Saturday, 20 October 2012

Nearly home now

Only blog entry number two and already it's time for a confession.  Your humble scribe had been seduced away on Friday night by the lure of an evening photo charter with three A4s at Shildon (300 miles from home).  Consequently when I turned up at Winchcombe at 06:00 to start cleaning the service engine for the day, I had benefitted from rather less sleep than I would have liked to have done.  I can't tell you therefore quite how thankful I was that Nick (on the left) and Dan, two of the steam loco departments younger members had made the effort to join me and we soon made short work of getting Churchward 28XX, 2807 buffed up and ready.

As it turned out, it wasn't just 2807 that needed to be brought into steam, Hawkesworth Modified Hall, 7903 Foremarke Hall was having a boiler exam today (needless to say she passed with flying colours) which gives me all the excuse that I need for a couple of gratuitous early morning shots of 2807 moving forward to pull 7903 onto the pit.

The big news at the moment on the Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Railway is that the landslip at Chicken Curve has now been fixed and that the steam locomotives are shortly to return to Toddington.  Indeed the 8F will be going there tomorrow for some attention (for more details and the reason why, you'll have to wait until Sunday 28th), but the rest of the steam fleet is expected to remain at Winchcombe for a further week or so.  Fixing Chicken Curve isn't the only bit of work that needs to be completed before the steam fleet can return, and after the service engine was off shed, all available hands proceeded to Toddington to assist in clearing ash from roads 8 & 9 in readiness for a fresh ballasting of the track by the Permanent Way dept.  While we were at it we also erected a telegraph pole onto which floodlights will be installed illuminate the pits.

Feel free to come up with as many 'how many steam loco dept volunteers does it take to install a light pole' jokes as you can.

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