09-MAY-96 02-JUN-12

    TOTAL: 44 years 10 months 

     

    D6566 approaching York in 1967 on the Cliffe (Kent) to Uddingston (Scotland) cement working. The Kent-based ‘Crompton’ worked the train as far as York where a Class 40 would have taken over for the climb towards Glasgow. Photo from the Ian Robins collection ©

     

    Birmingham Railway Carriage & Wagon Company (BRCW) 1,550 hp Type 3 (later Class 33) serial number DEL170, ‘Crompton’ D6566 (33 048) of August 1961 carries shed plate 73C (Hither Green, Lewisham, Kent) at Williton on 24th December 2020. Photo by Ian Robins © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

     

    From left to right, WSR ‘Mogul’ 2-6-0 number 9351 and Class 33 ‘Cromptons’ D6566 (33 048) and D6575 (33 057) together at Williton on 1st June 2021. Photo by Chris Lawton © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D6575 (33 057) approaches Doncaster with the Cliffe-Uddingston cement working on 4th May 1963. Photo from the Ian Robins collection ©

     

     

    A very big THANK YOU to all who have bought and are buying tickets in support of our 2021 diesel-hauled services, and an equally big thank you to all of the volunteers who have been and are involved in putting on the shows !

    Tickets for the ‘Crompton 60th Birthday Special’  on Saturday 21st August are still available so BUY YOUR TICKET NOW !

    If you have a question, please fill in the contact form on our website. Thanks ! Please help us and help the WSR make these diesel-hauled services a success by buying a ticket to ride !

     

     

    OTHER LOCO NEWS:

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9526 – this loco continues to be busy at the KENT & EAST SUSSEX RAILWAY and has racked up almost 100 hours of work already. Observations from the K&ESR crews have shown that there is a temperature difference between ‘A’ bank and ‘B’ bank of the Paxman 6-cylinder V-type engine and attempts to correct this by tweaking the fuel delivery pumps have not resolved the problem. To avoid putting the engine at risk, a pair of spare fuel pumps will be sent out from Williton this week for calibration as a pair, then fitted to D9526. Hopefully, this will resolve the issue and protect the engine from becoming damaged by the imbalance.

     

    Class 14 D9526 is pictured running around her train at Tenterden on 2nd August 2021, with sister loco D9504 confined to barracks while waiting for a major overhaul. Photo by Jacky Duncan © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

     

    Class 47 47077 ‘NORTH STAR’ – our ‘celebrity’ remains marooned at Bishops Lydeard because of delays in obtaining permission for her oversize road haulage move from Bishops Lydeard to Pickering on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Sadly, we still do not have the date or route information yet, but when we do, it will be shared via a DIESELGEN bulletin.

     

    Class 52 D1010 ‘WESTERN CAMPAIGNER’ – we continue to receive donations towards the restoration of this much-loved loco and we would like to say a big THANK YOU to all who have contributed to the fund to support the £100,000 restoration of D1010. We have had a great start, but this is a big project so please keep the funds rolling in. Rapid progress towards our fund-raising target will result in rapid progress on the restoration work because we can engage sub-contract specialists who can work on the loco 5 days a week, not just on Saturdays.

    Last weekend, the marker light fittings were removed from the cab ends and the heavily corroded areas were taped-up to keep them in position while assessment work continues. The yellow lines drawn on the body show the extent of the cuts that will be made to remove the corroded sheet metal and expose the underlying cab support structure, which is also in need of renewal.

    In parallel, Richard L, a new member of our volunteer electrical engineering team, started work on tracing the fault in the “Run Oil Pressure Switch (ROPS)” circuit that had prevented the ‘A’ engine from running back in June. We intend to run the ‘A’ engine one more time before draining down the coolant and removing the cooler group so that it can be refurbished. Step by step, we are continuing to make progress with our restoration plan (read our restoration plan by clicking on this link).

