Week ending 15-Aug-21

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‘D’ number TOPS number Manufacturers Serial number Date into traffic Date withdrawn Date into service on WSR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



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 the below link to make a donation:

Thank 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 the below link to make a donation:

Thank 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 !


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