     

    D1010 with marker lights removed to allow the corroded metal to be cut out at Williton on 7th August 2021. Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D1010 with tape applied to keep the corroded body panels in shape until we are ready to cut them out to allow access to the underlying cab support structure. Seen at Williton on 7th August 2021. Photo by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    We intend to raise £100,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:

     

    After selecting a donation link, you will then be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you want to donate. Please remember to select the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM GovernmentThank you very much for supporting the D1010 Restoration Appeal !

    In addition to funds, we also need plenty of HANDS. If you love the ‘Westerns’ 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 D1010 to full operational condition.

     

    Class 33 D6566 (33 048) – this loco is stabled at Williton and is fully operational and ready to work with sister D6575 (33 057) on the ‘excursion’ special on Saturday 21st August in top-and-tail mode to celebrate their 60th birthdays !

     

    Class 33 D6575 (33 057) – no change – this loco is outstationed at Bishops Lydeard in support of WSR operations and will be working with D6566 (33 048) on the special on 21st August.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7017 – no change – this loco is waiting for its turn to go into the Swindon Shed for bogie disconnection and lifting to replace the weak leaf spring. We are planning to make a start on this work in late October/early November.

     

    Class 35 ‘Hymek’ D7018 – with a break in her duties until the Mixed Traction Weekend of 17-18 September, the opportunity has been taken to perform planned maintenance tasks to keep this popular machine in A1 condition. Here’s a photo of Terry and Chris performing the chassis and bogie lubrication tasks:

    D7018 chassis and bogie grease point maintenance being performed by Terry and Chris at Williton on 3rd August 2021. Photo by Mark Bladwell © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Class 14 ‘Teddy Bear’ D9518 – we are very happy to report that donations to our D9518 restoration fund continue to build and as a result, we are now able to approve the re-installation of the springs, hornguides and wheels. This specialised riveting and alignment work will be performed by WSR Restorations at the Swindon Shed, Williton.

    We intend to raise £10,000 for the whole restoration project so please help us by using one of the below links to make a donation:

     

    After selecting a donation link, you will then be able to use the quantity buttons to select the precise value that you want to donate. Please remember to select the GiftAid option if you are eligible because this will give us a 20% boost via a contribution from HM GovernmentThank you very much for supporting the D9518 Restoration Appeal !

     

    Here’s some photos of the tasks awaiting us this coming week:

    The cab of D9518 is now inside the main shed for restoration. Photo taken at Williton on 7th August 2021 by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    D9518 cab interior view showing almost total disassembly and giving a hint of just how much work there is to be done. Pictured at Williton on 7th August 2021 by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    The wheelsets from D9518 ready for the BLUE gloss that will help return the loco to the NCB livery that she carried when in service at Ashington colliery in Northumberland between 1969 and 1987. Photo taken at Williton on 7th August 2021 by Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    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 operational condition – and see her haul passenger coaches for the first time in her life!

     

     

    Andrew Barclay 578 (ROF 1) – this loco is undergoing bodywork repairs prior to priming and painting. The livery chosen for this loco will be the Government-standard (in 1972) deep bronze green that the loco carried during her days in service at the Royal Ordnance Factory (ROF) in Puriton, near Bridgwater, Somerset.

     

    Many thanks to all of our volunteers who are hard at work cleaning, painting, maintaining, restoring, managing and fund raising for our fleet of heritage locomotives !

     

     

    BOOK REVIEW – this week we have learned that DEPG member and supporter Andrew Royle (not our Staff Rep Andy Royal, different person, different spelling) has released a second edition of “TRACTION TIMES”, a popular and highly enjoyable work that we featured in October last year. His new book is entitled “TRACTION TIMES – A SECOND SELECTION” and is available from Transport Treasury Publishing via this link: https://ttpublishing.co.uk/product/traction-times-a-second-selection/

     

    This 112-page paperback continues in the style of the previous publication and features more high-resolution and fully-captioned photographs from the early days of dieselisation. It is well worth the asking price of £14.50

    ISBN: 9781913251093 – “TRACTION TIMES – A SECOND SELECTION” by Andrew Royle, published by Transport Treasury Publications in August 2021.

     

    We don’t have this one (yet) but we do have many other PRE-OWNED BOOKS that will be added to our online store ASAP. All such books have been donated by members and supporters and ALL PROCEEDS from the sale of pre-owned books goes directly to the D1010 restoration fund. Please use our contact form if you have books that you would like to donate. We welcome your donations!

     

     

    ON SHED: last week, we posed some questions about the following shot of a number of Class 14s on shed at the end of a hard day’s work.:

    Where and when ?

    Several of our readers were quick to point out that the ‘where’ was Bury Bolton Street shed and the ‘when’ was 24th July 2014, the occasion of the largest gathering of the class since the days of the NCB. The same photo with the colour restored is below:

     

    Ten preserved Class 14s on shed at Bury Bolton Street on 24th July 2014 photo by Simon Purvis © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    Many thanks to Simon for sharing his photos, more of which will be shared next week. If you were there and if you have a story to tell, then we would love to hear from you.

     

     

    DEPG NEWS: Following the success of the first three runs of ‘Hymek’ D7018, we can now focus on selling tickets for the fourth run, which takes place on Saturday 21st August with haulage from our Class 33 ‘Cromptons’ D6566 (33 048) and D6575 (33 057).

    A reminder of the running days follows (both are Saturdays):

    • 21 August        – Crompton pair, top and tail, celebrating their 60th birthdays!
    • 25 September  – ‘Hymek’ D7018, with an extension to Norton Fitzwarren

     

    The ticketing links for these services are as below (these are links to the WSR website):

     

    IN ADDITION TO THE ABOVE, we have been advised that our diesels will be in use for the MIXED TRACTION WEEKEND on 17-18 September, the draft timetable for which was reviewed at a Gala Planning Meeting last week and the details of which should be released this week. This new running opportunity will feature an extension to Norton Fitzwarren to provide both additional mileage and additional interest from this little-used section of the line. We will send out a DIESELGEN bulletin as soon as we have timetable details. Meanwhile, mark the date in your diary !

     

     

     

    OTHER DEPG NEWS: A Board meeting was held at Williton and via Zoom on Saturday 14th August, a synopsis of which will be included with the next roundup. One important date for the diaries of all volunteers is the FIRST WEEK OF NOVEMBER because we are planning a WILLITON WORK WEEK so that we can make significant progress on major projects, including D7017.

    September is approaching and all members need to have their memberships up to date in order to be eligible to vote at the forthcoming Annual General Meeting (AGM). Please renew your membership online by clicking this link.

     

    As a REMINDER – the date for the next AGM is set for 14:30 on Saturday 4th September, at Williton Diesel Depot. Formal notices have already been sent out, so please reply to this email if you have not yet received your copies and you believe your membership is up to date.

    By the way, our initiative to offer AGM paperwork by email rather than post resulted in more than 50 members opting for paperless, saving us £50 from DEPG funds for the AGM paperwork alone. Please let us have your email address and you could help us save more in future.

     

     

    DEPG WEBSITE: Our ONLINE SHOP IS NOW LIVE so go ahead and visit our store!

     

     

    WSR NEWS: The WSR are now operating public services to Minehead via a connecting bus service between Dunster and Minehead, so please support these services by buying tickets to ride!

    Don’t forget to read about the WSR appeal by clicking this link – this appeal also needs our support because we need a thriving railway to run on !

     

    The WSR’s Class 03 shunter D2133 waits in the goods yard at Dunster in preparation for the first shunt-release operation of the day on Sunday 8th August 2021. Photo by driver Martin Howard © CC BY-NC 3.0

     

    All members of the WSR family have to do what we can to help and one easy way is to make a donation via the WSR website. Another way is to ensure that all of the timetabled services are a commercial success, so please buy a ticket if you can.

     

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